Practicing thankfulness is always wise and beneficial, but during this time of year it is especially appropriate. As I wrote in my recent newsletter, not only are there many things happening around the globe that we can be thankful for; there are also many ways in which we can continue to impact the future of our planet.

During this season of excessive consumerism, I encourage you (and me) to set aside time to consider how we can be positive forces for change. But don’t stop there. Consider the possibilities. Be thankful. AND be active. Support organizations that are practicing sustainable business and ones that are making excellent uses of their resources as they hold out a helping hand to the poor and disadvantaged. Give them either your time or your money – or both. Show your gratitude with action. If you’re looking for suggestions, here are just a few of my favorites: DreamChange, the Pachamama Alliance, Clear Path International, Habitat for Humanity, and Greenpeace.

Each of us possesses the power to make a difference by making small adjustments to our lives that will have big impacts in the future. For example, buying from green and local businesses is good policy and it also sends a message to the big corporations that responsible businesses are more valued by us, the people, the consumers. It’s been demonstrated that spending $100 at a local business contributes $68 to your community, instead of the mere $43 kept there by spending the same amount at a big box store.

When you do find it necessary to acquire more material items, consider simplifying by donating what you don’t need to local shelters and charities. Buy only from corporations that are committed to serving us, the 99%, not the 1%. Let them know you appreciate what they do. Send emails to the ones that are not committed to serving us to let them know why you refuse to support them.

These are just a few ways to make a small impact now and a large impact later as these choices become habits for you and an example for your community.

This is the season for feeling thankful, acknowledging what we have, and for experiencing the bliss of doing good work. Happy Thanksgiving.

For more information about these and other organizations that are already doing a wonderful job, please visit my list of resources:

About John Perkins

John is a founder and board member of Dream Change & The Pachamama Alliance, non-profit organizations devoted to establishing a world future generations will want to inherit & the author of the NY Times bestseller, Confessions Of An Economic Hitman.

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