For what are you thankful this year?

Below in the comments I would love for you to share those things for which you are thankful this year.

The proliferation and corporate embracing of the word “dude” is surely something for which to be thankful.
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By the way, did you notice that my title used proper grammar? (“Things For Which I am Thankful” vs. “Things That I am Thankful for”). Five points for me.

It really does seem that this time of year lends itself to more reflection and thankfulness. Part of it might be the weather. Part of it might be, personally at least, my exhaustion with work (this is the craziest time of year for me). And part of it I think is that I know full well that next Thursday if I expect to partake in any of the copious amounts of meat, starches, and sugars, I must have a few ready-made answers to the question, “What are you thankful for?” (Hey, I’m not saying others are going to use proper grammar…just keeping it real here).

Here is a partial list of the things for which I am thankful this year.

  1. That “dude” is becoming increasingly acceptable in business circles. I say “dude” a lot. You’re a dude, I’m a dude, she’s a dude. We’re all dudes, so it’s good that everyone from CEOs to marketing VPs are cool with being labeled as such.
  2. That my daughter is considerably smarter than I am. My daughter is so incredibly smart, among other amazing traits. Which brings me to #3…
  3. That my wife, Tara, has sacrificed career, money, and surely a piece of her sanity to spend virtually the entire day with our daughter. Aracelli is 19 months now and has an incredible mother who, every day, reads 10-30 books a day with her, plays with her, teaches her, and prays with her. I pray that more and more children would be blessed in this way.
  4. That I finally figured out how to delete the wrong email address for one of my contacts, so I no longer email him only to realize that a former boss just got an email making fun of him. (Yes, I know I shouldn’t make fun of people, but really, 72% of my life’s enjoyment comes at the misfortune of others, so please, don’t take away my joy!)
  5. For sunrises. Prior to this year, I had not seen very many, but this year has been amazing. I’ve seen them while writing at the kitchen table. I’ve seen them at the 3 mile marker while running. I’ve seen them while doing nothing at all. I’ve seen them over a warm, dew-covered hill and over a frigid, frost-covered lawn. Every single one of them is beautiful and serves as a reminder that, indeed, God’s mercies are new every morning.
  6. My men’s group at church. This year I found a group of guys who come from all sorts of backgrounds, life experiences, hurts, joys, and races who come together every week to support each other, listen to each other, love each other, and pray for each other. If heaven is better than this group of men (and I know it is), it’s a thousand times better than anything I can imagine.
  7. That the Tigers swept the Yankees. Enough said. One does not have to be a Tigers fan to enjoy a good beating at the Yankees expense.
  8. Chris LoCurto (and the Little LoCurtos as someone called us once). Chris, I’ll make this brief. You are the reason I have hope in my leadership and a vision of what can be with my business. Thank you to you, your wonderful tribe, and to Debbie and Dave Ramsey for allowing you to do so much to help others like me.
  9. That in an era when the average marriage lasts about as long as the average NFL career (3 years-ish), my wife and I will celebrate our fourth anniversary on Thanksgiving Day this year. It hasn’t been all cupcakes and frolicking unicorns, but we have stuck together, often battled our way through adversity, and learned a ton. 
  10. That I continue to learn from so many sources. Here is a short list (and if I have left you off, I either forgot you or didn’t learn a thing from you this year…just kidding). Andy Andrews, whose books have inspired me, educated me, and often moved me to tears), Michael Hyatt, whose book, Platform, inspired me to start this blog, Rick Warren, P.K. Hallinan, Hunter Ingram, who challenges me virtually every week to get out of my box and has loved me better than a brother for more than 17 years, Lily Kreitinger, Dan BlackBret Wortman, Mark Seiverkropp, Brendon Burchard, whose books The Millionaire Messenger and The Charge, rocked my world this year, Joel Fortner, Carol Dublin, Todd Liles, Michael Holmes, Jon Acuff, whose book Quitter made me realize how incredible my “day job” is after all, Joshua Rivers, Luke StokesLaura Johnson, Dan Rockwell (the Leadership Freak), Jon Stolpe and so many others. I am perpetually in class thanks to all of you.
  11. That I literally get to wake up every day excited about the work I do. I work with some of the most amazing people in the world and while there are moments of stress, every day is fun and rewarding.
  12. For you, my readers. Your comments and feedback are the fuel that gets me going most days. I love you all.

For what are you thankful this year?

31 thoughts on “Things For Which I Am Thankful This Year

  1. Todd Liles says:

    We share so many similar likes. So, I give props to my wife. She is doing an amazing job raising oir daughter Willa as a stay at home mom.

  2. Bret Wortman says:

    Just a few things:

    1. I too have been blessed with a wife willing (and able) to spend her days at home with our kids. They’re in school now, but even so, her presence there before and after school is a tremendous influence on their lives.

    2. Schadenfreude. See your #4 above. And here: http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/schadenfreude?s=t

    3. I too give thanks almost daily (not so much lately but that’s because I’ve been lost inside a bunch of business lately) for the tribe I stumbled into through CLo’s blog. Awesome stuff, and I’m praying that this year, our paths will actually cross.

    1. Matt McWilliams says:

      I can always count on your to include a fancy word…I love it!

      1. Bret Wortman says:

        It’s what I do. 😉

    2. Carol Dublin says:

      I agree Bret – I hope our paths cross in real life. Would be so cool to have a CLoBlog meetup! And thanks for the dictionary reference…

      1. Matt McWilliams says:

        You know, we really should do that. Maybe after the New Year, when things clear up a bit for Chris, we could plan something for the spring?

        Nashville (well Franklin) makes sense since that is where Lampo is.

        Just saying…could be really cool.

  3. I’m also happy for #7, #8, and for the book Platform.

    I’m thankful for-
    – My new career
    – My Church
    – Wisdom through adversity

    Question – is it cool to use dude when addressing a women?

    1. Matt McWilliams says:

      See “she’s a dude” in #1 🙂

      Honestly, I don’t call many women “dude” but sometimes I do. You have to test it out in the right environment to see how it goes over, but then again that may be too much effort just to demonstrate your commitment to the awesomeness of a word.

      1. Lily Kreitinger says:

        I think I would be OK, depending on who was saying it to me. For example, I wouldn’t like it from my doctor “Everything looks good, dude” or my priest “Dude, awesome job on Bible study tonight” HA HA!
        However, my little daughter recognizes the awesomeness of the word. She said to her 2 y-o brother “Matthew, you’re a stylish dude!”

      2. Matt McWilliams says:

        Good examples of both! LOL at all three 🙂

      3. Joshua Rivers says:

        Unless you live in California – then it’s okay

      4. Matt McWilliams says:

        Touche. Or a lot of churches in Nashville.

        Come to think of it…a lot of churches around the country actually.

  4. Lily Kreitinger says:

    Wow… got me a little teary-eyed there Matt. Some of us Little LoCurtos are littler than others but quite high on my list of people I am thankful for.

    Very thankful for a wonderful husband and beautiful kids who make my heart smile every day.

    Thankful for my faith and for the way God has put great people in my life to share the journey.

    Very thankful for online communities like this one, extensions of one blog or the other but great opportunities to be challenged to grow.

    Great post!!

    1. Matt McWilliams says:

      HAHA. My wife is 5 feet tall so I’m with you there.

      It is kind of crazy how connected many of us have become in such a short time. And we’re growing as a result!

      1. Lily Kreitinger says:

        Growing… figuratively speaking, of course. ;0)

      2. Lily Kreitinger says:

        And time with me is always “short” Ha!

      3. Matt McWilliams says:

        HAHA at both!

  5. Joshua Rivers says:

    I try to make thanksgiving a daily practice as much as possible (not necessarily the holiday, but that leads to a new idea…). Gratitude has been one of my core values (plug for blog posts :). I tend to slip from time to time and complain a little, but then I have to stop and realize just how good I really have it.

    I have worked a great deal of overtime lately, which is a negative on the energy and time scale, but it looks like this may be our financially best year yet! This year, we were able to get out of debt (again…this time for good!).

    I am so thankful that I took the extra effort to go from justing listening to the Entreleadership podcast to participating in Chris LoCurto’s blog. Not only his great help and encouragement, but the bonding that’s occurred in several of us that are regulars. I’ve grown so much (as Lily stated, figuratively – if I got taller, I’d have to consider the NBA!) from the all the content, resources, suggestions, and connections to other great leaders.

    So many things to be thankful for, but so little time to do it. Thanks for the mention in #10.

    1. Matt McWilliams says:

      You’re probably better at than I am Josh.

      I have to force it sometimes. Yes, I am thankful for this laptop, but dang it why does it have to…sigh.

      I am indeed thankful for people like you!

  6. Jon Stolpe says:

    Matt, I’m humbled that I would even make your list. But you blew me away by putting me in the same company as all those other people.

    It’s amusing that our blogs share a similar theme today. And I’m thankful for getting the grammar correct in my post. Whew!

    5 Things For Which I’m Thankful: My trip to Guatemala this summer, The blogging community, My job, My kids, and My wife.

    You can chime in on my post here: http://www.jonstolpe.com/2012/11/16/ice-breaker-giving-thanks-at-thanksgiving/

    1. Matt McWilliams says:

      Grammarians unite!

      I’ve enjoyed reading your stuff and learning from you Jon!

      1. Jon Stolpe says:

        Thanks, Matt!

  7. skottydog says:

    You had me until #7. I’m a New Yorker, transplanted (what seems like permanantly) in Florida. The Yankees are my boys. And they sucked hard this year. Unfortunately, the NY Rangers didn’t have the opportunity to suck this year…strike and all.

    Having a 5 year old smarter than me…right there with you. A great wife? Mandatory. The use of “dude” in the workplace. Awesome. Being appreciative for my day job? Yes and no.

    But tear down my boys? We’re so not friends anymore.

    And to think I was going to crash Thanksgiving dinner at your house this year!

    I am grateful for:

    ~My incredible wife that is truly the “Yin” to my “Yang”. She deserves a Nobel Prize or something.
    ~Health. Mine, and my family’s. I pray that I continue to make cancer my bitch and keep it out of our lives for good.
    ~A steady income. The day job is tough, but provides well.
    ~The Lampo Group, through which I was introduced to an amazing army of people: the CLo tribe, CLo himself, Jon Acuff, Bryan Allain, Christine Niles, Andrew Zahn, and countless others that endulge me, whether out of genuine interest, or just plain old pity. (I’ll take it, either way!)
    ~Every sunrise or sunset I can witness. Living in Florida’s gulf coast, I have on more than one occasion seen the sun come up an go down over the water. Almost makes having a home valued at -$100K worth it!

    1. Matt McWilliams says:

      Go Sox!

      I can’t argue with any of those Scott. Lampo is amazing and I have had the fortune of getting to know some awesome people (and play flag football with some of them) thanks to my wife working there.

  8. Carol Dublin says:

    Matt – I am honored to be included in such an awesome group. Thank you!

    I am also thankful for the incredible CLoBlog tribe – such an amazing group of people who are so supportive and from whom I learn so much. And also from the Lampo Group – what an amazing team.

    I’m also thankful to work for a nonprofit that makes such a difference in our community – even if it means working overtime (without extra pay, unfortunately since I’m salaried) this time of year.

    I am thankful to have reconnected with a dear friend (and soul mate) who has made my life so much richer.

    And I am thankful for the opportunity to serve in my church as an elder and a covenant partner to a 6th grade confirmation student – what incredible opportunities to learn and grow in my faith.

    Great post Matt!

    1. Matt McWilliams says:

      Awesome list Carol!

      GraceWorks is doing some amazing stuff. I remember it well from my time in Franklin. And yes, this time of year is insane. Don’t see the family much 🙁

  9. Dan Black says:

    What a great list of things to be thankful for. Thank you for mentioning me, it’s an honor. I’m glad you started blogging because I’m learning so much from you, your a wise man! Looking forward to building deeper friendship with you.

    1. Matt McWilliams says:

      Wise? Who you calling wise?

      Thank you Dan. That means a lot. I didn’t post it but I am thankful for every single screw up in life, because I (usually) emerged stronger, smarter, and more humble.

      1. Dan Black says:

        Yes you:) Have you read John Maxwell’s book failing forward? I think you should also write a book on the topic, most times a person learns more from failure than success:)

      2. Matt McWilliams says:

        You are the 4th or 5th person to tell me to read that…so I guess it’s time.

        Thanks for the push…it’s been in the back of my mind for years to write a few books.

      3. Dan Black says:


        Ya man you should. just remember your first book could be an eBook and does not have to be the typical book size (about 200 pages). A small eBook with superb content is a great start.

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