Yes, even today at work, I’m thankful and ready to go.

No, I didn’t just pull my head out of the sand. I know as well as anyone what’s going on. Since the election I’ve been talking to colleagues here and across the nation, I’m reading all I can find, and yes, I am very thankful.

As we settle into the pause of Thanksgiving with family and friends, here’s a touch of what I’m thankful for.

These last weeks I’ve been part of some amazing conversations about the future of our country. As one friend said, "I’ve long thought our country needed a cathartic event to get back on track. Perhaps this is it."

This past weekend, several of us sat around a breakfast table. Plates were cleared but we kept talking-for several hours. I just heard about another friend’s "Possibility Potluck" this weekend, where folks felt the need to gather and talk. Sure, in both we recounted all the crazy stuff we’ve heard and fears we share, but we also wrestled with issues that underlie what’s going on. Things we should do, things we can do to help and reach people we should better understand and support. There are fellow Americans who feel they’re not being heard, who recognize as well as we do that there’s a future unfolding yet feel they are being excluded from it. These are important conversations, and for each of them I am thankful.

I just returned from a gathering of groups like ICL from all around the nation. I have never been more impressed by the talent, diversity and forward momentum of my environmental colleagues. On all the issues we care about, our nation’s NGO and nonprofit community is a foundation supporting civil society in America. From local to national, from professional associations in your field of work to organizations supporting your faith, the NGO community of this nation is strong and fully engaged. While many issue groups have been knocked back by this election-and make no mistake, we have Class 5 rapids ahead-the NGO community is as committed to a just, forward-moving future as I’ve ever seen it. We can do this. For that I am thankful.

At last week’s gathering of conservation groups we discussed new strategies. I heard new voices of color, and passionate and articulate voices of youth, complemented by wisdom from voices with years of experience in the trenches. It was all quite inspiring. I’m fired up. For this, too, I am thankful.

I remain fantastically impressed by what the best journalists and commentators are producing and all the ways we can share quality journalism and analysis. We need a robust and strong free press as never before. Don’t just cruise the free sites. Subscribe and support outlets you value. From neighborhood blogs to the New York Times or Washington Post, I am thankful for the robust accountability that only a strong free press can provide.

And then there is you. You are what I’m most thankful for. I got into this work many years ago to protect special places, but I’m still in it because of special people. Because of you. These last weeks I’ve been getting emails and calls. Some of you are dispirited and angry. Others are asking for advice on how to engage. And some are simply reaching out, unsure what the future brings. One of the things ICL does is stitch individual voices into a chorus. We build community to protect the Idaho values we all love.

Here’s the deal: we live and work in one of the most magnificent landscapes on Earth. Get outside and breathe it in. Grab some leaves and crush them in your hands. Smell it. Look around. Working to protect Idaho is a great inspiration.

We have extraordinary organizations and tools that collectively support our actions and our society. Lean on them-and back them with your dollars and actions. We all need the boost as never before.

And from all of us at the Idaho Conservation League: we need you. We need your spirit. We need your support. We need your encouragement, and yes, we need your dollars. But most of all-and this has always been true-we need to have each other’s back. Speaking for ICL’s staff and board, at ICL we always know you have ours. For that I’m especially grateful.

Take a break. Go outside. Talk to people. It’s important to listen, too-remember, two ears, one mouth. Celebrate what we have, and then let’s come together and get to work.

Happy Thanksgiving.