It’s common to overlook the importance of a heartfelt “thank you.” Even though we like being on the receiving end of gratitude, we often forget how important it is to give it to others. This tip is not only a reminder to give thanks to people around us, but to also take daily moments to appreciate ourselves, and our accomplishments so far.
Ever have trouble falling asleep at night because you’re focused on how things could be better? Bedtime is a great moment to switch our thinking to gratitude for something we achieved that day, even if it’s a small thing. These thankful thoughts will calm our minds and put us in a pleasant state, while setting up our subconscious to move towards positivity.
One caveat, this attitude should not imply that we should lower our standards and just be thankful for what we have. Gratitude is not about settling for less than we’re capable of. In fact, acknowledging things we’ve done well can actually get the ball rolling to do more things well.
Some great things to reflect on are: small accomplishments you’ve performed through the day; or a good state of mind you achieved during a less than ideal situation; a connection you made with another person that helps grow your relationship; or something you learned or realized that will enhance your life.
Gratitude can make a very significant change in our life. It helps us focus on the good stuff. If we have a positive state of mind, we have a better ability to make solid decisions, which lead to beneficial outcomes, and then make it easier to focus on the good stuff again. It’s like an upward spiral.
Take action: Having a gratitude jar is a great way to remind yourself of what to be thankful for. Step 1: Reflect on a moment, and pull out something about it that you are thankful for. It doesn’t have to be a good moment, in fact a good challenge is to pull gratitude from a difficult situation. Step 2: Write the appreciation on a piece of paper and pop it in a jar. Repeat this regularly and review the contents of the jar frequently. And don’t forget to express this gratitude to others involved.
:: Inspired by Kristin Wong’s Lifehacker article, Why Gratitude Makes You a Happier Person.
Receive weekly mindset strategies to your inbox, and get the useful nuggets of wisdom from 3 top productivity books. Save tons of reading time while creating a smarter, more meaningful life.