How To Develop an Attitude of Gratitude
You are human, you will have negative thoughts running around in your head, and feel discouraged at times. Here is a “How To” guide for practicing gratitude.
- Make a list of things you are thankful for. Typically it’s better to write them down daily. Sometimes you don’t know where to start, so start with basic stuff like the fact that you have working legs, or you can learn new things. Then get more creative like, you got a kiss by your pet, or a child smiled at you, and you got to the bank in time. Once you are more comfortable look for other things to add to your list.
- Tell someone what you are thankful for. Maybe you got some good news, take the opportunity to share it with someone else, so they can also get happy. That list you made in #1, read it to someone else and have them read it to you. Fun activity: when you are sitting around the Thanksgiving table, take turns sharing something you are grateful for.
- Express thanks daily. In the morning when you wake up or at night before bed say 5 things that you are thankful or grateful for each day.
- Thank others. Throughout the day, thank others for their help — particularly people you don’t ordinarily thank, such as cashiers, waiters, or that nice person that let you switch into their lane.
- Compliment people. If you are like Elika, you LOVE compliments. Most people do. Did you know that giving compliments shows appreciation and lifts others’ mood as well as yours?
- Write notes. Put them on your refrigerator, mirrors, and computer to remind you to be thankful. Set a reminder in your phone to gives thanks during your lunch break or at the end of your day.
- Write unexpected thank-you notes. Writing your appreciation prompts loving feelings in others as well as yourself. Take a few minutes out of your day to send a quick text or email to thank someone for something they did or for being in your life. Elika once got a random text saying “thanks for putting up with me and always making me feel human”. She still has that text saved!
- Do small acts of generosity. Give someone your place in line, bring food to a neighbor, volunteer your time, or offer to drop someone off on your way home.
In time, you’ll notice a change in your mood and that your cup is not half empty.
Share some things you’re grateful for, comment below.