Updated: Sep 19, 2019
There are quotes abound about the benefit of fostering an attitude of gratitude and there is science to back up these up. Research has shown that by simply keeping a gratitude journal – regularly writing brief reflections on moments for which we’re thankful can significantly increase well being and life satisfaction.
In business saying thank you to staff and colleagues and acknowledging a job well done strengthens your working relationship as the ripple effect of this acknowledgement is increased trust, commitment and confidence. This is true for non-business relationships too!
The effects of gratitude are long lasting – A study from the University of Pennsylvania found that people who wrote and delivered a heartfelt thank-you letter actually felt happier for a full month after and that writing down 3 positive events each day for a week kept happiness levels high for up to 6 months. Share the gratitude and encourage others to do the same.
The best tools for gratitude are journals and thank you notes – by writing down positive things that happen to you and actively acknowledging those who have helped you, you become better at recognising the good in your life, which naturally helps you regularly feel more grateful and thankful. Be specific about what you are grateful for beyond the things that are right in front of you. Allow yourself to notice new things to be thankful for each day - the great service you received in a shop, the smile from your neighbour as they collect the parcel you took in for them whilst they were out.
When you develop an attitude of gratitude you feel a sense of abundance in your life, you appreciate the contributions of others to your life and you recognise and enjoy the little things in life!
For me remaining mindful of what I’ve accomplished each day keeps me grounded and motivates me to move forward with my life in a way that I have designed myself. I am conscious that when I fall into a rut of comparison or overwhelm – the absolute opposite of gratitude, I lose sight of what’s really important, what I have achieved and my personal goals and aspirations.
“Wear gratitude like a cloak and it will feed every corner of your life” - Rumi