There is much talk this time of year about gratitude, helping others and saying thanks. While this should be our focus year round, I appreciate the extra momentum too. It’s a great opportunity to pause from our hectic, daily lives to focus on ways to express gratitude.
There are many ways to express gratitude. The easiest is, of course, to say thank you. Be genuine in all that you say and do. It speaks volumes about the gesture and your intent. Here are some other simple ways to express gratitude:
Give compliments, even to strangers. Isn’t it nice when someone randomly compliments your outfit, hair, an action you did? Your compliment can help improve someone’s day, give a boost of confidence and bring a smile to another.
Write your gratitude. Grab a pen and paper and write down 10-20 things you’re grateful for in life. Read this list often, every night before bed for instance, to remind yourself of the good in your life. Because even when we feel like we’re stuck in darkness, from an illness or life challenge, there is still something to be grateful for.
Tell someone how you appreciate them. I’ve been blessed to have some pretty amazing, kind people in my life. I like them knowing how much I appreciate their support, laughs, love and kindness so try to communicate that via cards, texts, calls, gifts, dinners and sometimes simply saying “I appreciate you. Thank you for being in my life.”
Focus on possibilities and opportunities rather than problems and challenges. When I learned I had to not only clear cancer for the third time, but also go through chemo again, I admit a list of challenges popped into my head. Pretty overwhelming. Stepping back to focus on what possibilities and opportunities may come from these challenges really helped switch the focus to being grateful. Examples included an amazing, smart care team, learning new techniques (like cold cap therapy to save my hair) to help others through their cancer journey, meeting new people, gaining insight into new personal strengths and interests, getting opportunities to speak publicly about my cancer journey and more.
Do something for someone else. Yes, I know, you’re busy. In today’s first world society, we’re all busy. And that sometimes makes us get stuck in our life, losing sight of those around us. So take a step back and look around. Does a friend need support? Could a local charity use some help? Have you recently talked to your parents and siblings?
These are just a few suggestions to focus on gratitude. There are TONS of other ways to express gratitude in our own lives and help others be thankful (if you need other ideas, feel free to message me). What are your suggestions?