The busy holiday season is quickly approaching and it can be easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle. Despite the craziness that comes with the end of the year, now is the perfect time to think about what you are thankful for and how to express it.
For many, the holidays can be stressful — entertaining guests, checking off someone’s wish list and making appearances at all the holiday parties. Pair that with the colder temps and darker evenings and it can be easy to let that positive attitude fall to the back burner. But did you know that practicing gratitude can lead to more positive emotions, better sleep and even a stronger immune system? Fortunately, expressing gratitude is simpler than you think!
Gratitude for your Friends, Family and Colleagues
Because we see or speak with our friends, family or colleagues often, it can be easy to overlook the simple ways to express gratitude to them and spread a positive vibe.
It’s important to be specific about what you are grateful for. Instead of being grateful for your family or job in general, think of something more specific, like your coworker stepping in to cover a meeting with a tough client when you have multiple deadlines to hit that day, or your child walking the dog so everyone is happy and rested for the evening.
Gratitude in your Mind
Your mind has a tremendous amount of power in determining how your day goes. Practice positivity. When you start to have a negative thought, think of the positives in the situation. Instead of thinking about the dinner that didn’t turn out like the recipe, congratulate yourself for trying something new.
Speaking badly about people and complaining can lead you to a negative headspace. Commit to leaving the gossip behind and choose at least one day a week where you don’t complain even once!
Gratitude in your Behavior
Putting some positivity in your behavior can be as simple as smiling more often. Or maybe you let that car merge in front of you on the way to work, or listen more intently to a story someone is telling you.
You can also pick up litter whenever you see it, offer to teach someone about something new or share some homemade treats with neighbors or co-workers.
Gratitude in the Community
Having a positive impact on people in your community can go far. Who serves you in your community? Your neighborhood barista? Your bus driver? Your trash collector? Taking an extra moment to say thank you or writing a note of thanks can have a big impact.
Try spending an hour volunteering in your community or offering to go to your child’s classroom to be a helper.
These simple tips will help you include an act of kindness in your life each day, leading to increased well-being and satisfaction in your life, even as the day-to-day stressors threaten to knock you off your positivity game.