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How Do You Give Thanks?

This is the season of giving, and I’m curious how you “give” thanks. Did you know that showing gratitude can actually have a positive effect on your life, your health, and your overall wellbeing? Research has shown that those who feel grateful are more optimistic, report less depression, and fewer physical complaints. Would you believe that they also earn more money?

A Buddhist exercise, called Naikan (“inside looking” or “self-reflection”). You are asked on a daily basis to ponder these questions: “What have I received from…?” “What have I given to…?” and “What trouble have I caused…?” It’s a structured method that allows us to look at ourselves, our relationships, and our actions with gratitude and kindness…

Many people keep a gratitude journal – writing one or two words on what they feel grateful for during the day. It allows for us to remember the “good” things and not focus on the negative.

Say thank you! From the person who lets you over in traffic; to your partner for being the wonderful person they are. It costs nothing, and puts a smile on everyone’s face.

Take a walk. Notice the beauty of the trees, and the crispness of the air. Give thanks to nature and all its goodness.

Write a letter of thanks. Explain to someone you care about how they’ve changed your life and how blessed you are to have them.

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