“I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought;
and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.” G.K. Chesterton
Expressions of Gratitude
There are various words used to express gratitude: grateful, acknowledge, appreciate, treasure, and thankful, to name a few. For many people, this time of year is when they start counting their blessings and looking back on the past year. They gather their thoughts and reflect on people or experiences for which they are grateful. People believe that gratitude is what feeds their soul. What does gratitude mean to you? How do you show it? Looking for ways to express that gratitude in a meaningful way? Below are examples of how you can show your gratitude to the people you know and love.
How is Your Gratitude Expressed?
Gratitude is more than a feeling, and it’s not enough to just feel grateful. You need to do something with it – that’s where acknowledgement comes in. For example, tell your friends and family why you’re grateful to have them in your life. Acknowledge the impact of their friendship, their support or their love. Whether you sit down to write a note (or email or text), be specific about how they touched your life. Make them feel your gratitude.
How do YOU Show Appreciation?
What do you appreciate about your life? Is it your family? Or your job? Or your health? Or your community? As we and our loved ones, get older, we may not remember his name (Augusten Burroughs), but we remember the quote: “When you have your health, you have everything. When you do not have your health, nothing else matters.” And that is SO true! When you’re in ill health, it’s hard to think of much beyond your personal situation. Being healthy allows you to be more active in your life, business and community. There are many ways to show appreciation in your community for the gifts and blessings you have. Maybe you can assist someone who’s house-bound or bed-bound. Maybe start a food drive to help your local food bank, or drive the van that takes meals to senior citizens. What about a coat drive for foster children – for some, gratitude is a warm coat.
Do you treasure the people in your life? Do they know who you feel about them? And, I’m not just talking this time of year. J Do you show them, in small ways, how much they mean to you? It doesn’t take much – a heartfelt message written in soap on the shower door, having dinner ready on the table for you after you come home from a long day, or clean and folded laundry! Just that fact that someone notices and treasures what you do for them on a daily basis is another form of gratitude.
Whether you are giving thanks for a thoughtful note, a visit from a friend, a delicious meal or a thank you for our service members for keeping this the land of the free and the home of the brave, keep that feeling in your heart all year.
Remember this thought as you go through life – “Gratitude turns what we have into enough.” ~ Unknown.
I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving. If this year, we see our families on Zoom instead of in person, let us be grateful they are well, and hope that next Thanksgiving we will be back to normal. And in that vein, I plan on having an “Attitude of Gratitude!”