It’s not just a religious gesture anymore, now science has shown a link to expressing gratitude and feeling happy. Undoubtedly this is due to the characteristics of gratitude lining up so closely with a sense of well-being, or feeling good. And not only how they line up, but how feeling and expressing thankfulness can impact our health positively and our ability to handle difficulties.
So feeling truly thankful for not only gifts we’ve been given, but for life itself and all that we have and experience may have awesome long-term effects, but it certainly doesn’t come easy for everyone. In fact, one study shows that men have a more difficult time getting a handle on gratitude. Feeling burdened with gifts they may receive instead of accepting them as no-strings attached acts of love, is truly hard for some guys.
Here at Southwest Engines, we’ve found some ways we can all try today to show our gratitude more:
- Smile. It’s easy and it’s effective. Smile at yourself driving in the car. Smile at everyone you meet. It’s the simplest gift you give those around you and it makes both of you feel good.
- Appreciate People and Situations. When anyone does something for you, say “thank you” and be specific with what they did. Even little things are great to acknowledge.
- Opening Praise. We so easily throw out those sarcastic remarks to people, just to jab or get a laugh. Try curbing your impulse to jab or critique and give a few words of praise instead. See what happens in one day when you praise instead of critique!
- Give Back. Now that you are expressing thanks more, take the next step and try giving in return. Give back to society by helping people around you in need, and helping in your community. Look for those you can help every day.
Genuine gratitude requires a certain amount of vulnerability and emotional openness that can be quite awkward for some folks, and so it takes time to purposefully recognize all the things in life that we should not just take for granted. Yet the benefits far outweigh the feelings of being uncomfortable at first. Try increasing your gratitude and your happiness today, and see how it affects those around you.