So how do I actually practice gratitude?
Gratitude Journaling is one of the most commonly practiced approaches and doesn’t take much if your time either.
All you need is something to write on! You could simply use some sheets of paper, a note book or even digitally.
A personal account on OneNote would be a great space to note down how you are feeling.
Now, just write something you are grateful for. As simple as that. Maybe now can you think of something else to add to that list?
I would generally try to get three things onto my list each day, but the number of things you write does not have to be set in stone.
And finally, have a think about how often you wish to journal your gratitude? I personally do this daily in a very quick fire way.
It takes a human around two weeks to form a new habit. Try practicing gratitude regularly for two weeks, form a new habit and get a positive boost.
The Gratitude Jar
This one is a great communal activity
For this – you will need lots of pieces of paper or post it notes.
Each day, grab a piece of paper. Write down something you are grateful for and add your name to the paper, and then add it to a jar.
After a period of time – the people who are involved in the activity come together and read through the things you are grateful for.
The activity is great with small groups, or even families to collectively practice gratitude.
- Another variation on this is a gratitude pin board, where the pieces of paper are places on a visible board so people can read through the gratitude notes at their own pace.
A morning meditation practice can also involve gratitude.
You can choose to meditate on things you’re grateful for, or you may find it easier to meditate on how you’ve gotten to where you are now.
To do this, remember the past, both good and bad. Reflect on how far you’ve come since then. This puts the present into context and allows you to clearly see it, helping you feel grateful for what brought you to this point.
The morning is often the best time to practice gratitude meditation, as it sets you up for the day with an optimistic outlook. It can also be beneficial to use your practice as a way to wind down before bed.
A Positivity and Gratitude ceremony
- This activity is great for team building experience
Watch the following video: Gratitude at Work (06:13 – stream)
Now open Microsoft Whiteboard.
Add the following 5 categories
- Things I am grateful for
- People I would like to thank
- Recent a recent success or victory
- Share positive news
- Share one thing that made you happy in the last 24 hours
Go to the share the board option and get a weblink for the board
In the live session – post link to the whiteboard into the chat window. Also share your screen so people can view this if they do not wish to participate
Ask participants to enter the whiteboard, and to add post it notes to the board next to each of the four questions, mentioning that the gratitude is on the left and positivity on the right.
Allow up to 5 minutes to add posit it notes
Finish session by reading out the responses for each question
Here is an example:
16 Things You Can Do to Realize These Benefits
- Journal about things, people, or situations for which you are grateful. Consider including negative situations like avoiding an accident, for instance.
- Think about someone for whom you are grateful
- Write a gratitude letter to someone for whom you are thankful. Consider sending it or giving it to them in person.
- Meditate on gratitude (present moment awareness).
- Do the “Count Your Blessings” exercise (at the end of the day, write down three things for which you were grateful)
- Practice saying “thank you” in a real and meaningful way. Be specific. For example, “Thank you for taking the time to read this article and leave a comment. I enjoy reading your contributions because they broaden my understanding of this subject.”
- Write thank you notes. Some might say this is a lost art. Challenge yourself to write one hand-written note every week for one month.
- If religious, pray about your gratitude or use specific prayers of gratitude. Interfaith Worker Justice offers Muslim, Jewish, and Christian examples. Secular Seasons has several graces and invocations. You also can find a collection of secular gratitude approaches on Be. Orlando Humanist Fellowship.
- Recall a negative event. Doing this helps you appreciate your current situation.
- Be mindful of your five senses. How does each enhance your life?
- Create visual reminders to practice gratitude. Sticky notes, notifications, and people are great for this.
- Focus on the good that others have done on your behalf.
- Actions lead to gratitude. Smile, say thank you, and write gratitude letters.
- Be grateful gazer. Be on the lookout for opportunities to feel grateful.
- Give something up. We tend to adapt to newness; sometimes it’s a good idea to give something up so that we can increase our appreciation of it.
- Think about what your life would be like if a specific positive event wouldn’t have happened. Write all the decisions and events that would have been different in your life. For instance, what if you didn’t meet your spouse? What if you didn’t get the dream job you have now? What if you hadn’t stopped a particular bad habit?