Gratitude is front and foremost on my mind today—very likely because this Monday marks the Canadian Thanksgiving holiday, the very first that I’ll be spending married (my husband is American).
However, like many who plan to share meals and make new memories with friends, family, and loved ones this holiday, I’m mindful of how I practice gratitude and how it translates into my life on a daily basis, not just on Thanksgiving.
Here are eight ways to show thanks and feel the effects of gratefulness on a regular basis…
1. Mindful Gratitude Strengthens Relationships
Sure, when we say the words “thank you” we are making an outward acknowledgement of our gratitude for a door held open, for the offer of a ride home in the rain, and for a cup of coffee made for us in the morning. But how much weight do those habitual words have? Expressing gratitude with a deeper understanding of what exactly we’re thankful for—the people who take the action—creates stronger relationship bonds when others know someone else appreciates them. In fact, a study out of University of California, Berkeley, links expressing gratitude with stronger connections to others and suggests that showing outward thanks supports our existing relationships, and increases our satisfaction with those external bonds.