Gratitude – Tis the Season!
Gratitude – it’s my favorite time of the year. It’s the time I review all we’ve done in the year and start to formulate a plan for the coming year. And it’s a time to think about all the people that have helped make our year what it was, good or bad.
We expect it to be good, because expecting things to work out is not wishful thinking, it is choosing to be positive no matter what the consequences. That positive mindset, your thoughts and how you act in the world, can be the greatest asset or the greatest obstacle to freedom. That freedom is the product of gratitude.
Developing a habit of gratitude releases you from those negative expectations and teaches you to focus on the positive. Writing a gratitude journal is key to heling change that self-talk. And expressing your gratitude to the folks that have helped you along the way is one of the best activities you can do.
3 Ways To Express Your Gratitude
There are three ways to express yourself.
- Verbally - Whether it’s personal or for business, be sure to voice your gratitude. With COVID-19 and isolation, you may not have the opportunity. You can use your phone and record a message to send to the. Or use it as your voice mail message over Thanksgiving weekend.
- Using Technology - There are several choices among the Social Media Channels. Microsoft Meeting Rooms and Zoom Chat are popular, free, and easy to use. A friend is using a zoom room for their family to chat on Thanksgiving. A client is using one for their employees to visit since they don’t see each other during shift changes. And another client is having a Facebook live Thank You give=away. They’ll draw names during the live event. Some of my clients like to receive their cards via Facebook.
- My Favorite – Greeting Cards - Yes, good old-fashioned, personally written notes. I choose about 24 friends, family, peers, and clients to send “Gratitude Cards” to. I write each a small note and send them off the Monday before Thanksgiving. It’s important to acknowledge the people that have made a difference in your life and no better way than a special card.
Oops – there is another way, but it doesn’t include sharing with anyone – my Gratitude Journal.
During my current business journey, I bumped into an App that puts a Gratitude Journal on my phone. I tried it for a while, but I’m a pencil and paper gal. I like taking the time to sit in a quiet place and write. I do it every morning for at least an hour. My weekly journal starts with “This week I am grateful for _____________”. Sometimes I have the same focus for my gratitude several weeks in a row, but it comes out differently because of the other influences upon the weeks’ events. So, don’t hesitate to repeat if that’s what is top of mind.
When I was going through some tough times, those little words of gratitude helped lift my spirits and created a different mindset, a mindset of positivity. I would write down all the negative things my inner critic said about me. Those were all the message we received in childhood that resurface as adults. Many of them start with “you always” or “you never”, and there were always the “you should haves”. Then I would write them from a positive mindset using “I’m glad I _______” as the prompt.
Positive mindset should help change your self-talk to break the recording and create a new track of positive messages, to change the recording to one of positive mindset. To do that you need to change your expectations. Happy people expect things to go well; unhappy people have expectations of failure and when they fail, they won’t try again.
Gratitude Journal Writing Prompts
Not sure where to start your Gratitude Journal? Try one of these prompts:
- Where are you in your journey and who helped you get there?
- What are your self-expectations, especially in the current environment?
- How was your work-life balance last week?
- What would you change – if anything – this week?
- Who should you write gratitude notes to?
- What one person in your world should you thank with a special gratitude note?
Getting A Gratitude Journal
There are several lovely journals available to purchase. Some of you may want to record their journey on a digital journal. Here’s a link to a complimentary digital journal you might enjoy using for your business. I teach solopreneurs how to journal for their business. If you'd like help let me know.
Visit my store for a link to a lovely hard-cover Gratitude journal. And you’ll find several small “Happy Journals” you can purchase and use to get started. If you have a friend or family member that journals, these would make nice little “thinking of you” gifts. And please do bookmark the page. I’ll be adding more journals in the near future.
No matter how you journal, please do. Having a gratitude journal will change your expectations about yourself and others in your world.