Easy Gratitude Exercises

Posted by Editor Kristi Heidel

The following contains excerpts from Stephen M. Yoshimura & Kassandra Berzins, Grateful experiences and expressions: the role of gratitude expressions in the link between gratitude experiences and well-being, 17(2) Review of Communications 106-118 (Aug 2015). (View Article).

There are many psychological benefits to expressing gratitude. Here are five, easy exercises to help you express your gratitude every day.

Appreciate Your Partner
Say thank you for the small things that your partner does for you. This can especially go a long way if they perform everyday acts that often go unnoticed. Studies show that men often lag behind women in experiencing and expressing gratitude. However, both will benefit from the effort to be thankful for their relationships. Try not just saying it, but also showing it.

Credit Others with Your Achievements
We like to take credit for our achievements, but when we think about it, are they really all our own? Sometimes we receive a little help along the way. Everyone likes to hear that their advice was helpful, or that it was their help that it made it all possible.

The Gratitude List
Many psychologists suggest keeping a list of everything that you are thankful for. Take time every day to add to your list.

Use Body Language to Thank Someone
Sometimes we say “thank you” in a less than enthusiastic way. Next time you tell someone “thank you”, use body language to boost the thanks so that person knows you really mean it. Smile, lean in, touch their arm –at least look them in the eyes when you tell them.

Gratitude Letter
Write a gratitude letter to someone who has never been properly thanked. Tell them that you appreciate everything they have done for you and what it means to you. Try to make it a real letter and not just an email.

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