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  • Writer's pictureSusie Csorsz Brown

10 specific ways to be more grateful

I think you’re probably noticing a theme in this month’s posts, right? November is an excellent time to specifically be more grateful; it can help strengthen the habit and build your life satisfaction simply by deliberately taking the time to be more grateful. It can, however, feel a little forced and “Pollyanna”-ish if you are not generally already in the habit of being grateful.

Let me give you a few specific suggested activities that will help you embrace more gratitude in your life.

1. Make a list. I know, lists sound like work, but here is the thing: taking a pen and paper and physically writing down things/people/actions/experiences for which you are grateful not only pays homage to that thing, bringing it to the forefront of your attention like a shiny penny, but also it helps seal that thing in your memory bank so you can continue to be grateful for it for a long period of time.

2. Be grateful to specific people. Tell them how you feel. Again, this might feel uncomfortable at first, but the more you share your positive opinions, the more you will spread the joy. Especially let your parenting partner know how much you appreciate them and, even better, letting them know specifically what you appreciate.

3. Keep a gratitude journal. Much like keeping a list, taking the time to remind yourself of the gifts, grace, kindness and other good things you have enjoyed during the passing day helps elevate the seemingly ordinary events into special moments.

4. Pay attention to your language. When communicating about gratitude, it isn’t about how good you are, but rather the kindnesses and good things that others have done on your behalf. Also, make specific comments out loud about the things for which you are grateful. Things, people, actions, etc. Say them out loud, will help you appreciate the story again and also others may overhear, and become inspired as well.

5. Savor the good moments. The more we can take the time to tune in and focus on the positives in our situations, the better we will be able to embrace owning a grateful outlook.

6. Fake it. I know that sounds like a weird suggestion, but just like smiling, faking gratitude actually inspires you to be more grateful for real.

7. Be grateful for your challenges and mishaps. Without challenges and mishaps, we don’t grow to try new things.

8. Volunteer. Volunteering not only makes you feel more grateful for the things that you have 9and maybe take for granted), but will also increase your sense of well-being.

9. Develop your grateful vocabulary. Sure, saying ‘thank you’ is an excellent way to convey your appreciation. Take the time to really give details and express your thoughts to those to whom you are grateful. Write a letter or give them a call. Don’t just think the thoughts; actually sharing them will increase your own levels of gratitude.

10. Embrace the bad as well as the good. Without the hard or challenging times, we wouldn’t understand how good the positive moments are.

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