The Power of ‘Thank you’.
A few weeks ago, I did ‘the usual’ – I lost something, and couldn’t work out how, where or when! It was an old coat and it really wasn’t worth much; to anyone else it was probably insignificant, but it was important to me as it was a Christmas present from my son.
‘Sorry; we don’t have it here…’
It was four to five days before I realized it was missing, and so my chances of getting it back were slim. As I methodically retraced my steps, I received a succession of ‘No. Sorry!’ from every venue I visited. As you can probably imagine, my hopes were running thin when I arrived at my final and last hope; a Coffee Shop. On explaining why I was there they went rummaging behind the scenes – and returned with my coat!
‘A miracle,’ some would say. But no, not really. Rather the power of belief that everyone is doing the best with what they have available, and this coffee shop worked hard to give its customers the best possible service from arriving to leaving. Top marks to them!
As you can imagine, a big Thank you was given to all the staff. And, the relief, and happiness experienced by that small act made me think. Do we spend enough time saying, ‘Thank you?’ Do we realize how powerful those two words are?
The power in those two small words, ‘Thank you’!
Gratitude originally showed itself in the field of positive psychology when Martin Seligman studied the power of gratitude, optimism, forgiveness, happiness, compassion and altruism.
He found that expressing gratitude improves mental, physical and relational well-being.
Being grateful also impacts on the overall experience of happiness and these effects tend to be long lasting.
How can we use the power of gratitude in our everyday life?
Gratitude journals are a good way of recording things that we should be grateful for – as well as being a great way of reminding us of all these things too! So –
Keep your gratitude journal by your bedside, and each night list three to five positive experiences from the day. Elaborate on one of these ideas.
Say ‘thank you’ often – particularly to those who serve you!
Linger on memories of positive moments from the day.
Write a letter of thanks to someone who has made a difference in your life – and give it to him or her in person if possible.
Express gratitude at meals with loved ones.
Practise not gossiping, complaining or judging for a day.
Demonstrate, in words or actions, gratitude to your partner.
Think about what you are grateful for each morning.
And don’t forget yourself! Write down what you appreciate about yourself.
Gratitude exercises are something we use in Cognitive Hypnotherapy. Sometimes it is the smallest thing that makes the biggest difference. If this is something that interests you, let me know and I will send you an exercise.
… time to take stock ……be grateful ……..
So, in these times of turbulent change, maybe it’s time for all of us to take stock and look at what we have to be grateful for. And, even more importantly, say, Thank you,’ a little more often! It’s a guaranteed way to help you feel good about you!