This coming week is Thanksgiving. To some Thanksgiving simply means food and to others like my children, it means time off of school. Most of us realize Thanksgiving was started to celebrate and give thanks to God and the pilgrim’s neighbors. Recognizing how much the Indians played a part in the pilgrim’s survival. How often do we make a big to-do about our thankfulness? And how often do we make sure our spouses know we are thankful for them or the things they do for us.
“Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.”Abraham Lincoln
Gratitude: Did you Know
Did you know if you google gratitude you will see a bunch of information on gratitude? There are articles by Harvard Health and Psychology Today. Both of them tell you how having a spirit of gratitude is beneficial to your physical, and emotional health. Your personality is greatly improved and so is your social well being. Even your career is affected by gratitude. And your marriage can be affected by a spirit of gratitude. Who would not want all the wonderful benefits in generating a thankful spirit?
Write a thank-you note
How: writing a thank you note can be done on anything. Relly. If you are like me you don’t have a bunch of cards easily and ready to be used at the drop of a hat. So a plane envelope with a scrap of paper will do. Just a quick little note saying “thank you for…” it really is that simple. And yes I need to do this more often myself.
Why: You may be asking yourself why? Or what is the point? Well, I say how about a little possible bost to your health for one. But then again it won’t do you a bit of good if all you ever do is think about yourself. Think about the boost to other feelings of well being.
Thank someone mentally
Why: Although this is probably the laziest way to be thankful it is still beneficial to recognizing someone did something and you need to thank them. This way is not helpful to your spouse. Nor to anyone else to whom you’re thankful. However, the thought does count for something. But I would say try to remember to do some way of letting them know you know and you appreciate it
Say Thank you
How: Just say it. A simple thank you will suffice. It does not have to be fancy to let your spouse or someone else know you are thankful.
Why: Knowing that your spouse or someone else is appreciated builds them up. It gives a type of energy and it lightens their mood.
How: In a world where our lives are on social media. Publicly displayed for all to see. How about publicly stating how your spouse or someone else knows did something you’re thankful for.
Why: letting your spouse know publicly and privately that they did something you appreciated will have benefits in your marriage. Just take a look at all the studies.
Keep a gratitude journal
How: Any notebook will work. I recently bought a notebook that was on the school sales rack at the local Walmart. A cheap 59 cents or dollar notebook will do. It is the perfect time to take notice of all the randomly fabulous things that happened around you or to you. Journaling this way is something you can do daily or weekly.
Why: It seems so obvious why we would say thank you to people but why would we keep a journal but the idea is to develop a more thankful spirit for yourself. Recognizing the positives in your life helps you to be more positive. Be sure to mention your spouse because on the bad days you can remind yourself of why you love them. The world needs more positives.
How: Praying is communication. It is talking to God it can be done silently or out loud. God knows the heart. But speaking your thanks brings it to the mind.
Why: Recognize God’s hand in the blessings you have received each day. Even God needs to be thanked. God is the one who is responsible for all the positives in your life. Recognizing God’s hand in the blessing in your life opens the door for more.
The precepts of the Lord are right, giving joy to the heart. The commands of the Lord are radiant, giving light to the eyes.Psalm 19:8
Sometimes it is a little hard to get started on a new habit. So I have a resource link for you. My friend a wonderful lady who is all about Happiness. The Society of Happy People. She even found a great way to let people know they started a smile. Check out the link to her page. There is a free membership that includes the happiness handbook which includes the 12-month happiness planner. And since it is getting close to Christmas there might even be some great gift ideas.
Amazon has a book for couples called Couple’s Gratitude Journal. This might help you in taking the step towards a grateful spirit with your spouse.
Further Readings on the Subject
- Seven ways to Be Kind in your Marriage
- Beginning to Journaling
- Could you Be Someones Difficult Person