Giving Thanks

November 24, 2015  |   Posted by :   |   Uncategorized

During a month of ‘Thanksgiving’, it is a time to remember the things we have to be grateful for. It is our special time to give thanks… not just for the obvious, like food, but for the thousands of fortunate moments, the multitude of blessings that we receive each year. 

Wouldn’t it be amazing if every day your CEO made it a point to personally greet each of canstockphoto12980373 (2)your employees and say, “Thanks for coming in today.” And imagine what it would be like if no employee left at night without stopping by the CEO’s office to receive the earnestly-felt message, “Thanks for your hard work today; it really meant a lot.”

What would be the long-term impact of adopting this kind of mentality in the corporate world?  And why don’t we gravitate to this approach naturally?  I believe we get so caught up in the “busyness” of business that we often forget about being thankful for the little things, let alone expressing our thanks.  For most of us, our predominant role at work is that of problem-solver.  This role, by definition, heightens our awareness of that which needs “fixing.” As a result, it’s easy to overlook (and undervalue) the things that are working well.

The key then, is to practice increasing our awareness of the positive side of life. 

What are you thankful for?  

How can we make thankfulness an every day habit? 

Here are some tips that will help gratefulness become a natural part of life.

  • Begin by keeping a gratitude journal. Do not write down negative things, only positive ones. As part of this process, work toward increasing your awareness of life’s gifts, both big and small.  For example: “I’m grateful that I made it through that heavy rush hour traffic safely.” “I’m grateful that I got to see a beautiful sunset this evening.”
  • Consider all the good things that come out of something negative happening first. For example: “If that slow driver hadn’t pulled in front of me, I might have gotten a speeding ticket.” “If I hadn’t experienced unemployment, I would never have acquired the skills that helped me find a more fulfilling job.”
  • Avoid focusing on what you do not have, and pay attention to what you do have. For example: “I’m so fortunate to have a warm place to sleep in the winter.” “I’m so fortunate to live in a safe neighborhood where my family can take walks.” “I’m thankful I am able to see the beauty around me.”
  • Think about people you know or have known that have made you thankful, just through their existence. They can be family, friends or even people you have read about or seen on television. Now imagine how many others in the world might have equal impact on you. You just have not met them yet.
  • Think about the places that make you smile: a favorite restaurant, a wooded trail, an exciting city, a great spot from which to view the sky, a hill that you once rolled down. Give thanks for all the special places you experience.
  • Now pass it on. True gratitude involves action. Lend a hand. Pitch in. Make a gift. Give your time. Listen. Give back as often as you can. Even a friendly greeting can make all the difference in the world.
  • Create your own opportunities for gratitude. Do you know someone who never seems happy? Be ready with a smile and a kind word each time you see them. It may require patience, but eventually, they will smile first when they see you. Your interactions with them will gradually be much more pleasant. And guess what? You will have a new reason to be thankful!
  • Let others know when they have done something you are thankful for. For example: “I’ll never forget how you stuck up for me. It meant a lot.” “That email you sent really made my day.” “You make shopping here a pleasure.” An attitude of gratitude spreads like ripples from a tossed pebble, benefiting all it touches.
  • Remember that hard times make good times sweeter. And keep in mind that obstacles and challenges not only make you stronger, but they force you to explore outside of the comfortable routine you have settled into. Without challenges, there can be no progress. Without obstacles, there can be no achievement.  Be thankful for the opportunities that they provide.

If you allow yourself to escape the confines of living in the richest country the world has ever seen, there is nothing that you will not feel grateful for.  

In conclusion, giving thanks is a powerful tool that can dramatically improve your life and the lives of those around you. Start by embracing gratitude’s special day, and then make it a habit!  For more information on employee engagement, please contact Amy Shannon, for a consultation. 


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