In the spirit of Thanksgiving this week I'd love to share with you the benefits and power of two simple words. THANK YOU.
They are two words that have the power to transform our health, happiness, athletic performance and success. Research shows that grateful people are happier and more likely to maintain good friendships. A state of gratitude, according to research by the Institute of HeartMath, also improves the heart's rhythmic functioning, which helps us to reduce stress, think more clearly under pressure and heal physically. It's actually physiologically impossible to be stressed and thankful at the same time. When you are grateful you flood your body and brain with emotions and endorphins that uplift and energize you rather than the stress hormones that drain you.
Gratitude and appreciation are also essential for a healthy work environment. In fact, the number one reason why people leave their jobs is because they don't feel appreciated. A simple thank you and a show of appreciation can make all the difference.
Gratitude is like muscle. The more we do with it the stronger it gets. In this spirit here are 5 ways to practice Thanksgiving every day of the year.
1) Take a Daily Thank You Walk - I started this practice 16 years ago and it changed my life. Take a simple 10-30 minute walk each day and say out loud what you are thankful for. This will set you up for a positive day. I wrote more about this in The Positive Dog .
2) Meal Time Thank You's - On Thanksgiving, or just at dinner go around the table and have each person, including the kids, say what they are thankful for.
3) Gratitude Visit - Martin Seligman, Ph.D., the father of positive psychology, suggests that we write a letter expressing our gratitude to someone. Then we visit this person and read them the letter. His research shows that people who do this are measurably happier and less depressed a month later.
4) Say Thank You at Work - When Doug Conant was the CEO of Campbell Soup he wrote approximately 30,000 thank you notes to his employees and energized the company in the process. Energize and engage your co-workers and team by letting them know you are grateful for them and their work. Organizations spend billions of dollars collectively on recognition programs but the best and cheapest recognition program of all consists of a sincere THANK YOU. And of course don't forget to say thank you to your clients and customers too.
5) Say Thank you and Goodnight – At bedtime reflect on your day, identify and share all that you are thankful for. If you have children you can read Thank You and Goodnight with them and add to it.
I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving. Thank you for allowing me to share this newsletter with you. I'm thankful for YOU.