Sometimes in the hustle and bustle of everyday life, it’s hard to remember to be grateful. It’s easy to let the daily grind rob you of the experience of being thankful. But it’s important to remember that there’s a lot of good in the world.
Jump ahead to these sections:
- Ways to Show Gratitude to a Friend
- Ways to Show Gratitude to a Family Member
- Ways to Show Gratitude to Your Spouse or Partner
- Ways to Show Gratitude at Work
- Ways to Show Gratitude at School
It can help to change your mindset and remember the things you’re grateful for even if you’re feeling worn down by life. Here are some simple ways to show gratitude even in the busiest of times.
Ways to Show Gratitude to a Friend
Friends are the family you choose. They may even be in a similar life stage that you are. This means they may understand you even better than some of your family members. Here are some ways you can thank friends for their unconditional support.
1. Make them a playlist
Music can get people through some very challenging times in their lives. Make a playlist featuring songs about gratitude.
Let your friends know those songs encapsulate the way you feel about their presence in your life. Music is a great way to foster a good sense of emotional connection.
2. Send a thank you
It’s always nice to take time to reflect on the people you know and think of how they’ve changed your life.
Take a moment to write down all the things you appreciate about your friend. You can send it to your friend in an email or go the old-fashioned route and put pen to paper. Even a quick text is a simple but effective way of expressing your gratitude.
3. Ask your friend how she’s doing and really listen to the response
Part of what we love about our friends is how much they’re there for us in times of need. Friends are often sounding boards and unpaid therapists. Make sure you’re holding up your end of the relationship by doing the same thing for them.
Your friends may be facing the same kinds of uncertainty and anxiety that you are right now. As much as you may need to vent, you need to listen and empathize, too. Being a good friend is the best way to thank someone for doing the same for you.
Ways to Show Gratitude to a Family Member
No one knows us as well as our family knows us. It can be easy to forget to thank your friend for the ways that they support us. Don’t take your family members for granted. Be sure to express your gratitude to them.
Tip: If you're interested in unique ways to honor a loved one who passed away, you can consider a custom urn from a store like Foreverence or even have a memorial diamond made from ashes with a company like Eterneva.
4. Remember that the family that prays together, stays together
If you and your family members are religious, consider leading them in a prayer of gratitude. This can help reaffirm your spirituality and put you all in a good frame of mind.
5. Step up and take on extra responsibility
A lot of times, family members split up housework so everyone constantly does the same chores. For instance, one person might be in charge of doing the dishes, while the other takes out the trash.
If you have an extra few minutes, take chores off a family member’s plate. Add them to your own chore routine instead. It’s a nice way to show your appreciation.
6. Spend quality time with your family members
It’s easy to get isolated, even if you’re sharing space with someone. It’s easy to get distracted by phones or other devices. If you’re at home with your family, have everyone put their phones away. You can play a board game together or cook a meal.
Living apart from your family? Use technology to get closer! Cue up a movie and watch it together while you’re on the phone. Show your gratitude toward your family members by spending time together.
Ways to Show Gratitude to Your Spouse or Partner
When it comes to being in a relationship, teamwork is incredibly important. Your romantic partner is also your life partner. Showing your gratitude is a great way to reaffirm your bond.
7. Purchase a book about gratitude as a gift
Reading gratitude books can provide a great deal of comfort. If your partner has been going through something stressful, a book about gratitude can help. This gift is also the perfect way to show your partner how grateful you are.
8. Write your partner a love note
Lifting your partner up is so important. Keep track of all the little things. Does she step up and order groceries? Does he do a great job keeping the kids entertained?
Write down all the little things your partner does and say thank you. Express your gratitude and your love all at once in a love note.
9. Give your partner a hug
If you’ve been with your partner for several years, odds are you’re past the snuggly honeymoon phase. As responsibilities like work and parenthood crop up, you may lose touch — literally.
Give your partner a hug or a kiss or hold his hand on the couch. These are simple ways to re-establish contact and strengthen your relationship. Affectionate touches can be soothing and therapeutic and they’re a great way to express gratitude.
Ways to Show Gratitude at Work
People spend about a quarter of their lives at work. It’s important to find things about your job that you’re grateful for. When you spend so much of your waking life somewhere, you need to appreciate the good things about it.
That often includes appreciating the people you work with. Expressing gratitude toward your coworkers can be a great way to keep everyone’s morale up. In turn, that can make your work environment even more positive.
10. Recognize people’s hard work
It’s easy to get frustrated and demoralized when you feel as though your work isn’t being noticed or appreciated.
Be sure to uplift your coworkers by praising the work they’re doing. They’ll be happy that their efforts haven’t gone unnoticed. In turn, they’ll be more likely to praise you. It creates a cycle of workplace positivity.
11. Let your boss know your coworker is doing a great job
Has one of your coworkers gone above and beyond at work? Be sure to tell your boss. Your boss may not be there to witness your coworkers doing great things, so this will ensure they get the recognition they deserve.
Bosses also have to field a lot of negativity. They’ll appreciate getting positive feedback, too.
12. Offer to help lighten your coworker’s workload
If you have a coworker who’s struggling to balance work and personal life, see if you can help. Maybe your coworker’s running up to a deadline but has a sick child at home. See if there’s anything you can do to help your coworker meet her deadline. She’ll appreciate it!
Ways to Show Gratitude at School
Students spend almost as much time with their teachers as they do with their parents. Be sure to express gratitude for these underpaid, underappreciated heroes. Teachers aren’t responsible for just teaching your child; they shape the minds of an entire generation.
13. Have your child compile quotes about gratitude
Many great historians and writers have incredible thank you quotes worth exploring. Help your child find some they can attribute and share with their teacher.
Have your child research the people responsible for the quotes. It’s a great homeschooling exercise that also shows gratitude.
14. Send a gift card
Teachers spend a lot of money on their students. They often have to fill in gaps and stock their classrooms with supplies for kids who can’t afford them. Gift cards for stores that carry school supplies are always a great gesture of appreciation.
You can also get a gift card for Starbucks or for a restaurant so they can splurge on themselves a little outside of the classroom.
15. Volunteer to be a classroom helper
It’s always a great help when parents volunteer to help out at school. You can come in and read to younger students or help organize and run classroom parties.
You can also work with the PTA to put together fundraisers to benefit the school. There’s no shortage of ways you can help your child’s school.
Showing Gratitude To Your Loved Ones During Challenging Times
It’s always good to tell people how grateful they are for what they bring to your life. Getting in the habit of expressing gratitude makes that practice even easier to adopt in the long run.
You can do that by thanking the people in your life and by keeping a daily gratitude journal. You won’t just help other people feel good, you may even lift up your own mindset.