As the holidays come around, it can be easy to be thankful for everything we have in our lives. However, when the holiday spirit is long gone, how do we maintain thankful hearts? Below are 6 tips to remind yourself how amazing your life truly is! Remember, a thankful heart is a happy heart
1. Share what you’re thankful for with others
It isn’t difficult to rant about the bad days and situations that got your blood boiling, but how often do you hear someone rant about their good day? Being positive leads others to want to be around you more. In turn, having a more positive outlook on life makes you a happier person. Sounds like a win-win! Try making a “thank-dislike-thank sandwich”. Start out with something that brightened your day or made you smile that you are thankful for, followed by something that you didn’t care for (try not be too negative), and end the conversation with another positive uplift. You can even tell this person how thankful you are for them (brownie points)!
2. Keep a journal or a simple list
Of course it is ideal to keep a journal with all of your happiest moments, but sometimes with the busyness of life, it is better to just keep a list. Whichever works for you, try something you can commit to. Try to think of at least 5 things you are thankful for everyday, but be specific. Your kids, your parents, and your dogs can not be recurring on your list everyday!
3. Take pictures
Right now, make an album titled “Thankfulness”. Try to take at least one picture everyday of something you are thankful for. It could be the sunshine, your home, or a slice of pumpkin pie, but be creative! Try to make your album vary and be unique to you and your experiences. When you are feeling down or having a “Negative Nancy” moment, scroll through the pictures to remind yourself of all of the blessings in your life.
Prayer can be a very positive, uplifting experience. It can elevate your mood and increase your hope for the future. Knowing that you have a relationship with the God that provided you with everything you have gives you a sense of security that your life is in His hands. Don’t take for granted his undeserved blessings. Setting aside a time in your day to pray not only allows you to thank God for His gifts, but also gives you time to reflect on all that you are thankful for.
5. Do the little things…
Being thankful doesn’t have to simply be a feeling, but it should also direct your actions. For those you are thankful to, do a little something. If you husband is your concrete support system, make him his favorite treat or leave him a note to express your gratitude. People in your life don’t know you are thankful for them until you express it in some way. This may seem obvious, but I always tell myself “they know I love them”. Which isn’t necessarily true! It can be very uplifting for this person to hear you tell them or let your actions speak for you and do something kind for them.
6. Give Back
In order to not take for granted all of the people and things in your life, spend time with others who are lacking the blessings you have been given. If you are thankful for your parents, mentor an orphan who needs someone to look up to. If you adore your pets, spend time at an animal shelter with animals that don’t have a home. When you find yourself grumbling about your life, it can be very humbling to donate your time to someone who would give anything to have what you have right now. If you are blessed, go be a blessing!