We know that Thanksgiving has just passed, but have you already stopped giving thanks? We haven’t. Here at iVBS, we are grateful everyday for the little things in lives. From our wonderful clients to the good work that we get to do. Gratitude is one of the most power emotions that you can practice in your everyday life and we know that because we have been reaping its benefits for awhile now.
The Link Between Gratitude and Happiness
Believe it or not, studies have shown a direct link between being thankful and being happy. In a particular study by Robert A. Emmons, Ph.D. (University of California at Davis) and Mike McCullough (University of Miami), random participants were given journaling tasks that focused on different aspects of their daily life. One group was asked to write what they were thankful about each day (positive), another was told to note their daily annoyances (negative), and the third was asked to note anything that affected them (neutral). At the end of the study, the group focusing on thankfulness was found to be more optimistic and in a better general state of mental health than the rest.
The simple act of giving thanks for the little things in life can have such a significant impact on your level of happiness. And yet, it is surprising to see that not many people do it often. When things are going well, we tend to take things for granted. It is only when times get tough that we start looking back and truly understand the value of people or things. By then, it might be too late for appreciation.
Giving Thanks Strengthens Relationships
It is not a myth that saying “thank you” can help your relationships. Yes, that means for both personal and business ones. People like being recognized for their effort, whether it is the simple act of holding the door for someone else, or putting in extra hours at work to finish that proposal. Acknowledging their effort takes little to none on your part, and in return both parties leave feeling way more positive than before.
This also applies to the relationships you have with your clients and customers. We all know that the key to returning clients is to keep them close. And what better way to maintain the relationships than to send a little gratitude their way? Remember that building long lasting relationships take time and saying “thank you” just once a year probably isn’t enough.
A Simple “Thank You” Can Open Doors
Besides strengthening existing relationships, new ones can also be forged by the sharing of these two little words between unacquainted strangers. An Emotion study has shown that strangers who were recipients of gratitude tended to extend the effort to continue the relationship with a new acquaintance.
Perhaps it is a good idea to keep this in mind at your next networking event. While most of you know to follow-up the next day by reaching out to potential leads you met the night before, most forget to say “thank you”. Even if it seems like there was nothing to thank them for, try throwing in a simple “Thank you for the opportunity to connect.” You’ll never know when one of these Thank Yous may lead you to new opportunities down the road.
Being thankful should not be an afterthought, nor should it only occur annually on a fixed calendar date. It is an attitude that, if incorporated into your daily life, has the means to change your life around and possibly turn bad situations into positive ones. Go on and give it a try.
Oh, and we’re thankful that you took the time to read this.
Operational & Administrative Consultant
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