Merci. Gracias. Danke. Mahalo. Grazie. Shukriya. Hvala. Tak.
Do you know what all the above words have in common? They all mean Thank you.
These words are verbal expressions of appreciation in different languages. Gratitude begins as a feeling but this is only one side of the coin. The other side is communication-the expression of gratitude. Both, deep feeling and expressive action make up the totality of gratitude. Today, gratitude is widely recognized to play a pivotal role in strengthening relationships, building a common ground and improving health and wellbeing.
Unfortunately, expressing gratitude isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. Some feel awkward, some embarrassed and some don’t have a clue. If you fall in the above category or are just looking for interesting ways to express your gratitude, we’ve got you covered.
Attitude for gratitude toolkit
Say It with Words
Words have power. Using the innate power of words one can communicate gratitude in an impactful way. Saying a simple thank you or penning a short note can work well. Here you have options to explore the tone of your message. Your note of gratitude could be medium-formal or informal, handwritten or virtual. One of the most popular and effective choices is the handwritten note. Leave the message on a post-it or handmade paper-choice is yours.
An added tip is to specify- what you are thankful for and how that person has helped you. Just adding a few details can lift your message, making it more intimate and meaningful.
Handmade with Love
Another firm favourite is the handmade gift. After all, an expression of thankfulness doesn’t need to be expensive to make an impression. Many of us do treasure the drawings gifted by our children, nieces, nephews and so on. This is also an opportunity to flex your creativity. Good at cooking, make a homecooked meal. If art is your thing, make a photo collage interwoven with touches of your art work. You get the drift.
Gifts, Gifts, Gifts!
Though a gift given with affection is great, personalisation takes it to the next level. Check the person’s likes and dislikes and try to align your gift with that. After all, gifting tea to a tea lover is more meaningful than gifting it to someone who isn’t a fan. Another alternative is a gift of encouragement, to support them in their hobby. For example, someone is passionate about gardening, gift them a plant or seeds as a way of saying thank you.
Acts of Service
For some, as actions speak louder than words, acts of service are right up their alley. This can take the form of something as simple as active listening, as in today’s busy and noisy world just having someone to listen to you has become a rarity. Offering little acts of kindness, especially when the receiver of your gratitude needs help is another effective way.
Time is one of the most precious things in today’s hectic world. So, gifting your time is a great way to show appreciation. A good idea is to spend time doing something the other person likes. For example, if they love puzzles, buy one and spend some one-on-one time completing it together. Or how about catching up on a movie together, or even a simple walk in the park could be great ways of spending quality time while also saying thank you.
One good way to become better at expressing gratitude is to actually start with oneself. What about yourself are you grateful for? Your passion, creativity, patience, grit etc. Begin by appreciating yourself. Then, this gratitude for the self can become the stepping stone for expressing gratitude to others in your life.
Expressing gratitude is also about more than just giving a physical gift. Positive Psychology Research has shown that gratitude is a positive emotion, which when expressed, boosts the health and happiness of both the giver and the receiver. Expressing gratitude can truly be a gift that keeps giving. It is a good addition to your daily to do list.
What is your favourite way of expressing gratitude?
Leave a comment and let us know.