5 Ways To Show More Gratitude (Without Keeping A Journal)

I love the idea of making gratitude a bigger force in my life, but I know that I am never going to actually buy one of those gratitude journals and write in it every night before I go to bed. This is something that I see all over the internet and I find it very difficult to believe that people are buying these journals, and logging what they are thankful for every night. I think the intention is beautiful and awesome. But I have a little hunch that people aren’t sticking with it. Of course, I believe that gratitude is super important and even necessary for an impactful and fulfilling life. But I also want to be realistic here-- a journal by my bedside is just not going to work for me. And I don’t think I’m unlike a majority of the population. I’m just not a journal person-- I wasn’t able to keep one when I was 13, and I’m not going to be able to keep one now.

This year, I have been making a more genuine effort to express gratitude toward the people around me, and I’ve been trying to be as creative and modern as I can about it. Below I’ve listed 5 things I’ve been working on in my own life to satisfy my desire to show more gratitude. I only have these 5, so if you have more, please let me know below! I’d love to hear it.

1. Write handwritten thank you cards

The first thing I did in my quest to show more gratitude was stop by Papyrus and purchase some thank you cards. I now keep them in my desk drawer at work, and when something comes up that I appreciate, I jot down a note on the card and hand it to the person I want to thank. It’s shockingly uncommon to receive a handwritten thank you card these days, and it really shows people that you appreciate what they’ve done. Your note can be as long or short as you need it to be, it’s one of those things where the thought really is what counts.

2. Send morning gratitude emails

When was the last time that you received an email that was simply thanking you for something you did? It’s really rare! When you wake up, or when you get to work, try and carve out 3-5 minutes to send someone an email letting them know you admire something they’ve done, that you appreciate the way they handled something, or that you are really thankful for the role they play on your team. This is a quick, easy, and impactful way to show the people around you that you are grateful for the way they do things, and that will always feel good.

3. Surprise someone with a treat or a gift

You can never go wrong with buying someone’s favorite candy or some flowers when they need it most. If someone helped you out or did something that made an impact on you, an awesome way to let them know how grateful you are for that is to leave a present for them and a note. If you can get something that shows you see them, you love them, and you appreciate them, that’s the good stuff right there.

4. Buy someone a drink

If you’re out with someone who has helped you in one way or another, a great way to show them you value what they have done is to pick up their check. This can be for a $50 bar tab or a $2 coffee, it doesn’t make that much of a difference. People like to feel valued, and this is a perfect way to show someone that you value them. If you’re feeling particularly lucky and grateful one day, it will never make you feel worse to pay it forward to a total stranger.

5. Donate to a cause you care about

We all feel lucky and grateful at times, but at those same times, there are people we pass every day who need our help. The absolute best way to let gratitude be a driving force is to pay it forward. So whether that is giving someone $5 on your way home from work, or donating $100 to a cause you care about, try an make that a part of your grateful efforts. It’s one of those things that will only make the world a better place.

Like I said before, gratitude is important and necessary for living an impactful and fulfilling life, so we should be doing what we can to make it a bigger force in our day to day. These are 5 things I’ve been working on to show more gratitude in my own life. What ideas do you have? Comment below and if you have found success with a physical journal, how do you do it!?

Thanks for reading! For more, you can follow me on Instagram or Twitter @therealbenhawes. Have a great week!