Are you up for a challenge? It requires only a small time commitment, but it does need mental effort. The benefits may include better relationships, improved health, motivation to achieve goals and greater life satisfaction. You can do this yourself, or better yet – take it into your workplace.
The gratitude challenge is to take time every day to write down what you are grateful for. This is a practice that came out of the work done by Martin Seligman. The idea is journal these things each day, then periodically review them.
The key is in noticing the good things in your life, that are right there in front of you. They are often the small things that we can often take for granted. They can be quiet things that are often drowned out in our conscience because of all the other “noise” and negativity that can dominate.
The results may be subtle
The results may not astound you at first. They build in your psyche. They are part of a journey that you can only realise when you are on the way – not at the outset. Despite the gentleness of this impact, over time research shows the impact of gratitude is considerable.
Gratitude strengthens our relationships, improves our health, motivates us to achieve our goals, and boosts our feelings of satisfaction with life.
Gratitude in the Workplace Challenge
What about gratitude at work?
Imagine what an impact gratitude may have at work. Evidence collected by the Gratitude in the Workplace Challenge included:
- 93% of people agree that grateful bosses are more likely to succeed.
- 88% of people say that expressing gratitude to colleagues makes them feel happier and more fulfilled.
- In one study from Harvard University and Wharton, receiving a “thank you” from a supervisor boosted productivity by more than 50%!
Ways of expressing gratitude at work
There are a range of ideas about how to do this. Here are a few:
- Thank the people who never get thanked – those who do the seemingly thankless work.
- Be authentic – be specific about the way(s) a person, action, or thing has helped you. This increases your own appreciation and it tells the person that you are paying attention, not just going through the motions.
- Find different ways of expressing gratitude – to suit different styles of people.
- Recognise the progress of people you are developing skills in.
How it works?
In workplaces, people are recognised eg positive feedback on results or performance. Real value comes in the appreciation of someone’s contribution. It connects with who the people are and makes them feel valued as people, regardless of the results. It tends to foster greater appreciation of others too.
There is an important social, interpersonal dimension to gratitude. It lies in expressing recognition that someone has helped us. It is acknowledging this as a gift that makes a difference. This expression of gratitude brings people together and this connection is an important component to health and happiness.
Will you join the gratitude in the workplace challenge?
With the benefits of gratitude suggested – stronger social connections, more effective workplaces, more satisfying lives – it may just be worth it. Those who go to work spend a lot of time there. Making it a better and more satisfying experience can surely benefit us all.
Read more about the Gratitude in the Workplace Challenge here