Want to be the next big success story? Start by celebrating World Gratitude Day this Saturday. Continue by celebrating the next day. And the next day. And the next day.
Studies show that committing to a daily ritual of gratitude expression can lead to greater success in many aspects of your life. When you express gratitude, you are taking a step back and looking at the big picture of your life. In order to achieve success, you have to define what success means to you. Does it mean a happy and balanced life? A powerful job? A big family? Whatever success means for you, creating a routine that includes gratitude can help you get where you want to be.
These three steps are an easy approach to integrating gratitude into your daily routine.
1. Identify one thing you are grateful for every night before you fall asleep
Instead of lying in bed thinking about the stresses of tomorrow, think about all the things you are grateful for in your life. Start with the simple things like the food you ate that day or the great new song you discovered on your commute to work. Then focus on the things that matter to you: the people in your life, your health, your job, your friends. (Be careful not to focus on materialistic things.) Ending each day on a positive note can have numerous health and mental benefits including lower blood pressure, lower anxiety, stronger immune system, and better sleeping habits, according to research. Isn’t that a recipe for success right there?
2. Turn gratitude into action
While it’s great to remind yourself about wonderful things in your life, successful people are only successful because they act. If you are grateful for your job, show up 15 minutes early one morning to get a head start on the day and impress your boss. If you are grateful for the people in your strong support system, send a text telling them so. And be specific. If you feel cheesy, just tell them it’s some success-building exercise you’re working on.
Not only will your gratitude and positivity rub off on the people around you, but you will begin to create a positive brand for yourself that people will want to be around. Research conducted by The Royal Society shows that employees who think and act in a positive way are three times more likely to flourish.
3. Share the energy
When you put out positive energy into the world, good things are more likely to come to you. The next time you are riding up the elevator with your colleague on a Monday morning, instead of complaining about coming to work on a Monday morning, steer the conversation to more positive topics, like what was fun about your weekend. Instead of venting about your boss to your significant other on the couch over a glass of wine, focus on the things you’ve learned from your boss or that one time you were allowed to join that really big meeting. Studies show that clearing your head space of negative thoughts will allow you to open up your mind to more creative and positive thinking.