Thanks. Merci. Haaw’a. Gracias. Enkosi Kakhulu. Baie Dankie, Thank you.
Since late last October, after an amazing trip that was totally worth being thankful for, I started saying thank you every day. Meaning I wrote, rather texted, what I was thankful for every day and fired it off to my stepmom. In December, I looped another person into my social experiment, asking one of my best friends to join my everyday ‘Thank you’ ritual.
Once a day, I pause (usually in the morning or evening) and text the words, “Today I’m thankful/grateful for….” These little texts of grace are something I look forward to. I also love receiving these missives of gratitude back from my step mom and bestie. And you know what, this attitude of gratitude has made a positive impact on my day to day.
The idea is that this act of that gratitude-filled pause encourages a bunch of stuff: builds relationships, bolsters psychological health and even helps you sleep better according to a recent article by Amy Morin in Forbes. In the last four months expressing gratitude daily has helped boost my mindfulness, grace, calm, and reflection. Sometimes my thankfuls are small and seemingly easy, “I’m thankful for my yummy berry smoothie.” Other times, they’re big, full of heart and even tears. “I’m thankful for a wedding invite to Pender Island.”
Travel Thank Yous
When it comes to travel I feel like I could fill a whole website full of thanks. I’m thankful I’ve been to 14 countries, to have the best travel buddies and to have a family who supported a year away at age 18 that started my life of adventure and adaptability.
I’m thankful I’ve travelled with grandparents when I was young and as an adult. I’m thankful I was a Rotary Exchange student and learned how to adapt to a new culture, new home and news school at the age of 18. I’m thankful I managed to navigate Zanzibar in a time of riot and unrest but really the trip ended up so peaceful and thrifty we stayed for an extra week. I’m thankful my friend travel buds ham it up for my silly photo ops (case in point above at the Mexico City Monument to Revolution).
I’m thankful that I left my phone in a cab in a foreign country full of photos, videos, and memories and it was sent back to me within five days. I’m thankful to have survived a week with a Kiwi/Aussie wolf pack of surfers. I am thankful to have travelled to the Yukon not once but twice to visit amazing friends and road trip under the midnight sun.
I’m thankful I decided to travel to Haida Gwaii six years ago with friends and now it’s my home. I’m thankful that we had so many people travel to our far away archipelago to visit in 2016 and that others are planning to come this year. I’m thankful my family is so good at camping and that my kiddo is a FANTASTIC traveler criss-crossing the Rockies since he was five months old with minimal tears (relatively speaking).
I am thankful to write this blog, have time to write this blog and to receive such thoughtful comments, shares and conversations over it’s content.
The Benefit of Saying Thank You
Since starting my daily thank you practice, I feel more purposeful and less petty. I’m trying not to sweat the small stuff, instead to be thankful for it. And one of the best parts? Scrolling through my text history to read some of my thanks, my step moms and my besties (with accompanying mandatory emjois, of course.)
Still not convinced? These articles by the Huffington Post, Harvard and MindBodyGreen might help. Or even better, try it yourself. You’ll find after a week or so of Thank Yous that gratitude really is the best attitude.
What are you thankful for? Share your thanks in the comments below.