Gratitude doesn’t just boost your mood; it can also transform all of your relationships if you allow it to. Here are just a few ways that gratitude can improve your friendships, connections, and relationships…
Gratitude Heals Relationships
It’s easy to focus on what your spouse is doing wrong or how you feel your friend is failing you. But often, these attitudes toward others create a negative loop. For example, Sharon thought her husband was lazy. The more she told him this, the less he tried to please her. This allowed a negative pattern to continue for months.
Instead of focusing on what others should or shouldn’t be doing, think about what you love about them. You might say, “Yes, my father calls me frequently to offer advice on my job search. It’s comforting to know he cares so much.”
Gratitude Deepens Relationships
Sometimes, gratitude can strengthen a relationship that’s just beginning. For example, Amelia had always been interested in becoming a professional photographer.
At a parents’ night meeting, she discovered one of her daughter’s classmates had a mother who was a professional photographer. The other woman happily chatted with Amelia and answered all of her questions.
Amelia sent a thank-you note the next day. The other mother loved the note and offered to go on a coffee date so she could share more tips with Amelia. The woman went on to become Amelia’s business mentor and guided her through the process of finding clients.
Gratitude Strengthens Relationships
You may not realize it, but when you’re grateful, it shows up in your relationships. For example, if you’re grateful for your mom, you’re likely to demonstrate this without even realizing it. You take the time to listen to her when she calls, you offer to help her with difficult tasks, or you do an enjoyable activity together.
When you express gratitude in your relationships, the other person feels valued and heard. As a result, they want to bless you, too. Often, this creates a continuous cycle of generosity that contributes to positive feelings on both sides.
Let your loved ones know you appreciate them. You can do this by thanking them for something they’ve done or who they are. For example, you might thank a friend for bringing you cookies. But you could also thank her for being so thoughtful when you were in the middle of a difficult time.
Relationships are precious, and you should value them. Spend time each day letting a loved one know you care.