- Gratitude is all about showing your appreciation for the good things in your life; and engaging in gratitude practices is incredibly beneficial to your health.
- Some scientifically proven benefits of practicing gratitude include a boost in self-esteem, improved quality of sleep, and enriched relationships.
- One gratitude practice in specific can be especially beneficial to your overall happiness and wellbeing: that’s a little something called making a gratitude visit.
- Making a gratitude visit is simple—all you have to do is write a letter to someone you’re grateful for, explaining your love and appreciation for them!
- While you might feel a little hesitate to do your first gratitude visit, this practice will prove beneficial to both you and the recipient of your letter.
Gratitude. You’ve probably heard this word thrown around recently. Maybe you’ve seen your friend talk about it on their Facebook status or you’ve heard it muttered on the uplifting podcast you listen to each morning. And maybe you even get the gist of it. (For those of you who are out of the loop, gratitude is all about showing appreciation for the good things in your life.) But, I bet that you don’t understand just how beneficial gratitude can be! Or, more specifically, how beneficial certain gratitude practices can be, like making a gratitude visit.
How Does Gratitude Fit Into the Grand Scheme of Things?
First, I want to convince you (if you aren’t already convinced) that gratitude is well worth your time. To start, practicing gratitude is scientifically proven to improve your psychological health, give you a self-esteem boost, help you sleep better, and enrich your relationships. And if science wasn’t enough to convince you, maybe Clinical Therapist DeAnne Joy’s personal testimony will:
“Perhaps most important to living an authentic abundant life is the practice of gratitude. As a clinical therapist for over 25 years and a master transformation coach for over 15, I have worked with hundreds of people at the end of life. An attitude and practice of gratitude is perhaps the most common characteristic that I found among those who were at peace with their own death. These are the people who, at the end of their lives, were able to look back and truly say that they had no regrets.
Even in the face of adversity, obstacles, fear or loss, they found things to be grateful for. Rather than focus on regrets, or what they didn’t do, have, or create in their lives, they chose to focus on those things that they were grateful for. If you talk to anyone on the planet who is joyful, you will find someone who is grateful. Not only are joyful people grateful, it is BECAUSE of their gratitude that they experience joy. But they do so not simply because they are a ‘glass half-full’ person, but because they actively practice it. In whatever manner they choose, they choose gratitude on a daily basis.”
Make a Gratitude Visit: A Foolproof Guide
See? Gratitude is all it’s cracked up to be! Now that you’re convinced, we can delve into a specific gratitude practice that is super beneficial: making a gratitude visit. In simpler terms, making a gratitude visit is writing a letter to a person you’re grateful for! Here’s a complete guide for tackling this task:
1) Identify who you are grateful for and why.
First, you have to think about who you want to write your letter to. Who are you super grateful for? It could be your mom or dad, a friend, a coworker, or even an old teacher who had a lasting impact on you. It could be anybody! Take a minute to think and then decide who the recipient of your letter (gratitude visit) will be.
2) Write a letter to this person explaining why you’re grateful for them.
Now, you simply write your letter! If you’re having trouble figuring out what to say, just speak from your heart. Think back to why you chose this person to write your letter to and be honest about why you appreciate them. They’ll appreciate this more than you know.
3) Deliver the letter, either in person or via mail.
The third step is to deliver your letter! If the recipient of your letter lives nearby and you’re able to drop it off, you’re encouraged to do so. You might decide to read the letter to them or simply preface it before they open it up. If they don’t live nearby, you can simply mail it to them or give them a phone call to, again, read the letter to them if you feel comfortable doing so.
See how easy this gratitude practice is? It might feel a little weird at first, especially if you aren’t used to opening up about your feelings or you simply aren’t used to writing those feelings down. But you will benefit greatly—as you will experience a boost in your wellbeing and overall happiness.