In everyday life, most of us associate gratitude with saying thank you, but in the practice of well-being, it means more than that. Gratitude is an appreciation of what is valuable or meaningful and is a general state of thankfulness. Practicing gratitude can switch our attention away from negative feelings and emotions. The purpose of gratitude can become important in a time of uncertainty when we can focus on more positive language and emotions. There are a number of benefits to practicing gratitude, both physical and psychological. They include:
- Stronger immune system
- Less bothered by aches and pains
- Lower blood pressure
- Exercising more and taking better care of health
- Sleeping longer and feeling more refreshed upon walking
- Higher levels of positive emotions
- More alert, alive and awake
- More joy and pleasure
- More optimism and happiness
Gratitude can be practiced in the workplace. By noticing the good in the workplace, you can open yourself up to opportunities for growth. In one employee appreciation survey, nearly 70% of the employees said their boss showed them enough appreciation, but 53% of employees admitted they would stay longer at their company if they felt more appreciation from their bosses. In fact, four in five employees report they are motivated to work harder when their bosses show appreciation for their work. Here are some ways you can practice gratitude in the workplace:
- Compliment your colleagues. It is easy to get wrapped up in our routines. But even when you are busy, pausing to notice the accomplishments of a colleague and thanking them goes a long way. When you notice your colleagues or employees performing well, you are less likely to negatively stew over your challenges.
- Write simple thank you notes. You do not have to make a big show of gratitude. A simple post-it note that is left on your monitor or on a colleague’s desk can go a long way.
- Notice the small things. At the end of the day, make a list of three things your team did well. Even if the day was challenging, anyone can find three positives, such as finishing an important project or having a productive meeting. Put this list in a spot at your desk where you will see it.
Want to learn more about how showing gratitude in the workplace? Watch this Blue Cross® Virtual Well-Being webinar. In this webinar, your Virtual Well-Being coordinator discusses how being grateful helps us to rewire our brains to look for the good around us and the positive impacts it has on our bodies and minds. You can also sign up for future employer-focused and general interest webinars here, where you’ll also be able to check out past sessions and resources. Related:
- Supporting Multi-Generational Workforces
- Specialty Benefits and Planning for the Unexpected
- Vaping at Work
Photo credit: Nattakorn Maneerat