Gratitude is a powerful tool that can improve your mood, making you feel happier.
Practising gratitude has also been linked with improved physical health - as well as an enhanced sense of meaning and purpose in life.
Scientists have found that thinking about the things you’re grateful for just twice a week for four weeks:
- Increases life satisfaction
- Improves self-esteem
- Reduces stress
And when you start practising being grateful every day, you’re also more likely to notice and seize opportunities as they arise.
Here’s how to practise gratitude:
- Try to think of just one thing you feel genuinely grateful for.
- It doesn’t have to be something big: it’s often the small things that matter most.
- Once you’ve chosen the thing you’re grateful for, begin to play it over in your mind. Visualise it as clearly as you can. How does it make you feel?
- Stay with this memory and be grateful for it.
- Maybe try saying ‘thank you’ for it - to yourself - or in your mind to whoever was involved.
- Or you could just say ‘thank you’ to the universe, and see how that feels.
- And finally, turn your attention to the future. What is something that you’re really looking forward to?
- Picture yourself enjoying it and see how it feels.
- Maybe also try saying ‘thank you’ for this thing as well - this thing that’s going to happen.
- Anytime you need a boost today or tomorrow, just think again about the thing that you’re grateful for, and the thing you’re looking forward to.
Some tips for developing a regular gratitude practice:
- Plan some time each day or week to think about the things that you’re grateful for.
- Get into the habit of writing them down.
- Vocalise them - tell the people around you that you’re grateful for them.
Richard Branson and Oprah Winfrey are among the celebrity names who swear by practising gratitude. Branson has referred to gratitude as his key to happiness.
Oprah has said: “Opportunities, relationships, even money flowed my way when I learned to be grateful no matter what happened in my life.”
And here’s one of our all-time favourite quotes about gratitude:
“Gratitude turns what we have into enough” - Aesop
Try taking some time to practise gratitude today, and, if you’re a Fika user, let us know what you think in the Fika app’s Community feed. Fika has partnerships with 41 universities across the UK. For a list of Fika’s university partners, please click here.
Do you find it easy to practise gratitude? Join our panel and let us know your thoughts - you’ll get a £10 voucher just for signing up.