The last several years, my social media feed spent the entire month of November awash in gratitude. It’s become popular to post something you are grateful for each day throughout the month as we head into Thanksgiving. While it’s heartwarming and inspiring to see these moments of appreciation peppered throughout my day, it also reminds me that being grateful is something we need to make a priority all 365 days of the year.
Why gratitude matters
Whether we’re thanking or being thanked, expressions of gratitude create an atmosphere of positive thinking. A simple thank you, as an example, tells us we’re appreciated. That can go a long way in lifting our spirits. From the other side of the coin, expressing our heartfelt thanks brings to the foreground all the ways we are blessed.
How to express your gratitude
Sure, a simple thank you is a good start. Let’s make the effort to include verbiage like “please” and “thank you” in our everyday communication with one another. But let’s not stop there! Here are 6 more ways we can express gratitude in our marriages:
1. Go ahead and tell others about the awesome job your spouse did making dinner or how lucky you are to have such a great partner. Even better, let your spouse hear you bragging.
2. When your spouse tells you about their day, listen. Ask questions. Show genuine interest. The things that excite your spouse may not be that tantalizing to you, but this isn’t really about interest in his hobby or work, it’s about being interested in him or her.
3. Ask for your spouse’s opinion. Letting someone know you value their input translates to “I value you.”
4. Surprise your spouse with small gifts or notes. A little bit of chocolate snuck into a lunch box or a post-it note of thanks stuck on the steering wheel can make a big impact.
5. We all have chores we loathe. Take on your spouse’s least favorite task around the house.
6. During your prayer time together, make sure you include your spouse in the list of things you thank God for.
Challenge: Make it a point to show your gratitude – in big ways and small, subtle ways – daily. How will you show your love and appreciation?