3 Ways Gratitude Will Make You (and your business) Soar
By April Burrows
I’m a person who can easily see what needs to be improved.
In other words I can see flaws, problems and imperfections.
This can be a real gift, however, it can also be a trap. When what you see first t is how something could be better, it’s hard to see what is good now and already improving. I’ve struggled with this in relationships, in organizations and even within myself.
I am discovering that practicing gratitude has many benefits for my own ability to enjoy my life, and it is creating some significant successes in Flow.
1. Gratitude can open you up to discovering gifts and strengths – your own and others’
We recently threw a party to celebrate Flow’s 5th Anniversary and invited our guests to think of a person who had empowered them in some way - whether by something they said, did, noticed etc., and to write a note of thanks to them. . Taking some time to bring to your awareness an event or memory not only gives it a second life but also amplifies it. The act of sharing your gratitude to someone who has done something so profound as empowering you takes the gift of it to a whole new level.
Try it and see!
Here’s one of mine as an example:
Thank you: Mrs. Belbeck
For empowering me by …reaching out to me when I was a child and noticing I liked to sing and making it possible for me to do so.
When I thought of my grade 4 teacher Mrs. Belbeck and named what had actually happened I realized that it was more than just providing opportunity for me to do something fun and that I was good at it, it was an act of empowerment. She saw me when I felt invisible and that had a lasting impact on my life. It helped me learn to see and verbalize the talents and gifts in the people around me. It gave me eyes to see. I now count these abilities as some of the best parts of me.
I had not made this connection until I worked through the gratitude exercise myself. I am DEEPLY grateful to Mrs. Belbeck.
2. Gratitude transforms challenges into a way forward
I heard Tony Robins being interviewed by Oprah and he shared a process he uses whenever he is in search of a solution to a challenging situation.
First put your hands on your heart and feels its power and beauty.
Now, name the unresolved issue – identify its level of intensity from 1-10.
Next, name 3 things you are grateful for. Now feel, see, and experience that gratitude. Pull it through your whole body.
Then say to yourself All I need to
- remember is… OR
- focus on is… OR
- believe is… OR
- do is…
Your heart knows the answer.
I have used this many times when reflecting on client challenges, staffing hurdles, and communication issues and each time I end the exercise feeling very clear about what my next step should be.
3. Gratitude creates a culture of building on strengths, passions and skills
I recently created a Slack (link to Slack) channel for our team called Channel-Awesome. I did this because it was becoming clear to me that for us to find continued success, we need to be on the look-out for our greatness and awesomeness. Unfortunately our flaws can be far too easy to spot, and if we are not careful they will become all we see. That is a huge energy sucker!
Noticing and showing gratitude for our awesomeness not only acts as a huge energy booster, it also highlights the strengths and skills that we can leverage in our business. For example we have received many words of appreciation from our clients about our bookkeeper Mary. Client care is an obvious strength that Mary has and recently we have invited Mary to take a greater role in that area. This helps the company and gives Mary an opportunity to grow in her skills. If those clients had not shared their gratitude for her work, we may not have realized the strength she has to share.
I’m positive that I’m going to keep learning and experiencing the power of gratitude both in my personal life but also in the life of Flow.
Help us bring gratitude into our lives more fully by sharing on Facebook a gratitude for someone who has empowered you and share it directly with them through social media or send it in an email or message.