Kate McKenzie

How to be more thankful


Sometimes it is very easy to complain about all the negative things happening all around us.  We start to be bogged down by little things that annoy us until we burst.  Enter the “Thankfullness Jar.”

A friend of mine, Cathy Yost, shared her wisdom with me several years ago when she told me that every year she picks a word to focus on for the year.  I chose “thankfulness” for this year.  I have been learning that when we choose to state and share what we are thankful for we actually increase our feelings of positivity overall. For example, one study showed that expressing gratitude for someone or for something you have could increase you happiness by 25%. So how do you make expressing gratitude a habit?

My partner Leor and I started a thankfulness jar so we could keep track of all the awesome things that happened. At the end of a long day we would sit down and write what we were thankful about. Sometimes, it was simple things like being thankful for a hot shower or food to eat.  As we started doing it longer though we wanted to celebrate moments by putting them in the jar.  When something great happened in our day we would come home and announce it by placing it in the jar. We plan to wait until Thanksgiving to open our jar and remember all the amazing things that happened over the past year. Then we will start over again.

Seeing each item of thankfulness add up in the jar has been a visual reminder to us every day that the world is in fact still a beautiful place.  Take this opportunity to start your own Thankfullness Jar on your own, with your family or with your co-workers.  After all, it’s an easy way to be 25% happier!


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