Across the wide spectrum of mindsets you might have when you walk through the door each day, how often does gratitude make it to the front of your list? If you’re like many of the executive leaders out there, you probably aren’t thinking about being thankful on a daily basis.
Not everyone thinks gratitude is an easy or desirable thing. Joseph Stalin said, “Gratitude is a sickness suffered by dogs.” Actually, dogs are great at saying thanks. They practically make themselves ill expressing their enthusiastic gratitude for even the smallest gift.
Acknowledging life’s every little miracle (like a dog might do) is a habit that humans would benefit to learn. What a wonderful change it would be to view the world through grateful eyes.
Too often your mindset is impacted by the burdens of yesterday or deadlines you face tomorrow. Perhaps you get distracted by the lousy commute you just endured or the fight you had with your spouse or kids on the way out the door.
There are so many things that can shape our outlook at work before we even step into the building. Today, though, we’re going to talk about gratitude.
Gratitude is a word we usually don’t hear about enough. Maybe your minister, priest or rabbi says something occasionally. Yet when we stop and think about it, being grateful can have a big impact on the rest of our thinking.
If you live in modern culture, you should be more grateful than two-thirds of the rest of the world. You should recall that some two-thirds of the world still lives within the immediate need for good soil to farm and live animals to sustain their lives.
Yet if you’re reading this article from a laptop or other mobile device, you likely rely upon some deli or grocery store to buy your food; far removed from the earth producing it.
How does it apply to work?
While we can be thankful for material possessions around us, how can we be grateful for work and the things about your job?
First, are you grateful you have a job? When was the last time you wondered when or from where the next paycheck would come? If yours is a steady situation, be thankful for that.
Read more about leadership with gratitude here.
Next, what about the team around you? Unless you truly work absolutely alone (and there are few of us who really do that), are you grateful for the team?
Or is your attitude about your team less flattering as in, “these guys are trouble.” Or, “It is such a hassle to work with them.”
Shift that thinking to be grateful for the talents, skills, and resources the team can offer. They were hired for a reason, right? Unless you had full control of the hiring process and blew the call, the team assigned to you are precious resources. Be thankful.
Read more about building team trust here.
What about the work itself?
Are you grateful for the scope, depth, and breadth of the work itself? Are you challenged? Do you see the opportunity around you? If so, be VERY grateful.
Here are 16 quotes from wiser minds to remind you to say thanks every day: