Gratitude has been shown to increase happiness in those who practice it. Rather than just focusing on it just during this time of year, consider incorporating gratitude your daily life. From a Harvard Medical School article, here are some ways to cultivate gratitude on a regular basis.
Write a thank-you note
You can make yourself happier and nurture your relationships by writing a thank-you letter expressing your enjoyment and appreciation of that person’s impact on your life. Send it, or better yet, deliver and read it in person if possible. Make a habit of sending at least one gratitude letter a month. Once in a while, write one to yourself.
Thank someone mentally
No time to write? It may help just to think about someone who has done something nice for you, and mentally thank the individual.
Keep a gratitude journal
Make it a habit to write down or share with a loved one thoughts about the gifts you’ve received each day.
Count your blessings
Pick a time every week to sit down and write about your blessings — reflecting on what went right or what you are grateful for. Sometimes it helps to pick a number — such as three to five things — that you will identify each week. As you write, be specific and think about the sensations you felt when something good happened to you.
People who are religious can use prayer to cultivate gratitude on a daily basis.
Mindfulness meditation involves focusing on the present moment without judgment. Although people often focus on a word or phrase (such as “peace”), it is also possible to focus on what you’re grateful for (the warmth of the sun, a pleasant sound, etc.). There are many apps available now that can help you with mindfulness.