Sometimes people become caught up in the chaos of their busy schedules and forget to remember something very important: showing and giving gratitude. As the emotional support dog on campus, I think that humans could really learn from my kind. Let’s face it: when it comes to showing appreciation, I’ve got that puppy in the bag. Here are some ways you can bring gratitude back into your life.

Identify Things You’re Grateful For

One way to make a habit out of practicing gratitude is to start each day with a list of three things you’re grateful for. Keep in mind it doesn’t need to be anything major. It can be as small as being grateful that you had a yummy breakfast to as big as being grateful a friend was there for you in a difficult time. For me, I’d list toys, treats, and belly scratches!

Praise and Support Others

Nothing makes a person (and a puppy) feel great like hearing praise from their loved ones. So take some time to say kind things to the ones you care about. It will make you both feel good and will strengthen your relationships as well.

Don’t Forget to Say “Thank You”

This one is so basic and simple, but really goes a long way. Saying “thank you” to a stranger can make their day, and maybe remind them to pay it forward and say “thank you” more in their own life.

Spend Time Together and Be Present

Like I’ve said before, people tend to have really busy lives and get caught up in them. But no matter how busy and hectic your life is, it would mean a lot to everyone if you made sure you made time for people. With how popular video chatting is nowadays, you don’t even need to meet up in person anymore to still spend some fun time with your loved ones. This is especially great to utilize when you have family or friends that are far away. 

Not only does spending time with your loved ones show gratitude, but also being present in the moment. Showing the person you are spending time with that they have your full attention can mean a lot, especially in a time with so many distractions.


Accepting Gratitude Given to You

It certainly feels good knowing that someone has shown you gratitude, but sometimes it can be difficult to understand how to respond. Some people prefer to be humble and feel like they need to be dismissive, or some people feel they don’t deserve the kindness. Here are some ways you can accept gratitude shown to you.

  • Allow yourself to receive kindness. You do deserve it! You can even take it on an opportunity to reflect on your actions that made someone grateful.
  • Say “thank you” in response to gifts, compliments, etc.
  • Take a moment to pause before you reply. This is crucial if you are a person who is typically dismissive of compliments and gratitude. Take a moment, consider why this was said to you, and give a genuine response.
  • Show how their gratitude really makes you feel. Don’t be afraid to show the joy that you feel when someone shows you gratitude. Having a vulnerable moment with a loved one will strengthen your relationship.

      Final Thoughts

      Gratitude is an important thing. It can be used to strengthen your bonds with people and grow your self image. I hope this pup has inspired you to show your loved ones gratitude. And if you ever see me around PIMS, be sure to show me some love too!