Gratitude. I’m sure you have heard of this word before and you probably know that it simply means a feeling of thankfulness and appreciation. Gratitude may be a mouthful to pronounce but the act of showing it is actually rather simple and effective to implement. Knowing the power and potential of showing gratitude and subsequently applying it accordingly can be the single most decisive factor in ensuring better degrees of success for yourself. Let’s dwell a little on exactly what gratitude can do for you and subsequently your success. Gratitude instills a positive feeling in you and the people you show it to. It alters your perspective of negative feelings, thoughts or beliefs you may have of yourself or others by alerting these feelings, thoughts and beliefs to the things you are grateful for. Gratitude raises your awareness and focus and it can inspire you to achieve better for yourself and the people around you. In fact, there are numerous other benefits of gratitude. Yet, many people still do not or refuse to shower themselves or the people around them with gratitude. Instead, they put themselves and others down by criticism and condemnation. To see if you fall under this category, take the next few seconds to ponder over the following questions: 1) What exactly are the obstacles that are holding you back from showing gratitude to yourself and to others? 2) How can you overcome these obstacles? 3) How can you unleash an onslaught of gratitude to yourself and to others? The obstacles stated above are mainly negative thoughts, emotions and beliefs that you may possess that are probably not only hindering you from showing gratitude but they are most probably also hindering you from success. However, the chief aim of my article is to show you the importance of showing gratitude and how you can go about doing it. As such, I will not touch in depth about how to overcome these negative thoughts, emotions and beliefs. But if you would like to find out more, please refer to resource box below. Now that you are clearer about the benefits of gratitude, let’s first talk about how you can start showing gratitude to yourself. To start doing this, you must first be appreciative of all your achievements – be it big or small – that you have experienced so far in your life. Ask yourself: when was the last time you actually rewarded yourself for those achievements? If you have constantly been doing so, then good for you and keep it up. If not, then it’s about time you start indulging or pampering yourself with some simple or extravagant (whichever is appropriate) rewards for all your past achievements and the future ones. Next be appreciative of the things you have – your job, work place, house, wealth, family, food and surroundings. I know it can be rather impossible to directly show gratitude to these things but don’t fret. You can actually list down these things and write down thank you notes for each of them to express your gratitude. Keep referring to this list when you’re feeling sad or depressed and you can instantly feel a surge of happiness or positive emotions. So far, I have covered on how you can show gratitude to yourself and the things around you. Now I will touch on how you can show gratitude to the people around you. There are many ways you can express your gratitude to the people around you but I will only list down the few I feel are important and simple to perform. You are however, free to find out or think of others of your own and implement them as you deem fit. 1) Instead of putting down, insulting and complaining about the people around or working under you, try complementing, praising and appreciating them for all they have done for your well-being and your achievements. By doing this, you gain their respect and trust and they are more likely to continually assist you to achieve better. 2) Make a thank you list of all the people you are grateful for and constantly refer to this list to give yourself a better and greater feeling. 3) Give a simple verbal thank you, note of appreciation or even a thank you e-mail to express your gratitude to the people who have assisted you in achievements. 4) Shower the people you are grateful for with small or big cards, gifts, presents or rewards to clearly show them how much you appreciate them. 5) Or simply provide the people around you with gifts that cannot be bought with cash like your valuable time, your sacrifice or something that is of utmost importance to you. Gratitude. The word may be a little complex to pronounce but there is actually nothing complex about performing the act of showing gratitude. Always bear in mind that when you show gratitude to yourself, the things and the people around you, you will definitely hold the key to unlocking your personal growth and ultimately your success.