How To Save Your Family, Your Relationships, and Your Career With Gratitude

At this moment, the majority of you are preparing to eat lots of yummy food and/or be kind to your family members with football playing in the background.

The holidays bring up a whole range of emotions for people because everyone is living in a different set of circumstances.

For some families, the holidays are the highlight because they love getting everybody together in one place. Other families do it out of custom even though the members of them do not enjoy getting together with the rest of the family. And of course there are also so many families around the world that do not get together for the holidays, due either to difficult circumstances or simply because they never prioritized the customs.

It does not matter how people treat the holidays, because holidays are not about the food or the presents or the days off from work or school. Holidays are for something more. They are about gratitude.

Gratitude shows vulnerability to someone/something outside of you, which takes strength.

In family systems, gratitude

  • breaks down long-standing grudges and tensions
  • creates a moment of reflection that allows you to take a breath and be present
  • models for others what gratitude and vulnerability looks like

In relationships, gratitude

  • highlights shared value systems
  • proves vulnerability and is a reminder of commitment
  • can be playful or emotional and can remind the couple of how the relationship began

In jobs and careers, gratitude

  • demonstrates professional etiquette
  • helps you be remembered by clients, investors, and other connections in your network
  • proves vulnerability - again - as an indication of the work or kind of interaction that you value

Thanksgiving is the most clearly stated holiday title we have because it is a command.

It tells you to give thanks, not just stage an elaborate meal.

To be vulnerable, not just tired from the Tryptophan.

To show people what matters to you, not how much turkey you can eat.

In all of the above categories, the most important result of showing gratitude is the diminishment of judgment. How can you judge someone to whom you are saying thanks for something meaningful to you?

Whether you celebrate holidays or not, we could all use a little less judgment around us.