Did you know there’s one gateway drug that’s actually good for you? And it’s something that’s especially top of mind as we gather with friends and family for Thanksgiving this week.
Peter Bonanno, director of program development at the Search Inside Yourself Leadership Institute, recently told Greater Good Magazine, “I see gratitude as a gateway drug to empathy in that it’s very positive, it’s easy to get started with … A lot of people have said that it’s helped them to open up a conversation that they’ve needed to have with a business partner or a spouse, something they’ve been holding in, something they’ve been putting off.”
Gratitude is not only a gateway to more empathy. In Peter’s workshops, he’s found it also promotes more kindness and generosity, and makes employees more concerned about social responsibility.
We’ve also written extensively about the perks of gratitude on the Globoforce blog.
In celebration of Thanksgiving this week, we thought we’d share five of our favorite quotes on how transformational gratitude can be in our organizations and our personal lives from some of our favorite speakers, like Brené Brown, Dr. Robert Emmons, and Rasmus Hougaard.
- “If you have an organization where gratitude is a norm and it’s shared throughout the organization, then that’s where you can really start seeing powerful effects – employees really being able to thrive at work, feeling more engaged to be more resilient to challenges that they face … Being appreciated still feels good in the workplace just like it does everywhere else. By bringing gratitude into work, we can break down some of the barriers and some of those false assumptions about what work is supposed to look like.” – Ryan Fehr, associate professor of management at University of Washington School of Business Seattle
- “Research participants consistently described both joyfulness and gratitude as spiritual practices that were bound to a belief in human connectedness and a power greater than us. Their stories and descriptions expanded on this, pointing to a clear distinction between happiness and joy. Participants described happiness as an emotion that’s connected to circumstances, and they described joy as a spiritual way of engaging with the world that’s connected to practicing gratitude. While I was initially taken aback by the relationship between joy and vulnerability, it now makes perfect sense to me, and I can see why gratitude would be the antidote to foreboding joy.” – Brené Brown, researcher, storyteller, and WorkHuman 2018 speaker
- “Acceptance and gratitude are important because these are factors that establish trust and connection, which allows people to become more collaborative and corporative. One of the things that people begin to recognize when they become more mindful is that we are all alike in that everybody wants to be happy and no one wants to suffer. By building our awareness and attention, we start to notice places where we can offer appreciation to those we live and work with, and we are more inclined to be kind and show gratitude. Even in difficult transitions, during change processes, and offering negative feedback, we can show appreciation and gratitude.” – Rasmus Hougaard, WorkHuman speaker and founder of Potential Project
- “Too many executives still have the old attitude of ‘we say thanks with a paycheck.’ They think it makes them more powerful not to express appreciation for the work people do. But they are wrong on every count! Being appreciated is one of the great motivators on any job. You’ll give your best effort if others appreciate your work. In the survey, 81 percent of people said they would work harder for a grateful boss and some 90 percent said that a grateful boss is more likely to succeed because people would rally around him or her and nobody succeeds on their own.” – Janice Kaplan, best-selling author of The Gratitude Diaries
- “I think the concept of ‘celebration’ is crucial for any complete definition of gratitude. Gratitude is essentially a celebration, especially salient in the context of the Globoforce focus on recognizing the worth and value of an employee. Gratitude is a celebration of goodness, of affirming the good in our lives and realizing that it is not there by random or by accident. Someone has intended it for our good. It is also undeserved. So you could say that gratitude is a celebration of undeserved kindness.” Robert Emmons, WorkHuman speaker and the world’s leading expert on gratitude
When is the last time you told someone at work you were grateful for them? It’s never too late to start. And don’t forget – social recognition can help by making gratitude a part of your everyday workflow.
Giving Thanks: 5 of Our Favorite Gratitude Quotes from @dr_bobemmons @brenebrown @rasmusTPP…
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Happy Thanksgiving, readers!