Gratitude is relative: perhaps surrounded by several meanings. Simply, it is the state of being grateful; it is the appreciation of what is dear or valuable.

There are certain times in life when things will go the other way. This is exactly when your practice of gratitude is highly needed. Asides the fact that showing gratitude is an etiquette required by man in his daily activities, it also helps to strengthen relationships with others.

An act of gratitude can be used to apologise or give a cheerful mind to others.

Some of the ways to show gratitude are;

Contentment: The first step in showing gratitude is to appreciate yourself and being contented with what you have.  None will appreciate you if you fail to appreciate yourself.

Say Thank You: Showing appreciation immediately you receive a gift gives a lasting impression. People easily remember when you are thankful or show gratitude. Human is ever-demanding and greedy by nature. Saying “thank you” to your benefactor when they least expect it is a morale booster and could compel them to do more.

Smile: Life is not always rosy. In fact, there are more people on earth experiencing difficulty – least to say. A single grain of smile to the depressed is underrated but can brighten their day and worn away depression. Hitherto, when you receive anything – favour, gift or even smile – from anyone, whether big or small, a smile can speak a lot about how you appreciate such.

Smile is cheap; it cost you nothing.

Send a Message: While sending emails is considered an old method of showing gratitude, many still cherish it. Accompanying the mail with a meaningful gift is always merrier. You can send a short note through an express or snail mail to appreciate your benefactor.

Also, you can compose a short poem or send an email to show your appreciation.

Accept Invitations: when being invited to a party, courtesy demands that you honour such invite. Understandably, you might be having a bad time but your presence really means a lot in strengthening your relationship.

Keep Promise: breaking promises is a bad attitude common among people. For instance, when people take a loan from another party, they feel less pressured especially when it involves a close relative. This reason is not farfetched; private lenders hardly take legal actions, unlike financial institutions. While this is not only bad etiquette, it could be a bad signal in securing future opportunities.

Give/Accept gift: Greediness ruins relationships and severe ties. A gift is always a gift; one penny, multimillion car, advice or even a smile. While some people feel rejecting gift is a norm, it is considered a disrespect in most parts of the world. You don’t have to break a bank to give a gift. Just send one that shows that you really value what they gave to you.

Generally, showing gratitude to others affects them emotionally and psychologically and perhaps, gives them the urge to do more. In fact, it opens several doors to opportunities.

Now is the time to begin. Pick up your phone, pen old benefactors, visit long-time friends and make someone happy today

Gratitude is not inborn; it is learned.

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