I am continuing on with Iona Boniwell’s list of practical, evidence based activities that are connected to the science of positive psychology.
A gratitude visit.
The activity goes like this: think of a person who you are grateful for, who has done something for you. Write a letter to them, describing what they did and how it effected you. Give them a call and arrange to meet them. Then, read the letter aloud to them. (It is interesting that Boniwell is an English author and lecturer and she mentions that in her world, usually the students giggle about the delivery part, but in America this does not happen. I wonder what would happen here in Australia?)
If a person feels uncomfortable making the delivery then it could be just written and posted. A little warning – this activity tends to give a quick ‘pick-me-up’ but is not long lasting. Along with it there is the “usual moral dilemma, such as whom this exercise is really for and if there is something strange in saying ‘thankyou’ to someone else in order to feel better oneself.” (Positive Psychology in a Nutshell page 133)
I have a lovely collection of special notes that my husband and children at different times have written to me. I also have lovely notes my parents and siblings have written. On reflection I wonder if these notes would do a similar thing to the above idea?
Maybe we could all try?
Here’s to special notes being popped in lunch boxes,
here’s to kind notes being left on the kitchen bench,
here’s to txt’s sent to friends and family just letting them know you thought of them!
Valentines Day is coming up, drop a love note to your kids and family!
Happy note writing!
(There are many printable notes if you are interested. I have put one link here, but there are many others.)