Gratitude can go a long way

How small moments of acknowledging the good make life worth living

Riley Dorau | Photo Courtesy | Sometimes stopping to smell the flowers really will make you more grateful for life.

Showing gratitude doesn’t have to be complex. It can be as simple as taking an extra minute to pause to appreciate all that’s around you. 

Gratitude is acting, showing up and being present without a reward. The amount of gratitude we acknowledge in our life can influence others to appreciate and find theirs. 

During my freshman year, we didn’t have air conditioning in the dorms so our window was always open. 

I heard someone’s alarm clock once and I had a moment: it was one of those moments where I looked out the window and realized every single person here has a story, each one being different.

That one person’s alarm clock could signify them waking up to go to their class, to breakfast with an old friend or to see their mom for the first time since leaving for school. Anything. 

Moments in life are rapid but permanent. Don’t waste those moments being ungrateful. 

It’s easy to get caught up in life, because there is a lot going on and a lot of wrongdoings. However, one small acknowledgment of gratitude goes a long way. A casual thank-you to the Caribou worker who made your coffee this morning, or a smile to the person next to you in line are examples of the many opportunities to give and show gratitude. 

During the school year, take time to recognize your peers, professors or random people you meet in the dining hall. 

There is a lot to be learned from a grateful heart. In the words of Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes to you, and give thanks continuously. And because all things have contributed to your advancement, you should include all things in your gratitude.”

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