Thanks Thursday



A friend at work suggested I share a practice they’ve adopted on their team.  It’s “Thanks Thursday.”

They’ve made it a habit to thank each other, and show a little more appreciation, at least one day of the week.  It’s all too easy for time to slip by, and to either take each other for granted, or to think the words of appreciation, but not voice them.

What I like about this idea is that it’s anchored to a day of the week.  I think anchoring things to the day of a week, make it a lot easier to remember.  If you wake up on a Thursday, it’s easy to remember, that it’s “Thanks Thursday.”  Oh yeah, and I like that the name has alliteration.

Cicero taught us that gratitude is the parent of all other virtues.  I can see why.  One of people’s deepest needs is appreciation and acknowledgment.  It’s no wonder that empathic listening (listening until the other person “feels* heard), is the most important communication skill.    An attitude of gratitude also helps us appreciate what we’ve got, while we’ve got it.   There’s a lot of truth in the song, Big Yellow Taxi, that says, “you don’t know what you got till it’s gone.”

With that in mind, I’ve reached out to various folks today to thank them.  I also want to thank the readers of Sources of Insight.  So many of you have spread the word.

Photo by eflon.


  1. I reserve the final 10 minutes of my direct report meetings for appreciation and recognition – anybody can recognize or be recognized. It helps with team building, morale, and engagement.

  2. @ David — It’s great that you create space for thanks. I find that so many things don’t happen, simply because there’s no channel or forum for it.

  3. JD,
    Simple “thank you” goes such a lohohohong way. It’s of no cost but of huge value just to thank someone when you feel like, eh?
    THANK YOU, partner!

  4. JD, I love the idea of “Thanks Thursdays.” it keeps Thanksgiving from being a once-a-year holiday in one country. It makes gratitude king. I am going to put this into practice each week.

  5. @ Alik — Indeed it does, especially when you notice the unnoticeable.

    @ Bryan — I really like the fact that there’s no downside to it. It’s also a great way to avoid the entitlement mindset.

  6. Hi JD .. thank yous are so important … I won’t leave the Nursing Centre until I’ve said thank you to the carers or nurses .. even my mother, now bedridden for 4 3/4 years, says thank you for the things that are done for her – and has a ready smile. Amazing attitude to have .. they’re not gratuitous either – they are true.

    I hope you and the family are having a happy Thanksgiving weekend .. cheers Hilary

  7. Hi J.D
    Reaching out with thankyou’s should be a habit. Dedicating a day of the week starts to create this habit, keep it up…..there are not enough thankyou’s given in this world.
    be good to yourself

  8. @ Hilary — I bet you and your mother make everybody’s day at the Nursing Center. I can’t imagine being bedridden that long. It’s great she keeps her spirit up. It’s so easy to go bitter, but once we go bitter, we lose.

    @ David — It definitely builds momentum. Looking through a lens of appreciation is a great way to see the world, and everyone in our world.

  9. J. D. I started smiling as soon as I saw the words “Thanks Thursday.” So thank YOU for putting a smile on my face and infusing some happiness into my being. I agree with you so much that people need appreciation and love almost more than anything else in this world. Thanks for making a special day for it!

  10. Hi JD,

    Being thankful for what we have is a great way to show our appreciation. It is important to express our thankfullness on a daily basis, so it becomes a positive habit in our lives. Thanks for sharing

  11. @ Sandra — A smile and an infusion of happiness sound like a wonderful thing … so thank you 😉

    @ Dia — While actions often speak louder than words, appreciation is an example where the right words from the heart can go such a long way.

  12. Good suggestion JD and why not spread it out to the whole week on a regular basis? – Motivation Monday, Truth Tuesday, Welcoming Wednesday, Thanks Tuesday, Fabulous Friday, Smiling Saturday, and Spontaneous Sunday. Could be a great competition somewhere as to who can come up with the most inspiring or positive week!

  13. Awesome thoughts on gratitude, JD!

    Anchoring anything to a day of the week or a time or anything else helps us remember it. And what’s more important to remember than gratitude?!

    I’ve always looked at gratitude as a fundamental character trait that not only adds to our happiness, but simply makes us more likeable. The image of an ingrate underscores it.

    Thanks for the post, JD!

  14. @ John — I like that weekly lineup, especially Spontaneous Sunday (and ironically, it matches my life.)

    It actually reminds me of a song I learned in Kindergarten about food and the days of the week. But this is way better.

    @ Ken — I’ve always been grateful, and yet I’ve underestimated the full power of gratitude. It’s far reaching. It’s part of our own flame, and it helps fan the flames of others. I got reminded of this as I pulled together my favorite quotes on gratitude. As Cicero teaches us, gratitude is the parent of all other virtues. That’s powerful stuff.

  15. Thanks for the wonderful post. My new goal is sit at the thanksgiving table with nothing to say, because I already gave thanks to everyone throughout the year on Thanks Thursday. Then again, I will probably just repeat things I’ve already said as one can never be too thankful.

    And thank you J.D. for being a great friend and colleague.

  16. LOVE it! We all want to believe we have these intentions everyday but sometimes the happy thoughts just slip through the cracks. If we have little helpful reminders that guide us through we can stay positive all week. I will make sure to practice my “thanks” on Thursday! 🙂

  17. Thank you JD for all your good words and inspiring wisdom of insight.
    I write down 5 notes of gratitude in a journal before I fall asleep – nearly every night. I sleep better having noted my thanks…

    I need to hear thanks for my efforts too and since my children are all gone, I have started to remind my partner to say thank you for the things I do for him….not just thank you for the lunch on the airplane, but also a thank you for thinking of the lunch and that need being met. After 34 years, he still waits for me to initiate but he will say it – I just know he will surprise me one of these days. It is one of the things I miss with not having my kiddos at home…as they mature they are all 3 very grateful and appreciative of my efforts.

    I hope you were able to visit my blog thank you note to my readers this past week….it was on beauty and I am grateful for it’s grace and being able to share some of that beauty with one reader.

    Aren’t we lucky to be part of this game 🙂

    Again, Thank you JD…and I love the idea sharing…maybe I can get those silent engineers and architects doing the same in 2012

  18. @ Brant — That’s quite the goal. Actually, I like the idea of saying all that needs to be said.

    I learned long ago that you never know when the last time is you’ll see somebody, so make sure you tell them what you feel, while you can, whenever you can.

    @ Meg — This one definitely seems sticky. Here I was thinking, tomorrow is Thursday … oh wait, it’s “Thanks Thursday” … and now I’m automatically shifting into grattitude mode.

    @ Patricia — It sounds like you’ve got a great grattitude habit.

    I grew up believing actions speak louder than words (I still do), but I’ve gone out of my way to use more words when I find it matters to somebody. Tony Robbins made a great point that a lot of our conflicts come down to our rules, and we often have different rules about what it means to show love, or that we care, or that we’re appreciative, etc.

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