Gratitude, like love, is a choice. It’s a decision you get to make each day, if you like.

When times are good, it’s easy.

When teammates are joyful and energetic and give you that report you needed long before your team’s deadline, showing gratitude is a pleasure.

As it is when the individuals you work with show those “attentive little courtesies” like holding a door open for the next person, listening actively, or interrupting as little as possible in team discussions. 
And yes, saying thank you often.

That’s why we’d rather call our monthly get-together as a tribe our Gratitude Celebration, instead of a retention activity.

Of course, we want retention like all growing organizations do. 
Yet it feels more true to who we are in GO-VA to focus on gratitude, and see retention as a positive side effect. (We retain water. We celebrate and are grateful for good people.)

In one of the Tea with the CEO sessions in January, our CEO Fiona Kesby listened to suggestions from team members who had successfully completed their six-month probation. 
You’ve probably noticed that these sessions are gratitude celebrations in themselves—a chance for Fiona to thank new team members for choosing GO-VA. Six months later, a chance to thank newly regularized team members for their commitment and drive.
In these sessions, it’s not unheard of for team members to speak up and say what they’re thankful for. 
And when that happens, they virtually light up the room.
“One of the many reasons I love living in Cebu is the gratitude I’ve seen, which is at levels I had never seen before,” Fiona said in January. That’s why, about two years ago, she recommended that two values be added to the original 5 in GO-VA’s culture code.

You know which two those are, right? Humility. Gratitude. 

Now, like some important decisions, gratitude (or, for that matter, love) won’t always come easy.  Some days, it’s a real test of willpower and mindset. 
On those days when you meet detours on  your road to productivity and greatness, you’ll be tempted to grouse instead of being grateful.

Here are some ideas that may help:

First, make a gratitude record a part of your day.

Give yourself a little time each day to jot down 3 things you are thankful for. Or be like Oprah and stretch for 5. Author Robin Sharma, who teaches personal mastery, recommends making a daily record of 10 things you are grateful for.

Doing this will remind you that gratitude is a matter of focus.

Focus on what you have, not what you lack.

Second, remember what gratitude is for.

When you learn to be grateful even when some things aren’t working out the way you’d like, you make yourself more resilient. You learn to be thankful not only for special events, although these are great reasons to be thankful.

You learn to become a persistently grateful individual, no matter how many storms may threaten your personal weather. 
Each month, give yourself time to actively show gratitude. Send an email or, better yet, a handwritten Thank You note or card. Surprise a friend or loved one whose gestures or qualities make your life so much better, although that may not be something you’ve recently told them. You can thank a teammate or a client using the Love Gratitude app.

Third, practice accepting gratitude.

Actively expressing gratitude fosters humility and reminds us of how interdependent our lives are, both at work and in our other communities and interests. 
When we win, it’s usually because others have motivated or helped or given us the tools and tactics to challenge our limits.

When we help others win—and receive their gratitude for it—it makes us want to help some more. It makes everyday gratitude an easier choice to make.

If you’re curious about joining a tribe where gratitude is a habit we value, visit  Check out our open roles and apply. 

Come join our tribe!