Exercise 1: Write your letter
Here, you can write the first draft of your gratitude letter. Alternatively, you can also think about the things you are grateful for and to whom you would like to express your gratitude. Write those ideas down as they will help you to formulate your gratitude letter when you feel ready.
Exercise 2: Sending and/or reading your letter
When your letter is complete (and checked for spelling and grammar), it is time to send it to the recipient. Research shows that this step is the most powerful in improving mental health. You can either:
- send this letter to the person through the post as a real letter, to make it extra beneficial, or email; or
- for even greater benefit, read the letter to the person live, either while visiting, by phone or through a video chat.
If you opt to read the letter, read it slowly and with feeling, while maintaining eye contact. Give the other person time to react. Make a trip down memory lane, especially try to retrieve events that made this person so important to you.
If you have opted to send the letter in the post or via email, make sure the recipient has received it, and then plan a meeting (face-to-face or online) with this person.
If this has worked for you, you may want to repeat the process with a few other people as well.