I woke up feeling kind of depressed the other day. It was raining outside, I didn’t work out, and I was just in a funk.

Then, I remembered something I read that said when you feel down or depressed, the best thing for you to do is thank someone for what they have done for you in some way.

The easiest way for me to do that was to fire off text messages to 8 different people telling them how much they mean to me and why.

It made a huge difference in my mood. Like, I felt a physical difference in myself. And even better, a couple of the people I reached out to said they were having a bad morning and that getting my text made them feel better.

I know there is science behind all this. Whenever you express gratitude, all kinds of good stuff fires up in your brain. And that is exactly what happened to me.

You are most likely in the thick of it right now. And I know full well how in your work, you can feel alone, depressed, inadequate, and stressed out. You can go into a dark place at this time of year when everyone is expecting you to be jolly and fun. Hang in there; all that hard work will pay off.

In the meantime, try the gratitude thing.

Reach out to your friends and family. Make connections with your donors. If you know your donors well, point out why you appreciate them beyond their gifts. Be real and sincere. Share something you admire about them.

Notice in yourself if that fog starts to lift. If your mood changes. Gratitude leads to feelings of hope. Expressing gratitude can help change your attitude and bring you a sense of joy.

Give that to yourself and to your donors.