How Gratitude Can Change Your Life

How Gratitude Can Change Your Life

“If the only prayer you say in your life is ‘thank you,’ that would suffice.” – Meister Eckhart

Gratitude means thankfulness, counting your blessings, noticing simple pleasures, and acknowledging everything that you receive. It means learning to live your life as if everything were a miracle, and being aware on a continuous basis of how much you’ve been given. Gratitude shifts your focus from what your life lacks to the abundance that is already present. In addition, behavioral and psychological research has shown the surprising life improvements that can stem from the practice of gratitude. Giving thanks makes people happier and more resilient, it strengthens relationships, it improves health, and it reduces stress.

Research Shows Gratitude Heightens Quality of Life

Two psychologists, Michael McCollough of Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, and Robert Emmons of the University of California at Davis, wrote an article about an experiment they conducted on gratitude and its impact on well-being. The study split several hundred people into three different groups and all of the participants were asked to keep daily diaries. The first group kept a diary of the events that occurred during the day without being told specifically to write about either good or bad things; the second group was told to record their unpleasant experiences; and the last group was instructed to make a daily list of things for which they were grateful. The results of the study indicated that daily gratitude exercises resulted in higher reported levels of alertness, enthusiasm, determination, optimism, and energy. In addition, those in the gratitude group experienced less depression and stress, were more likely to help others, exercised more regularly, and made greater progress toward achieving personal goals.

Dr. Emmons – who has been studying gratitude for almost ten years and is considered by many to be the world’s leading authority on gratitude – is author of the book, “Thanks!: How the New Science of Gratitude Can Make You Happier”. The information in this book is based on research involving thousands of people conducted by a number of different researchers around the world. One of the things these studies show is that practicing gratitude can increase happiness levels by around 25%. This is significant, among other things, because just as there’s a certain weight that feels natural to your body and which your body strives to maintain, your basic level of happiness is set at a predetermined point. If something bad happens to you during the day, your happiness can drop momentarily, but then it returns to its natural set-point. Likewise, if something positive happens to you, your level of happiness rises, and then it returns once again to your “happiness set-point”. A practice of gratitude raises your “happiness set-point” so you can remain at a higher level of happiness regardless of outside circumstances.

In addition, Dr. Emmons’ research shows that those who practice gratitude tend to be more creative, bounce back more quickly from adversity, have a stronger immune system, and have stronger social relationships than those who don’t practice gratitude. He further points out that “To say we feel grateful is not to say that everything in our lives is necessarily great. It just means we are aware of our blessings.”

Notice and Appreciate Each Day’s Gifts

People tend to take for granted the good that is already present in their lives. There’s a gratitude exercise that instructs that you should imagine losing some of the things that you take for granted, such as your home, your ability to see or hear, your ability to walk, or anything that currently gives you comfort. Then imagine getting each of these things back, one by one, and consider how grateful you would be for each and every one. In addition, you need to start finding joy in the small things instead of holding out for big achievements—such as getting the promotion, having a comfortable nest egg saved up, getting married, having the baby, and so on–before allowing yourself to feel gratitude and joy.

Another way to use giving thanks to appreciate life more fully is to use gratitude to help you put things in their proper perspective. When things don’t go your way, remember that every difficulty carries within it the seeds of an equal or greater benefit. In the face of adversity ask yourself: “What’s good about this?”, “What can I learn from this?”, and “How can I benefit from this?”

There are Many Ways to Practice Gratitude

A common method to develop the practice of gratitude is to keep a gratitude journal, a concept that was made famous by Sarah Ban Breathnach’s book “Simple Abundance Journal of Gratitude”. This exercise basically consists of writing down every day a list of three to ten things for which you are grateful; you can do this first thing in the morning or before going to bed at night. Another exercise you can try is to write a gratitude letter to a person who has exerted a positive influence in your life but whom you have not properly thanked. Some experts suggest that you set up a meeting with this person and read the letter to them face to face.

Last year millions of people took the challenge proposed by Will Bowen, a Kansas City minister, to go 21 days without complaining, criticizing, or gossiping. To help condition the participants to stop complaining, they each wore a purple No-Complaint wristband. Several authors in the self-improvement genre have suggested that people do something similar to help condition themselves to be constantly aware of the things in life that they’re grateful for.

A variation of the wristband concept is to create a gratitude charm bracelet, with either one meaningful charm or different charms representing the things you’re most grateful for. For example, you could have a charm shaped like a heart to symbolize your significant other, figurines to represent different family members, an apple to represent health, a dollar sign to symbolize abundance, a charm that represents your current profession or a future career, and maybe a charm that makes you laugh to represent humor and joy.

Conclusion

Once you become oriented toward looking for things to be grateful for, you will find that you begin to appreciate simple pleasures and things that you previously took for granted. Gratitude should not be just a reaction to getting what you want, but an all-the-time gratitude, the kind where you notice the little things and where you constantly look for the good even in unpleasant situations. Today, start bringing gratitude to your experiences, instead of waiting for a positive experience in order to feel grateful; in this way, you’ll be on your way toward becoming a master of gratitude.

Photo by martinak15

Latest posts by Marelisa Fabrega (see all)

100 Comments

  1. It may be the most important virtue of all: gratitude. Practicing it alone can transform your life! Thank you,
    Todd

    Todds last blog post..24 Hours Of Living ‘In The Flow’

    Reply
    • I agree completely that the most important virtue of all is gratitude . I began a morning graitude blog about a month ago at goodmorninggratitude.com and the half hour to 45 minuters each day of attention to being grateful has profoundly altered my perspective and the quality of my life beyond my ability to explain it.

      Reply
      • I’ve been keeping a gratitude journal lately. I’ve found that recording it has helped me be more grateful because I can review things and remember them and how blessed I am.

        Reply
    • It certainly is ”The Mother of All Virtues”. I practice gratitude every single day for everything that I have and also don’t have. I completely agree with you that that alone can transform one’s life and it has transformed mine.

      God Bless

      Reply
    • Thank you for this great attitude.

      Whilst studies and research is good we have already been informed of the benefits of gratitude over 1400 years ago:

      And [remember] when your Lord proclaimed, ‘If you are grateful, I will surely increase you [in favor]; but if you deny, indeed, My punishment is severe.’ ” [Quran: 14:7]

      So ponder over that people

      Reply
    • You are right Todd. Gratitude get us in tune with the source of everything that comes into our life. By this alignment we become happier and engage in the process of the law of attraction.
      My life change when I discovered the 30 Day Gratitude Challenge.
      I took it, I teach it, I live it.

      Reply
  2. Hi Peter,

    It is a nice article by Marelisa.
    I read somewhere the following:
    “I complain about not having shoes until i see a man without legs”.
    We should be always thankful to God for all the things blessed on us.
    Thank you GOD!

    Thanks for sharing this.

    Best Wishes,
    Kannan Viswagandhi
    http://www.growing-self.blogspot.com

    Reply
  3. I love your posts. I try to teach as best I can that when people approach their lives from a place of gratitude, that the universe responds by giving more. As a career coach, it is so difficult to convince people of that even though there is evidence all around us.

    Thank you,

    Mike Edwards

    http://www.directyourcareer.com

    Mike Edwardss last blog post..Ryan and Jessica’s Decision – Part III

    Reply
  4. “The sun was shining in my eyes, and I could barely see
    To do the necessary task that was allotted me.
    Resentment of the vivid glow, I started to complain–
    When all at once upon the air I heard the blindman’s cane.”
    ~ Earl Musselman ~

    …gratitude!

    Wonderful read. I gave it a Digg.

    Marc and Angel Hack Lifes last blog post..21 Keys to Magnetic Likeability

    Reply
  5. Marelisa,

    I would like to show some gratitude by saying thank you for an excellent article. I particularly found your point about a “happiness set-point” to be very interesting. I hadn’t really considered it before, but it is so true that our happiness tends to return to a certain point despite fluctuating up and down.

    One simple exercise I like to do is just before I fall asleep I will think of approximately 5 things I am thankful for.

    Reply
  6. I love this article.

    I think increasing ones gratitude is one of the most important goals of life – unquestionably. Not only does it make us happier, I’d also argue that it makes us have more humility. If we can’t be appreciative for what we have it’s as if we’re declaring we deserve more. It’s great to seek out more, as that’s also part of life. But… Doing so already being really grateful and joyful for what we have now is the way to go, I think.

    Bamboo Forests last blog post..Making People Feel Appreciated can Make You Rich

    Reply
  7. What’s great about gratitude is that even on the worst days there is always something to be thankful for, and usually there is more than one thing. No wonder gratitude helps you to be a little happier – you’re focusing on the good in your life even when things aren’t going great.

    Amanda Linehans last blog post..Be Idle and Acheive

    Reply
  8. Thank you, Marelisa. A wonderful sharing!
    Many blessings to you and all you hold dear,
    CG

    C.G. Walterss last blog post..What is Happiness?

    Reply
  9. @Sara: I know what you mean, like when something goes wrong and you’re being hard on yourself and someone close to you points out all of the things that you did right. Other people can certainly help give you better perspective.

    Marelisas last blog post..How Gratitude Can Change Your Life

    Reply
  10. Hi Marelisa – I love your article – I’ve just been reading about gratitude myself ;=)

    I’m making a habit at the moment of feeling grateful all the time for things like the ground I’m walking on and the seat I’m sitting on – hopefully this will raise my vibration enough for me to perform a few more miracles (he he)

    Robins last blog post..How I Found Immortality

    Reply
  11. Hi Marelisa,

    What a great and well researched post.

    I write daily in a gratitude journal. I write little, as well as big things. It keeps me focused and reminds me how truly blessed I am. For me, it makes all the difference in my attitude.

    Barbara Swaffords last blog post..NBOTW Author Says “Life Is A Jungle”

    Reply
  12. This is so true Marelisa. On a small level, I experienced this just yesterday. I left for work (I was biking) in a rush, frustrated that I was running late. I ended up stopped at a traffic light longer than expected. So, in general I was just not very grateful by this time. As I rode on, I realized I should really be thankful for the opportunity I have to work, to bike, for my family, etc. My mood instantly changed, and I just felt so much better. And it was all because of the gratitude I envisioned in my life, not the perceived negatives.

    Reply
  13. Showing gratitude takes so much more than a “Thank you”. True appreciation comes from within and when you truly mean it and feel it, it can definitely have a major positive affect on your life! Great article! Doc KC

    Reply
  14. Great article!

    Gratitude is such an important topic. We need more good articles such as this one.

    Practicing gratitude is one of the easiest and quickest ways to train your brain to think positive. If you think about it, there are always blessings and burdens in life, no matter what the situation is.

    By practicing gratitude, your mind becomes focused on the good in your life. And as you know, whatever the mind focuses on, the mind attracts. That’s the law of attraction.

    Do you want wealth, health, and happiness? Try thanking the Universe for all the blessings in your life, no matter how small or insignificant, and see what happens.

    You need to do this daily, to get into the wealth, health, and happiness groove.

    Reply
  15. I thought of this poem when I read the importance of GRATITUDE.

    i thank you God for most this amazing…
    e.e. cummings
    i thank You God for most this amazing
    day:for the leaping greenly spirits of trees
    and a blue true dream of sky;and for everything
    which is natural which is infinite which is yes

    (i who have died am alive again today,
    and this is the sun’s birthday;this is the birth
    day of life and love and wings:and of the gay
    great happening illimitably earth)

    how should tasting touching hearing seeing
    breathing any–lifted from the no
    of all nothing–human merely being
    doubt unimaginable You?

    (now the ears of my ears awake and
    now the eyes of my eyes are opened)

    Reply
  16. Thank you for this blog. There are many ways that gratitude can change lives and I am grateful you have shared your thoughts. I have had my life changed by gratitude in so many ways. I am excited to see a new movie like “The Secret” coming out called “The Gratitude Experiment” I just saw the trailer for it. I hope it will discuss many of the thoughts that you have expressed. You should contact them to see if they have room for you to be involved. Any ways, thank you again. K.

    Reply
    • I saw the trailer as well. The Movie looks great. I am a big fan of Doug Vermeeren who also created The Opus. The Opus was wonderful and if The Gratitude Experiment is anything like The OPus it will be very inspiring. Does anyone know a specific release date or where there may be a screening in the Los Angeles area?

      Reply
  17. thank you for your contribution to the Living by Design blog carnival – your article has been included in our February 15th edition.

    Reply
  18. This is a lovely post. I appreciate your optimism, and I agree with your attitude of looking for what’s good and beautiful in life- no matter what.

    Reply
  19. it makes a lot of sense, when you become grateful for the things you have your mind will automatically think positively and search for the good things instead of being focused on the bad ones

    Reply
  20. Starting each day with gratitude can really make a difference – it is one of the most powerful practices for living a happy, entred and abundant life.

    Thanks for the post.

    Reply
  21. Hi Mare .. especially at this time of year .. we should be grateful for being in the free world, and having things that most people in this world do not have – the main one of these is choice.

    By being grateful for all small mercies – saying thank you, a smile, a laugh, a little extra time, enter joyfully into the spirit of the season .. can all change others lives as well as our own.

    Great post for December
    Hilary Melton-Butcher
    Positive Letters Inspirational Stories

    Reply
  22. Gratitude CAN change your life! It changed the lives of our company’s co-founders. Cheryl Nordyke and Kim Wierman built the company on the strong belief that everyone should have the opportunity to “wear” symbols of gratitude that have style and meaning. The mission of Waves of Gratitude is to offer products that inspire people to remember the importance of expressing gratitude. “After finding myself unemployed for the first time at the age of 42, I went searching for a piece of jewelry to remind me to be grateful regardless of my situation,” said Cheryl Nordyke, CEO. “When I was unable to find anything that spoke to me, Kim and I decided to create our own products that inspire and express our gratitude.”

    Looking forward to connecting with more people who believe in the power of gratitude to change the world!

    Reply
  23. Marelisa, thanks for this post. You did a great job of pulling together all the research and making it understandable and usable. And thanks to all of your visitors who left such warm and inspiring comments.

    Reply
  24. Thank you so much for this article. It was well written. I think gratitude is so important to well-being. I’ve kept a gratitude journal and it really makes you focus on the positive all day long because you’re thinking “what am I going to write in my journal tonight.”

    Reply
  25. We seem to have much in common. I enjoyed your blog. While it makes me feel less unique, it makes me also feel less alone. I’ll take the latter over the former any day.

    Reply
  26. Yes! Through gratitude all things are possible. Thank you so much!!!…

    Reply
  27. Yes! Through gratitude all things are possible.
    Thanks.. You Have a great article..

    Reply
  28. Through Gratitude All Things Are Possible

    Each day when the sun rises, I am given a choice about how I am going to live that day. Will I allow myself to be grateful for what I have and make the most of it, or will I dwell in the nadir of despair, and allow it to pull me into the belief that whatever I might want to happen just can’t, or won’t? Through my study of gratitude, I have discovered that even people who undergo horrific challenges in their lives can choose to let their misfortune ruin them completely, or they can choose to be grateful that their lives were spared, and begin to repair the damage with greater wisdom and appreciation for what they have.

    The people of New Orleans come to mind as I think about all this. Those who were grateful to be alive after Hurricane Katrina pulled together through their appreciation for the gift of life and restored the city into an even better place. They did not dwell in the past. They chose to live in the moment, and as a result, there is a renewed spirit in New Orleans, more music, more art, more life and more determination than ever to manifest the dreams of putting the pieces together again. It is happening as you read this.

    Through gratitude all things are possible.

    Some days, I find myself lost and unable to summon gratitude. This might be because I am angry, or I might feel sad about something. Sometimes, I allow negative thoughts to take over my mind. When this happens, I turn to a valuable resource that I recently stumbled upon, a book by Kim Serafini, who is an expert on the use of Positive Psychology. It is called “I Am Gr8ful For Life,” and I begin to use it by allowing that title to be the stepping-stone that I need to get started feeling grateful for what I have. After all, I am alive and I truly am grateful for this life that I can shape into anything I want.

    Kim Serafini’s book is full of resources for helping to summon gratitude. I purchased it on her web site at: http://www.iamgr8ful.com and it has proven to be one of the most powerful tools I could ask for. I refer to it throughout the week because it truly does help me get back on track with positive thinking and gratitude.

    I find that when I allow myself to live in the here and now, I am gifted with an abundance of solutions to problems that I had thought were unsolvable. I feel energized and more alert. As I give thanks, I can see the abundance of gifts that I have to be thankful for. Remarkably, the more I show my appreciation, the more those gifts multiply. It seems as though I am looking through a whole new lens. I begin to live by my words of appreciation rather than just speak them, and this is, I believe, why all the barriers come down and I am able to achieve what I previously thought was impossible.

    Reply
  29. I like this article, a simple way of doing things could make life a big change.

    Reply
  30. Gratitude = Happiness! Thanks for the post and great ideas for practicing gratitude. While I don’t have specific practices I have made a habit of living daily in gratitude. And for me, it feels very good to verbally express it. I like to let others know when something they have done/created/said has touched me.
    We recently had a devastating loss in our lives, the passing of a family member, and it was way too soon. I mention this because for me, the one good thing death has the ability to give those remaining here in human form is a greater abundance of GRATITUDE. Today is the day to choose Love. Loving ourselves in every moment, releasing judgment and living in appreciation!
    With tremendous Respect,
    Michelle

    Reply
  31. Thank you. I hope that would suffice. :D

    Reply
  32. This is a very grounding and centering article. Thank you!

    Reply
  33. Outstanding article! Thank you!!!

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  34. Gratitude is as important as Attitude.

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  35. I enjoyed discovering and reading your site.

    I think you might enjoy this website and the Gratitude and Soulshine cards featured on it:

    http://bit.ly/oLRvi1

    …in gratitude.

    Marc

    Reply
  36. Thanks for reminding me of the no-complaint challenge! I have to try it once again – it’s a great way to get rid of negative thoughts.

    When it comes to gratitude – make it a daily practice to make it the most effective. Every morning (or every evening) spend a few minutes expressing gratitude for what you have. Gratitude brings more happiness in life. What goes around, comes around!

    Reply
  37. Gratitude has played a very big part in healing my life. Thanks for the reminder. No matter how bad things get in life, looking at what I can be grateful for uplifts me and encourages me to keep going.

    Reply
  38. Hi Marelisa:

    I am compiling a book called Gratitude: A Key to Success and would like to incorporate this article in my book. I have several authors contributing and this article would fit so well. Please email me privately at ctoupin@shaw.ca if you are willing to be included. Thanks.

    Cathy T

    Reply
  39. I am curious if you have heard about the new Law of Attraction movie The Gratitude Experiment, featuring many of the cast from The Secret. (Bob Proctor, John Demartini, Marie Diamond and others.) Considering gratitude is such an important part of the law of attraction, I thought this might be a movie of interest to you. Here is the Website: http://www.TheGratitudeexperiment.com 

    Reply
  40. i must really say, i find your article interesting. it answers my question,” what is life without gratitude”. such a life is void,and full of worries. i hope to abide by the ” keeping a gratitude journal,” for it will reduces worrying about ones lack.

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  41. I am even very grateful for this information you have shared. It is very inspirational.. Thanks again

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  42. I thank the author and all the visitors and readers of this article. Gratitude really works and it will transform your whole life when you begin to practice it. Stay always connected with positive source.

    Reply
  43. It’s all true! It felt a little alien to me at first but as I started to make a conscious effort to appreciate my life and everything in it something in me began to shift. After a while the sense of appreciation and gratitude really does come from a deep heart felt place. It helps me enjoy the present moment as I’m not worrying about what I haven’t got. And one of the nicest things for me is that by appreciating my husband, warts and all, he gets to be George Clooney and Brad Pitt all rolled into one, well he does in my eyes anyway!!

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  44. wow!it’s a beautifully written piece.I’m going to practice it rightaway

    Reply
  45. We end every day, tucking our girls and selves into bed, by saying our favorite part of the day and what we are thankful for. LOVE and GRATITUDE make for a happy life and I’m all about the happy. Look for twinkles, follow the winks, find your happy. ;)

    Reply
  46. Thanks for your posting.I am completely new for this gratitude attitude but it proved amazing within few hours of practicing.I am so lucky to find this eternal and universal truth.

    Wasantha from
    Sri Lanka.

    Reply
  47. Thank you so much for this article. It was well written. I think gratitude is so important to well-being. I’ve kept a gratitude journal and it really makes you focus on the positive because Gratitude brings more happiness in life. What goes around, comes around!

    Reply
  48. Beautiful! If you want to move forward to a wonderful future, be thankful for what you have in your present.

    Reply
  49. Thanks for the post and great ideas for practicing gratitude. While I don’t have specific practices I have made a habit of living daily in gratitude. And for me, it feels very good to verbally express it. I like to let others know when something they have done/created/said has touched me.
    We recently had a devastating loss in our lives, the passing of a family member, and it was way too soon. I mention this because for me, the one good thing death has the ability to give those remaining here in human form is a greater abundance of GRATITUDE. Today is the day to choose Love. Loving ourselves in every moment, releasing judgment and living in appreciation!

    Reply
    • Christa i have learned that even from a bad or something horrible like death we should look for something positive , i lost my grandmother and i told my self that she was sick & i couldn’t take away her pain but now she is in a better place no more pains and that made me strong .thanks .

      Reply
  50. Gratitude is mother of virtues…
    Life is all about grattitutde.

    Out of gratitude love has borned,
    Out of love devotion borned
    Out of devotion surender has borned.
    Out of surrender faith has borned.
    Out of faith life has borned…

    Reply
  51. The journal is the most important tool for separating the two people we all have inside, the wonderful good hearted soul and the old moaner whose never wrong and never satisfied. Only by really getting to know both honestly in our journals can we begin to consciously nuture to one we would rather be and the one more likely to bring us happiness.

    Reply
  52. This was great blog post!!!! I think gratitude is key in life. It helps us appreciate the most little things.

    Santi
    thankagain.com

    Reply
  53. Gratitude could save the planet, says filmmaker Louie Schwartzberg. I believe him.

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  54. That’s a great post! Can I please blog it in my blog? I believe my brazilian friends really would benefit from this! I can put your link there of course.

    Reply
  55. How right you are Marelisa. Sometimes life has a way of reminding us to orient toward looking for things to be grateful for like the tragedy that occurred at Sandy Hook Elementary.

    Excellent post! :)

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  56. I have seen how powerful gratitude can be, and I have started an online community dedicated to people sharing all of their many blessings with the world. If you need some inspiration, or want to join the gratitude movement please stop by :) thegratitudejar.com
    Many thanks!

    Reply
  57. Gratitude and thakfulness are the basis for peace of mind and happiness. You realize that you lack nothing. This is the missing jewel.

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  58. Gratitude is the missing jewel. in happiness

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  59. Thanks for sharing the beauty of gratitude. When we look for the smallest good even in tough situations, it also sparks hope that can grown in us. Being thankful is a special gift that help us to be stronger, be creative and be more tuned to more blessings in life.

    Reply
  60. Develop an attitude of gratitude, and
    give thanks for everything that happens
    to you, knowing that every step forward
    is a step toward achieving something
    bigger and better than your current
    situation.

    Reply
  61. Thank you for this post. It made me smile and made me think of all the things I am grateful. I sent texts to my close friends telling that I love them after reading this. Gratitude is something I can practice on each and every day : D.

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  62. This is the most wonderful thing that has happened to me today. I was so mad this morning, and when I had it all, I decided to sleep. On waking up, I stumbled on this blog post. I am so grateful for the peace that it has yielded in my heart. May you live to inspire more people. And thank you for everyone who commented, you have added so much to the juice of gratitude.

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  63. Brilliant post ! agree with what you have shared, thanks for sharing !

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  64. I have been heard of this Gratitude thing.But i never did it.I just always focusing on the lack of life.From now i will be prayer for making me grateful all the moment.And I want to start to thanks for this article.thanks.

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  65. Thanks for posting. My wife has been keeping a gratitude journal. Maybe I need to now!

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  66. while during a depression in my life A GREAT friend of mine asked me to write a daily gratitude list first i could not understand it really I WROTE AND WROTE IN A HANDWRITING I NOW CAN HARLY READ but I managed to find things each day many things to be grateful for and it increased and increased and I still do I write the word gratitude I say gratefulness and thankfulness aloud and I say it in my heart often often I say it to the people whom I meet I say it as often as I can and I mean it it has be with the emotions attached as I see it..thank you thank you thank you for this article

    Reply
  67. I am a huge advocate of living in gratitude and think you have written a concise, informative, yet inspiring and practically helpful article on the topic. Well done and thank you!

    I am so happy to see that this has been tweeted so much (and I will tweet again!) to share this beautiful message of being grateful. I will also be getting myself a gratitude charm to remind me even more, every day!

    With love,
    Jess

    Reply
  68. If all the obsessive compulsive humans who accumulated knowledge for the rest of the human kind to enjoy had simply accepted what nature brought to them (diseases, disasters etc), humanity will still be in the stone age. Do you realize that, people? Those same computers and antibiotics you are taking for granted would not exist. It is only because determine people got fed up with things and did not buy into accepting everything as a good thing that we have built something as a species.

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  69. Gratitude should be spelt Greatitude because it is really a great attribute of a person. I have seen those who are gratitude have better relationship with things, people and themselves.They are happier, more caring and very much in control. I always like the quote: “Success is getting what you want and happiness is wanting what you get.” The wanting what you get is an expression of gratitude.

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  70. Thank you for the article…
    I am grateful to read this, and follow this.

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  71. I just stumbled across this post and found there are 99 comments on the post.

    I think it’s quite poetic that I am the hundredth, because I am a strong believer in practising gratitude to increasing levels of happiness.

    I particularly like the exercise about imagining yourself losing things that are valuable to you and then having them returned.

    I do take my things like my sight, hearing, and family for granted a lot more than I realised.

    Until I did this exercise.

    Thank you very much.

    Reply
  72. Hi Todd: Very true.

    “Gratitude is the mother of all virtues.”
    -Marcus Cicero

    Marelisas last blog post..The Sound of Laughter

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  73. Hi Kannan,

    Yes, saying thank you is not just good manners, its good spirituality.

    Marelisas last blog post..The Sound of Laughter

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  74. Hi Marc and Angel: I see everyone likes gratitude quotes :-) Here’s one by Oprah:

    “The more you praise and celebrate your life, the more there is in life to celebrate.” – Oprah Winfrey

    Marelisas last blog post..The Sound of Laughter

    Reply
  75. My pleasure Peter, thank you for posting my article on your beautiful blog. Before I go to sleep I write in my gratitude journal (ten things) and then I try to think of ten new things I learned during the day.

    Marelisas last blog post..The Sound of Laughter

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  76. Hi Vered. I’m thinking of getting a charm bracelet to be my reminder that I should live in constant gratitude. This past Saturday I asked my three year old nephew what three things he was grateful for, and he loved the idea. After he reached three he just kept going! And then he wanted to know what I was grateful for (of course, one of the things I said was that I was grateful for him) :-)

    Marelisas last blog post..How Gratitude Can Change Your Life

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  77. Hunter: Do you keep having to change it from one wrist to the other and starting all over again? I can pretty much stop myself from complaining or criticizing outloud, what I need to work on is doing it in my head.

    Marelisas last blog post..How Gratitude Can Change Your Life

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  78. Hi Bamboo: I agree that learning to focus and acknowledge all of the good in your life is an important goal. I’m glad you enjoyed the article!

    Marelisas last blog post..How Gratitude Can Change Your Life

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  79. @Amanda: Sometimes all you’ll be able to write down on your gratitude journal are things like having enough to eat and having a roof over your head, but you know, that’s already plenty! So I completely agree with you that even during bad times–perhaps especially during the bad times–we should focus on the good we have.

    Marelisas last blog post..How Gratitude Can Change Your Life

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  80. Yup, I keep switching it to the other wrist. Sometimes I’m about to complain and I catch myself in time, but sometimes it slips out before I notice.

    Hunter Nuttalls last blog post..Free Ebook: Memoirs Of A Gaijin

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