He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has. Epictetus
That brings us to Habit 5…
Gratitude is a keystone habit whose good effects cascade through your life improving nearly every area: physical, emotional, spiritual, work, and personal relationships. You name it, gratitude helps.
University of California, Berkley, has documented and measured the impact of gratitude on people’s lives in hundreds of studies. They conclude that gratitude is one of the most reliable methods for increasing happiness and life satisfaction; it boosts feelings of optimism, joy, pleasure, enthusiasm. It reduces anxiety and depression, strengthens the immune system, lowers blood pressure, reduces symptoms of illness, and makes us less bothered by aches and pains. It encourages us to exercise more and take better care of our health. Grateful people get more hours of sleep each night, spend less time awake before falling asleep, and feel more refreshed upon awakening. Gratitude makes people more resilient and helps people recover from traumatic events, and PTSD.
Gratitude is a simple affirmation of goodness that acknowledges that the goodness comes from some place outside yourself. A simple “Thank You” is a grateful act but you can also become a grateful person who habitually looks at the world as a source of goodness.
There are countless things to be grateful for and dozens of ways to feel and express that gratitude.
- List 5 things you are grateful for.
- Choose of one of those items, and describe why you are grateful for that person or thing. What does it bring to your life? What would it mean if it was suddenly gone?