8 Ways Gratitude Boosts Happiness

1. Grateful thinking promotes the savoring of positive life experiences. By relishing and taking pleasure in the gifts of your life, we extract the maximum satisfaction and enjoyment from our current circumstances.

2. Expressing gratitude bolsters self-worth and self-esteem. When we realize how much others have done for us or how much we’ve accomplished, we feel more confident.

3. Gratitude helps cope with stress and trauma because it allows us to positively reinterpret stressful or negative experiences. Expressing gratitude during personal adversity can help us adjust, move on and perhaps begin anew. As the saying goes, there is always a silver lining.

4. Gratitude encourages us to become aware of kind and caring acts and as such, we are more apt to help others.

5. Gratitude can build social bonds, strengthen existing relationships and nurture new ones by producing feelings of greater connectedness and an awareness of the true value of friends and family.

6.  Gratitude gets rids of the “keeping up with the Jones’s” mentality as we appreciate what WE have rather than envy others.

7. The feeling of gratitude is incompatible with negative emotions and can actually deter or diminish anger, bitterness, jealously, fear and greed. Just as the positive and negative forces of magnets repel each other, positive emotions ward off negative ones.

8.  Gratitude helps thwart heodoic adaptation. Adapting to anything postive is an enemy of happiness; it results in taking those things for granted. Gratitude enables us to appreciate those people, experiences and things in life that makes us happy and allows us hold that happiness close.

An attitude of gratitude is a powerful thing.

Excerpt from “The How of Happiness” by Sonja Lyubomirsky