Get Happy: Gratitude Adjustment
Appreciating the little things in life can pay off big!
Being glad for even little things can be a path to greater happiness and health benefits.
“Thank you.” What a simple, powerful phrase. Expressing gratitude for a kind gesture or a thoughtful remark is polite, certainly – but did you know that it can have health benefits too? People who feel appreciative on a regular basis feel happier, more optimistic, and more satisfied; according to one study, being mindfully thankful can even inspire people to exercise more. Gratitude can counter negative feelings such as frustration and negative health effects such as stress headaches. And of course, the positive state of mind created by cultivating gratitude can result in better health choices.
To get into the gratitude groove, take time this week to look out for the little things that make your life sweeter, easier, more joyful. Thank someone who who has helped brighten your day. Pause to appreciate a blue sky. This activity can help you notice the good things in your life and express thanks to the people or things making those moments possible.
What are you thankful for?
- Make a quick list of the things that come to mind today. Think outside the box; maybe it’s the smile and wave your neighbor gave you this morning – or it could be the grocery store’s well tined sale on a healthy item you love, or your comfortable shoes that let you take a brisk afternoon walk everyday. Consider things little and big.
- Choose one person (or thing) to whom you’ll write an actual note of gratitude. Use the guide below to jot down a note expressing your gratitude.
Dear ______________, I’m grateful to you because _____________. It helped me ______________________. Thank you!
Try out a song or two from this playlist to help you flex your “gratefulness muscle.”
- What a Wonderful World by Louis Armstrong
- Happy by Pharrell Williams
- Gratitude by Paul McCartney
- Thank You by Sly and the Family Stone
- Wind Beneath My Winds by Bette Midler
- Somewhere Over the Rainbow by Israel Kamakawiwo’ole (a beautiful Hawaiian version of a classic song)
- Grateful by Pete Philly and Perquisite
- Gratitude by Earth, Wind & Fire
- Thank You For Hearing Me by Sinead O’Connor
- Thank You for Loving Me by Bon Jovi