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The secret to happiness: 5 tips to feel more grateful

The secret to happiness: 5 tips to feel more grateful

The secret to happiness: 5 tips to feel more grateful

There is good reason to believe that people who cultivate thankfulness tend to be happier and healthier than those who don’t. Find out how you too can be more thankful and express gratitude.

For years, researchers have been publishing studies about the effectiveness of an intervention that produces positive outcomes in nearly every arena of health and wellbeing. 

Gratitude has been scientifically proven to strengthen your immune system and make you happier and more optimistic, as well as less lonely and isolated. And although science has just recently caught up to this fact, the Buddhists have known it for years.

Thankful people appreciate what they have instead of obsessing over what they lack. They express gratitude to others, and often receive more gratitude in return as a result. They see each day as a new opportunity for happiness, rather than another challenge to struggle through.

But how can you be more thankful? Here’s how…

Every day, say aloud three good things that happened. This can be a fun activity to do with your kids when you tuck them in, or around the dinner table with family, but it’s also extremely powerful to express gratitude aloud when you’re alone.

Don’t be picky: appreciate everything. Gratitude doesn’t have to be saved for the “big” things in life. The habit of being grateful starts with appreciating every good thing in life and recognising that there is nothing too small for you to be thankful for.

Talk about gratitude with family. Set aside a time, like over an evening meal, to talk about the things you were grateful for that day. Let each family member have a turn to discuss what made them thankful that day.

Think bigger than yourself. Become involved in a cause that is important to you. As you become aware of other people who are less fortunate than you, you will start to feel a deeper appreciation for what you do have.

Savor the good moments. If you notice you’re feeling happy, stop what you’re doing and pay attention for a few minutes. Notice exactly how you feel, including the sensations in your body and the thoughts you’re having. Later, when you’re trying to inspire gratitude, you can remember this moment and experience the benefits all over again.

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