Gratitude, thankfulness, thanksgiving, or gratefulness, from the Latin gratus ‘pleasing, thankful’, is a feeling of appreciation felt by and/or similar positive response shown by the recipient of kindness, gifts, help, favors, or other types of generosity, towards the giver of such gifts. The experience of gratitude has historically been a focus of several world religions. It has also been a topic of interest to ancient, medieval and modern philosophers, and continues to engage contemporary western philosophers. The systematic study of gratitude within psychology only began around the year 2000, possibly because psychology traditionally focused more on understanding distress than on understanding positive emotions. The study of gratitude within psychology has focused on the understanding of the short term experience of the emotion of gratitude (state gratitude), individual differences in how frequently people feel gratitude (trait gratitude), and the relationship between these two aspects.
Thank you Wikipedia!
Giving thanks has been the center of religion and Holidays. We have Thanksgiving to commemorate the discovery of America. Veterans Day, Memorial Day, The 4th of July and many more Holidays are about giving thanks. And during those times of the year people seem to be more grateful and forgiving of each other. Kindness follows gratitude. The words “Thank you” is gratitude. Sometimes I say a mantra of “Thank you” a couple times a day. The day feels better as I go about it with that mantra.
We have the choice each moment to go positive or negative with our emotions. That’s part of the beauty of being human. Choice. We have the power to switch or thoughts immediately. The next time you are thinking negatively switch your thought to something you are grateful for. Gratitude has the power of expansion. We can be grateful for simple things such as the blue sky, our health, the beauty of a stranger’s smile, etc. When I feel grateful I feel lighter in spirit. That feels like expansion to me. What do you feel when you are to be grateful?
A gratitude journal is fun and easy to do. Some people like to wake up and write a couple of things they are grateful for before they roll out of bed. I’ve seen lives change with this practice. Here are a couple of things I am grateful for:
I am grateful for my health
I am grateful for my husband
I am grateful for my friends
I am grateful for nature in all of its forms
I am grateful for the ability to eat anything I choose
I am grateful to travel and explore the world
I am grateful to have my own business
I am grateful to be able to inspire others
I am grateful for my family
The list could go on and on. It really feels good to be grateful. Some of the wealthiest people I know are extremely grateful. You can see it in their eyes and feel it in their smile.
“The more grateful I am, the more things I will have to be grateful for”, Richard Branson
What are you grateful for?
Gratitude equals altitude.