Why Gratitude is Essential for Happiness
Dennis Waitely said, “Happiness cannot be travelled to, owned, earned, worn or consumed. Happiness is a spiritual experience of living every moment with love, grace and gratitude.”
Where do you find happiness? Do you find that happiness and contentment is fleeting and elusive? Do you depend on someone else to ‘make’ you happy? Do you think that having something better will make you happier, such as a bigger house, better and nicer clothes?
Are you happy when you succeed in something? Are you waiting for that perfect person to ‘make’ you happy? Are you looking for that perfect career to ‘make’ you happy?
Do you really desire happiness?
Studies have shown that being inwardly grateful creates happiness far more than just material things.
You see, being grateful can change the way you look at everything. Learning to appreciate what you already have and what you already do is what will make you the happiest.
Appreciation equals contentment. When you focus on the good in your life, you create an internal energy that comes from your heart and soul. When you focus on that internal energy, the happiness you feel will be apparent on the outside. If you make gratitude a priority and be thankful for all that you do have, happiness and contentment will come to you naturally.
You have the choice every morning to change your attitude and be grateful for what you have.
There was a time in my life that I was not happy. I wasn’t happy with my first husband. I wasn’t happy with my second marriage. I wasn’t happy with where I lived. I wasn’t even happy with myself. I felt that I was missing out on so much because I did not have everything that I wanted or everything that I felt I deserved. When I finally realized I had to stop blaming other people for my lack of happiness, I found happiness. I stopped placing blame on my mediocre job. I stopped placing blame on my husband because he wasn’t living up to my standard of what I thought he should be and I stopped blaming hm for our lack of income. I realized that those weren’t the things that were going to make me happy. I realized that if I were grateful for everything that I did have, I would be happy. I stopped placing blame on other people and other circumstances. I realized that by finding something to be grateful for every day, I did find joy. I found it in my everyday activities and when I did this, my contentment grew.
Each morning, I write a few new things in my journal that I am grateful for and I repeat some things as well because those are the things that I really am grateful for every single day. When you make your first thought in the morning, ‘thank you,’ its hard to not be happy.
Things to be grateful for are the simpler things, such as you got up this morning, you have coffee and you have a warm fuzzy blanket to wrap yourself in on cold days. You have people that love you, you have people to love, you have food to put on the table, you have a roof over your head….I could go on and on about the simpler things in life that we all do have.
Happiness does not come from someone else or something else. Happiness is from appreciating what you already have. It’s about remembering you can still find it in your heart to be grateful for what you have while still looking for something different. You do not have to have it all to be happy. You can be happy with what you already have by being grateful for what you have now. Remember though that does not mean you have to stop there; you can keep going in the direction you choose for what it is that you want. Just be grateful for every single step of the way.
Life is so short, and we all spend too much time thinking we will be so much happier if we only had a nicer car, a nicer house, a better job, nicer clothes, better friends. All of that could not be further from the truth. Ask a millionaire what makes her the happiest and she will tell you that its family and having someone to love and someone to love her back that gives her the most joy in life.
When I was researching positive psychology, I found that gratitude is consistently associated with greater happiness. You see, gratitude helps you to feel those positive emotions that lead to happiness and contentment.
Gratitude can and has contributed to people being able to deal with adversity better and can also improve your health. Harvard research says that gratitude can improve relationships, make employees work better and make your own inner self happier.
When you stop looking for happiness in other things and people, and accept what you do have, you will find happiness and joy in everything that you do and in everything that you have.
Having gratitude will show you what a wonderful and fulfilling life that you have now. Who knows, with gratitude, you may just fall in love with the life that you have right now.
You have a choice every morning when you get up, you can be thankful, or you can complain about what you do not have.
I choose to feel grateful and happy. I choose to be thankful for everything that I have while I still aspiring to more.
Remember happiness doesn’t come from having it all, happiness comes from appreciating what you do have now.
Go to sleep every night feeling grateful and wake up every morning with an attitude of gratitude.
You don’t have to search for happiness, its always right there in your heart. Listen to what your heart is telling you for your heart doesn’t lie to you.