Gratitude: It’s Not Just For Thanksgiving

Image of Beach at Big Sur, CA
I'm thankful that places like this beach in Big Sur, CA exist.

Last week, I attended the Northern Virginia Business Women’s Conference. All of the speakers were inspiring and enlightening, but one stood out above the others. Carolyn Adams Miller gave a speech on happiness at the end of the day that seemed targeted to me personally. And, maybe you, too.

Happiness is a topic that has roused the intrigue of celebrities, authors, and entire countries. America’s own idea of the “pursuit of happiness” is so important that it’s in our Declaration of Independence. Britain just recently launched a nation-wide survey to determine its subjects’ propensity toward the emotion.

This is crucial stuff, and it’s Miller’s specialty.

Miller mentioned that one of the top five traits of happy people is gratitude. Here’s how her book Creating Your Best Life expanded on this:

Miller's Book, Creating Your Best LifePeople who express gratitude in any number of ways – such as thanking someone else verbally, writing down a list of blessings on a regular basis, or mailing a letter to someone who has made a difference in your life – have the power to increase life satisfaction and hope. Gratitude is also linked with lowering depression and anxiety, and may be the most powerful and long-lasting way to make someone happier.”

I also did a little bit of research on the internet. Indeed, while gratitude hasn’t been proven to make people happy, happy people tend to be grateful.

In honor of Thanksgiving and in an effort to start a new good habit, I’m starting a Gratitude List. Each week, I’ll add another five reasons to be grateful.

Gratitude List #1

  1. My husband does most of the cooking.
  2. I’m smart.
  3. My mother is not a lunatic and I can count on her for sound advice.
  4. My son is healthy and happy.
  5. I have four friends that I can call in the middle of the night if necessary.

What makes you grateful?

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