Gratitude: The Secret for Unlocking Happiness in Life

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Expressing gratitude is one of the simplest things in life we can do. Yet, we might seem too busy to stop and think, Why should we be grateful? And why can this change our lives, improve our day-to-day, and help us realize that our lives are full of good things we always overlook? In this article, we are going to talk about the benefits of gratitude, and some exercises you can practice to incorporate this practice into your routine. So, without further ado, let’s get started!

A person standing with open arms, embracing the sunrise, symbolizing gratitude in life.

Imagine waking up every morning and feeling an overwhelming sense of appreciation for the world around you. Well, science tells us that gratitude can make this dream a reality! A study conducted at the University of California, Davis, revealed that individuals who practiced gratitude by writing daily lists experienced better sleep, improved overall health, and a greater sense of well-being. It’s truly awe-inspiring how something as simple as acknowledging the good in our lives can have such profound effects.

Gratitude vs. Thankfulness

Although gratitude and thankfulness might seem similar, they are two separate things. For example, you can thank someone who has done something nice for you – we were told when we were kids to show appreciation for the acts of kindness that someone has shown us. However, gratitude goes much deeper. Gratitude is a sentiment that allows us to feel immersed in contentment, not only for others but for everything we have, live, sense, and create. Gratitude is understanding how blessed we are and reminding ourselves that we have more than what we need.

By retraining our brains to not only see what we are missing or lacking but to instead see the positive and the good in everything, we can find an immense number of possibilities and opportunities that surround us. But there is more – gratitude also motivates us, helps us stay calm, rest better, and creates better connections with people, just by recognizing the abundance in our lives and acknowledging the overlooked details of our everyday lives that are there to make us feel better and happier.

What are the benefits of gratitude?

We have mentioned before that gratitude can rewire our brains, but it can also create emotional changes that will be reflected in many areas of our lives. Here are 5 benefits of being grateful:


Noticing your present life and starting to realize everything around you is a good place to start with your gratitude journey. Enjoy the sun, the stars, the cup of tea you are just drinking, the cozy sweater you are wearing. Being grateful for the things we have now, what we see now, what we do now – that’s what matters. Letting go of the past and stopping worrying about the future because we have it all.


Once you realize everything you have in your life, you will understand how lucky you are, how many blessings you have, and how many wonderful things surround you. There won’t be room to let the bad feelings take over your mind. Being positive means appreciating what you have instead of focusing on what you lack.

Improving your sleep

Before bed, taking a few minutes to reflect on your day, and feeling that you had a new opportunity to achieve something, will help your mind relax. You might not have a list of things you have done, but you can still be happy for those days when you are able to take a day off for yourself, watch your favorite show, engage with your friends, or simply walk around your neighborhood and see the beauty of it.

Decreasing anxiety

If you feel overwhelmed by some situations, just think about all the wonderful things you can rely on to diffuse those feelings. Whether it’s acknowledging that you have a very good friend and being thankful for that or having a job that is giving you the opportunity to learn and grow. Gratefulness is linked with living in the present instead of holding onto past experiences or fearing what will happen in the future.

Bring joy and happiness

The fact that you recognize your life is full of blessings and positive things will bring you happiness and fulfillment. When you recognize that your life is not perfect but you fully embrace where your path in this world will take you, with the ups and downs, and focus on the opportunity of being yourself and expressing your gratitude for those moments that fill our lives with great memories and sentiments.

When is the best time to practice gratitude?

There are no rules for practicing gratitude – you can do it at any moment during your day. Some people prefer to express gratitude when they wake up, as this can set the intention for the day and serve as a reminder that you are surrounded by amazing things. Other people prefer to do this ritual at night to give that day closure and to evaluate how things went.

Any time of the day can be an opportunity to be grateful. So, if you don’t have a schedule for this practice, you can do it whenever you have the time for it. For example, you can have moments of feeling gratitude while you commute, during your lunch hour, workout, or at any time you need some introspection or a few moments to remind yourself that everything in your life is a blessing.

Gratitude exercises for a great practice

If you want gratitude to be a crucial part of your life and want to start practicing some gratitude exercises that allow you to deepen this practice, you can try the following:

1. Gratitude Journaling

This exercise consists of writing down the things you are grateful for in a notebook or journal. Each time you write down your thoughts, think about how those things make you feel. Recall the sentiment and fill your heart with a great sensation of fulfillment and joy.

2. Meditation

You can incorporate your gratitude practice into your meditation sessions. Meditations are about living in the present, and gratitude is one of the practices that keep us grounded, feeling the now.

3. Praying

For the most spiritual folks, incorporating gratitude into your daily prayers or rituals is a great idea. Take a few minutes to reconnect with your day and list all the things you are grateful for.

4. Expressing gratitude

Every individual has very different ways to express their feelings. You can express your gratitude to people by cooking something special, writing a text message or thank you note, supporting them in something they need, or simply showing up for your relatives and friends.

5. Practicing Acts of Kindness

Kindness is a boomerang – the more you express your gratitude, the more positive things you will attract into your life. Be kind to people in your life, your pets, nature, and anything else you can imagine. Helping others is an act of altruism, but it also nourishes our souls as we can realize how blessed our lives are.

Remember, gratitude is a gateway to abundant joy, contentment, and harmonious relationships. Now think, how will you infuse your day with gratitude? How will you express your appreciation for the blessings surrounding you? Remember, your story of gratitude has the potential to inspire others and create a ripple effect of happiness. Share the love, spread the joy, and together, let’s illuminate the world with the radiant glow of grateful hearts.