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How Gratitude Can Improve Your Life

Being thankful, and showing it through clear expressions of gratitude is important, and it’s one of the things this coming thanksgiving holiday is all about. But would you believe it can not only improve your life by making you happier, but can actually be good for your health too.

Well, it can. Gratitude can make your life better in a number of ways, and today, we’re going to explore them all, and give you ample reason to start practicing gratitude actively.

Gives You Lasting Emotional Well-Being
The first one on the list should also be the most obvious. Being grateful for what you have is a major mood booster and general happiness-maker. Thankfulness, in many ways, erects a protective barrier against the dark forces of stress and negativity. Being grateful for the good things makes you less likely to focus on the bad, meaning it can be a major word against depression, anxiety, and general stress.

Reduces Reliance on Materialism
We live in an incredibly materialistic society. Everything around us is telling us we don’t have enough. We need that new dress, that kitchen gadget, that album, that video game…etc, etc, ad infinitum. Our world is incredibly saturated with advertising that constantly drills the notion into our skulls that we are lacking something. But counting your blessings, realizing all the great things you have, being GLAD that you have them, and feeling content with them, can drastically reduce this reliance on materialism to be happy; if we can be content with what we have, we’re better able to resist the pull of advertising to get better, newer, shinier things that will supposedly make us happy…but don’t.

Makes Your Relationships Stronger
And we don’t just mean romantic relationships. Friendships and relationships with family members are a kind of relationship too (and on that note, you should really stop saying “relationship” to mean romantic relationship, as if it doesn’t need a qualifier; it’s rather dismissive of other kinds of relationships).

In any case, practicing and showing gratitude tends to strengthen the bonds you share with friends, family, romantic partners if you have them, and anyone else you share a close bond with. This is because showing your gratitude—both for the things the other person does for you, and for the good things in life in general—is a very endearing trait, and shows people you care about them and their feelings. This will deepen emotional bonds and make both you and your loved ones happy.

Makes You Healthier
Gratitude actually has a medically documented, positive effect on your health. It can improve the quality and duration of your sleep, making you better rested and energetic. It also gives you more conviction to achieve your goals and make healthy decisions. Further, because it improves your emotional wellbeing and makes you feel better, it can make you be all around better, too, improving your quality and length of life.