“Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all the others.” Marcus Tullius Cicero
Who are you grateful for? What are you grateful for? How will you express gratitude this week?
I know, it isn’t Thanksgiving, so why write about Gratitude?
As I started looking into Tried and True Keys to Success I came across a workbook written by Bob Burg “Master Your Traits Master Yourself”. He took the system created and described by Ben Franklin in his book “Benjamin Franklin: The Autobiography” and made it something we can use on a daily basis. In this workbook Burg writes,
“…in following Dr. Franklin’s system – and it IS a system – I have become a much more effective Bob Burg than I ever was before. And, in this program, you’ll learn how to be a much more effective YOU, as well…”
Both books begin with Gratitude which, interestingly enough, according to Marcus Tullius Cicero is the parent of all the virtues. That’s why I’m writing about gratitude.
So, why be grateful?
Amit Amin in his blog post http://happierhuman.com/benefits-of-gratitude/ writes about the scientific research that has been done regarding the benefits of being grateful. It is an expansive review of studies done with lots of references and places you can go to get more information. Below are just some of the benefits. Is there one of these you would like to do without?
- Makes us happier and healthier
- Boosts our careers
- Makes us more optimistic
- Reduces materialism and increases spirituality
- Makes us less self-centered and Increases self-esteem
- Improves sleep and helps us relax
- Reduces envy
- Improves relationships, especially the significant ones
So there are many reasons to develop our Gratitude muscles. Next question: How?
Again, there are lots of articles on the internet that provide “how to’s” Here’s three: https://greatergood.berkeley.edu/article/item/ten_ways_to_become_more_grateful1 and http://www.lifehack.org/articles/communication/10-tips-more-grateful-life.html and https://www.unstuck.com/gratitude/
These people make several suggestions, a few of which I share here:
- Take time to be mindful everyday of the people and things and events you have to be grateful for and keep a Gratitude Journal (list 3 – 5 items per day). It’s even a great resource for review when times get tough
- Embrace the bad, it’s part of the path and will make you stronger
- Embrace the past, you survived it and learned something along the way
- Watch your language (no blame no shame for yourself or anyone else)
- Give thanks, whether you feel like it or not – Gratitude is not an emotion, it’s a way of being. It’s like a muscle and needs to be developed and maintained.
- Change your environment. Surround yourself with inspirational and motivational quotes and positive people who express gratitude.
- Reach out and help other people
- Exercise – whatever works for you – just get moving
- Express gratitude – out loud, to someone about something, daily.
So, how will you express gratitude this week? To whom? How? And by all means, track yourself. You can find who and what I’m grateful for in My Gratitude Posts on my website. Love to have you join me – you can post yours there as well. Just remember, I’m a Grandma, so keep it clean 🙂
FYI: Marcus Tullius Cicero, January 3, 106 BC – December 7, 43 BC was a Roman politician and lawyer. He is considered by many historians to have been one of Rome’s greatest orators.