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Giving thanks can make you happier - Harvard Health

Gratitude meaning

Gratitude is a thankful appreciation for what an individual receives, whether tangible or intangible. 

In positive psychology research, gratitude is strongly and consistently associated with greater happiness. Gratitude helps people feel more positive emotions, relish good experiences, improve their health, deal with adversity, and build strong relationships.

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Giving thanks can make you happier - Harvard Health

Giving thanks can make you happier - Harvard Health

https://www.health.harvard.edu/healthbeat/giving-thanks-can-make-you-happier

health.harvard.edu

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Key Ideas

Gratitude meaning

Gratitude is a thankful appreciation for what an individual receives, whether tangible or intangible. 

In positive psychology research, gratitude is strongly and consistently associated with greater happiness. Gratitude helps people feel more positive emotions, relish good experiences, improve their health, deal with adversity, and build strong relationships.

Write a thank-you note

You can make yourself happier and nurture your relationship with another person by writing a thank-you letter expressing your enjoyment and appreciation of that person's impact on your life. 

Make a habit of sending at least one gratitude letter a month. 

Thank someone mentally

No time to write? It may help just to think about someone who has done something nice for you and mentally thank the individual.

Keep a gratitude journal

Make it a habit to write down or share with a loved one thoughts about the gifts you've received each day.

Count your blessings

Pick a time every week to sit down and write about your blessings — reflecting on what went right or what you are grateful for. 

Sometimes it helps to pick a number — such as three to five things — that you will identify each week. As you write, be specific and think about the sensations you felt when something good happened to you.

Pray

People who are religious can use prayer to cultivate gratitude.

Meditate

Mindfulness meditation involves focusing on the present moment without judgment. 

Although people often focus on a word or phrase (such as "peace"), it is also possible to focus on what you're grateful for (the warmth of the sun, a pleasant sound, etc.).

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