The Importance of Gratitude and How it Can Change Your Mood

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Whether you’re young or old, rich or poor, live in a luxury condo in Manhattan or a tiny house in the country, there’s one thing we all have in common: we’ve all got plenty to be grateful for.

However, it’s often hard to remember all the wonderful things we have in life when overscheduling, stress, and sleep-deprivation are getting the best of us. The good news? The solution is simple: make time for gratitude in your life, and your mood will improve in no time. Here’s why gratitude is so important in the long run:

It helps you see the big picture: From the house you live in to the health of your family, there are so many things to be grateful for on a day-to-day basis. Even if you don’t have much in the way of material possessions, simple things like the fact that you woke up this morning and could go to work and collect a paycheck are major accomplishments, and well worth being grateful in the grand scheme of things. When you realize just how many things are working in your favor, it’s easy to feel grateful and content.

It helps you recognize those less fortunate than you: When you think about all the things you do have, and those you’re grateful for, it’s easy to realize just where you stack up compared to others less fortunate. Armed with this newfound wisdom, it’s easy to find inspiration for volunteering and other good deeds.

It takes your mind off your “want list”: For most of us, there’s always something we want but don’t have, whether that’s a fancy vacation or a nicer car. However, when you realize all the things you already have and are grateful for, it’s easy to dismiss those wants for good and completely eliminate the stress you once felt about them.

It helps you reprioritize: When you consider all the things you’re grateful for, it makes those little annoyances seem to vanish. When you realize just how much you’ve got going for you at the moment and how much you’ve got to look forward to being grateful for, you’ll have an easier time remembering prioritizing the things that matter and casting aside those that don’t.

It makes you happier: Gratitude and happiness go hand-in-hand. Gratitude is just one of many stepping stones on a path toward a calmer, more centered, and more wholeheartedly happy you. So, what are you waiting for? Start listing the things you’re grateful for today.

Gratitude is a skill we could all afford to learn, and there’s no time like the present to start practicing it. Make this the year you become a more grateful person; from your mood to your relationships, virtually every part of your life will benefit.

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