Regardless of your definition of happiness and success, we all always want to achieve more happiness and success, be it personal or professional. However, that insatiable desire for more can make us blind to what we already have in life, and, undoubtedly, should appreciate and be grateful for.
The great Greek stoic philosopher Epictetus once said: “He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has.”
But, how many of you can proudly and from the bottom of your heart say: “Yes, I’m aware of all the things I have in my life. I’m aware of all the amazing people that bring happiness, joy, peace, and light into my life. I’m aware of the people without whom my life wouldn’t be whole and complete. And I show how grateful I am for having them in my life?”
Well, if you can say this, then you’re on the right track – just keep expressing your gratitude. But, if you can’t, then, my friend, you should stop for a second and take a break from your everyday responsibilities and problems and look around you to see all the blessings you’re surrounded with.
But know that you’re not alone. We’re all guilty of forgetting about the importance of gratitude. While it’s easy to feel and express gratitude on our good days and when things go in our favor, when life throws us curve balls, most of us neglect and even completely forget about all the things in our lives we should be thankful for.
And, yes, it’s true, gratitude doesn’t make your problems, heartbreaks, and regrets magically disappear. But gratitude gives you an opportunity to psychologically survive difficult, painful times more easily and feel happier and more fulfilled in the good times.
In what follows, there’s a list of top 7 habits of highly grateful and sincere people:
1. They take the time to smell the roses.
And not just the roses, but the freshly baked bread or the first morning coffee. They take the time to savor every single experience in their lives. No matter how unimportant or boring some experience might appear to others, they pay attention to and appreciate everything.
Whether it’s food, nature, material things, or people, they make sure they appreciate them because they know they won’t be able to enjoy them forever.
2. They’re grateful to people too.
Saying ‘thank you’ to the sun or trees will certainly make you feel good and more positive and may also cause you to consider your impact on the environment, but things can’t feel your gratitude. On the other hand, people can. They glow in gratitude.
Saying ‘thank you’ to your family, partner, friends, or colleagues strengthens and adds deep meaning to your bond and makes them feel happier and appreciated.
So, next time when someone helps you, make sure you acknowledge their help and effort and tell them ‘thank you.’ This will mean a lot to them and it’ll make you more aware of all the amazing people you have in your life and the good things that happen to you.
3. They forgive others.
There is no space for gratitude in the hearts of those people who hold grudges against others. Instead of feeling resentment and bitterness and creating all kinds of revenge plots against the person who harmed them, highly grateful and genuine people acknowledge the wrong deed and their pain and let it go.
They don’t allow past sorrows and disappointments to linger on in their present and future. So, make sure you forgive others for not being or behaving like you had wanted and hoped they would.
4. They take the good things in their lives as gifts and not as birthrights.
Has it ever occurred to you what the opposite of thankfulness is? It is entitlement. The attitude that you deserve everything that you have in your life by birthright. A person who is entitled thinks that others owe them something because they are very special, and therefore they don’t need to express gratitude to anyone.
But the truth is that no one is completely self-sufficient. We need love and support and we need to feel that we are respected and valued, and for that – we need friends, family, partners, and pets.
5. They are specific when expressing gratitude.
Highly grateful people don’t say ‘thank you’ just because. Instead, they pay attention to the way someone helped them, or did them a favor, or made them feel good and loved, and they acknowledge the intentions of the person they’re thankful to and the benefit they received.
Therefore, a highly grateful person will never say just ‘thank you,’ but they’ll try to make their expression of thankfulness more authentic and say something like: “Thank you for X you make when I’m hungry even when you’re tired and for all the comforting hugs you give me when I’m down in the dumps so that I’ll feel better.”
6. They think about death from time to time.
You wonder why? Well, try to visualize the sudden disappearance of someone very close and important to you, or even your own death. Wouldn’t this make you feel more grateful for having them in your life and appreciating more everything that you currently have in your life as well?
I’m sure it would. The thing is that most of us make the same mistake. We tend to think that just by living with our family or hanging out with our friends without showing them how thankful we are for having them in our lives and for everything they do for us is enough.
But it isn’t. By thinking and behaving this way, we only end up taking our loved ones for granted and missing the opportunity to let them know how much we love and appreciate them.
7. They’re grateful for the bad things as well.
It’s easy to be grateful to someone who helped you in one way or another. But what about being grateful to the person who did you wrong or hurt your feelings, such as the boss who fired you, or that boyfriend/girlfriend who broke up with you?
Well, a highly grateful and genuine person is thankful to such people as well. Why? Because instead of denying those negative experiences and obstacles, they acknowledge and turn them into opportunities. Instead of as failures, they see them as valuable lessons.
How, you’re wondering? That’s simple too. People who practice gratitude know that if they really want, they can find a reason to be thankful even to those who have done them wrong. Thus, you can thank your ex for ending a relationship that was going nowhere or the boss that laid you off for causing you to take on new challenges.
Riley Cooper is a professional writer who writes informative and creative articles on topics related to various fields of study. Written with love and enthusiasm, her articles inspire readers to broaden their knowledge of the world, think and get ready to act.