grat·i·tude: the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness
In the book, “The How of Happiness,” author Sonja Lyubomirsky, Ph.D., says that, “50 percent of individual differences in happiness are governed by genes, 10 percent by life circumstances, and the remaining 40 percent by what we do and how we think – that is, our intentional activities and strategies. The secret, of course, lies in that 40 percent. If we observe genuinely happy people, we shall find that they do not just sit around being contented. They make things happen. They pursue new understandings, seek new achievements, and control their thoughts and feelings. In sum, our intentional, effortful activities have a powerful effect on how happy we are.”
As I have mentioned, I am taking yoga teacher training. Recently, we had a workshop (the first of twelve) based on Dr. Lyubomirsky’s book. The first was about gratitude. People who are grateful and, more importantly, express gratitude to others, are happier.
So my challenge this week – for myself, for my team, for my readers – is to be “intentionally grateful.” For some that may mean writing thank-you notes expressing specific gratitude. Others may perform random acts of kindness that demonstrate their gratitude for blessings in their life. And others may choose to merely smile at everyone they pass, grateful they are able to see them and share a moment of happiness.
In whatever way you choose, do it intentionally. Why? Because it is this effort to make things happen, to acknowledge the goodness in our lives, and to purposefully act with this knowledge, that greatly contributes to our own happiness.
Enjoy your day!