3 Tips to Achieve Happiness Through Gratitude

Posted on by Beth Gross

“With coarse rice to eat, with water to drink and my bended arm for a pillow – I have still joy in the midst of these things.” This quote by Confucius, written centuries ago, rings true for me even in this age of materialism. I find that true gratitude, for what you have, what you are, what you know, is a mood lifter.

Being grateful is more than thanking someone.

The word “Grateful” actually means “Warmly or deeply appreciative of kindness or benefits received.” To realize what you have received, you need to examine the experiences you have. Take some time to list, in your mind or on paper, what you have beyond the necessities of life. Here are three tips to get you started.

1.  Know you are loved

Accept kindnesses when someone does something for you without being asked. Perhaps the neighbor kid shoveled your walk. Maybe a co-worker offered to complete a task when you go on vacation. Or a friend picked up an item at a garage sale for you because they knew you would like it. All of these things are kindnesses that people don’t have to do, but want to do. Having people in your life who like you enough to help you is something to be grateful for.

2. Accept your power

Knowing who you are is often a matter of who you relate to. Everyone can say “I’m a child, a neighbor, a co-worker…” But to know your true essence, your spirit, is a reason to be proud. It might be that you are a strong defender of a social cause. Or perhaps you found the strength to walk away from someone who is a toxic presence in your life. To “know thyself” is a gift. To be able to say who you are and what you stand for, without guilt or avarice, should bring a smile to your face.

3. Acknowledge life lessons

What do you know? I mean, really, what DO you know? Probably much more than you think. Every time you read a book, whether for work or for pleasure, you gain some knowledge of the world that you didn’t have before. Anytime you talk to anyone you learn something about them, whether you realize it or not. Information is flowing into your brain through so many venues these days, absorbing knowledge is second nature. Be aware of the world and you will always find something new. And new things are a source of pleasure.

Your life journey can be a happy one when it’s fueled with gratitude. Find something you are grateful for and use it as your first step.