When most people think of gratitude, they may instinctively associate it with stereotypes of hippies sitting cross-legged around a campfire, singing songs of self-love and compassion. Which, is completely, not the case.
Gratitude, in its best, is taking moments—big or small—to appreciate the things in your life. And, according to Happify.com, doing so can instantly lead to an increase of happiness and satisfaction and a decrease in the stuff you don’t want, like negativity and depression.
Gratitude can be used in many ways, either for yourself, a situation in your life or with your relationships. Say, for instance, you’re used to waking up for work, with your first thoughts being along the lines of: “I don’t want to go to work today, I’m too tired. I hate my job,” and so on. This negative self-talk will only set you up for a bleak outlook, compared to practicing gratitude and expressing appreciation for another day, for being alive, for having family and friends who love and care for you. And so on.
See the difference?
When it comes to your relationships, practicing gratitude can quite honestly save them. It helps you to stop sweating the small stuff, feel more satisfied and appreciate the person you’re with so much more. For example, having your husband take out the trash may seem like no big deal (or maybe you’re rolling your eyes, thinking, finally), but by implementing gratitude, you may suddenly have a greater respect for the fact that he cares for your home and strives to make you happy by completing chores like those.
If you’ve also been having a tough time in your relationship or marriage and find yourself harbouring a lot of resentment, it can help you take the first steps to forgiving, moving on and seeing the situation in a new light.
So the next time you find yourself getting mad at something small, shift your thinking instead to gratitude. Be thankful that you have a partner who you love and a life being built together that is worth cherishing. Soon, you’ll find the anger and stress melt away, only to be replaced by those oh, so lovely feelings of bliss.