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I’ve been following the relatively new field of Positive Psychology for the last few years –imagine studying people who are healthy and thriving and not just those with disorders and diagnosis –about time!

There are powerful research results coming out about the idea of gratitude.  Findings say that gratitude helps maintain close connections with others.  Gratitude is linked to more helping behaviors, high positive emotions, life satisfaction, increased hope and lower feelings of anxiety and envy.  Who doesn’t want that!

In a research study on happiness, people in one group were asked to write a letter of gratitude to someone, a 2nd group was asked to write down five things they were grateful for each day for one week, and a 3rd group was asked to write down five things they were grateful for on a single day.

There appeared to be more benefit to listing your blessings 1 day a week rather than everyday (I wonder if it was because it was easier to remember to do it once!).  All three interventions worked, providing people with increased happiness and hope.  And even more impressive –the benefits lasted up to 6 months.

Of all the happiness interventions to date– gratitude gives the strongest effects.

The affirmative prayer method that I practice daily has a gratitude component to it. Being grateful for what is right now and feeling what it’s like to already have what you have asked for.  When I practice affirmative prayer and get to the gratitude part, my heart always fills up so full…no matter what circumstances are appearing in my outside world…it is a wonderful feeling and always transforms me to a higher place.

Enjoy this season of gratitude, and post a comment on our blog about your experiences with gratitude…I’d love to hear them!