With Canadian Thanksgiving just around the corner, I can’t think of a better time to discuss the role of gratitude in happy living. Science has proven that gratitude is one of the greatest contributing factors for achieving happiness. Don’t believe me? Check out this powerful experiment in gratitude from the folks at SoulPancake:
So now that we know that expressing gratitude directly relates to our overall happiness, how do we put it into practice? One of my favourite strategies comes from Canadian writer Neil Pasricha whose 1000 Awesome Things blog helps to inspire millions of followers to embrace the little joys in life.
Pasricha’s concept is pretty simple: everyday he posts about something awesome counting down from 1000. Entries range from #995: finding money you didn’t even know you lost, to #858: the other side of the pillow, to #67: when cats do stupid things. His blog is such a success that he’s gone on to publish several bestselling books.
Pasricha’s awesome list resonates with people because it helps us to appreciate the little things in life that we too often take for granted. While each entry might seem insignificant by itself, together the list starts to paint a picture of how awesome life truly is. The best part of Pasricha’s list is that it’s an easy way to practise gratitude.
Your Happy Challenge
- Write down one or two awesome things everyday for a week. At the end of the week, read them over and see how you feel.
Need some inspiration? Check out some entries from my own list of awesome:
- The smell of freshly cut grass
- A new book you can’t put down
- Catching your opponents ball during a game of dodgeball
- Ordering something different off the menu that turns out to be your new favourite dish
- Try the SoulPancake experiment for yourself. Start by thinking of someone really influential in your life. Next, write down reasons why they’re so important to you. Finally, call that person and read what you wrote about them and see if you notice a jump in your happiness.
What’s on your awesome list? How do you practise gratitude? Share your thoughts!