from our guest speaker and gratitude guru, Robert A. Emmons, Ph.D. on the science and benefits of giving thanks.
and interact with guest speaker, Robert A. Emmons, Ph.D., and others on the ways intentional gratitude transforms life.
gratitude in your daily life. Glean, incorporate, and experience the physical, emotional and spiritual benefits of intentional gratefulness.
the gift of gratefulness with friends, family and strangers alike. Invite them to this event and towards a life filled with thanks.
Robert A. Emmons, Ph.D., is the world’s leading scientific expert on gratitude. He is a professor of psychology at the University of California, Davis, and the founding editor-in-chief of The Journal of Positive Psychology. He is the author of the books Thanks! How the New Science of Gratitude Can Make You Happier, Gratitude Works!: A 21-Day Program for Creating Emotional Prosperity, and The Little Book of Gratitude.
When it comes to life the critical thing is whether you take things for granted or take them with gratitude.
The best way to show your gratitude to God and people is to accept everything with joy.
Gratitude can transform common days into thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, and change ordinary opportunities into blessings.
Increased feelings of energy, alertness, enthusiasm, and vigor • Success in achieving personal goals • Better coping with stress • A sense of closure in traumatic memories • Bolstered feelings of self-worth and self-confidence • Solidified and secure social relationships • Generosity and helpfulness • Prolonging of the enjoyment produced by pleasurable experiences • Improved cardiac health through increases in vagal tone • Greater sense of purpose and resilience.
Have higher levels of joy, enthusiasm, love, happiness, and optimism • Report more satisfying marriages • Make stronger friendships • Exercise more • Achieve more goals • Have lower blood pressure • Show improved immune function • Are sick less and recover faster from illness • Are more prone to acts of generosity and cooperation • Are much more resistant to depression • Report much higher levels of connectedness • Feel more loving, forgiving, and closer to God
Spend five to ten minutes and write down what you are thankful for and why—specifics are important! Look for things that might surprise you. Think of life and your experiences as gifts. Studies show gratitude journaling every other day or twice a week is more effective than every day (sometimes less is more).
TIP: Including painful experiences, difficulties, and failures is actually more beneficial than recalling only successes. Remembering our own mortality increases gratitude. Awareness that a pleasant experience is about to end enhances feelings of gratitude. Imagining the absence of something positive already in your life results in more gratitude than imagining the presence of something positive you don’t yet have.
This one matters, you know, if you want to be happier and healthier. People who keep a gratitude journal are 25% happier, sleep one-half hour more per night, exercise 33% more, have a 10% reduction in blood pressure, and have a 20% reduction in dietary fat intake!
Identify people who have contributed to your life and let them know by writing a short note. Consider making a personal visit to someone who has deeply influenced your life to tell them.
Skip a meal or a day’s meals and when you feel hungry, return your attention to things you are grateful for.
When you are driving by yourself in the car, instead of the radio, turn your attention to what is wonderful, good, and beautiful. Take an hour in silence, by yourself, responding with gratitude to the life you’ve been given schedule a retreat day someplace beautiful where you can spend a day meditating and praying in thankfulness.
The Bible records God giving a day (Sabbath) to humans to stop working, acquiring, and accomplishing, and instead make space for celebration, gratitude, and relationship. Try designating one day each week to not getting anything done or acquiring anything, and instead focus on savoring what you already have. Eat good food. Spend time with people that you love. Get outside. Make the world better for someone else. Be grateful for what is.