Research in positive psychology has proven that having a grateful attitude improves an
individual’s mental health, helps them build strong relationships, and boosts their morale. Factors
like heavy exposure to social media and access to people’s lives makes it difficult for us to
maintain a grateful mentality, because we are bombarded with messages that tell us that we need
to be somewhere different than where we are. These messages trigger feelings of comparison
rather than appreciation for who we are and what we have.
They say the grass is greener where you water it, and choosing to focus on our side of the fence
is surely the way it will blossom. This can only happen through striving to adopt a grateful
What is the Impact of Gratitude?
Ungratefulness opens a door to negativity, discontentment, and entitlement. These feelings lead
to depression, stress, and anxiety. On the other hand, gratitude leads to a love, appreciation, and
excitement for life and it also dispels feelings of bitterness towards others. Gratitude doesn’t only
impact mental well being, but physical well being as well. According to Laura Dunn, a study from
the University of California San Diego showed that “people who were more grateful actually had
better heart health, specifically less inflammation and healthier heart rhythms.” Another study in
the University of California Davis showed that college students who wrote things they were
grateful for were not only in a better mood but they also exercised more.
An attitude of gratitude does not come naturally for everyone, but it’s a habit that can be
How can I become more grateful?
1- Think of three things that you’re grateful for everyday
Make it a habit to express gratitude for three things even if they seem insignificant. Rather than
dwelling in things that are not going right, expressing gratitude in the morning will set the tone
for the whole day.
2- Watch your language
Be mindful of the words you use and how quick you are to use negative words when asked
things like “how is your day?” This is not an encouragement to follow toxic positivity, but rather
an encouragement to focus on the glass half full. Try to shift the trajectory of your words, and
you will notice a difference in your mood.
3- Identify your triggers
If there’s anything specific that triggers feelings of comparison, take a break from it. Not only
feelings of comparison, but also negativity. Distance yourself and limit your exposure to things
that stand in the way of you feeling appreciative for what you have.
4- Follow positive accounts
Social media has its perks, and you can use it to boost your confidence rather than shake it.
Follow accounts on Instagram that share a glimpse of reality rather than an edited version of life
that is meant to deceive others. This will keep you reminded that life is not only what you see
GRATITUDE CHALLENGE PROMPTS
● What is one thing that brought you joy today?
● What is something you appreciate about yourself?
● What was the last meal you enjoyed?
● Who was someone who was helpful to you this week? \
● What is a new thing you learned this week?
● What was a difficult situation that turned out to be a blessing in disguise?
● In what ways do you feel privileged?
● What is an area or space in your house that you love?