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The Secret to Being Happy – Practicing Gratitude

The secret to being happy is practicing gratitude.

It so simple it’s ridiculous, yet few practice it or are even aware of it.

We so often think about when we’re going to be happy or why we will be happy. In other words, another time, the future and circumstances that may or may not happen and we even may miss being grateful when and if that moment occurs.

Fact is, if you are being grateful it is impossible to be unhappy. Try it.

The time to practice gratitude is now and it will always be now.

Gratitude can be life-changing when you consistently practice it.

Fact is, if you are being grateful it is impossible to be unhappy. Try it.

Expressing and contemplating what you have to be grateful for will also help you breakthrough in realizing the amazing strengths, talents, experience and skills you have to offer.

And with those realizations can come insights, realizations and epiphanies leading to a new path in life, a way to reinvent yourself for a job and confidence to meet the challenge.

Oh, and increased confidence as well.

5 Ways to consistently practice gratitude and be happy

If the secret to being happy is practicing gratitude then how can your consciously and consistently do it?

Here are five ways practicing gratitude can build your confidence, fully reveal your strengths, talents and abilities and make you happier.

  1. Every morning before you get out of bed take a couple of minutes to be grateful for anything. Big, small, obvious and certainly things you take for granted. From being in a warm home to appreciating your family and friends to the prospects you have and intend to make a reality.
  2. Be grateful for your experiences. What you have done in your life. The lessons you’ve learned. Be grateful for the “body of work” that provides you the skills, talents and persona and how you can use them for a great future.
  3. Be grateful for the challenges you’ve overcome, the successes you have achieved and the failures you learned from. It is stunning how much this will raise your confidence and appreciation for what you can offer.
  4. Be grateful for what you have to offer. Feel underappreciated? Take those underappreciated parts of you and look at them from an angle of gratitude that you have for them. Others will tune into this, see what you have to offer and appreciate it.
  5. Be grateful for the fact that you are being grateful.

We focus so much on what we don’t have instead of what we do have. Focusing on what we do have (and have done) first and foremost makes us happier and more content. Many would say that if you want more of that (money, security, love, success, relevance, etc.) you first must be grateful for where you are now with each of those areas.

How I discovered the secret to being happy is practicing gratitude.

Several years ago I was going through a very difficult time and felt bleak and scared I would get stuck in those emotions.

I started listening to thought leaders to find a way out and up. I kept hearing about gratitude.

One dismal and depressing morning I heard a cardinal sing and (as I literally rolled my eyes in derision) I expressed my gratitude for the simple song of a bird.

To my shock and surprise, it worked. It still gives me goosebumps thinking about it.

The result was amazing. So simple and I got it. I was grateful for the song of that bird. That moment, that song led to a domino effect of gratitude for so many things I did have and knew that I would have in the future.

That was the moment I started emerging from the black hole.

From that moment forward I have practiced gratitude every morning before I got out of bed, every night when I put my head on the pillow and a multitude of times in between.

I would be racing to a meeting, turn a corner on the road and see morning light shining through the trees and be grateful for it and then…wait for it…be grateful for being grateful because it made me feel good. It even improved my performance in the meeting.

overcoming depression sadness gratitude
Werfel, a 6-year old Austrian orphan, beams with unbounded joy as he clasps a new pair of shoes presented to him by the American Red Cross. Photograph: Gerald Waller Source: LIFE magazine December 30, 1946

Werfel discovered the secret to being happy. Practicing gratitude. In his horrific situation he found something so basic, so taken for granted by most of us, to give him a happy moment amongst all his tragedy.

If Werfel can do it in that situation, so can we.

Practice Gratitude in the Now (because Now is the only time that exists)

Life is simply a series of moments and the only time that exists is right now. Period. Looking at it that way, we want more happy moments than unhappy moments. If you are grateful in the moment a lot, then the momentum builds, your happiness builds and as medical research proves your overall health and well-being improve.

by embracing the secret to being happy by practicing gratitude I became more and more grateful for what I had experienced, learned and accomplished. My confidence and ability to achieve exploded. Confidence is the foundation of successful action.

But more than anything, it makes me grateful and fully appreciative for what I have with a focus on the most important things and people in my life.

I challenge you to try it. There is probably nothing you can do in life that takes so little time and effort that can have such amazing results

How to be happy gratitude

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