The Formula for Happiness: Gratitude Plays a Part

Pink Flower by Sara FergusonNo duty is more urgent than that of returning thanks.” — Unknown

The pursuit of happiness is nothing new, almost everything we do is an effort to make ourselves or others happier. None of us want to be unhappy, I can bet on that.

In reading an article on this subject called “The Pursuit of Happiness,” by Clifton B. Parker, several pointers about how to achieve more happiness in your life were given. Having the attitude of gratitude was chief among them. “People who expressed gratitude regularly by means of a ‘gratitude journal’ — a list of things, no matter how small or ordinary, for which they were thankful — were more satisfied with their lives, more optimistic and in better physical health, among other things, than those who did not.”

Keeping a “gratitude journal” may be one way in which you are able to remember to keep focused on what we DO have rather than what we don’t.  We can also show gratitude by giving back…or returning thanks.  Engaging in “pro-social” spending is an almost sure fire way to gain happiness.  Pro-social spending is giving back to others—from the emotional or material resources that you have to share with others.   I’ve linked an article from The Harvard Business School that suggests thathuman beings around the world derive emotional benefits from using their financial resources to help others.”

If you’d like to read more on how to hype up your happiness, please visit The Leader’s Library where I’ve hand picked some wonderful books on the subject.  And if you would like a complimentary session to discuss how to get started on some of these ideas, please schedule a session at the website of Dr. Lynn K. Jones.

p.s. I always am interested in what you think about these discussions. Please post your thoughts on the blog…your constructive criticism and support is appreciated!


Dr. Lynn K. Jones
, Certified Personal and Executive Coach

Your Mojo Maven


  1. Calla Gold on April 14, 2011 at 9:29 pm

    I can definitely see how gratitude plays a huge role in our level of happiness! When we’re grateful, we really can focus on the good things in our lives instead of the bad, no matter how big or little they are.

  2. Jill Meek on April 25, 2011 at 4:51 am

    Writing a gratitude list is the one tool in my safe coping skills tool box that I do on a daily basis. I have done this for over 3 years, and I ask the women I sponsor in AA to do the same. My mind tells me that I have only a few things to be grateful for, however when I see them on paper I know how truly blessed I am.
    In fact Lynn I believe YOU have been on my gratitude list a time or two. God Bless Friend. Jill

    • Executive Coach on July 8, 2011 at 10:11 pm

      Hi Jill,
      I am honored to have been on your Gratitude List! Back at ya!

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