The Happiness Formula

In the late 1990s, Oprah started a gratitude journal and, every day, began writing down five things she was grateful for. From fresh flowers to the kindness of a stranger, Oprah says acknowledging these things made her more receptive to the goodness in her life and that it was the best thing that she's ever done.

What is Gratitude?

Robert A. Emmons, Ph.D., the world's leading scientific expert on gratitude defines it in two parts:

1. "It's an affirmation of goodness. We affirm that there are good things in the world, gifts and benefits we've received." 

2. "We recognize that the sources of this goodness are outside of ourselves. We acknowledge that other people (or even higher powers, if you’re of a spiritual mindset) gave us many gifts, big and small, to help us achieve the goodness in our lives.”

Benefits of Gratitude

When you practice being grateful, you become more positive and optimistic. Specifically, gratitude will:

1. Make you feel happier
2. Reduce anxiety, stress and depression
3. Make you more resilient
4. Improve your relationship with others


1. Grab a notepad or use your own journal if you already have one
2. At the end of each day write down 3 things that you're grateful for that day

Here are a few suggestions to help you if you're struggling to come up with ideas:

* A positive experience or emotion
* Something that made you smile that day
* Something new that you learned
* A positive interaction with someone

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