The Science of Gratitude and Financial Success

Find out how being grateful affects your financial success. Plus, Money Girl reveals 5 tips for easily cultivating more gratitude in your daily life. 

Laura Adams, MBA
6-minute read
Episode #380

5 Tips for More Gratitude

Just because gratitude can improve your life, doesn’t mean that it’s easy to cultivate. Here are 5 tips to become more grateful in your daily life:

Tip #1: Keep a Gratitude Journal

I’m sure you’ve heard that setting aside time to write down what you’re grateful for in a journal is a healthy practice. Studies by many psychologists have backed up the benefits of this exercise, and shown that it can increase happiness.

Journaling is a great way to remind yourself on a regular basis of the gifts you have and all the good things you enjoy. It focuses your attention on developing more positive thinking and eliminating negative or ungrateful thoughts.

You might list one thing you’re grateful for each day or 5 things once a week. It could be something seemingly small, such as being able to read this article, listen to the Money Girl podcast, or experience a beautiful sunset.

Tip #2: Write a Gratitude Letter

Research has shown that writing a letter of gratitude to someone who helped bring goodness into your life—such as a family member, friend, or mentor—increases happiness.

Tip #3: Remember the Bad

To be grateful, it can help to think about hard times you may have experienced in the past and recognize how far you’ve have come since then.

Tip #4: Use Visual Reminders

It’s easy to forget that gratefulness is important, so use a visual reminder - like a sticky note on your bathroom mirror or refrigerator, or a framed picture on the wall -  to trigger daily thoughts of gratitude.

Tip #5: Watch your Language

Instead of talking about problems or what you don’t have, focus on the good you have in your life. Grateful people speak much more about their gifts or abundance than what they may lack. They also tend to smile more and say “thank you” more often.

Being grateful is never about settling for less or not striving to achieve your true potential. It’s an understanding that life isn’t always in our control, and that we must appreciate the gifts we do have right now, both big and small.  

To read more about gratitude, visit the Greater Good Science Center website and read Why Gratitude Is Good.

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About the Author

Laura Adams, MBA

Laura Adams received an MBA from the University of Florida. She's an award-winning personal finance author, speaker, and consumer advocate who is a frequent, trusted source for the national media. Money-Smart Solopreneur: A Personal Finance System for Freelancers, Entrepreneurs, and Side-Hustlers is her newest title. Laura's previous book, Debt-Free Blueprint: How to Get Out of Debt and Build a Financial Life You Love, was an Amazon #1 New Release. Do you have a money question? Call the Money Girl listener line at 302-364-0308. Your question could be featured on the show.