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What if I told you that there is a superpower you could learn? It’s scientifically proven to make you happier, deepen your relationships, reduce stress, drive personal success, enhance your physical health and improve your psychological well-being. It’s gratitude.

Thanksgiving — and all the season's holidays — are a great time to think about to spread those thankful feelings through our everyday lives. Here are some fresh ideas, resources, and tools you can use to do just that.

Take a gratefulness quiz

This quiz was developed as a part of a study to determine which people benefit most from adopting a habit of gratefulness. You can use it to see how grateful you are and use the result as a baseline for your own personal exploration of gratitude.

Make gratitude a habit

Life-changing gratefulness is not accomplished in a single day. It takes many days to develop gratefulness that can make a true impact on our lives. Try one of many gratitude challenges to get started, including this free online course from the Mayo Clinic Health System.

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Feel it, then share it

Scientists say that experimenting with the many, many ways of finding gratitude is only the first step. You must also express it to others. Whether that is through words or kind gestures, expressing gratitude unlocks the greatest benefits.

Don’t forget to express self-gratitude

Even those who are great at gratitude can forget to give thanks for themselves. It’s okay to appreciate ourselves for our own good qualities, the way we handle a difficult situation, how we care for others, or the good choices we have made.

With a gratefulness habit and all the benefits that come with it, you have limitless potential to experience the full depth of meaning in your life. And that is truly something to celebrate.

Lori Vadakin is the director of Outpatient Mental Health and Substance Use Services at United Counseling Service.


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