Living and Giving

The Pamela Positive: Research Gratitude

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Here\’s a great research project on one of the most important aspects of health: Being Grateful!

Robert A. Emmons (UC Davis) and Michael E. McCullough (University of Miami) are on a long-term research project, scientifically exploring \”gratitude, its causes, and its potential consequences for human health and well-being.\”

Here are just a few of their findings:

  • A daily gratitude intervention (self-guided exercises) with young adults resulted in higher reported levels of the positive states of alertness, enthusiasm, determination, attentiveness and energy compared to a focus on hasles or a downward social comparison.
  • Most people report being grateful (average rating of nearly 6 on a 7 point scale).
  • Grateful people report higher levels of positive emotions, life satisfaction, vitality, optimism and lower levels of depression and stress.  The disposition toward gratitude appears to enhance pleasant feeling states more than it diminishes unpleasant emotions.  Grateful people do not deny or ignore the negative aspects of life.
  • Grateful individuals place less importance on material goods; they are less likely to judge their own and others\’ success in terms of possessions accumulated; they are less envious of wealthy persons; and are more likely to share their possessions with others relative to less grateful persons.

Read more about the report here.

Thank you, Robert and Michael, for this important research!