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Power To Shape Minds
Steph  »

“Gratitude is like fertilizer for the mind”

Robert Emmons, PhD

According to studies conducted by Robert Emmons, a professor of psychology at the University of California, Davis, gratitude is like fertilizer for the mind. When practiced, it activates multiple brain systems in ways that support mental and emotional well-being.

In a series of experiments, Emmons found that when people focused on their “blessings,” as opposed to their hassles or complaints, they significantly increased feelings of joy, happiness, and overall well-being.

What makes gratitude so powerful? Like an amplifier, gratitude pumps up the volume on the good in our lives, Emmons says. Our minds take the shape of the thoughts and emotions that flow through them.

What is shaping your mind today?

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A Servant’s Heart
Jill  »

As we embark on this season of giving thanks, let us remind ourselves thank you is not just a fragrant expression for the moment. But should also be the gratitude of our hearts through the works of our hands. While we gather together, break bread and give thanks; may we also serve one another with love. Giving thanks for the blessings bestowed on us should catapult us into moments of thankful service. If thankfulness is the beginning of gratitude then gratitude is the fruit of a servant’s heart.


How often do we use words when our actions could make a greater impact?

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Grateful Living


Grateful Living 

I’d sure like to learn to be a more grateful person if for no other reason than an obvious one: being grateful makes you happier; ingratitude diminishes happiness.  Fortunately, many wonderful people have taught me lessons of gratitude.

  • A friend, Adrienne, when she was diagnosed with cancer, began keeping a “Gratitude Journal.”  Every morning she writes down 10 things that she was grateful for. 

  • Brother David Steindl-Rast inspired a worldwide Network for Grateful Living. Check out its interactive web site:  I feel energized every time I visit it. 

  • Thich Nhat Hanh has taught countless people to find joy in the present moment.  He says, “Every morning we have 24 brand new hours to live.  What a precious gift!”

In these days of such troubling daily headlines (in addition to our own personal struggles), we all easily are in touch with the dreadful part of life.  At the same time, life if full of wonder.   For our own happiness and to help us become more expansive and generous, may we always grow in gratitude.

We all know people who radiate gratefulness.  What’s their secret?

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