Explicit Gratitude Increases Well-Being, Reduces Materialism

Robert Emmons

Robert Emmons

Gratitude, or appreciating a beneficial outcome, has significant benefits to physical and emotional health, according to Robert Emmons at the University of California.

He found that volunteers who kept a gratitude journal exercised more frequently, reported fewer physical symptoms of pain, were more optimistic about the upcoming week, and showed greater progress towards personal goals over a two-month period than people who kept journals that reported events factually or allowed them to complain.

Jeffrey Froh

Jeffrey Froh

Emmons worked with Hofstra’s Jeffrey J. Froh and Giacomo Bono of California State University, Dominguez Hills to consider gratitude in contrast to happiness among 700 middle school students, who completed measures of gratitude, prosocial behavior, life satisfaction, and social integration, with re-measures after 3 months and 6 months.

Giacomo Bono

Giacomo Bono

Emmons and team found that students who expressed gratitude initially showed greater social integration after 6 months, and these dimensions enhanced each other.
Theyposit that gratitude may help young people develop greater emotional and social well-being, and prosocial contribution to their communities.

Jennifer Wilson

Jennifer Wilson

This team was joined by Hofstra’s Jennifer Wilson and Noel Card of University of Arizona in another study of young adults who practicing daily gratitude exercises.

These volunteers reported higher levels of alertness, enthusiasm, determination, attentiveness and energy compared to people who focused on social comparisons with people in better or worse life situations than they.

Noel Card

Noel Card

The year-end holiday season often provokes reflections on materialism and gratitude.

Emily Polak

Emily Polak

Materialistic strivings have been implicated as a cause of unhappiness, whereas gratitude as a trait and as a temporary state can be related to happiness, according to Albert Einstein College of Medicine’s Emily L. Polak and Michael E. McCullough of University of Miami’s.

Michael McCullough

Michael McCullough

They note that gratitude may reduce materialistic strivings and reduce associated unhappiness to increase well-being.

-*How effective is conscious gratitude on increasing happiness, well-being, and social integration?

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3 thoughts on “Explicit Gratitude Increases Well-Being, Reduces Materialism

  1. fwade

    Hi Kathryn,

    I love this one, just because I happen to make a gratitude list every Friday.

    Tell me, do you ever accept guest posts? Your style of compiling research is so compelling – I have a few topics that are time management related that I have studied and could pull together using your style.

    Let me know if interested.

    And keep up the good work. How you find the time and bandwidth to cover so many diverse topics is probably worthy of study…


    Framework Consulting Inc / 876-880-8653 / http://www.fwconsulting.com

    1. kathrynwelds Post author

      Thanks for your kind words, Francis. I welcome your Guest Posts, and think they would amplify past discussions of time perception and personal productivity. Let’s connect offline to develop a plan. Thank you for the suggestion – it’s very welcome.

      *Kathryn Welds* welds@post.harvard.edu +1 650 740 0763 mobile *LinkedIn | **Blog **|**Google+ ** |Twitter @kathrynwelds * *| Facebook notes *

      On Thu, Jan 2, 2014 at 7:22 AM, Kathryn Welds | Curated Research and

  2. Pingback: Gratitude Increases Financial Patience, Investment Earnings | Kathryn Welds | Curated Research and Commentary

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