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Gratitude, thankfulness, or appreciation is a positive emotion or attitude in acknowledgment of a benefit that one has received or will receive


Dr. Robert A. Emmons, A UC Davis psychologist, conducted a 10 week research in the psychology of gratitude. In one of his studies the participants were asked to list what they were grateful for compared to what they weren’t happy about in their lives. In another study they were asked to list what they were grateful for, in ways they compared and thought they were better off than others.


The results showed that the second group of people who expressed gratitude without comparing themselves as “better than” were significantly happier than those making comparisons between themselves and others.


From another study on self esteem: a dangerous silent damage to your feelings of self worth is created and intensified when you compare yourself to being better off or more of anything than someone else. By practicing the habit of comparison when you are feeling happy with yourself or your life, you are establishing the foundation for feelings of lack of self worth when you don’t measure up to any comparison in the future. The inherent problem with this habit is that then takes considerably more effort to repair your feeling of lack which can contribute to the difficulty in regaining levels of success in chosen areas of your life.


A person who can see their unique qualities, success and strengths without the need to compare themselves to anyone other than themselves is found to be emotionally stronger, and more genuinely compassionate for anyone they see experiencing any difficulty in life.


And since we can only hold one emotion at a time, why not just gratitude without comparison.

Are there times in your life when you have said “I’m grateful to not be him/her”? or “I’m grateful to have something more, better or different than someone else?”

Were you really in a genuine gratitude spot, or were you actually feeling something else?