Having gratitude is awesome when things are going well in your life, but did you know it’s even more powerful when life isn’t exactly hunky-dory?

This interesting piece by gratitude expert Dr. Robert Emmons explains how recognizing and expressing gratitude during tough times can help give uplifting perspective and remind you of your past strength. I’ve used this strategy with great success in my own household when someone has fallen pray to chronic complaining. Having them list a few things they’re grateful for has an almost instantaneous positive effect. Try it some time.

Meanwhile, I’m a huge fan of keeping a gratitude journal. Here are three things on my gratitude list this week:

1. Dinner with my lifelong best friend. We live in different states now, but there’s nothing like being together, talking about everything under the sun. She’s more than my friend—she’s family and I am blessed.

2. A long walk by the ocean on a perfect fall day. The sunshine sparkled on the water, the air was fresh and crisp, the ocean was calm and crystal- clear. It was at once energizing and peaceful.

3. My awesome happiness community! So grateful to the thoughtful people who take the time to appreciate what I share on Facebook and on the blog. Often, you make my whole day…and I thank you!

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