(September 2019) — Gratitude leads to greater health and happiness. The Ancient Romans knew it. Around 60 B.C., the philosopher Cicero called gratitude “the mother of all virtues.”

Now, modern day scholars and educators are reminding us that there is a free, quick, and simple way to feel happier, healthier, and generally more at peace. 

Dr. Robert Emmons wrote in his acclaimed book “The Little Book of Gratitude” that gratitude gives us strength of character to improve our lives as well as the lives of others.  

The research continues to prove this is true. Studies* show that regularly taking time to express gratitude can improve overall happiness by 25 percent. And by lowering blood pressure and increasing physical activity, gratitude can directly lead to improved physical health. Look closely and the benefits really start to add up. Gratitude can also:

    • Increase generosity: Grateful people give an average of 20 percent more to charity.
    • Reduce violence: 13 percent fewer fights are reported in youth who express gratitude.
    • Lengthen your life span: Positive emotions produced by practicing gratitude have been shown to add seven years to your life.

At Dignity Health we recognize the importance of expressing gratitude on a daily basis. Gratitude to our physicians, clinicians, and staff for the dedicated work and patient care they provide every day. Gratitude from our patients, their family, and visitors who voice their thanks for the kindness they experience throughout our ministry. Gratitude to our donors and supporters who believe in our mission of delivering compassionate, high-quality, affordable health care, especially to those most vulnerable.

On Saturday, September 21 we plan to stop what we’re doing and take a moment to be grateful for you and everyone who contributes to our culture of gratitude. We invite you to join us and find something in that moment to be grateful for. It’s good for you!

Celebrate with us and share your gratitude for the people and events in your life and community using #gratitudeeveryday #worldgratitudeday and by tagging @SupportDignityHealth.  

*Research published by the Greater Good Science Institute.