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We want to help you benefit, as we have, from the proven effects of gratitude. We are focusing on The Productive Power of Gratitude in business but you will find that the ongoing use of appreciation practices and tools can increase your effectiveness and happiness in all aspects of your life.

Gratitude and appreciation in the workplace can…

  • increase productivity
  • increase employee loyalty and retention
  • increase customer satisfaction, loyalty, and retention
  • increase individual and team morale
  • even help lower blood pressure!

What is gratitude?  Robert A. Emmons, Ph.D.,author and professor, says…“First, gratitude can be defined as acknowledging and affirming the goodness in our lives. We affirm that there are good things, gifts and benefits, in the world that we’ve received. This doesn’t mean that life is perfect; it doesn’t ignore complaints, burdens, and hassles. But when we look at life as a whole, gratitude encourages us to identify some amount of goodness in our life.The second part of gratitude is figuring out where that goodness comes from. We recognize the sources of this goodness as being outside of ourselves.” When employees, clients, associates, friends and family, or even someone whom we do not know (a cashier, waitress, or customer service employee) receive acknowledgement and thanks, they feel more motivated to continue to do good work and pass on the good feelings by helping others. It might surprise you to know that the giver of gratitude, as well as anyone observing the act of appreciation, also receives equally powerful benefits.

When people are thanked for their work, they are more likely to increase their helping behavior and to provide help to others.
Source: Greater Good Science Center, University of California, Berkeley

Let’s talk about stress and anxiety for a moment. Not a fun subject to discuss, we know, but the harmful effects of stress and anxiety are reaching epidemic proportions in our fast-paced world.

There is a strong link between stress and overall health. High stress levels, unhealthy behaviors to manage stress, and alarming physical health consequences of stress suggest the U.S. is on the verge of a stress-induced public health crisis.
Source: Stress in America™ 2012 Survey – American Psychological Association

Relaxed Stresses shutterstock_160695080Why do we want to help you learn to reduce your stress and anxiety? Isn’t this site about gratitude, you may be thinking?

We have found, that in order to have a grateful mindset and to be able to receive the maximum benefits from an ongoing gratitude practice, you must first slow down and learn to calm down. When you are physically and mentally going too fast, multi-tasking, feeling stressed, not breathing properly or breathing deeply enough…it is much more difficult to obtain or maintain a positive, pleasant, and grateful attitude.

When you sign in, you’ll receive free calming breathing techniques and other relaxation tools. We are creating a webinar “The Power of Please and Thank You to Move Mountains”. When you join us, you will receive details to access this webinar for FREE!

A little bit About Us (more on the About Us page):

Lisa E. Papp (who likes to call herself the Leader of the Gratitude Gang rather than a Gratitude Coach) and her husband and business partner Jim Papp have decades of combined experience in retail and direct sales, customer service, and management. Lisa has worked with for-profit and not-for-profit organizations including Nordstrom, Safeco Insurance, the American Institute of Architects, and has managed a retail store. She has received many commendations for her superior customer service. Jim Papp is President of a shipping transportation company with 8 U.S. offices and has held various staff and management positions with this company for over 30 years. Jamie Olson, our Program Director, has a Master of Education in College and Continuing Education, 15 years of experience teaching adults and youth, and also has sales and customer service experience.

We are creating an online Productive Power of Gratitude program for owners and managers of organizations with sales and customer service departments as well as the sales and customer service professionals. We plan to launch this online program in May. When you sign in, you will learn how you can receive a special low introductory price for this course.

We are fortunate to be able to share the latest research and information from Robert A. Emmons, Ph.D. and the other incredible professors, authors, and researchers associated with the Greater Good Science Center, University of California, Berkeley.

We hope you join us. Thank you for your interest!

Lisa Papp, Jamie Olson, and Jim Papp   -   The Gratitude Gang Team

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Do you feel like this at work?

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Do you want to feel like this at work…

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Why Gratitude is Good

By Robert A. Emmons, Ph.D.

For more than a decade, I’ve been studying the effects of gratitude on physical health, on psychological well-being, and on our relationships with others.  In a series of studies, my colleagues and I have helped people systematically cultivate gratitude, usually by keeping a “gratitude journal” in which they regularly record the things for which they’re grateful.

Gratitude journals and other gratitude practices often seem so simple and basic; in our studies, we often have people keep gratitude journals for just three weeks. And yet the results have been overwhelming. We’ve studied more than one thousand people, from ages eight to 80, and found that people who practice gratitude consistently report a host of benefits.

The social benefits are especially significant because, after all, gratitude is a social emotion. I see it as a relationship-strengthening emotion because it requires us to see how we’ve been supported and affirmed by other people.

Indeed, this cuts to very heart of my definition of gratitude, which has two components. First, it’s an affirmation of goodness. We affirm that there are good things, gifts and benefits, in the world that we’ve received. This doesn’t mean that life is perfect; it doesn’t ignore complaints, burdens, and hassles. But when we look at life as a whole, gratitude encourages us to identify some amount of goodness in our life.

The second part of gratitude is figuring out where that goodness comes from. We recognize the sources of this goodness as being outside of ourselves. It didn’t stem from anything we necessarily did ourselves in which we might take pride. We can appreciate positive traits in ourselves, but I think true gratitude involves a humble dependence on others: We acknowledge that other people—or even higher powers, if you’re of a spiritual mindset—gave us many gifts, big and small, to help us achieve the goodness in our lives.

What good is gratitude?

So what’s really behind our research results—why might gratitude have these transformative effects on people’s lives?

I think there are several important reasons, but I want to highlight four in particular.

1. Gratitude allows us to celebrate the present.  It magnifies positive emotions.  Research on emotion shows that positive emotions wear off quickly. Our emotional systems like newness. They like novelty. They like change. We adapt to positive life circumstances so that before too long, the new car, the new spouse, the new house—they don’t feel so new and exciting anymore.  But gratitude makes us appreciate the value of something, and when we appreciate the value of something, we extract more benefits from it; we’re less likely to take it for granted.

In effect, I think gratitude allows us to participate more in life. We notice the positives more, and that magnifies the pleasures you get from life. Instead of adapting to goodness, we celebrate goodness. We spend so much time watching things—movies, computer screens, sports—but with gratitude we become greater participants in our lives as opposed to spectators.

2. Gratitude blocks toxic, negative emotions, such as envy, resentment, regret—emotions that can destroy our happiness. There’s even recent evidence, including a 2008 study by psychologist Alex Wood in the Journal of Research in Personality, showing that gratitude can reduce the frequency and duration of episodes of depression.

This makes sense: You cannot feel envious and grateful at the same time. They’re incompatible feelings. If you’re grateful, you can’t resent someone for having something that you don’t. Those are very different ways of relating to the world, and sure enough, research I’ve done with colleagues Michael McCullough and Jo-Ann Tsang has suggested that people who have high levels of gratitude have low levels of resentment and envy.

3. Grateful people are more stress resistant. There are a number of studies showing that in the face of serious trauma, adversity, and suffering, if people have a grateful disposition, they’ll recover more quickly. I believe gratitude gives people a perspective from which they can interpret negative life events and help them guard against post-traumatic stress and lasting anxiety.

4. Grateful people have a higher sense of self-worth. I think that’s because when you’re grateful, you have the sense that someone else is looking out for you—someone else has provided for your well-being, or you notice a network of relationships, past and present, of people who are responsible for helping you get to where you are right now.  Once you start to recognize the contributions that other people have made to your life—once you realize that other people have seen the value in you—you can transform the way you see yourself.

Robert A. Emmons, Ph.D., is the world’s leading scientific expert on gratitude. He is a professor of psychology at the University of California, Davis, and the founding editor-in-chief of The Journal of Positive Psychology.

***Thanks to the Greater Good Science Center for generously sharing the contents of this article with PracticalGratitude.com.

The complete article, “Why Gratitude is Good” by Robert A. Emmons, Ph.D., originally appeared on Greater Good, the online magazine of UC Berkeley’s Greater Good Science Center. To view the original article, see http://greatergood.berkeley.edu/article/item/why_gratitude_is_good