Research and experience has shown that people who count their blessings or are grateful on a daily basis, have a better overall outlook on life. A better life outlook may lead to many positive benefits, including better health.

It’s not all that difficult to show gratitude but it does take a little time and some getting used to. It’s also worth showing children early on the importance of gratitude. Not only does it make you feel good when you show gratitude, but it also helps others around you.

Here are a few tips to help you get into the habit of counting your blessings:

#1 – Keep a gratitude journal. This can be simple notebook you keep on the side of your bed. Each night before going to sleep write down all the things you are grateful for. Writing things down cements them into your mind and subconscious in a more positive way then simply thinking about it.

It also gives you a nice record to look back on and see how far you’ve come. And if you’re ever feeling low, simply looking through your journal may help life your spirits.

#2 – Show gratitude. While writing down that you’re grateful is nice, there is no substitute for real life action. Show others you are grateful for them. Give your children a hug daily and tell them how lucky you are to have them in your life. Do the same with your partner. And don’t forget friends and neighbors. While it may not be appropriate to go around hugging everyone you meet, you can show gratitude in other ways.

A thank you note to a friend who invited you for coffee or doing a favour for a neighbor are both simple and very nice ways to show people you care. When you show people you care and are happy to have them in your life, this has a very positive effect that rubs off on everyone.

#3 – Take action. You feel blessed. You know you have a good life and that so many others are much worse off. Why not show your gratitude by helping others who are not so fortunate? This is one of the best ways to express gratitude for everything you have.

Get involved in a cause near and dear to your heart. You don’t have to dedicate your whole life to it but a little goes a long way. Volunteer a few hours a week or a month at your local shelter. Or offer to help a local single parent with the school run. Or perhaps an elderly neighbor needs to be driven to the pharmacy once a week.

It doesn’t really matter what you choose to do, but by being involved and helping others who are not so fortunate you send out a real message of gratitude to the universe. You not only help someone else’s life, but you also attract more goodwill to yourself in the process.