Gratitude seems to be a mood-improver. Here's an excerpt from The Parent of All Virtues, an essay by Steve Keeva, in the American Bar Association's ABA Journal, Feb. 2005, at 72:
When we see the world through the lens of gratitude, hassles get easier to bear, and stress recedes. And that's not an idle claim. Research supports it * * *
[A trial lawyer] tells me that he can't imagine a morning without his regular gratitude ritual, which he does in the shower. He brings to mind whatever evokes thankfulness, but always begins with the hot water pouring down on him, something he came to appreciate in a new way on a trip to Africa, where hot water was, in most cases, an unimaginable gift.
Gratitude is an attitude that grows over time and reveals a great deal about who we are as professionals and human beings and what matters most to us.
And it's not always what we might expect. ... [A]llowing the object of your gratitude to simply come to mind is likely to bring some surprises. * * *
What's important to remember is that it's not about searching for something to be grateful for. It's about finding what you already are grateful for.
The distinction is crucial because you can't make yourself feel thankful; you can only shine the light of awareness on what is already there, albeit heretofore neglected.
How is that done? By taking a few quiet minutes to ask yourself what makes you feel grateful.
(Paragraphing edited.) Steve Keeva is also the author of Transforming Practices: Finding Joy and Satisfaction in the Legal Life.