I might believe that a penny saved is a penny earned, however I’m not immune to impulsive, mood-boosting shopping. I was surprised by a recent article on the power of gratitude to increase willpower.

Like me, you’re thinking, “What does gratitude have to do with willpower?”

In a nutshell, research shows that people who focus on what they’re grateful for are more likely to choose to receive $80 in 30 days, rather than $54 today. (That’s 32.5% more cash in hand by waiting a month!)

Researchers say that it isn’t enough think happy thoughts. A few minutes of gratitude – thinking about what they were thankful for – was the thing that helped people resist temptation and think long-term. The benefit of a boost in willpower means more thoughtful decisions in a number of arenas – not only spending, but other choices, too, like whether to eat that gooey dessert or skip the gym in favor of sleeping in.

How could an attitude of gratitude make you a more thoughtful, patient person?


We’d be grateful to hear from you!

Photo from iStockphoto.com.