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What does Gratitude Have To Do with Goals?

Updated: Jul 25, 2022

When we have a long-term goal we are working towards, it’s easy to be so focused on it that we start to believe we won’t be happy until we reach it. Yes, it is very important to have long-term goals. But having long-term goals should not be at the expense of your daily life. Staying in a place of gratitude can be a huge benefit in reaching your goals.

Everyone has something to be grateful for. But what if you don't have anything to be grateful for? Well, if you don't know what you have that you must be grateful for, you're looking for the wrong thing.

Why is that? For different reasons, people think that only big things in life are worthy. It's the way we are brought up. For example, and this may not necessarily be true for you, but many of us learn to appreciate the kindness in others based on the size of their gifts to us on special occasions like a birthday or holiday celebration, rather than based on their inherent kindness. This may be a rather silly example, but the point is, we teach ourselves to overlook some things in life. We learn to appreciate stuff rather than the people who give us the stuff. And even when we are grateful for that something, we think our gratefulness or gratitude should match the value of the item.

I grew up in a broken home. My brother and I didn't have the same dads. His dad always brought him the most expensive gifts. In the end, I failed to appreciate the gifts that my dad gave me because it never measured up to my expectations. It just never compared well to what my brother got. I even learned to resent that as a child. And although I slowly matured, I took this into my adult life and failed to appreciate many small but important things. It took me an extremely long time to unlearn this mindset. It took even longer to realize that gratitude means something totally different from my concept. And it took me even longer still to realize that I have countless intangible things in my life that I must be grateful for.

If it took me this long to get to that realization, imagine my surprise when I eventually discovered for myself, that actually, I have many good characteristics and small achievements that I should add to the list of all those countless other things in my life that are worthy of deep gratitude.

In my case, it took a long time to figure out how many good things I have to be grateful for. And the more I look for good things, the more I find.


Staying in a place of gratitude can be a huge benefit in reaching your goals. Here's why:

1. Gratitude Makes You Happier

Neurologists have learned that feelings of gratitude actually change the way your brain works. When you are consciously aware of all the wonderful things in your life, you are happier and more content. When you are happy and feeling good about your life, it’s easier to believe that more good things await you down the road. This shifts your mindset that shifts your life.

2. Gratitude Lowers Stress

A life filled with the struggle to always be better will lead to a life of stress. Yes, you want to reach your goals. You want to unlock all the potential that’s inside you. But finding a way to balance this desire with gratitude for what you’ve already accomplished and what you have in your life today is also important. When constantly pushing yourself forward, it’s easy to believe you aren’t good enough today. Focusing on what you have to be grateful for today lowers your stress level and helps you enjoy the journey to your ultimate destination, wherever that may be. This shift in mindset moves you forward smoothly.

3. Gratitude Makes You More Optimistic

Believing the grass is always greener on the other side is a sure way to ensure your dissatisfaction with life on this side of the street. It makes you feel like you may never get the life you want. This pessimism just makes everything in life harder. You may even just give up on your dreams because you don’t believe you can attain them. Keeping a grateful mindset offers you a way to enjoy life now and look forward to the future, once your goals have been realized.


Obtaining a grateful spirit doesn’t take a lot of time and effort, but it makes a huge difference in your life. Start by keeping a small notebook with you or using an app on your phone to note the little things that happen throughout your day that you are grateful for. Some people prefer to keep a gratitude journal by their bed and add a short list of things that they are grateful for that day. Give it a try if you feel you’ve been too focused on a goal and it’s making you unappreciative for what you already have.

Gratitude is one of the simple Micro-Habits we can build that will reap bigger and bigger rewards as time goes on. It grows, like money grows in an investment account over time. And just like interest compounds, the rewards from gratitude compound over time. Also, like with savings, it is never to early to start!


Micro-habits are just that – changes that are small but that affect big change. While there are dozens of things you can do to transform your life, it’s the small things that will stick. By making these and other small changes, you will find that it becomes easier than you ever thought possible, to achieve your goals and reach your dreams.

What Next?

I am passionate about this topic of small changes with massive impact. If you want more tips on small changes that you can start in all sorts of places in your life, with practical steps on how to start and make it a success, click here for more information including a short first draft that started me on this writing journey, for free!

Or if you are more adventurous, I dare you to grab the 90 page fully fleshed out e-book here while it is on sale and take advantage of the 35% discount on it's release!

Until next time, grow your gratitude and your list of things to be grateful for will multiply! I'm here to help, just ask me how. And in the meantime, check out my free audio program for phenomenal sleep: The Garden of Gratitude.

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