Appreciation is the key to happiness

appreciation is the key to happiness

What is the key to happiness? Very simply – it’s appreciation.

The key isn’t having what you want. It’s wanting what you have.

You may have tons of neat material possessions, wonderful kids, and an awesome spouse, and still be miserable. Yet that old lady with all the books loves her life and she’s either telling everyone about the next book she’s reading or her next cruise.

Why is she so happy? Because she appreciates what she has. Perfect example of how appreciation is the key to happiness.

“How do I show appreciation?”

Very simply, just do it. Start showing appreciation for everything that goes right instead of obsessing what went wrong.

For instance, that doughnut shop down the road has really good coffee. If you’re like me, you’ll have to skip donuts as I no longer eat that stuff. However, I’ll still get coffee there.

So get your coffee and tell the lady behind the counter just how good their coffee is. Start a conversation about it. Look her in the eye when you compliment her coffee and smile as you do it.

You will realize that it feels good making someone else feel good. That, my friends, is how appreciation starts.

A dumb personal story about appreciation

OK, this is actually quite dumb. Years ago, I got obsessed with guitar brands. I wanted to “upgrade” my guitars. I had this Ibanez RGT42, which is an absolutely fabulous guitar. However, it’s inexpensive and I thought I’d have to play on stage with a “better” guitar.

So I sold it and bought a brand new Gibson SG, because I was under the impression Gibson is a more reputable guitar brand.

Well, I loved that old Ibanez. And Gibson’s quality in the past few years dropped significantly. Their newer SGs are unplayable. They sound muddy and have horrible tone.

The Ibanez on the other hand had a perfect neck, always stayed in tune, and after swapping out the default pickups with better pickups, it actually was pretty close to a perfect guitar.

How does this all tie to appreciation? Right here – I failed to appreciate a good guitar and got rid of it because I got wrapped up in status instead of function.

So for several years, I was stuck with an unplayable guitar (although from a famous brand) that I could never use live. And I missed my old Ibanez.

That, my friends, was stupid. I just fixed it two days ago when I finally found an Ibanez RGT42 online (they discontinued them a long time ago) and traded my useless Gibson in for it.

This applies to everything though

So many older people I know let a special someone slip away because they failed to appreciate them. They took them for granted, and that special someone left. Then afterwards, they realized just how awesome that person was. But it’s too late. They won’t come back.

Are you one of those people? Did you let the right one slip away because you took them for granted?

People like to be appreciated. You’ll see people quit otherwise good jobs not because they didn’t make enough money, but because they didn’t feel appreciated.

So yes, appreciation especially applies to people. If you have a good friend who’s always had your back, by all means, let them know it. Let them know how much you appreciate them.

So appreciate what you have

If you’re reading this, chances are, you have it pretty good. Yeah, you’ve heard that the rest of the world is starving. That’s so old and no longer motivates anyone. If anything, it’s annoying as it’s so overused.

Still, if you have food, appreciate you have it. If you have a good friend, appreciate them. If you have a loyal dog, that’s definitely a friend to look forward to when you get home.

Your health, don’t take for granted. When you have it, appreciate it since it won’t always be there for you.

When you start having a more appreciative mentality, you’ll be much happier. I can guarantee you that.

About the featured image

A train museum in the Berkeley hills. If you love trains as much as I do, let me know.


Roman is an artist, composer, writer, and travel junkie.

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