In a world that preaches hustle nonstop, and advertisements send messages of not having enough--it's easy to lose sight of what you already have in your life.

This is especially common with entrepreneurs and business owners. You do something good, but then the inner cynic arrives and sees all that could be improved on and this steals your joy because you don't feel good enough yet.

This is where the power of gratitude comes to the rescue. In today's world especially, gratitude is the ally you need to succeed in your business and for your personal health.

Every day, things happen that could steal your thunder and joy away. But with gratitude, you'll be able to stay healthier and happier and see the world through a much more positive lens.

A study by UCLA and the University of Miami found that people who wrote down what they were grateful for on a weekly basis ended up being more optimistic and cheerful about the upcoming week than those who didn't.

Before we move on, gratitude doesn't mean operating in a constant state of denial and burying your head in buckets of sand to avoid the world. Instead, gratitude is about taking a perspective of acknowledging what you do have in your life while on a quest for self-improvement.

Here are five reasons why gratitude deserves a seat at your table.

1. You'll live longer.

The healthier your body and mind, the better you'll perform professionally. When you're filled with negativity and pessimism, that only attracts more of the same along with additional stress that takes a toll on your body.

But, by practicing daily gratitude, you're bringing positive emotions into your life and thus more optimism, which helps you live longer.

2. You'll be better prepared for setbacks and tough moments.

Setbacks, obstacles, and less-than-ideal outcomes will arrive in your life. The key is to develop resilience and the capability of bouncing back. A 2006 study of Vietnam War veterans found they were more resilient and less impacted by PTSD when they had high levels of gratitude.

While you're not on a battlefield, the underlying principles remain the same: Develop gratitude and you'll build up the necessary armor to handle the daily rigors of life.

3. You'll sleep better.

Worrying about your kids, politics, your job, or making a career change is going to cause an increase in stress in your body, and when left unmanaged, will decrease the quality of your sleep.

Think about it. You're ready to go to sleep, but dozens of thoughts circulate inside your head and keep you awake. You're headed toward symptoms of insomnia. But a daily practice of gratitude helps, because it induces a relaxation response in your body.

In fact, a 2009 study published in the Journal of Psychosomatic Research showed that those who practiced gratitude often slept better and longer than those who didn't.

4. You'll develop empathy and quality relationships.

It's a fact that happy and positive people are better at cultivating relationships. And establishing relationships is essential in business and to your well-being.

Practicing gratitude helps with your perspective, but it also helps you develop empathy toward others, which enriches relationships.

5. You'll make better decisions.

When you find tokens of appreciation for your day, your decision making improves along with your performance across the board. In fact, researchers at Northeastern University found that individuals who felt more grateful were able to demonstrate greater patience and delay making rash decisions, which has big implications when it comes to your bottom line.

If you're highly stressed, close to being burned out, take 10 minutes today to appreciate everything you have right now.

Published on: Aug 1, 2017