Updated: Sep 3
The word itself comes from the Latin word meaning 'thankful' but how are 'grateful' and 'thankful' different? Historically the experience of gratitude is based in religion and has always been an emotion contemplated by philosophers. It wasn't until the year 2000 that the study of gratitude was integrated into psychology. Grateful is used frequently these days. Mostly by those that have experienced some amount of success in their life and or by those that appear to be more spiritually grounded in their thinking. All people possess the capacity to be grateful, as they do to be thankful. The difference is that there is a deeper emotional connection with grateful than there is with thankful. Both hold space and are necessary but gratitude seems to lack a sense of entitlement. The new generation of professional leaders possess a deeper connection to gratitude and with that it is bringing greater success for them and their companies. This is because when someone is grateful they have a greater capacity to think of the good of the many and not just for themselves. Gratitude is intrinsic but the amount of it differs in each person. This does not replace or nullify people being 'thankful' nor is it meant to diminish the relevance of being thankful. It simply is a lens on an emerging trend in our conversations that tends to lend itself to a deeper connection to each other.