Giving Thanks does your body Good
Excerpts taken from Dr. Mercola.com
- Gratitude involves affirming the good in your life and recognizing its sources. It is the understanding that life owes you nothing, and that the good things in your life are gifts that cannot be taken for granted
- Gratitude is uniquely important to psychological well-being. In teenagers, gratitude has been found to correlate with positive emotions, life satisfaction, social support and prosocial behaviour
- Gratitude lowers stress, improves depression and improves emotional resiliency; researchers have suggested gratitude practice can be used as a psychotherapeutic intervention
- One particularly potent strategy is to write a letter of gratitude to someone whom you’ve not properly thanked for their kindness, and to hand deliver the letter to them. This has been shown to result in an immediate and significant increase in happiness that can last for up to a month
Materialism and Entitlement — Two Common Blocks to Gratitude
According to Robert Emmons, one of the leading scientific experts on gratitude,33 materialism and entitlement are two common stumbling blocks to gratitude, so if you cannot find anything to be thankful for, consider whether you might have fallen into one of these traps
When Gratitude Is a Struggle
Depending on circumstances, gratitude can sometimes be a struggle. Researchers say the best way to overcome this hurdle (which can trigger even more pessimism or guilt) is to find one tiny little thing to be grateful for, and to focus on that one thing.
Another way to flex your gratitude muscle when life events leave you uninspired is to identify and express gratitude for seemingly “useless” or insignificant things. It could be a certain smell in the air, the color of a flower, your child’s freckles or the curvature of a stone. Over time, you’ll find that doing this will help home your ability to identify “good” things in your life.