Research shows that practicing gratitude can be beneficial for our overall health…physically, socially, spiritually and emotionally. This translates into better health habits, and healthier bodies. Gratitude can help restore our sleep patterns, making us feel more rested in the mornings and better able to face the day. Gratitude journaling before bed, or first thing in the morning can help improve a good nights sleep. Gratitude increases patience, and lessens our chances of burnout. Grateful people are less materialistic, and are drawn to minimalism trends, in home and surroundings. Less chaos gives way for more peace of mind. Expressing gratitude has shown to aid in reducing aches and pains in our body. It has been observed that levels of aggression decrease, not only in children, but adults, as well. Imagine what this could do for inmates, or special care facilities?
Robert Emmons, PhD, suggests expressing gratitude can increase our overall happiness by 25%. This reflects in improved self esteem and social relationships. This is a two way street…we feel better when we acknowledge kindness and thanksgiving from others, as well as being the giver of kind deeds. Gratitude, kindness, and love are all interrelated, making it very evident that love DOES make the world go round. If everyone were to practice gratitude in their own lives, not only would we see the health benefits in our own lives, but those around us…in our relationships with our significant others, with our children, with our co-workers, with our neighbours, with our communities. Dr.Jennifer Russell, NB Chief Medical Officer, has continually reminded us to be kind throughout this pandemic, and for good reason. It is a stressful time for many; and a little kindness and gratitude for those around us can go a long ways.
Strengthened resiliency is a long term effect of a gratitude mindset. Resiliency is the ability to “bounce back” from what life throws at us. This includes building our immune system, so we handle stress better. If we sleep better, our bodies are better able to handle life’s little “speedbumps”. If we develop stronger, caring relationships, we build a stronger support network; a definite asset when times get rough. Gratitude can have a direct impact on all of these.
In the Christian faith, “Eucaristeo” comes from the Greek word for “thanksgiving”, but as Ann Voskamp explores more in her book, it really means the JOY and GRACE that comes in the thanksgiving, and in this instance, around Jesus and the Last Supper. Despite the intense agony that would follow in the crucifixion, Jesus was letting the disciples know, joy would follow, even in the hard times; especially in the hard times.
Having an “Attitude of Gratitude” really can improve our well-being, and overall health and wellness.
Being grateful all the time isn’t easy. But it’s when you least feel thankful that you are most in need of what gratitude can give you: perspective. Gratitude can transform any situation. It alters your vibration, moving you from negative energy to positive. It’s the quickest, easiest most powerful way to effect change in your life — this I know for sure. ~Oprah Winfrey
Attitude of Gratitude: Resource List (Books, websites, Facebook pages)
Heather Brown website: https://inspireexplorecreateempower.wordpress.com
Facebook Page: Inspire, Explore, Create, Empower
Robert Emmons: THANKS! HOW THE NEW SCIENCE OF GRATITUDE CAN MAKE YOU HAPPIER
Sarah Ban Breathnach: SIMPLE ABUNDANCE
Ann Voskamp: ONE THOUSAND GIFTS (book, http://www.annvoskamp.com, Facebook)
Karl Staib: BRING GRATITUDE (book and website, bringgratitude.com)
Abraham Hicks: RAMPAGE OF APPRECIATION
Katherine Furman: THE GRATITUDE JOURNAL
Lori Deschene: TINY BUDDHA GRATITUDE JOURNAL
Pretty Simple Press: START WITH GRATITUDE: A 52 WEEK GUIDE
Louise Hays: GRATITUDE: A WAY OF LIFE
Gratitude Gals: Facebook page
Daring to Live Fully: https://daringtolivefuly.com
GRATITUDE ACTIVITIES: Gratitude letter: to a teacher, parent or mentor. Gratitude Visit (mentor, teacher, etc., to share that letter). Gratitude Stroll (use all your senses).
GRATITUDE PARTNER for a week: Choose a person to check in with daily for the next week, reporting examples of gratitude you witnessed or experienced.
Happy Thanksgiving! May you each find something to be truly grateful for today.