Why practice gratitude?
We may well feel instinctively that gratitude as part of our mindset will be good for us, but there’s also a wealth of research that confirms that experiencing gratitude is beneficial for both our physical and psychological wellbeing, as well as having a positive effect on our relationships.
For example, one study of more than a thousand people, from ages 8 to 80, found that people who practice gratitude consistently report a host of benefits, including stronger immune systems, improved sleep, lower blood pressure, they exercise more; have higher levels of positive emotions; are more helpful, generous and compassionate and are less lonely and isolated🙂.
With a grateful disposition and outlook, we’re more likely to
– notice and appreciate the positive, the good things in life
– avoid experiencing unpleasant/negative emotional responses
– negotiate adversity and negative life events more easily.
How to cultivate gratitude? One way is to keep a journal, where we can list just three good things that have happened to us today, or this week, that we’re grateful for.
This practice means we are consciously, intentionally focusing our attention, what we give power and energy to, on developing more grateful thinking. (Not always easy for sure if we’re struggling with life events, having a difficult time, our mood is lower than we’d like or whatever). Also, writing things down via a journal can make them more impactful.
Alternatively, or in addition, we can practice counting our blessings on a regular basis, maybe first thing in the morning, maybe in the evening. What am I grateful for in my life/about my day🤔? We don’t have to write these things down on paper.
If you like, you can download a simple gratitude journal here, with a space also to note down why you’re grateful.
There’s more on Gratitude here.