Gratitude – The quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness
When was the last time you thought of what you are thankful for in your life? Your relationships, your opportunities, your possessions, your pets…. your LIFE???
When was the last time you focussed on what you DO have rather than what you DON’T have?
It is not something many of us do very often. We seem to always focus on the negatives of life, what we don’t want, what we have lost, what we have never had – reinforcing negative thoughts and perspectives, making us unhappy and keeping us stuck in the unhappy place we are in…
Practicing being thankful and showing gratitude can have a massive influence on our thinking styles and patterns
There are also many other benefits. It has been scientifically proven that it can improve self-esteem, build resilience, allow us to sleep better, reduce blood pressure, have a stronger immune system – how? the MIND BODY and SOUL are ALL connected one cannot work correctly without the others.
Personality psychologists have found that expressing gratitude has a bigger impact on personal wellbeing than health, wealth or optimistic personality traits. It works to train the pre-frontal cortex to retain our positive memories, experiences and thoughts, there for giving less control to your negative ones
It will motivate you to express more compassion and kindness to others – then what happens?? –WE GET MORE BACK!!! – our positive perspectives and thoughts get stronger. We then have more motivation to change the things we want to change and create the lives we want to live. Significantly increasing wellbeing and life satisfaction – Imagine that!!
So how can you practice gratitude?
- Keep a gratitude journal – every night, write down 3 things that you are grateful for that day. These don’t have to be big thigs, maybe even that cup of coffee from Starbucks? It can be ANYTHING – the outfit you wore, that favour someone did for you, your relationships, the phone call with your parents, the picture your kid drew for you – ANYTHING!
- When you wake up in the morning you can spend the few minutes brushing your teeth thinking of what you are grateful to have in your life
- Celebrate even the minor accomplishments – you finished that book, you reached that small goal of getting up a bit earlier, you remembered to get in touch with that person you have been meaning to speak to for ages. Recognise the achievement every time you cross something off your to do list.
Love Jen x