The Importance of Expressing Gratitude
Expressing gratitude is essential for a person to achieve peace and happiness. It is also the fastest way to change your mental state. Expressing gratitude can take you from a negative mindset to a positive one very quickly. This is an essential part of life. We can’t help bad things from happening but we can train our minds to look for the positives and be thankful for the lessons. Often times, people get caught up in their busy schedules, especially during this time of year. Expressing gratitude is an easy way to ground yourself and think about all the things and people you are grateful for.
We tend to wait to express our gratitude until Thanksgiving dinner. While Thanksgiving is a great way to focus on all the things that you are grateful for, it is important to practice this on a daily basis. There are several health benefits to practicing gratitude and in this week’s blog we are going to discuss those benefits and ways you can express your gratitude all year long.
The main benefits of practicing gratitude is a boost in one’s mood and happiness. It is known that practicing this healthy habit, for even just ten minutes everyday, can improve someone’s mood drastically. These individuals are said to be happier and more positive than those who don’t practice gratitude. It is said this change occurs due to individuals being forced to focus on the good in their lives rather than the negative things that may be bothering them.
Other health benefits of expressing gratitude on the daily include: more satisfaction with one’s life, less fatigue and burnout, better sleep, better physical health, and they tend to be more resilient. When gratitude is practiced consistently, that person tends to help others more and it also helps to strengthen relationships.
One of the easiest ways to express gratitude each and everyday is by creating a gratitude journal. You can do this on your phone, in a notebook, or on sticky notes. All you have to do is write down three to five things that you are grateful for each morning. This action should be one of the first things that you do each day. It is a great way to start your morning by reminding yourself of the things and people that you are blessed to have. The key is to be as specific as possible in your list, this way you can find the beauty in the little things and keep your gratitude list long and meaningful. You don’t want to come to the point where it gets difficult to think of things due to your prior list being too broad. For example, if you are grateful for your family; instead of saying that, state that you are grateful for the way your mother helps support you when you need her too.
Once someone practices gratitude long enough, they won’t even have to write it down anymore. It will come to the point where they will be finding things they are grateful for as they move throughout their day. This action will develop subconsciously, leaving a positive impact on their physical and emotion well-being. Some other ways to express gratitude include but are not limited to; spending time in nature, volunteering, forgiving and letting go, and turning a negative into a positive.
Spending time in nature lets you experience the present moment and may help promote calmness and peace by seeing the beauty all around you. Volunteering is another great way to express gratitude. While you are helping others, you will be filled with a sense of peace and purpose. It also helps you see that while your situation may be bad, someone else always has it worse.
Forgiving and letting go is crucial for our mental health. Forgiveness doesn’t mean you go back to being friends with the person, but it helps you let go of all that anger and resentment inside of you. In order to achieve this, think of that person and try to find something that you are grateful for and practice this consistently. This also helps you turn a negative into a positive and is good practice for training your mind to learn from all situations. There is always a lesson to be learned!
This blog is just scratching the surface of practicing and expressing gratitude. The actually art of gratitude can be hand crafted to your liking. If you prefer to verbally state the things you are grateful for, rather than writing them down, then so be it. Your practice is your practice. Everyone benefits from these healthy habits in their own way, so feel free to customize your practice to your own wishes. However, the most important thing is that you stay consistent. Like anything, if you want to see results you have to remain consistent in your efforts. While you may feel better after practice gratitude for one week, it won’t compare to how you’ll feel after practicing it for one month or longer. This may feel hard to do at first, but remember focus on being specific in your list and the rest will follow.
If there is one thing that the team at Atlantic Wellness and Spine Center is thankful for, it is all of our patients. We appreciate your trust and thank you for choosing us to be part of your healthcare team. We hope everyone has a happy, healthy, and safe Thanksgiving.