Living With Gratitude

“Gratitude” has been popping up a lot lately. I have learned about it, my patients talk about it, my practioner has recommended it and even my real estate team is doing it. But is it really so great? Why incorporate a daily gratitude practice?

People have actually been studying the benefits of gratitude.Psychology Todayreviewed multiple studies and found that people who practice gratitude also tend to take better care of themselves and exercise more. It also found that people had a decrease in depression and increase in happiness. It also looked at the Journal of Applies Sport Psychology and found that gratitude improves the self-esteem in athletes, therefore improving their performance. Another interesting noticing was that gratitude can increase resilience and mental strength to help people overcome trauma.

Conscious Living also looked at the benefits of gratitude and noted decreased pain levels, improved sleep and increased energy. They also looked at a NIH study and found that gratitude activates the hypothalmus and increases dopamine. So, the more you give it, the better you feel.

So, how can you include a gratitude practice into your everyday? Find what resonates with you. Here are some examples:

  • Write a daily list of things that you are grateful for and keep it on you to reference throughout the day

  • Wear blessing beads or some other jewelry or item that reminds you throughout the day to acknowledge what you are grateful for

  • Set an alarm on your phone that cues you to consider your gratitude

  • Create a family dry erase board or poster and get everyone involved in listing what they are grateful for

  • Go around the table at dinner and have each family member list at least one thing that they are grateful for

  • Find an accountability buddy around your house or work that you can share your daily gratitude list with

What are your ideas? Is this a practice that you do, or would like to do?