Benefits of Gratitude

Want to be happier?  Make gratitude a habit!  In celebration of Thanksgiving, we’re providing a number of ways you can do that, even with a busy schedule and lot of commitments.  Express gratitude every day and reap the benefits…Our November  Report features eight benefits of gratitude and four ways to express it, from keeping a gratitude journal to paying kindness forward.

 

Here are 8 key benefits of expressing gratitude all year round.

 

1.  Improves your attitude. Expressing gratitude makes you feel more positive and optimistic, which can reduce stress and help improve your overall mental fortitude.

2.  Builds stronger relationships.  A simple “thank you” lays the groundwork for a stronger relationship, whether you’re expressing gratitude to a loved one or to a stranger. Saying “thanks” is a way to acknowledge a person for their help, which encourages them to feel special.

3.  Improves your mental health. The next time you feel upset or frustrated, write down what you’re thankful for. Studies show that expressing gratitude helps you to deal better with your emotions and may even reduce depression.*

4.  Enhances your physical health. Studies show a strong correlation between gratitude and health. Put simply, people who are thankful tend to be healthier. Not only do they exercise more frequently and visit the doctor for their annual checkups, but they report feeling healthier as well.*

5. Boosts your self-esteem.  Taking stock of what you’re grateful for helps you maintain perspective and makes you less likely to compare yourself to other people.*

6. Promotes better sleep.  Jotting down what you’re thankful for each day boosts your mood and reduces your stress, which can help you sleep better at night.*

7. Increases your empathy for others.  Gratitude may make you more sensitive toward other people’s feelings. Studies show grateful people are less likely to resort to retaliation when they experience negativity from others.*

8. Spreads happiness!  Gratitude positively impacts your overall well.

 

*Source: Forbes, 7 Scientifically Proven Benefits of Gratitude That Will Motivate You To Give Thanks Year-Round, November 23, 2014

 

Want to learn more about gratitude?  Check out these three insightful books and links to helpful websites:

 

1. Thanks! How Practicing Gratitude Can Make You Happier By Robert Emmons, Ph.D. explains the science behind the benefits of expressing gratitude.

2. Gratitude: A Way of Life By Louise L. Hay is a series of essays about the power of incorporating gratitude into every day.

3. Gratitude: A Journal By Catherine Price is a journal in which to record what you’re grateful for each day. Stay inspired with quotes and writing prompts.

Forbes: How Feeling Grateful Can Make You More Successful

Psychology Today: Gratitude Basics

UC Berkeley’s Greater Good, The Science of a Meaningful Life (Gratitude Difinition)

Why Gratitude Is Good an essay by Robert Emmons, the world’s leading scientific expert on gratitude, reveals why gratitude is good for our bodies, our minds, and our relationships.

TED Give Thanks Playlist (7 individual talks)

 

Four Ways to Express Gratitude Today…

 

Be happier by expressing gratitude every day. The month of Thanksgiving, November provides you an opportunity to express gratitude in four ways, from keeping a gratitude journal to paying kindness forward.

1.  Keep a gratitude journal.  If you want a daily dose3 of perspective a gratitude journal can help you focus on the great things you have in your life.  Every day, write down three things you’re grateful for, whether it’s the sunny weather, having a thoughtful spouse or the sound of your child’s laughter.  After ding this for a few days, you’ll become more mindful of the blessings in your life.  Here’s an app that you can use, if you have an Apple product: Day One.

2.  Write a note.  Personal notes only take a minute to write, but their impact lasts much longer.  Write a note to a person who has had an impact on your life to thank them for their help or kindness.  It’s a kind guesture that is sure to make someone’s day.

3.  Say “thanks”.  It sounds obvious, but a simple “thank you” acknowledges someone for their help and makes them feel special, whether they held the door open for you or helped you with a challenge at work.

4.  Pass it on.  When someone helps you, pay the kindness forward and help someone else.  give up your seat in a crowded room or bus, pay the toll for the person behind you on the highway, or help someone carry heavy groceries to their car.  Not only wiull this brighten someone’s day, it’ll improve your mood as well.

 

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