The practice of showing gratitude is more scientific than most people give it credit for. There have been proven results when it comes to how the action of gratitude can affect the way you think and feel. But, as the title of this article suggests, gratitude is a practice. It is something that needs to be worked on and acknowledged on a regular basis.
The grateful mindset comes more naturally to some people more than others. If it isn’t something that is strongly ingrained in you, don’t worry! That just means you have to take more time and put more conscious effort into practicing gratitude more often. If you are willing to do that, you just might be amazed at how many ways you life can change for the better. Let’s take a look at some of the positive changes you can expect from this wonderful daily practice.
You Will Build Stronger Relationships
Whether you have been friends with someone for ten years or ten minutes, the practice of gratitude can strengthen any relationship. Something as simple as a ‘thank you’ or action of thanks can add onto any relational foundation. It shows people your genuine emotion, and makes them more attracted to you as a person. In short, people will tend to like you more if you show honest gratitude, even for the smallest things.
Your Health Will Improve
It might be hard to believe that you will see physical improvements from something like showing gratitude, but there are a lot of ways this practice can boost your overall physical health. Feeling genuine appreciation can do things like lower your blood pressure and reduce your stress levels.
It can also help with aches and pains in your body, headaches, and can improve your heart health. You might also notice that you have more energy when you are genuinely grateful and appreciative. This affects your body, but it can also have an impact on your mental state and help you to get more done throughout each day.
You Will Manage Stress Better
Having a strong appreciation for things will make it easier for you to manage the stresses in your daily life. This includes minor things that happen all of the time, but it also can help with big things that might otherwise seem overwhelming. Being grateful will help you to deal with the hardships life can sometimes throw at you, because you will focus on the positive things and what you should be thankful for, instead of dwelling on the negative aspects of the situation you are in.
This skill can make you a pillar for others who might be struggling with stress or other hardship. People may come to you for support. You can use that as an opportunity to spread even more gratitude. Your positive attitude may rub off on others, so they can keep the trend going, too!
You Will Have More Confidence
Developing an attitude of gratitude can make you feel better about yourself and boost your self-esteem. This is mostly because you will stop comparing yourself to others. It is hard to be jealous of what someone else might have, how they look, etc., when you are grateful for what you have and how you look, as well as your accomplishments. Instead of being envious of the lives of others, you will be more appreciative of your own, which can help with your self-image.
You Are Less Likely to Face Depression
Studies have shown that people who are more grateful and appreciative are less likely to deal with depression or anxiety. This is because gratitude doesn’t leave room for so many toxic emotions in your life. If you are appreciative of the things in your life, it is harder to feel things like resentment, envy, or even anger. These emotions can still show up from time to time, but when your attitude and heart are truly grateful, those negative emotions don’t stick around for long.
You Will Feel Happier
Finally, you will tend to feel better overall when you practice an attitude of gratitude in your day-to-day life. There have been studies done on this very subject, and the results have consistently shown that people who are more appreciative of things are generally happier.
It’s important to note that everyone has a ‘baseline’ when it comes to happiness. It is up to us to push the line in a positive or negative direction each day. Having appreciation in your heart and mind will consistently make it easier to feel happier, instead of dipping below that line and feeling sad or angry about things.
How Can You Practice Gratitude Each Day?
Now that you know what a more grateful attitude can do, you might be wondering how you can actually be more appreciative each day. Keep in mind that it is an ongoing practice, and one you need to be conscious of all the time. But, there are some things you can do each day to create a shift in your mindset, and gravitate more towards a grateful attitude.
One of the best things you can do to get started is to create a ‘gratitude list.’ Sit down at the start of each day, and write down three things you are grateful for. Instead of thinking about what you have to do or the things you might be stressing over, consider the positive things that make you happy. By starting out your day this way, you can change your entire attitude. I use the Five Minute Journal to remind me every day to write down what I am grateful for each day. You can start your own gratitude journal if you wish, and take note of what you are grateful for each day.
As you can see, the practice of gratitude can have a huge impact on your daily life, with many positive results. There are many more benefits to consider, and some may be very personal to you. Try adopting this wonderful attitude into your life, and you are bound to notice some positive changes occurring quickly. In the end, that just gives you one more reason to be grateful.