Do you appreciate who and what you have?
Being grateful can not only increase your happiness and health but transform your life.
Gratitude contributes to increased and better social networks.
Studies have shown that people who are 10% more grateful have on average 17.5% more social capital.
Gratitude therefore helps us create and sustain our friendships and relationships.
It reduces blood pressure.
Patients with high blood pressure who practice the art of gratitude at least once a week have been shown to experience a significant decrease in blood pressure. (Shipton, 1977).
You will sleep better.
One particular study involved a 2-week gratitude intervention. Not only did it reduce blood pressure with participants, but it also increased sleep quality. (Jackowska, Brown, Ronaldson, & Steptoe, 2016).
You are more likely to exercise if you practices gratitude.
One particular study people who practiced gratitude for 11 weeks. They discovered that they were more likely to exercise than those in the control group (Emmons & McCullough, 2003).
Gratitude aids depression.
Researcher Chih-Che Lin (2017) discovered that expressing high levels of gratitude has a very positive impact on well-being, self-esteem, and depression.
Research shows that many body and brain systems are positively impacted by gratitude.
Obvious differences can be seen within mood transmitters, reproductive hormones, and inflammatory responses.
Blood sugar and levels are also positively affected.
If you find yourself inspired by my words and would like to practice the art of gratitude, I recommend working through the 3 gratitude levels below:
Level 1 – Be A Self Gratitude Specialist
Keep a small book beside your bed. Write down 3 things that you are grateful for every evening.
The only rule is no repetition. (If you are a fan of lovely little notebooks then I highly recommend this gratitude book which has plenty of space to write down your thoughts and it offers many inspiring quotes).
Counting your blessings in this way for just 1 week straight can impact your happiness and decrease depression symptoms for up to 6 months!
Can you imagine the positive impact it would have if you did this every day?
Level 2 – Be A Gratitude Giver
Continue to practice level 1, but up your game by expressing gratitude to others.
If you find yourself on the receiving end of spectacular service in a restaurant, take the time to speak to the waiter or waitress at the end of your meal.
Let them know how much you appreciated their service.
If someone at work helps you and makes a difference to their day, then tell them how much it meant.
If the barista who serves your morning coffee has great energy, then let them know how much they lift you.
Make or buy a card and send it to a friend with a few heartfelt words.
Look for opportunities every day to thank people and tell them how grateful you are for what they do or did for you.
Level 3 – Be A Gratitude Giant
Continue to practice at previous levels whilst looking for and finding the gifts in any situation, especially tough situations.
Within adversity and challenge, there are always gifts waiting to be discovered and it’s these gifts you can be grateful for.
If you separate from your partner, be grateful for the support of your friends.
If you are made redundant then be grateful that you have the ability to seek other jobs.
If you lose a loved one, be grateful for the time that you spent together.
Even in the darkest times, there is the ability to be grateful.
When you rise to this level you not only have the ability to profoundly and positively impact your own life but the lives of others who follow.
This level allows access to true empowerment, fulfilment and happiness.
You are more likely to exercise if you practice gratitude.
One particular study involved 2-week gratitude intervention. Not only did it reduce blood pressure (as above), it increased sleep quality in participants.
Maria Hocking is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn revenue linking to amazon.co.uk and amazon.com.
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