“There is a calmness to a life lived in gratitude, a quiet joy.”
- Ralph H. Blum
While Thanksgiving in the US only comes around once a year, expressing gratitude is something that can benefit us every day when we make it a regular practice. There are so many ways to express gratitude toward others and ourselves. There are so many things for us to be thankful for, even at the simplest levels. Even when life may not be going our way, gratitude can help us have a deeper appreciation for being alive when we are able to see the bigger picture. Gratitude is something people report feeling more at a Spiritual level, but there is plenty of scientific evidence to support the benefits.
On a physical level, grateful people feel healthier and experience less aches and pains. They also take better care of themselves by exercising more often and attending regular checkups. Furthermore, grateful people have better heart health, with less inflammation and healthier heart rhythms. They also lower their risk of heart disease by experiencing less depression, stress and anxiety. Gratitude is like a wonder drug that releases the feel good chemicals within us, like dopamine and serotonin, simply by approaching life with the right attitude.
On a mental level, practicing gratitude helps us to have a better outlook on life and show more resilience when our mental strength is put to the test. In his book, Thanks!: How the New Science of Gratitude Can Make You Happier, Robert Emmons tells us how people who regularly practice grateful thinking can increase their “set-point” for happiness by as much as 25 percent. He also explains how experiencing positive emotions through gratitude helps combat negative emotions. When we reframe our negative experiences to find the good, we can be grateful for what we learned and how we moved on.
Gratitude is so much more than giving thanks. It helps us to recognize how amazing life can be when we approach it from the right perspective. We are taught at an early age how being thankful is the right thing to do. We show respect toward others and ourselves. It’s also the best thing to do since it helps to improve our mental, emotional, physical and Spiritual health.
This is why practicing gratitude should be at the top of our “To-do” list every day. The more thankful we can be, the more benefits we will see. Thank you for reading this post! 😊
From Subatomic Zen: A personal growth blog blending Spirit and science