Gratitude is an immensely powerful force that we can use to expand our happiness, create loving relationships, and even improve our health. – Deepak Chopra
THE POWER OF GRATITUDE
Throughout the world and across the ages, spiritual teachers and philosophers have credited a happier life to being grateful! When we focus on what’s going right, we attract more of it. When we appreciate the value of something, we extract more benefits from it. Gratitude magnifies positive emotions.
Gratitude also blocks toxic, negative emotions, such as fear, anger, envy, resentment, regret – emotions that can destroy our happiness. There’s even evidence to show that gratitude can reduce the frequency and duration of episodes of depression.
If you find yourself sinking into a downward spiral of negativity, remember you have a choice – you have the opportunity to turn things around and elevate your mood. 🙂 Rather than focusing on the negatives, make a conscious effort to appreciate all the gifts in your life, however large or small! Choose to give your attention to the positive things in your life. With a full heart you will move from limitation and fear, to expansion and love.
When you are grateful, fear disappears and abundance appears. – Tony Robbins (author, entrepreneur, philanthropist, life coach)
THE SCIENCE – NEURAL NETWORKS
Whenever we complain, thousands of neurons are triggered and form a neural network. The mind then finds it easier to follow this established network when reacting to everyday life.
It is important to catch yourself whenever you notice yourself complaining or down, but make sure not to berate yourself.
When you do catch yourself, make a deliberate decision to change this pattern by focusing on gratitude. Choose to be grateful. It doesn’t matter what you are grateful for, it can be anything. As you practice gratitude, you will create a new neural network for pleasant feelings and the mind will find it easier to follow this new established network when reacting to everyday life!
Many scientific studies have found that people who consciously focus on gratitude experience greater emotional well-being and physical health than those who don’t.
Robert Emmons, a leading scientific expert on gratitude reports;
We’ve studied more than one thousand people, from ages eight to 80, and found that people who practice gratitude consistently report a host of benefits;
- Stronger immune systems
- Less bothered by aches and pains
- Lower blood pressure
- Exercise more and take better care of their health
- Sleep longer and feel more refreshed upon waking
- Higher levels of positive emotions
- More alert, alive, and awake
- More joy and pleasure
- More optimism and happiness
- More helpful, generous, and compassionate
- More forgiving
- More outgoing
- Feel less lonely and isolated
If you would like to experience greater levels of joy, happiness and health in your life, start cultivating an attitude of gratitude! Gratitude is good for our bodies, our minds, and our relationships!
KEEP A GRATITUDE JOURNAL
You can systematically cultivate gratitude by regularly recording the things you are grateful for!
Each day, take some time to write down who or what you are grateful for. It doesn’t matter what time of day or how many things you write down, what matters is that you are consistent and intentionally focus your attention on affirming all that is good in your life! 🙂
Challenge yourself to find new things each day, however small. This will guard against taking things for granted and encourage you to look closely at your life to appreciate the little things that bring you joy! What are you grateful for?
… Your relationships, waking up beside a loved one, the wind on your face, the air that fills your lungs and makes life possible, material comforts, a phone-call from a friend, a warm hug, the flowers in your garden, the people that enable you to grow and deepen your spirituality (being grateful for what we can give instead of what we receive is a very powerful way of cultivating a sense of gratitude!) … ?
WRITE A THANK YOU LETTER
Taking time to recognize the contributions that others have made in your life is a very powerful practice that can deeply affect not only you, but also the recipient!
Make a list of 5 people who have had a profound impact on your life. Choose one of these people and write them a thank you letter for all of the gifts they have bestowed upon you. If it is possible, deliver your letter in person.
Oftentimes we thank people in the moment, but taking the time to express your gratitude in the written form can be even more powerful and touching, and off course your letter can be treasured and read time and time again!
TAKE A GRATITUDE WALK
If ever you are feeling down, stressed or stuck, this is a great way to change your mood! Put aside 20 minutes (or more if possible) and take yourself for a walk! Walk around your office, your neighborhood, a park, in nature, wherever you can… and as you walk, think of all of the things you are grateful for.
See how many things you can be grateful for, pay attention to your senses; everything you are seeing, hearing, feeling, smelling, experiencing … this one is particularly fun to play with kids! 🙂
“I am grateful for… the smell of the flowers, the birds singing in the trees, the shoes I am wearing, the sprinkler systems that keep the grass green and lush, how relaxed I feel, the clouds, the gentle breeze…”
For an incredible Guided Gratitude Meditation visit Tony Robbins – Gratitude Meditation
(just 5 minutes and so worth it!) xxx