Why should I be grateful?

Last weekend I went to a professional development session where the focus for the morning was perspective. One of the speakers, Rod Soper, spoke about gratitude and it really opened my eyes to how being grateful can affect you as a person. Practising gratitude has social, psychological and physical implications, a lot of which I didn’t even realise.

 

Social:

More helpful

More generous

More compassionate

More forgiving

More outgoing

Less lonely and isolated

 

Psychological:

More positive emotions

More alert

More alive

More awake

More feelings of joy, pleasure, optimism and happiness

 

Physical:

Stronger immune system

More likely to exercise

Sleep longer

Feeling more refreshed

Less aches and pains

Lower blood pressure

 

By practising just a small act of gratitude every day, you are more likely to feel the implications as listed above and who doesn’t want all those benefits forΒ just 5 minutes of time?

 

So how can I practice gratitude you ask? Well, I have the answers for you. There are plenty of ways you can practice gratitude in your day to day life!

 

  1. Keep a gratitude journal – write down each day what you are grateful for, added bonus if you write why. By writing why you are grateful it will make you think and appreciate the entry more. It could be as simple as you are grateful for your bed because it means you get a comfortable sleep, or it could be something much more significant that happened throughout your day.
  2. Remember the bad – You know the lyrics “Only know you’ve been high when you’re feeling low” (Let Her Go – Passenger)? I was listening to these lyrics last night and it really reminded me that you can’t recognise you’re highs without remembering the hard times or low points in your life. Don’t just push them aside, take hold of them and acknowledge that you’ve overcome them.
  3. Use visual reminders – Have affirmations or cues in places you visit regularly. Places like your bathroom, your office desk or even your phone wallpaper. Just small reminders of gratefulness will be the nudge you need to practice.
  4. Be grateful to others – smile, say thank you, practice small acts of kindness or write a letter or message of gratitude to someone who helped you out.
  5. Practice mindfulness or meditation – Practising either of these techniques will keep you in the present time, rather than wishing for the future or overthinking the past. This is particularly useful for people who have a tendency to overthink or have anxiety as it centres you and makes you appreciate what you currently have.

 

The simplest way for you to practice gratitude is to write down what you are currently grateful for. So here’s my challenge, if you’re still reading by this point, I want you to leave a comment of what you are grateful for. It can be one thing, it can be ten. Let me know what you’re grateful for, I’d love to read them all!

 

What am I grateful for?

 

My family

My partner

My new job

Dancing

My pets, Kia and Simba

Being able to write and blog

My hope and resilience towards my health

The kids and families I work with

Water

 

Now it’s your turn!

 

-A.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s