The power of gratitude

A little thankfulness will do you a lot of good.

This is the time of year when many of us give thanks for what we have and show gratitude to those we care about. Not only is this a good practice but research indicates that gratitude itself is good for us in many ways. A grateful spirit brightens mood, boosts energy and fills daily living with a sense of contentment.

According to the University of California Berkley – Greater Good Science Center, people who practice gratitude have reduced anxiety and depression, are overall healthier, sleep better, more resilient, have stronger relationships, encourage forgiveness and inspires altruism. With that said, practicing gratitude would be very beneficial all year round!

The benefits of gratitude are not just for those with a naturally positive outlook. It is a skill anyone can develop and gain the awards along the way. Here are some tips from Michigan State University Extension to get started on your journey towards an attitude of gratitude.

  • Write down three to five things that you are grateful for on a daily bases in a journal. During the month of November you will see this happen on social media.
  • Write and send a “gratitude” letter to an important person in your life that you have never properly thanked.
  • Enjoy the good in your life! We tend to be a negative society. Turn that around and accentuate the positive.
  • Try to focus on the good intentions of peoples actions. Their intent tends to be genuine and they are trying to bring goodness to you. This in turn goes a long way to cultivate gratitude in adults and children alike.

Remember that gratitude is not about feeling happy because something good happens, but realizing that someone who didn’t have to, deliberately did something of value for you. Begin today and experience the power of gratitude to reap the benefits for you and your family.

Take some time as a family to create a list of what you are truly grateful for and embrace them to the fullest.

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