- Gratitude involves affirming the good in your life and recognizing its sources. It is the understanding that life owes you nothing, and that the good things in your life are gifts that cannot be taken for granted.
Focusing on gratitude has become a growing trend in recent years, and for good reason. There is a lot of stress, illness and unhappiness in the world, and gratitude is an effective remedy for all of these + it is Free!
The research shows that gratitude:
|Alters your brain in a number of beneficial ways — Examples include triggering release of mood-regulating neurotransmitters such as dopamine, serotonin, norepinephrine and oxytocin; inhibiting the stress hormone cortisol; and stimulating your hypothalamus (a brain area involved in the regulation of stress) and your ventral tegmental area (part of your brain’s reward circuitry that produces pleasurable feelings)|
|Increases happiness and life satisfaction|
|Lowers stress and emotional distress|
|Improves emotional resiliency|
|Reduces symptoms of depression|
|Lowers inflammation by inhibiting inflammatory cytokines|
|Lowers blood sugar|
|Improves immune function|
|Lowers blood pressure|
|Improves heart health, reducing the likelihood of sudden death in patients with congestive heart failure and coronary artery disease|
|Lowers risk for heart disease|
|Improves general health by encouraging self-care|
|Improves interpersonal relationships|
|Reduces materialism and increases generosity,both of which can increase happiness and life satisfaction|
This is Gratitude as explained by Harvard Medical School:
“Gratitude is a thankful appreciation for what an individual receives, whether tangible or intangible. With gratitude, people acknowledge the goodness in their lives.
In the process, people usually recognize that the source of that goodness lies at least partially outside themselves. As a result, gratitude also helps people connect to something larger than themselves as individuals — whether to other people, nature, or a higher power.”
According to one study, gratitude is “uniquely important to psychological well-being.”
Embrace the idea of having “enough” According to many who have embraced a more minimalist lifestyle, the Key to happiness is learning to appreciate and be grateful for having “enough.”
More will come.
Have a Happy Thanksgiving!