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Health Tips & TopicsGeneral

The Power of Gratitude

What if you could experience remarkable physiological and psychological benefits in your life tomorrow? How about - better heart health, more energy, less inflammation, healthier heart rhythms, fewer aches and pains, better digestion, reduced stress, anxiety and depression, improved sleep, deeper personal relationships? What if one daily practice could give you all these benefits and more?

That one daily practice is gratitude. There have been countless research studies done on people having a simple daily gratitude practice and the benefits are unbelievable!

This simple habit initiates a positive response to stress that turns your entire day into a stimulating challenge, rather than a burden you must endure.
Here are some of the positive changes you can expect:

Improved Physical Health - Grateful people experience fewer aches and pains and they also report feeling healthier than other people (as noted in Psychology Today). Not surprisingly, grateful people are also far more likely to take care of their health. They exercise more often and are more likely to attend regular check-ups with their doctors. When we think about what we are grateful for, the parasympathetic, “rest-and-digest” part of the nervous system is triggered, producing numerous positive benefits for the body. One study from the UCSD School of Medicine discovered that people who are more grateful actually have better heart health, less inflammation, and healthier heart rhythms. This means gratitude is also good for your heart!

Improved Psychological Health And Mental Strength - Being aware of everything you have to be thankful for – even during the worst times of your life – fosters an intense resilience that helps you battle stress and get through tough times. Gratitude also increases overall mental strength.

Enhanced and deeper Relationships - By starting each day with a mindset focused on seeing the good and being grateful, you’ll optimize yourself for stronger relationships. Gratitude primes your brain to see the good in everyone so you’re automatically more appreciative. Since human Biology is wired to crave relationships in which you both appreciate and feel appreciated relationships tend to grow and improve.

Better Sleep - According to a study published in Applied Psychology: Health & Well-being, writing in a gratitude journal right before going to bed may help you sleep better and longer. The study observed the effects of gratitude intervention on university students, who are constantly experiencing sleep problems due to racing minds filled with worries. They found that the gratitude intervention helped the university students calm down, quiet their minds and sleep better.

Improved Self-Esteem - A 2014 study published in the Journal of Applied Sport Psychology found that gratitude increased the participating athletes’ self-esteem, which is an essential component to optimal performance. Grateful people are able to appreciate both their own and other people’s accomplishments due to their higher levels of self-esteem.

Now, put it to action! The easiest way to do this is to wake up every morning and write down one thing that you’re grateful for. You can use a paper notebook, journal or even the notes app on your phone works! Just write down something, or someone, that you’re happy to have in your life. Stating one thing that you’re grateful for as soon as you wake up (and perhaps again before going to bed) can change the rest of your day, increase positive emotions that have been scientifically shown to affect your body and health. This brief exercise will have a huge impact on your mind, on your body, and on your spirit!