Do you practice gratitude daily? You may be surprised by your results!

Do you practice gratitude daily? You may be surprised by your results!

We are often told to “remember to be grateful” for what we have, and to continuously practice gratitude. On a surface level, I think we all understand that means to be kind to others and to be thankful for our health and the life we live. However, is understanding that really practicing gratitude? When looking at this question I wasn’t sure I could provide a good answer, so I wanted to learn more about what it actually means to practice gratitude and why it is important.

First things first I wanted to learn what exactly gratitude is. According to Oxford gratitude is the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness. More simply put gratitude is the ability to acknowledge goodness in our lives along with its source [1].

These definitions make sense to me and I understand what gratitude is, but I wanted to learn how we practice gratitude and the ways in which we can get better at doing so. One of the most well-known ways to practice gratitude keeping a gratitude journal. This is a journal where you write down and remind yourself of the things you enjoy. Did you have a great conversation today, did you catch a rainbow that made you smile or were you able to take a step today when yesterday you couldn’t. Whatever it is that made you smile or thankful throughout the day, write it down. Writing in this gratitude journal for just 5 minutes a day can have a huge lasting impact on your life.

Outside of journaling, there are many everyday things we can do to practice gratitude. Examples include taking the time to notice the beauty in nature, smiling more often, volunteering, making a conscious effort to not complain and telling those around you that you appreciate them. These are just some of the many different things you can do daily, for a more robust list to help you get started in practicing gratitude check out lifehack here or Positive Psychology here.

At this point, I was grasping the concept of gratitude and the many ways in which I can practice it daily, but I was still curious as to why I should practice gratitude daily. When digging around, I found that there is not one good reason to not practice gratitude daily. Countless research has been done on the topic of practicing gratitude daily and the positive impact it can have emotionally, socially, personally and physically. Below I take a closer look into each category and the benefits practicing gratitude can provide.

Emotional
  • More Resilient
  • More Relaxed
  • Less Envious
  • More Positive Emotion
  • More Joy and Pleasure

 

Social
  • Healthier Relationships
  • More Compassionate and Kind
  • More Outgoing
  • More Helpful
  • Less Lonely

 

Personal
  • Less Materialistic
  • Less Self-Centered
  • More Optimistic
  • Increased Self-Esteem

 

Physical
  • Improved Sleep
  • Less Stress
  • Increased Energy
  • Stronger Immune System
  • Lower Blood Pressure
  • Ability to Exercise

 

All of these benefits just from practicing gratitude, that’s something to be thankful for. At FITTEAM we are always looking for ways to help others and improve ourselves, practicing gratitude will absolutely be something we do daily but encourage all of you to do the same.

 

Sources:

 

[1] https://www.health.harvard.edu/healthbeat/giving-thanks-can-make-you-happier

[2] https://positivepsychology.com/benefits-of-gratitude/

[3] https://greatergood.berkeley.edu/article/item/why_gratitude_is_good

[4] https://www.happierhuman.com/benefits-of-gratitude/

[5] https://www.lifehack.org/articles/communication/40-simple-ways-practice-gratitude.html



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