3 Benefits of a Gratitude Practice
Do you practice gratitude on a daily basis? It’s easy to be caught up in the daily grind of everyday life, or be overwhelmed by the world’s current state. We’re constantly connected to our phones receiving news alerts and email notifications. Take a moment to reflect on what you are genuinely grateful for. This can be practiced through meditation, writing, or any way you choose. Something as simple as a single flower can act as a physical reminder to your daily gratitude practice. Try putting this at your bedside to start and end your day with a visual reminder to enjoy the beauty of nature, and all of the things that we can appreciate in our lives. Below are three benefits of a gratitude practice.
Makes you happier!
Unsurprisingly, focusing more on the things you are grateful for and on positive aspects of your life increases your happiness! Practicing gratitude reduces toxic emotions like envy, resentment, frustration and regret and increases positivity. Studies have found that people who focus on gratitude are more optimistic, feel better about their lives, have reduced stress and improved self-esteem.
Makes you healthier!
Practicing gratitude can not only strengthen your mental health, but it can also help make you physically healthier! A 2012 study found that grateful people reported feeling healthier and experiencing fewer aches and pains. They were also more likely to regularly exercise and attend regular doctor’s check-ups. Your sleep can improve as well! Another study found that writing in a gratitude journal before bed can help you to have a better, and longer, night’s sleep.
Strengthens your relationships!
In a 2014 study, researchers found that thanking a new acquaintance made them more likely to pursue an ongoing relationship. This can be as simple as thanking the cashier at the grocery store, or a stranger who holds the door for you. And your existing relationships will benefit as well! Sending a friend a thank-you note for helping you with a task, or letting someone know how grateful you are to have them in your life will increase positive feelings and help maintain strong relationships.