Thanksgiving is tomorrow and many of us will be gathering around a table with friends and family. Many of us too, will be giving thanks before or after we eat. It is a tradition that my parents used to do with me and my brothers. When I moved out of my parents house I forgot about it. For 4 years I didn’t give thanks during Thanksgiving. Looking back now, I realize that I miss giving thanks each year with my family.
I’ve read a lot of self-help articles, especially about depression. One of the main pieces of advice is to write down things that you are thankful for. This sort of action changes the framework of someone’s brain and thoughts. So this Thanksgiving I’ve decided to look into the effects of gratitude if one were to practice it year long.
- Improved Mental Alertness
Mental alertness is any function related to the brain such as imagination or reasoning. It’s self-evident that this type of alertness is valuable for people of all occupations and ages.
- Cope Better with Stress
Not all stress is bad stress. But when stress is bad it can take a toll on the body. Low energy, headaches, insomnia, loss of sexual desire are all symptoms of a person that has stress. Generosity helps with this stress by changing the focus of the mind from stressors those good things you are grateful for.
- Supports Well-Being
Well-being, concerns with a person’s state of feeling comfortable, happy, and healthy. Gratitude will enhance one’s well-being by improving the thoughts behind one’s actions.
- Faster Recovery
Scientists studied gratitude’s effects on one’s ability to recover from sickness and injury. They’ve covered the recovery from heart attack and other cardiac related sicknesses, in particular. According to the results, a person had a better quality of life after heart related problems when they practiced giving thanks frequently.
- Greater Happiness
Focusing on positive aspects in the practice of gratitude leads to higher levels of “psychological goodness”. In fact it can lead to higher satisfaction and greater progress in work and personal life. People who start to practice gratitude can even improve their happiness by 25%.
Gratitude can have prolonged effects on a person’s health through changes in one’s outlook. Through this new perspective one can live a happier and healthier life.
There are millions of things to be thankful for. All you need to do is reflect on those things a few times a week and you can reap these benefits. So what will you be grateful for?