Sunday Snippet: The Value of Gratitude
Hello everyone! We are so grateful that you have taken the time to join us this week. Wow, that wasn’t very difficult at all! Thanking others for sharing their time to acknowledge your efforts is just one small way to integrate more gratitude into one’s life.
Gratitude is seriously underrated and sadly under used. Yet is takes little energy or effort to express it either internally or externally. But it does take self awareness, something that is constantly under siege from the barrage of external stimuli most of us experience daily. One must focus on seeing and experiencing all the wonderful things in our lives for which we can and should be thankful.
At the risk of sounding self-centered, one might ask “what’s in it for me?”. Well, plenty! There is considerable science behind the personal benefits of gratitude. Being grateful reduces anxiety and the potential of depression, while increasing our ability to build stronger, more positive connections with others. Simply put, it enhances our well-being!
An article posted in Psychology Today a couple years back highlights several scientifically proven assets of gratitude. In 7 Scientifically Proven Benefits of Gratitude, (Amy Morin, Psychology Today, April 3, 2015) the author shares the following:
Gratitude opens the door to more relationships. Not only does saying “thank you” constitute good manners, but showing appreciation can help you win new friends.
Gratitude improves physical health. Grateful people experience fewer aches and pains and report feeling healthier than other people.
Gratitude enhances empathy and reduces aggression. Grateful people are more likely to behave in a prosocial manner, even when others behave less kindly.
Grateful people sleep better. Writing in a gratitude journal improves sleep.
Gratitude improves self-esteem. Rather than becoming resentful toward people who have more money or better jobs—a major factor in reduced self-esteem—grateful people are able to appreciate other people’s accomplishments.
Gratitude increases mental strength. Recognizing all that you have to be thankful for —even during the worst times—fosters resilience.
Child psychologist, Sandra Cobain recently posted how one can help our children practice gratitude. In 16 Sensible Ways to Teach Your Kids to be Grateful (Sandra Cobain, Bestforthe kids.com), she offers a multitude of practical applications of gratitude:
- Embracing Scarcity to Cultivate Gratitude
- Encourage the Act of Generosity
- Give Blessings a Name
- Having Realistic Expectations
- Practicing Mindfulness
- Engage Kids in Random Acts of Kindness
- Recite Daily Prayers
- Appreciative of People
- Volunteer Age-appropriately
- Learn the Art of saying ‘No’
- Give more Love than Gifts
Despite the negativity that bombards us throughout each day, take the time to look around you and discover all there is to be thankful for in our world. And again we thank you for reading our humble words of wit. Have a great week everyone!