How Gratitude Can Change Your Life
Three simple ways to practice gratitude
Have you ever had a moment where you paused from your busy day and almost felt guilty for not appreciating everything you have? It is so easy to get caught up in the little things in life that we forget to appreciate those little things. You’re going about your day taking for granted the fact that you even have another day on this earth. Perhaps you get home from work exhausted at the thought of having to cook for your family. Or, maybe your child needs some extra help with their homework, but really all you want to do is have some time to yourself. Don’t hang your head low if you too, have had these thoughts. It happens. That’s a part of life. BUT, what if we told you there was a way to help turn these thoughts into something beautiful? A way to help reflect on your day-to-day from a place of GRATITUDE? It may not be an easy switch at first, but once you are in this headspace of consistent appreciation, we promise you that you will look at your life a little differently.
Let’s look back at those examples above. How can you turn those moments into happy thoughts that feel less overwhelming? Instead of dreading having to go home to do more work and prepare a meal for your family, think to yourself, you know, I feel so blessed that I have a family to cook for. Instantly your mood will shift. How amazing is it that you have people to share a meal with? People you love who you probably brought into this world. You get the opportunity to cook for them, sit with them and hear all about their day. Now, maybe you're looking forward to this time instead of dreading it. Do you see where we are going with this?
The same goes for helping your child with homework. Let’s face it. Nobody likes homework. However, what a fantastic opportunity to be able to teach your kid or learn something new with them. You are blessed to have this time with your child, as tired as you may be. Chances are, once you get going with helping them, you will find yourself enjoying it more than you thought you would.
So turning your negative thoughts into positive ones and reflecting with gratitude can make a world of difference in how your day goes. Let’s see how else gratitude can change your life and find simple ways to practice gratitude daily. How can gratitude change your perspective?
The Power of Gratitude
When you feel lost in life, gratitude has the power to pull you back up from the depths of your despair. Surprisingly, there is a lot of scientific research to back this. One particular study suggests that individuals who are more grateful live happier, healthier lives.  Gratitude allows you to be present and more aware of all the good around you. Especially in a world of chaos, gratitude helps you recognize that there still is plenty of good in this world. You may not be able to change the world, but you can certainly start with changing your own.
Benefits of practicing gratitude:
According to research, here are just some of the profound benefits of practicing gratitude .
- Promotes a stronger immune system
- Improves body aches and pains
- Improves your mood
- Helps lower blood pressure
- Increases joy and happiness
How can you practice gratitude?
Set time aside each day to find one thing you are grateful for.
Make intentional time to think about at least one thing you are thankful for each day. This could be something good that happened to you or simply recognizing someone or a situation you appreciated. By getting in the habit of creating at least one positive thought for the day, you will begin to see your mood and mindset shift.
Create a gratitude journal.
Journaling is an excellent way to get all of your thoughts out and forces you to slow down and reflect on your life. It’s so easy to think about everything we don’t have or everything going wrong in our lives that we forget to acknowledge all of the good. Once you start writing down everything you ARE grateful for, you begin to realize that maybe your life isn't so bad after all. You can do this first thing when you wake up or before bedtime to unwind from your day. Take five minutes and jot down your thoughts!
Say thank you more instead of assuming they know.
One way to practice gratitude is by nurturing your relationships with loved ones. We often assume they know how we feel about them instead of speaking it directly to them. Sometimes it’s important to let them know. Let them know you are thankful for them by calling them up and telling them or write them a letter. You will build your relationship, make their day, and in return, you will feel good too.
You can see how gratitude can have a serious ripple effect. Your positive thoughts and actions reflect on you and often affect others. Your positivity may so positively impact them that it begins to spread all over. So, the next time you feel you are in a rut, STOP and think about how far you have come, what obstacles you have overcome, and EVERY little thing you have going good in your life that you can be grateful for. The results will blow you away.