For centuries the concept of gratitude and the feeling of being grateful to have been linked to physical and emotional benefits. According to psychology today “mentally strong people choose to exchange self-pity for gratitude.” Scientist can now prove that the feeling of gratitude releases an increased amount of endorphins in our brains, which lead to an influx of happiness. Psychology today has identified seven incredible benefits associated with gratitude.
- “Gratitude opens the door to more relationships. Whether you thank a stranger for holding the door or send a thank-you note to that colleague who helped you with a project, acknowledging other people’s contributions can lead to new opportunities.
- Gratitude improves physical health. Not surprisingly, grateful people are also more likely to take care of their health. They exercise more often and are more likely to attend regular check-ups, which is likely to contribute to further longevity.
- Gratitude improves psychological health. Gratitude reduces a multitude of toxic emotions, from envy and resentment to frustration and regret. Robert Emmons, a leading gratitude researcher, has conducted multiple studies on the link between gratitude and well-being. His research confirms that gratitude effectively increases happiness and reduces depression.
- 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. Spend just 15 minutes jotting down a few grateful sentiments before bed, and you may sleep better and longer.
- 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. For years, research has shown gratitude not only reduces stress, but it may also play a significant role in overcoming trauma.”
If you are looking for a way to sweeten up your day a little consider viewing the world as an optimist. It may take some practice turning your negative thought into grateful ones; however there are so many benefits, it could be worth it.
7 Scientifically Proven Benefits of Gratitude.” Psychology Today, Sussex Publishers, www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/what-mentally-strong-people-dont-do/201504/7-scientifically-proven-benefits-gratitude.