“Feeling grateful or appreciative of someone or something in your life actually attracts more of the things that you appreciate and value into your life.” ~ Christiane Northrup, MD
As we celebrate Thanksgiving, did you know that giving thanks can be beneficial to the health of both the giver and the recipient? The positive virtue of giving thanks is an expression of gratitude. It is an acknowledgment that expresses kindness.
According to a Wall Street Journal article written by Melinda Beck, “A growing body of research suggests that maintaining an attitude of gratitude can improve psychological, emotional and physical well-being.” The article claims that thankfulness and gratitude can be cultivated to change thought patterns. This can dramatically affect mood. Here are the findings:
Adults who frequently feel grateful have more:
- social connections
Adults who feel grateful are less likely to be:
Adults who are grateful are more likely to:
- earn more money
- sleep more soundly
- exercise more regularly
- have greater resistance to viral infections
Kids who feel and act grateful tend to:
- be less materialistic
- get better grades
- set higher goals
- complain of fewer headaches and stomach aches
- feel more satisfied with their friends, families and schools than those who don’t
Is it difficult to show gratitude? Apparently a certain amount of self-reflection is needed. It requires the individual to be aware of their limitations. The act of being grateful has greatly helped those impacted by terror attacks and natural disasters.
Can people learn to be grateful? About 50% of gratefulness is genetic. The rest comes from experience. This proves that people can learn to be more grateful.
How can you cultivate gratefulness? Count your blessings and record what you are grateful for. Take a “gratitude visit.” Tell loved ones and others that you are grateful. Psychiatrist Drew Ramsey says this is particularly helpful during the holidays, “Giving thanks for them helps you deal with the craziness that is part of every family.”
Can gratitude be a cure for materialism? “In an upcoming paper in the Journal of Happiness Studies, Dr. Froh and colleagues surveyed 1,035 high-school students and found that the most grateful had more friends and higher GPAs, while the most materialistic had lower grades, higher levels of envy and less satisfaction with life.”
Want to find out how grateful are you in your everyday life? Take the TEST.
It turns out I am extremely grateful. Happy Thanksgiving To All!