There’s something truly magical about this time of year. Amid crisp air, cool winds, & flares of color tumbling from tress, the natural spirit of Autumn already gives us plenty to be thankful for. As traditionally celebrated, Thanksgiving commemorates the survival & good harvest of a growing nation, but with each last Thursday of November we are further reminded of the importance of expressing gracious gratitude for the simple things.
Thankful appreciation is such a unique expression in that it allows for acknowledgement of all the goodness we’ve received in life, both tangible & intangible. Gratitude, it turns out, goes deeper then merely connecting us with elements outside of ourselves. Unearthing genuine reasons to give thanks is a process that refocuses our attention to positive occurrences in life, cultivating a state of mind that allows for mental health gains. As such, positive psychology research has strongly & consistently linked gratitude with grander bliss. This act helps support sentiments of confident emotion, delight in good experiences, conquer adversity, and build thriving relationships. Still not convinced? Here are the facts:
- Drs. Blaire & Justice from the University of Texas Health Science Center reported, “a growing body of research shows that gratitude is truly amazing in its physical and psychosocial benefits.”
- One study on gratitude was conducted monitoring adults experiencing neuromuscular disorders. Compared to participants who were NOT journaling each day about things for which they were appreciative (control group), those who documented such daily practices in the gratitude group reported added hours of sleep each night & feeling more rejuvenated upon awakening. Additionally, the gratitude group reported increased fulfillment with their lives holistically, sensed more optimism toward the future, & felt significantly more connected with others than did participants in control group.
- Further research has examined the effect of gratitude on relationships. A study of couples found that those who communicated appreciation for their partner not only experienced greater positive emotions toward them, but felt more comfortable expressing concerns about their relationship.
As you celebrate the holidays, remember that giving thanks isn’t just about delish food, & good vibrations aren’t reserved for hippies. For the sake of your mind, body & the world around you, cultivate gratitude daily:
- keep a gratitude journal
- write a thank you note
- meditate often
- volunteer in your community
- complain less, give more[tps_header][/tps_header][tps_header][/tps_header]
he who forgets the language of gratitude can never be on speaking terms with happiness.- C. Neil Strait
Chrystal Lynn: iHaute Health Co-Founder & Creative Director
@iHauteHealth: for the love of being in fine fettle, en vogue & stylishly informed