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Get Healthier Through Gratitude!

What is gratitude? Gratitude is the feeling of being thankful and showing appreciation for what’s in your life. Most people are familiar with giving thanks at Thanksgiving, but research shows that expressing gratitude throughout the year can have a major impact on your health and happiness. Studies show that counting your blessings, instead of burdens, can increase your well-being, energy and resilience. Regular gratitude practice can also help you sleep better, decrease stress, and strengthen your immune system.

When you shift your focus from being frustrated with what you lack to being thankful for what you have, you automatically feel more satisfied. This simple practice of expressing gratitude can completely transform your attitude. Keeping a gratitude journal shifts your focus from any problems you’re dealing with to more positive areas of your life. It helps you get perspective and recognize the “good stuff.”

Gratitude can also help you get through hard times. By uplifting your mood and upgrading your perspective, giving thanks is a great way to fill your heart and clear your head. It increases your resilience to stress and helps you view setbacks, failures or negative experiences as opportunities for growth.

When you shift your focus from being frustrated with what you lack to being thankful for what you have, you automatically feel more satisfied.

How To Practice Gratitude

Expressing gratitude can be done at any time or anywhere. It’s helpful to designate a certain time every day so that you have a consistent practice.

One of the easiest ways to incorporate gratitude is to keep a journal and write down at least five things you’re grateful for daily. We often think of giving thanks for the big things that happen in our lives, but it’s just as important to write down the little things too. Be specific with what you write and challenge yourself to explore new things to keep it fresh and exciting. Focus on people and experiences over possessions. You can even include others by sharing gratitude around the dinner table every evening.

No matter how you choose to express yourself or how little time you spend doing it, the important thing is that you do it on a regular basis. Here are some examples of what you might find in a gratitude journal:

I’m grateful for…

My husband whose love, support and inspiration motivate me to be a better person.
My work and ability to help others improve their health and enjoy food more.
Pets, friendship, hugs, smiles, laughter, love, dark chocolate and sunshine.

Resources

Why Gratitude is Good
10 Ways to Become More Grateful
What is Gratitude?
Happify Daily — Happy Thoughts