With the holiday season in full swing, many of us take the time to express gratitude about the blessings in our lives. However, we shouldn’t limit this attitude of gratitude to just this time of year with researchers discovering that gratitude is really good for your health. Listed below is a list of strategies to show thanks from an article from USA Today.
In an experimental comparison, people who kept gratitude journals on a weekly basis exercised more regularly, reported fewer physical symptoms, felt better about their lives as a whole, and were more optimistic about the upcoming week compared to those who recorded hassles or neutral life events. Young adults who practice a daily gratitude intervention (self-guided exercises) had higher levels of alertness, enthusiasm, determination, attentiveness and energy compared to the group that focused on hassles or thinking of how they were better off than others. The list doesn’t stop there. To learn more, read here.
1) Keep a gratitude journal, listing the gifts in your life, daily, twice-weekly or weekly. Try to be specific. And don’t repeat the same things each time.
2) Make a list of people or circumstances in your life that you take for granted — and then consider what your life would be like without them ( “the George Bailey effect,” from It’s a Wonderful Life).
3) Write a letter of thanks to someone who made a difference in your life. Consider delivering and reading it in person.