As we enter the holiday season, a variety of feelings can rise for many of us. This year, consider focusing on gratitude. This no-cost, simple practice can help build positive mental wellbeing throughout the season.
Committing to a daily practice of gratitude can:
- Support our mental and physical wellness. People who mindfully practice and exhibit gratitude report less pain, better sleep, and feel generally happier and more optimistic than those who do not.
- Strengthen our relationships. Grounding ourselves in gratitude helps us flex our empathy muscles and feel less aggression and negativity.
- Build self-confidence. Appreciating the good in others and seeing positive traits in ourselves helps us recognize the blessings that others bring to our lives, and vice versa.
- Help us become more resilient. Grateful people “bounce back” more quickly from life’s stressors and negative situations.
Cultivating a daily practice of gratitude can enrich your life in endless ways.
In all the science showing that expressing gratitude works, one practice stands out: tracking your gratitude. You can keep a journal or simply say, “There’s one!” when you experience something that is positive. You don’t have to wait for that job promotion or accolade from your boss, a gift from a friend, or that valuable scratch ticket… it can be something as simple as the feel of the sun on your face or a wave from someone you care about.
The habit of gratitude can train your brain to be on alert for the good things in your life. For November and beyond, let’s make a point to observe, and even write down, the things we have to be grateful for.
Want to learn more?
Read about the Science of Gratitude here or check out the book The Gratitude Project.