Have you tried it? If not here are 3 great reasons to start today – your body mind and those around you will thank you.
1 - The gift that keeps giving.
The beauty of practising gratitude is that it has a positive effect on not only the person taking part but also those around them. If you have ever had the pleasure or should I say displeasure of working with someone who never says thank you. You will know what I mean about how draining it can be and unmotivating. For me this conjures up the images of one boss in particular who would often give me meetings on my day off and not show appreciation for late working or going the extra mile.
Author Dale Carnegie said it well in his book
“..we neglect to give them kind words of appreciation that would sing in their memories for years like the music of the morning stars.” 1 Dale Carnegie (2016). “How to win friends & influence people”, p.32
It’s a breath of fresh air when you work with someone who values you. Giving genuine appreciation starts a wave of positivity in others. One particular boss that I remember with fondness was always the first to show his genuine true appreciation. It wasn’t that the work was any different deadlines were still a challenge and overtime was frequent, it was that simply the person leading the team had the art of gratitude. Don’t just take my word for it the University of Pennsylvania study they saw a 50% increase in productivity from the act of showing gratitude to others.
“…employees who heard her message of gratitude made 50% more fund-raising calls than those who did not.” 2
2- Benefits for your mind.
We all want to lessen a bad mood or uplift a gloomy feeling and with Gratitude we can. It has been shown in studies to support our mind in many ways from supporting emotion regulation, to feelings of contentment and even speech. Robert Emmons states that we cannot experience gratitude and resentment at the same time, therefore by focusing attention on the positive we inhibit the negative.
“Gratitude blocks toxic emotions, such as envy, resentment, regret and depression, which can destroy our happiness.”— Robert Emmons3
And its not only supportive for regular day to day application but it also has positive effects for patients. Study's have also shown positive findings for patients with PTSD, degenerative conditions and depression. One study found 88% of suicidal inpatients showed reduced feeling of hopelessness and 94% increased optimism from gratitude letter writing.4
3 - Benefits for your body
There are many ways to look after our body, gratitude included. The way it does this is by lessening our stress response and therefore the negative effects on our body. At UC Davis they saw a 23% reduction in cortisol from their study when participants felt stressed and thought of something they were grateful for.4
Stress is not a bad thing but like everything is all about creating balance. When our body responds to stress simply put its ready to go ten rounds with Mike Tyson. In this state our body turns down immune function and digestion in favour of heightening our alertness, focus and providing a surge of energy to meet our danger or flee from it.
Our world today gives us constant information making us feel stress more often that we should. The over stimulation of information we face in one single day is more than a person in the 15 century had in their whole life. We have the opportunity to turn our stress down and feel the benefit of gratitude, after all how often do we face a true life threat.
Try a little gratitude today who knows you might just enjoy the benefits.
ps- For quick and easy tips on practicing gratitude grab your copy of our cheat sheet.
- Dale Carnegie (2016). “How to win friends & influence people”, p.32
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Gratitude & Essential Oils
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