For many people, gratitude is a pure outright thank you. For others a half-hearted thank you text or card may seal the deal. But in psychology, it’s is not just an offhand action. Gratitude is a positive emotion that goes a long way in contributing to happiness and our general emotional well-being. The recognition entails more than feeling thankful for an act of kindness or condition because it consists of a deeper appreciation for someone or something. It affirms the graciousness of the giver. When we focus more on the many blessings in our lives, we are more contented, cheerful and generous. The great thing about this is that the feeling goes both ways.
The giver derives immense joy from the act, and the receiver appreciates the kindness. A definite win-win for all concerned and this highlights why we should all be a little more grateful and pass the benefits forward. Imagine how amazing you and those around you would feel with a bit more gratitude in their lives!
In a fast-paced world like ours, it is not unusual for daily blessings to go unnoticed. We often overlook the little acts of kindness we experience every day. Small acts of kindness shown daily culminate into a happier life. Whether receiving or giving gratitude, scientific studies prove that the result is immense happiness; such an amazing reward from such a small gesture.
So, what benefits can you expect from being more grateful? Well, here are 4 for starters:
Gratitude increases optimism, and optimism has been proven to boost the immune system. According to a study by Harvard Medical school, those who are optimistic live happier, healthier, longer lives. This just makes sense when you think about it; feeling well emotionally has a direct effect on our physical health so anything that we can do to make ourselves feel better emotionally is well worth it!
Saying thank you may constitute good manners, but showing appreciation may help you create new friendships, as well as live a happier life. A 2014 study discovered that thanking an acquaintance for a kindness more often than not makes them seek a deeper relationship with you. It doesn’t matter how small the kindness. Simply acknowledging little deeds leads to new relationship opportunities, and of course, more happiness. And who doesn’t want more happiness in their life?
Counting your blessings goes a long way in loving yourself without undue comparison. According to a study, a one-time act of thoughtful appreciation produced a 10% increase in happiness and 35% reduction in depression. This is especially important in today’s high-speed, highly stressful world so take a few minutes each day to slow down and feel grateful for who you are and what you have, and what you have to look forward to. Your blood pressure will thank you for it!
As an entrepreneur or a team player, gratefulness is non-negotiable. Everyone loves to be appreciated. So think of the world of good it would do your business if you showed more gratitude in your life. Send a thank you email or card. Say thanks when someone goes out of their way to make your life and business easier. Showing gratitude to workers, clients and investors makes you all happier and will give your business the needed boost because everyone you deal with will feel appreciated.
Cultivating and sustaining an attitude of gratitude goes a long way in helping you achieve happiness since there is virtually no downside to this simple act. Though it may seem tasking at first, it becomes easy with persistence.
Start practicing gratitude today, right now and I promise you, it will make you feel better about yourself and those around you. And you will also have a positive impact on those around you and you will attract more like-minded people towards you which will only help to reinforce the positivity you are now experiencing in your life. There’s no time to waste so start right now.