The benefits of practicing gratitude are nearly endless. People who regularly practice gratitude by taking time to notice and reflect upon the things they’re thankful experience more positive emotions, feel more alive, sleep better, express more compassion and kindness, and even have stronger immune systems.
Research by UC Davis psychologist Robert Emmons, author of Thanks!: How the New Science of Gratitude Can Make You Happier, shows that simply keeping a gratitude journal—regularly writing brief reflections on moments for which we’re thankful—can significantly increase well-being and life satisfaction
Lets take a look in depth at scientifically proven benefits of Gratitude
~ Gratitude opens the door to more relationships. acknowledging other people’s contributions can lead to new opportunities.
Kind gestures like saying thank you for someone holding the door for you or sending a thank you note will undoubtedly be more likely to grow new opportunities with people.
~ Gratitude improves physical health. Grateful people experience fewer aches and pains and report feeling healthier than other people, according to a study published in Personality and Individual Differences.
Not surprisingly, grateful people are also more likely to take care of their health. They exercise more often and are more likely to attend regular check-ups, which is likely to contribute to further longevity.
~ Gratitude improves psychological health. Gratitude reduces a multitude of toxic emotions, from envy and resentment to frustration and regret. Robert Emmons, a leading gratitude researcher, has conducted multiple studies on the link between gratitude and well-being. His research confirms that gratitude effectively increases happiness and reduces depression.
~ Gratitude enhances empathy and reduces aggression. Grateful people are more likely to behave in a prosocial manner, even when others behave less kindly, Study participants who ranked higher on gratitude scales were less likely to retaliate against others, even when given negative feedback. They experienced more sensitivity and empathy toward other people and a decreased desire to seek revenge.
~Grateful people sleep better. Writing in a gratitude journal improves sleep. Studies show that just spending 15 minutes jotting down a few grateful sentiments before bed, you may sleep better and longer.
~ Gratitude improves self-esteem. A 2014 study published in the Journal of Applied Sport Psychology found that gratitude increased athletes’ self-esteem, an essential component to optimal performance. Other studies have shown that gratitude reduces social comparisons. Rather than becoming resentful toward people who have more money or better jobs—a major factor in reduced self-esteem—grateful people are able to appreciate other people’s accomplishments.
~Gratitude increases mental strength. For years, research has shown gratitude not only reduces stress, but it may also play a major role in overcoming trauma. A 2006 study published in Behavior Research and Therapy found that Vietnam War veterans with higher levels of gratitude experienced lower rates of post-traumatic stress disorder. A 2003 study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology found that gratitude was a major contributor to resilience following the terrorist attacks on September 11.
Recognizing all that you have to be thankful for —even during the worst times—fosters resilience.
My journal practice involves a daily list of an average of 5-10 things or people I am grateful for. It can be anything as small as the delicious vegan dessert I had the night before to something bigger like the way my daughter reached out to me with love on a text. There is so much that we have to be grateful for and when we are able to recognize it as a daily practice it will forster Joyful benefits you will start to notice in your life.