You have 86,400 seconds per day. Have you used one to say ‘thank you’? Gratitude is giving thanks, and receiving everything you want in life. Gratitude is the memory of the heart. It is said that, Gratitude is an invisible but real force of energy. To see a drastic change to your present conditions, you have to practice gratitude and make it your new way of life.

When you no longer take life for granted, you become grateful for everything that you have. We all want good outcomes to everything we do. Giving thanks before you perform an action can guarantee the outcome you want.

Why should you practice gratitude?

Anyone can understand why particular things in our life may have gone wrong and why certain things might be missing from our life, once we start practicing gratitude. As you make gratitude as a way of your life, you will wake up each morning so excited to be alive. You will find yourself completely in love with life. Everything will seem effortless.  You will feel as light as feather and happier than you have ever felt before. Challenges may come but you will know how to overcome them and learn from them.

To live in gratitude, to experience it in your life, thank you must become those two words that you deliberately say and feel more than any other words. They need to become your identity. With good practice, it is understood that “Thank you” is the bridge from where you are now, to the life of your dreams.

What is Gratitude?

Gratitude is a feeling from the heart. Feeling as much gratitude as possible deliberately is the easiest way to experience it. The truer the feeling, the more sincerely grateful you are and the faster your life will change. As we express your gratitude, you must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.

Gratitude is a powerful energy which goes to whomever you direct it.  Don’t just throw away your thank you. Give the reason why you are grateful so that they feel your sincerity. For example, give thanks to your teachers for their support when you get high marks in exam results and thank yourself for the effort. Say thank you out loud for each experience, but if you are not in a position to say them out loud then it is fine to say them in your mind.

Just be grateful to feel the difference

Be grateful for the air you breathe. The most precious gift of our life is the air. Stop your running thoughts and think about the glorious air that you breathe. Take five deliberate deep breaths, and experience the feeling of air moving inside your body and feel the joy of breathing it out. Take five full breaths in and out five different times today and after you have taken each set of five breaths, say thank you.

You will be able to attract the circumstances that make you feel even better about yourself, only when you are grateful to be you. You have to be extensively rich with all the good feelings about yourself for bringing the riches of life to you. You will be enriched when you have the gratitude for yourself.

Don’t forget to recall the blessings of each day. They can be small things or big things, it is not about the size of the blessings but about how many you find, and how much gratitude you feel for each one. As you remember and write each one simply be grateful and say thank you.

When you arise in the morning, give thanks for the morning light, Give thanks for your food and joy of living. You could be grateful for your home, your family, your friends, your work, and your pets and say thank you. Say thanks for the water you drink, the food that you eat and the air that you breathe. It is because, all of them around you, that you are alive!! Be grateful for the trees, the animals, the oceans, the birds, the flowers, the plants, blue skies, the rain, the stars, the moon, and our beautiful planet earth.

You could also be grateful for all your sense organs. Your eyes that see this beautiful world, your ears that hear all the sweet voices, your mouth that tastes many delicacies, your nose that smells pleasant fragrances, and your skin that enables you to feel. You experience the real essence of life through all of them. So, take a moment to say thanks to all your senses. You could also be grateful for the legs that take to anywhere, your hands that make you do almost everything and your voice without which you cannot express yourself and communicate with others. Say thanks to all your body parts. Give thanks for your amazing immune system that keeps you well, and all of your organs that maintain your body so that you can live well.  Finally, give thanks to the magnificence of your human mind, which no computer-technology in the world can duplicate.

Expressing gratitude to your fellow beings

Besides feeling the gratitude towards your life, it is very important to express it to the other fellow beings that you feel it for. As mentioned earlier, just saying, “I’m grateful to my family” doesn’t mean it really. Say it mentioning the reason along. For example, “Last night when I was suffering the cramps, the massage given by my husband/wife as relieved the pain a lot. I’m grateful to him/her.” Or say, “I’m really grateful for the cool water offered by the neighboring old lady, when the scorching summer heat made me go mad with thirst.”

Saying thanks for the support your friends and family offered when you are in low spirits, enhances your happiness of getting succeeded. People who have gratitude have great mental health benefits. They have more pro-active coping life style and are more likely to seek out social support in times of need. Such individuals are less likely to have problems like PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) and other stress related problems. Actually, Stress can lead to exacerbate mood disorders such as anxiety, depression, bipolar disorders and changes in thinking patterns, personality changes and behavioural problems. But people who practice gratitude have more positive thinking patterns that can kick off stress. In fact, they can grow in times of stress and anxiety. This kind of attitude makes them to grow stronger day by day.

Experience the Benefits of Gratitude

Ever wondered what gratitude offers you in life? It has ample of things to offer like more happiness, better health, deeper relationships and better productivity. The benefits of gratitude can be endless.

Based on some researches on how the gratitude affects people, the benefits of gratitude can be listed as below.

Benefits of Gratitude:

There are various benefits of gratitude and to mention a few, here are they.

Emotional benefits:

The emotional well-being of a person improves with gratitude.

  • The person feels good
  • Feels relaxed
  • Can be more resilient
  • Is less envious
  • Can have happier moments

Personality Benefits:

The personality related benefits of a person with gratitude are like the following.

  • Will be less materialistic
  • Will be less Self-centered
  • Can be more optimistic
  • Shall have increased self esteem
  • Will be more spiritual

Health Benefits:

The physical health of a person shows a lot of improvement when the gratitude is practiced.

  • Improved sleep
  • Less sickness
  • Longevity
  • Increased energy
  • More exercise

Career Benefits:

The betterment starts to take its place even in the individual’s career.

  • Better management
  • Improved networking
  • Focused towards goal achievement
  • Improved decision making
  • Increased productivity

Social Benefits:

Practicing gratitude, bestows a person with numerous social benefits like

  • Can be more Social
  • Having a healthier marriage
  • Develops a loving and kind nature
  • Sustains more friendships
  • Will have deeper and meaningful relationships

And, these all are to name a few!!

The ultimate thing that relates all of these is the priceless happiness!!

Without practicing what you learn, the knowledge will slip through your fingers, and the opportunity that you attracted to easily change your life will be gone.

However, as it is always said, “Easier said than done”. If you need support in improving your life style and making yourselves better, practice the techniques of Mindfulness. Eliminate all your unwanted thoughts and have your mind focused on what you need. Take the support of our mental health experts. Book an appointment for online counseling, phone counseling, video counseling and even for an offline counselling to help you live a stress-free life.

 


Prof. Madhu Kosuri

I have completed 30 years of teaching and research in psychology at the Department of Psychology and Parapsychology, Andhra University, Visakhapatnam, India.

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