How to Practice Gratitude and Improve your Health

Gratitude improves your healthGratitude is key for our general well being. It affects not only our spiritual wellbeing, but also it has been proved that it affects our physical well being. 

A recent study, titled “The Role of Gratitude in Spiritual Well-Being in Asymptomatic Heart Failure Patients,” found that it plays an important part in overall wellbeing. 

The above study found that being thankful helped improve the health of heart disease patients.

But you do not need to suffer from heart disease to benefit from being thankful. Anyone, even totally healthy people, can show gratitude and see improvements in their health. 

After all, our body, soul and mind are all one. So whatever you think will affect your general wellbeing.  Whatever you say it will affect your mind, body and health. 

What is Gratitude?

When I talk about Gratitude, I am not referring to the unconscious "thank you" that we say when someone greets us. and it  is not the unconscious "thank you" that we say when we got to the cashiers at the shop  or when we phone someone for an enquiry. 

When I talk about gratitude  I am referring to that deep emotional feeling that you feel when you are really grateful for someone or something in your life. 

It is one thing to say "I am grateful for A", but you say it without that feeling in your deep core, without an expression in your face. 

It is another thing to say "I am grateful for A", but you actually feel the gratefulness in your entire  being, more than in the words. 

You will know the difference, but not only you will know it, but the person listening to you will also perceive it. 

So when I say that gratitude can improve your health, I am referring to that deep gratitude, that you feel in your heart. The superficial gratitude will do nothing for your health, because words are just words if not accompanied by that deep feeling. 

I should add that you do not need to express your gratitude with spoken words. Just the feeling suffices. 

But it helps if you voice your gratitude towards others. Then not only you feel better, but you make the other person feel good about themselves 

Remember, we all like feeling that we have been helpful to others. 
Gratitude will not only improve your health, but it will change your life

Gratitude can heal your lifeHow to show Gratitude 

There are different strategies you could use depending on who you are thanking. 

  1. Show gratitude to your loved ones.

    Many times we tend to take loved ones for granted.  It is important to show gratitude to your loved ones. It will make the feel better and the relationship will improve in leaps and bounds. 
     

    • There are different ways to show gratitude. You can start by thanking them for a specific action, and  for what they bring to the relationship.  
    • You can also show your thoughtfulness by doing small things for them and making their lives easier. 
    • Sharing your time is also a sign of gratitude. Offer to do something your loved ones may enjoy. This will show you care and pay attention to their lives. It also shows you want to help.  
    • Everyone loves compliments, so compliment them honestly and lovingly.   
    • Send them a note, a text message or a hand written note in their lunchboxes, expressing your gratitude for them.  
    • If you have young children, thank them daily for being in your life. 
       
  2. Show gratitude to your co-workers or clients  
     

     

    • We usually take for granted our co-workers or clients.  
    • Send them thank you notes, to your co-workers and/or clients. 
    • Listen to them. Listening is a way of making them feel important.
    • Buy them lunch. 
    • Bring flowers or a small gift.  
    • In the case of your clients, give them something for free. In the case of your co-workers, offer to do some work for them. 
  3. How to show gratitude for yourself.

    • Recognize the great things that are happening in your life and be thankful for them each day. 
    • Sometimes making a simple list of all the positive and good things in your life can start you on the path to gratitude.  
    • Remember to give yourself compliments, too! 
    • Thinking about the positive things you have done for others can help you see how you impact the world. 

    I found this Gratitude book quite helpful. It talks about God perhaps in the religious way, but I just pay attention to the gratitude declarations. I read them daily and I really enjoy the last prayer. 
     

  4. How to show gratitude to strangers.  

    • You do not need to know the person or their name to be grateful for. You do not even have to meet face to face, or talk to them. You can be thankful for the people that work at the electricity company to supply you with electricity. Or you can be tankfuls for the bank teller that helped you.  
    • You can show your gratitude with a tip, if appropriate, with a smile, a compliment or sharing something positive. 

Gratitude is important, and if you practice it daily, you will definitely see an improvement in your health and your overall well being. There are many ways to be thankful. Experiments and find your way Be thankful with everyone and specially with yourself.

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