Gratitude means thankfulness, counting your blessings, noticing simple pleasures, and acknowledging everything that you receive. It means learning to live your life as if everything were a miracle, and being aware on a continuous basis of how much you’ve been given. It can turn night into day, tough times into meaningful ones; it can even transform crises into life-changing lessons. Gratitude will strengthen friendships and relationships, bring success into your life, increase your passion for life and health, reduce stress and help you live longer. Gratitude enhances the human experience of life and implies a sense of present moment acceptance of conditions and circumstances as they are.
Gratitude is an attitude to living, and can have an immeasurable effect on our experience of every day, every hour of our day, and even every minute of our day. Focus on what you have; on the fact that you have a roof over your head, you can eat healthy foods, you do have a job or even if you don’t, that you are capable of getting a job. Learn to appreciate your friends, family and the environment around you. Appreciate the little things you are able to do every day, simply because you can do them. Rather than focusing on a sore ankle or leg when you go for a walk, or the fact that it's overcast or even raining, appreciate that you can still go for a walk. Gratitude is the appreciation of the simple things in life that we usually take for granted.
We have the tendency to focus on deficiencies in other people. Usually it's our family or closest friend who often go out of their way to help us. Instead we zero in on the one small aspect that didn’t work well, blow it out of proportion and blame them for not caring. Focus on what they do for you, not what they don’t do. We can learn to be grateful.
When you make a conscious effort to move toward the gratitude, you’ll notice that you feel better. Research shows that levels of serotonin (known as the “feel good” chemical in the brain) increase and your immune system is stimulated when you carry out gratitude or an act of kindness or giving. You get the same effects if you observe an act of kindness or giving. That is why people who give get pleasure or, as the Bible says, “give, and it will be given to you.”
Quantum physics and biology have shown us that neural networks in our brain are able to rearrange themselves according to the emotions we feel and the experiences we have on a daily basis. When we focus on gratitude, our neural networks will adapt to actually provide more of the positive chemicals that can help increase the positive emotions brought about by gratitude. American researcher Dr Candice Pert found that what we think creates the biochemical basis for how we feel—she uses the term “the molecules of emotion” to describe this. Literally, focusing on positive thoughts creates positive molecules of emotion in our brain. No drugs required.
So start your gratitude today