Chances are you’ve heard that attitude is everything. This becomes evident when you understand the science behind the idea that gratitude can help individuals enjoy better physical and mental health. Many of us think about “counting our blessings” at the holidays or after a health scare, but cultivating gratitude on a daily basis can help you in many different ways.
Here are some of those ways in which being grateful can help your physical and mental well being:
- A good attitude can help you recover from an illness or injury. It’s the “I think I can” mentality. If you feel grateful and are thankful for what you’ve got, chances are you will bounce back more quickly.
- Lower your blood pressure by looking on the “bright side” rather than dwelling on a negative. When you feel your tensions rising, take a deep breath and take a few moments to count your blessings.
- You just might sleep better if you take time before you fall into bed to recount what you have to be grateful for. Even on a day where everything seems to go wrong, chances are there was at least one bright spot. Concentrate on that before you fall asleep. Count your blessings before you get up in the morning – it’s a great way to start the day!
- Chronic, continued stress can lead to high blood pressure, sleepless nights, muscle aches and pains and even a compromised immune system. A study showed that individuals who meditated lowered their stress hormone (cortisol) by close to 25%.
- Focusing on what’s going right in your life may help you ward off depression.
- If you get up and move, exercise, walk, dance – whatever form of movement appeals to you, you just might begin to feel happier because of the release of endorphins.
What can you do, today, to heighten your sense of gratitude?