In times of stress and uncertainty, the best thing we can do for our bodies is practice gratitude. Practicing gratitude is one of the best ways to reduce stress.
When we focus on what we are grateful for, we immediately feel better because thinking about positive things lowers our stress hormones, such as cortisol and adrenaline.
It can also help us recognize what we have to be thankful for in tough times, which can help foster resilience and positive change. Below are some tips to help you get into the habit of practicing gratitude.
Consider your method
If you want to start practicing gratitude, consider the method you're going to use.
If you're a beginner, the easiest way to practice gratitude is to keep a gratitude journal. All you have to do is write down the things you're grateful for daily.
If you're looking for something more challenging, try writing thank-you letters to people or keeping gratitude notes in a jar.
If you want to start practicing gratitude, be specific with the things you are grateful for. It’s easy to say “I am grateful for my life” or “I am grateful for my family.” But what about all the specific things that make these relationships and experiences so rewarding?
Go into as much detail as possible when reflecting on your blessings. You'll probably find that certain things make you feel grateful regularly.
For example, you might feel grateful every morning when you wake up with your partner next to you or every afternoon when the sun is shining.
That's okay — it just means that your life contains so many blessings that some of them are a constant rather than a surprise. You can still write about those things in your journal; keep in mind that it's good to keep the entries fresh and interesting for yourself, so try to think of new ways of describing what makes you grateful for those regular occurrences.
Share gratitude with others
Practicing gratitude doesn't have to be a solitary activity. If you want to start practicing gratitude, let others know when you are grateful for them.
Gratitude for another can be expressed in many different ways. We can say thank you, and we can acknowledge when someone has done something for us, and we can also just let them know that they are important in our life.
If you want to start practicing gratitude, let others know when you are grateful for them. It may seem simple, but it can have a major impact on yourself and those around you. You don't have to do anything big or extravagant. Just take a moment to think about how someone has impacted your life and let them know.
Gratitude positively affects the people who receive it, but what about the people who give it? People who express gratitude are happier and more satisfied with their lives. They also have fewer aches and pains and are healthier than those who don’t practice gratitude. So consider keeping an attitude of gratitude throughout your day by actively noticing things that make your life better.
Oxford at Sonterra Apartments in San Antonio, TX