What are you grateful for?
For some people, the answer to this question comes easy. But if you’re struggling to think of a valid response to such a seemingly simple query, you’re not alone.
Feeling and expressing gratitude is essential to maintaining a healthy life. It’s an act of refusing to take life for granted, but rather appreciating your present situation.
Expressing gratitude through language may come easy, but true gratitude must also be felt. And it’s this expression of feeling rather than words that could be holding back your mental and emotional well-being.
Why Gratitude Is So Difficult for Some People
The idea of gratitude itself means something different to everyone. By definition, gratitude refers to the quality of being thankful. As humans, the uniqueness of each life presents different moments, feelings, people, and things to be thankful for, which make such a seemingly simple question be anything but simple.
Gratitude is especially difficult to navigate for individuals who suffer from depression or harbour intense feelings of anger, resentment, envy, or a general lack of confidence. Feelings of gratefulness are often overshadowed by negative emotions, but that doesn’t mean that gratitude is unattainable.
Research suggests that the ability to feel grateful, along with the intensity to which those feelings are manifested, could be rooted in our genes, brains, and personalities. However, gratitude isn’t a wholly hard-wired feature, which means that there are some actions you can take to make gratitude more prevalent and powerful in your life.
The Benefits of Gratitude
Feeling genuine gratitude isn’t just a personal choice. It’s a matter of health and well-being that can impact other areas of your life.
When you feel and express true acts of gratitude,
You promote the production of happiness in your life.
It strengthens relationships with others.
It energises us.
It motivates us to continue capturing those feelings to generate more positive effects.
It can reduce stress and eliminate sleep issues.
It creates a feeling of peace and satisfaction that is more powerful than any feeling of ill will.
For some people, gratefulness comes naturally. But for many others, gratefulness is a choice. Recognising the value that gratitude can bring to your life is often the first step of being to identify what gratitude looks like and how you can create it.
Finding Gratitude in Daily Life
Reasons for feeling gratitude exist every day. For some people, finding those instances that are most impactful can be a struggle. Oftentimes, individuals become consumed by the reasons other people are grateful that they fail to look within their own lives to find happiness.
Before you can begin to feel and express gratitude, you must first identify what you have to be grateful for.
Start by looking at the components of your daily life:
Whatever the size or location of your home, choose to be grateful for it. The people within your home, the members of your family, and the friends in your circle are also reasons you can choose to be grateful.
There are many people who have no one, and that type of loneliness can stifle feelings of gratitude. If you feel like you’re one of these people, it’s important to reach out to others and break out of your isolation. Volunteering for a good cause can create feelings of gratitude and also connect you with people who may be in need of company, as well.
If you have a job or some source of income, consider it a blessing. Nearly half of the world’s population survives on less than $2.50 per day, with more than a third of individuals living in extreme poverty.
If you have your health, take it as a blessing, not a right. Health is an attribute that millions don’t have, and it doesn’t last forever. Rather, finding gratitude can often motivate you to maintain it.
Where there’s hope, there’s also gratitude. When you lose your job, a loved one, a pet, or even your home or health, gratitude can seem far out of touch. But finding hope in a helpless situation can restore feelings of gratefulness and help you to re-evaluate your life to find reasons that make life worth living.
What Are You Grateful For?
It’s easy to forget what we have to be grateful for. We all experience moments where we feel we’ve reached the end and life is no longer worth living. But getting back to a feeling of gratitude is a choice. Choose it often enough, and it just might become the most effective habit for improving your life.
Are you ready to experience a more fulfilling life of gratitude? Let us help you on your journey - contact us today to see how we can help you choose gratitude for a happier, healthier you