Summertime is usually filled with a multitude of plans, parties, beaches and happiness. But given the current circumstances, many people are not feeling positive or happy. Anxiety, fear and depression are more prevalent emotions that surface these days. Many studies and clinical experience have shown practising Gratitude is one of the available tools to help counteract negative thoughts that float through people minds when anxious or depressed. Gratitude helps fosters positive emotions.
“Gratitude for the present moment and the fullness of life now is the true prosperity.”– Eckhart Tolle
What is Gratitude?
“Gratitude” word derived from the Latin word gratus’ pleasing, thankful’ which means a feeling of appreciation felt by and similar positive response shown by the recipient of kindness, gifts, help, favours, or other types of generosity, towards the giver of such gifts. Gratitude is being thankful and appreciative. Most of the religions mention and encourages practising Gratitude in one form or other.
How to foster feelings of Gratitude?
1. Keep a daily gratitude journal: Keeping a journal is a great way to channel our Gratitude in the right direction. Writing offers us a way to think and reflect on our emotions and opinions.
2. Engage in a contemplative practice every day: Introspection enables us to spend time in examining our thoughts and feelings, thus helping us to find out ways to be grateful.
3. Positive thoughts: It is easy to get swamped with the negativity and gloominess, which is floating all around us. But if we can separate the good from the bad, we can outlet our energy in bringing positive thoughts to the forefront.
4. Express our feelings: Expressing our feelings frees us from the internal turmoil which may be pushing us to negativities due to lack of explanation.
5. Appreciate and connect with nature: Nature teaches us to nurture. We can leap and nurture our feelings to Gratitude, no matter what the weather (circumstances) is.
6. Stop complaining and appreciate life: It is easy to fall prey of the negativity and complaining, but it takes a considerable conscious effort to accept and enjoy and appreciate life as it comes.
7. Practice mindfulness: Mindfulness is not just a fancy term but a significant factor in cultivating positivity and Gratitude.
8. Volunteer: Giving back to the community brings the feelings of Gratitude for being able to help others and to see the life more appreciatively by realizing how the things we take for granted can be out of reach for so many others.
9. Appreciate small things as well: Gratitude should not wait to be expressed after a significant event to happen. We should make more efforts to understand the smallest of the good things in our life.
10. Spend quality time with loved ones: The positive atmosphere that we get by spending time with loved ones helps us develop more Gratitude towards life.
Benefits of Gratitude
1. Expressing Gratitude internalizes good vibes
2. It helps reduce the symptoms of anxiety and depression
3. Gratitude liberates us from toxic emotions
4. It helps in cultivating better and deeper relationships.
5. It helps in increasing self-esteem
6. Expressing Gratitude makes us more optimistic and less materialistic
7. It also can help in improving sleep
8. Gratitude helps us create happier memories
9. It helps in uplifting mood
10. It helps us make more resilient.
At times, our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us.”– Albert Schweitzer
Practising Gratitude can make one feel more alive. It is integral to well-being. Expressing Gratitude for someone make the day brighter, it also does wonders for increasing levels of Gratitude and happiness in the long run.
I want to end this article by thanking my audience for taking the time to read it.