Why Gratitude is good for you

It is that time of the year!  If you are like many of my clients, you may be feeling low energy, tired, even exhausted after the considerable output of the past year. And you won’t be alone in needing time to just stop, re-charge and refresh with the Christmas New Year break.

Here is a powerful thing you can also do which will help renew and bring positive energy and good feelings back:

The power of Gratitude

As we countdown to Christmas or end of the year, do make time to really appreciate and savour all your blessings!

Notice all the gifts, resources, capabilities, blessings, magic and mayhem that life is but especially the gift that our loved ones of family and friends are to us.

And then in your thoughts extend these feelings of appreciation and gratitude back to them.

Those thoughts influence our heart rate variability, which then send positive messages to our brain which in turn manufactures and releases positive feel-good chemicals in the body.

Gratitude has a ripple effect

Gratitude is one of the essential pillars of positive psychology and has a direct hit on our feelings of positivity and well-being.

Research shows that people who are more grateful, have higher levels of subjective wellbeing, are less stressed, less depressed and are more satisfied with their lives and relationships.

Our resourcefulness and capacity also expands when we are in a more positive frame of mind and we are better able to deal with life transitions.

According to Dr. Barbara Fredrickson, Psychology Professor and author of Positivity, true gratitude is heartfelt and unscripted.

Gratitude researchers have found that the simple exercise of writing down three positive things that happened to us in our day increases our happiness scores.

Every night when you go to bed, let your mind wonder and identify three things that you feel grateful for that day.

Reach out to others

This festive season keep in mind those friends or family members who may be on their own and reach out.

As Albert Schweitzer said, “at times our own light goes out and is re-kindled 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.”

So treasure the unexpected, heartfelt gratitude that comes your way and be willing to share and pay it forward – whether it is your family, friends, peers, direct reports, manager or a stranger.

And on that note – all good wishes coming your way!

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Jasbindar Singh

Jasbindar is a business psychologist, leadership excellence coach and author of 'Get your Groove Back'. www.jasbindarsingh.com