The Benefits of Gratitude

A Little Story About Benefits of Gratitude

One of our Wise friends had an experience recently that was quite satisfying and a little overwhelming. She became the recipient of a small windfall from a loving relative and wanted to share with her three grown daughters.

 benefits of gratitude and kindnessKnowing that family budgets were tight all the way around, she called the eldest and explained that she had some extra cash and would like to know what she could do for her. “Mom, we are okay here, but I know that my sisters have struggled, and they could probably use some help,” was the response.

Next, she called the middle daughter, who stated “Well, everybody has things they wish for, but we are fine. It would make me happy if you shared with my sisters, though.”

Finally, calling her youngest daughter, she again explained the situation. “Mom, the other girls are so generous and loving with me that I can’t think of anything I would like better than you sharing with them.”

Well, our Wise friend was truly overwhelmed. She sat and thought about her daughters in a new light. She knew that they were good people, after all, she had raised them, but she had lost sight of the depth of their best due to day-to-day living and the problems that come with it.

A gift of a little extra money is nice, but knowing that you are surrounded with loved ones and friends — and co-workers — who are generous and kind is a gift that you cannot buy, you cannot make, and one that you should accept with humility and nurture carefully to ensure that its tender tendrils survive and grow.

Gratitude Must be Embraced By Leaders

When we can extend that same spirit of gratitude and graciousness into our business lives, we become employers — and employees — who are truly treasures to those we work alongside. A generous, mindful, selfless boss or co-worker can inspire the kind of loyalty that takes a small business from average to great. And kindness shown to a customer is never wasted.

We all get caught up in the trials and tribulations of our everyday business and personal lives. But if we can take a moment or two to look beyond, appreciate the good people in our lives, and pass that spirit on to others, we make the world a better place, at work and at home.

What does it mean to Practice Gratitude?

In simple terms, gratitude can be defined as the expression of thanks or appreciation, for anything, from a gift to life itself.

A feeling of gratitude involves recognizing the good things in your life and recognizing their positive effects on you. It can range from acknowledging a beautiful flower on the sidewalk to feeling grateful after recovering from a serious illness.

Gratitude can be practiced in many different ways, including:

  • Exercises for gratitude, such as journaling
  • Taking notice of the small things in life, like the birds in trees
  • It’s important to express gratitude to someone, no matter how long ago it was
  • Thanking someone by doing something kind for them
  • Focusing on what’s positive in your life
  • Praying for thanksgiving

How to practice gratitude

The exercises listed below will help you integrate gratitude into your daily life if you want to start practicing it regularly.

Writing gratitude journals

One of the most popular techniques for practicing gratitude is gratitude journaling, which involves keeping a set of daily gratitude entries.

List five things you are grateful for that day, recount a favorite moment from the day or describe a special person in your life.

You do not even need a physical journal. You can simply record something you are grateful for on your phone. This makes it simple to record something you are grateful for immediately.

An appreciation map

You create a visual mood board of everything you are grateful for, for which you place it somewhere in your home to remind yourself each and every day. Gratitude maps are ideal for visual learners because they involve creating a visual mood board of everything you are grateful for.

Gratitude jars

The idea of gratitude jars is a simple and practical one.

When you feel thankful, write it down on a piece of paper and place it in a jar. Next time you feel down, shake the jar and pick out one slip of paper.

You can use this technique to recall simple pleasures in your life you may have otherwise forgotten, helping you appreciate what you have.

An early morning meditation

Gratitude can also be a part of morning meditation. Meditation can be done on things you are grateful for or on how you have arrived at your current state. It can also be beneficial to use gratitude meditation as a method of winding down before bed as it sets you up for the day with an optimistic attitude.

Prayer

You can also cultivate gratitude through prayer. No matter what your faith, prayer is a powerful tool for cultivating gratitude. It has also been shown to improve health.
When you take time to express gratitude to a higher power or simply to the universe, you can share a sense of awe and appreciation for the world you live in, the air you breathe, and the body you use.

Donation

Giving back to others can inspire you to reflect on your own circumstances and give you a greater sense of compassion for the entire human race.

Benefits of practicing gratitude

Gratitude has many benefits, both mental and physical. Studies have shown that regular gratitude has positive effects on health.

Boosts immunity

Gratitude contributes to a feeling of well-being overall. According to a 2004 review of research, stress lowers your immune response to potential bodily threats, whereas mental well-being boosts your body’s ability to deal with illness

Improves mental health

The positive outcomes of mental health depend in part on gratitude. In a study from 2020, it was shown that practicing gratitude regularly could reduce anxiety and depression symptoms. In a study from 2003, gratitude was linked to improved mood. Gratitude fosters positive feelings and can contribute to well-being when it is practiced regularly.

Relationship improvement

You may also improve your relationships by practicing gratitude. In the context of relationships, gratitude plays an important role in both forming and strengthening them.

According to a 2010 study, partners who express gratitude to each other feel more satisfied with their relationships and are happier the next day.

Summary

Gratitude can have positive effects on one’s physical and mental health, as well as on relationships.
If you practice gratitude regularly, you will likely experience positive mental health and well-being benefits. You can start by practicing meditation, journaling, or simply paying attention to the little things in life that bring you joy.

 

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Joseph Ferriolo

Director at Wise Business Plans®
Joseph Ferriolo is the Director of Wise Business Plans. He has overseen over 15,000 written business plans during his tenure, raising over $1BN in funding and providing 30K+ consulting hours for startup companies.

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