The Science Behind Gratitude

By November 9, 2017 No Comments

the-science-behind-gratitude-lifeworksGratitude is something we talk about often and a subject that is getting more and more attention from many different schools of thoughts in recent years. Thanksgiving is notoriously the time of year where the general public focuses on gratitude and what we are thankful for. However, gratitude is something we should practice every single day in order to live a happier, healthier life. The benefits of practicing gratitude and being truly grateful for the various aspects and people in your life are tenfold and can impact your quality of life in many different ways. Unfortunately, many people underestimate the power of gratitude. Cultivating an attitude of gratitude isn’t as difficult as you may think, and it will bring a lot of strength and positivity to your life. But you don’t have to take our word for it – there is actually scientific proof that gratitude makes healthier and enhances our quality of life. If you take the time to invest in yourself and change the way you see the world, chances are you will be better off.

Sure, we understand it is unrealistic to think we can walk through life and every situation it throws at us with a positive attitude and a heart full of gratitude, but making the conscious decision to shift how you view things and approach people and situations to one of acceptance and gratefulness is a great place to start. Gratitude equates to authenticity, and when you are truly grateful for something or someone, you will probably feel lighter and maybe even euphoric. Recent studies have shown that people who are grateful and embrace expressions of gratitude experience positive effects on their health, moods, and relationships. Let’s now take a look at why practicing gratitude is a good idea – scientifically speaking:

  • Gratitude helps you develop stronger, more meaningful relationships – From saying thank you to showing appreciation for small acts of kindness, gratitude can pave the way for you to make new relationships/friendships and maintain the ones you already have. Thanking a person you have just met or showing those who are already in your life that you appreciate them can go a long way and even lead to new opportunities in your life.
  • Gratitude can improve your physical health – Scientific research has found that gratitude can actually have a positive impact on your physical health. People who are grateful experience less aches and pains and are much more likely to take care of themselves. They exercise more often, eat healthier, and are more likely to visit their doctor for regular check-ups.
  • Gratitude can improve your mental and emotional health – Practicing gratitude has been shown to reduce toxic emotions and feelings, such as anger, jealousy, hatred, and resentment. Leading scientists have found a connection between gratitude and mental well-being, reducing depression and negative feelings.
  • Gratitude can reduce aggression and increase feelings of empathy – Along the same lines as the above point, people who are grateful are much more likely to behave kindly towards others and be less aggressive. Those who adopt an attitude of gratitude experience more empathy towards others and less aggression towards others.

We could go on and on, but these are just a few of the top scientific benefits of gratitude. If you are interested in changing your life for the better or need help dealing with depression, stress, grief, anger, conflict, or any other emotion or experience, please contact our Dallas therapy center today.

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