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Practise Daily Gratitude

Updated: May 10, 2019

"Be grateful for what you have and stop complaining--it bores everybody else, does you no good, and doesn't solve any problems." Zig Ziglar.

Gratitude is a positive emotion that you will benefit from showing and practising daily.

A 2011 research paper entitled ‘A grateful heart is a non-violent heart’ published by a group of psychologists found that being grateful increases mental well being. Expressing gratitude makes for a more sensitive and empathetic individual who is much less likely to display aggression. Being grateful can remind you to believe that there are good things in the world even if what you are facing are challenges. Research has even found that expressing the positive emotion of gratitude can help to improve your sleep patterns and even help prolong the health of your heart. So it would seem that gratitude can have positive mental and physical health benefits.

Stoic philosopher and Roman Emperor, Marcus Aurelius wrote of how every day was a gift. He also warned against indulging “in dreams of having what you have not, but reckon up the chief of the blessings you do possess, and then thankfully remember how you would crave for them if they were not yours.” Gratitude allows you to operate in the present. In this sense Marcus Aurelius is advising us to be grateful for the things that we already have. Think of the things that you have today that once you dreamt of having but may now take for granted. Practising gratitude for the things that you have in your life be that family, friends, a home, good health or a steady income and savings will stop you craving things that you don’t have and perhaps spawning jealousy towards others that do.

Action plan:

  1. · Think about the things that are important to you and express your gratitude for them. Write it down, draw it, tell the person, hug your pet.

  2. · Take a pause and be in the present rather than strive for the things that you don’t have.

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