The importance of cultivating gratitude in our lives
“If the only prayer you ever uttered in your entire life was ‘Thank you,’ that would be enough,” Meister Eckhart.
Gratitude is an essential part of your personal development and in order to have a happy and satisfying life.
You will wonder if what I say is real, or if this is some kind of religion. Although gratitude is often linked to religions, in this case it is not so and on the contrary, we are going to the true origin of gratitude, and it is important to know what are the scientifically proven benefits of gratitude.
It happens that the fact of using the word “thank you” so often has made us think that giving thanks is something simple, obvious or that does not require our attention.
What is gratitude?
Gratitude is the emotion of expressing appreciation for what one has. The act of giving thanks is the act of focusing on the good things in life. If we perceive that in our life we have more well-being, we will also believe that in our future we will have more well-being. Optimism is related to gratitude because those people who are optimistic focus more on the good (gratitude) than the bad (anxiety, disappointments, etc.).
However, what I have been able to experience, especially in myself, since I began my path of introspection through mindfulness is much greater. It is a more intimate, more alive, deeper definition.
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The feeling of gratitude, when born from the heart carries a deep connection with oneself and with the environment. And in that connection, in that uniqueness is born the non-separation, the care, the appreciation and the love towards this life that gives us so much daily, despite the fact that sometimes, our demands are much higher.
In gratitude there is a feeling that deep down, when we stop listening to our demanding little head, all is well. Everything is enough, everything is good. We are perfect as we are and therefore our life is perfect as it is.
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Gratitude is especially important during tough seasons. Those days when we see everything black and the intake always seems bitter. Because there is always, always, always something to be thankful for. A ray of sunshine, the smell of spring or simply the act of breathing. Just stopping and becoming aware almost automatically modifies our perception of the whole.
Benefits of being grateful
In general, people who practice gratitude consistently in their habits and life have been found to have many benefits:
- Stronger immune system and lower blood pressure
- Higher levels of positive emotions
- More happiness, optimism and joy
- They act with more generosity and compassion
- Few feelings of loneliness or isolation
- Greater satisfaction with self and life
- More friends and support
- Stronger relationships with the people you know
- Happier with your career
- A more positive outlook
- Higher self-esteem
- More energy for activities
I leave you with a poem by an unknown author that can help us identify moments of gratitude for this season and I encourage you to observe with curiosity if you experience any changes.
Be grateful that you don’t have everything you want today. If you had it, what illusion would there be for tomorrow?
Be grateful when you don’t know something. Well, this gives you the opportunity to learn.
Be grateful in difficult times. They are a huge opportunity to grow.
Be grateful in your limitations. Because they give you the opportunity to improve.
Be grateful in each new challenge. Because they will build your strength and your character.
Be grateful for your mistakes. They will teach you valuable lessons.
Be grateful when you are tired and fatigued. That will mean that that day you have made a difference.
It’s easy to be grateful for good things.
A truly fulfilling life comes for those who also welcome setbacks.
GRATITUDE can turn negative into positive.
Find a way to be grateful for your problems as they can become your blessings.
~ Unknown Author ~