Gratitude - Mindful (and practical!) applications

Gratitude - Mindful (and practical!) applications

Feeling of appreciation.





Gratitude has been shown to improve our lives.  A research study by Emmons and McCullough found that people who wrote daily gratitudes (as opposed to daily irritations or daily things that impacted them) felt more optimistic and generally better about their lives.  Another famous researcher, Dr. Martin Seligman, found that individuals who wrote and delivered a letter of gratitude to someone exhibited a large increase in their happiness…and this impact lasted for a month after!  Another study group looked at how gratitude improves the functioning of those who struggle with mental health.  They discovered that using more ‘positive’ emotion words (as opposed to ‘negative’ emotion words) was helpful, even if you did not end up sharing with another person.  

There are lots of ways to cultivate gratitude:

  • We are often connecting with friends and family during this time of the year- this would be a great time to include a ‘thank you’

  • Keep a gratitude journal- this could be a bullet journal, longer narrative, or even just writing things on slips of paper to put in a jar

  • Ponder your blessings- what are you grateful for- big and small!

  • Mindful meditation

  • A fun activity for kids is a Gratitude Scavenger Hunt (see example here:  {If your kiddo had therapy during the start of the pandemic, this may be familiar to you—it was pretty popular with our therapists!}

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