We all want to change the world at times, change what's happening around us and the environment that we live in. A lot of the time this seems impossible as things seem beyond our control. We can't change everything, but we can change our own perspective through the power of gratitude.
When we see the world from a place of gratitude, it leaves little room for focusing on the things that weigh us down and make us miserable.
Gratitude is the power that drives us on to make our own space a more positive place and to keep on making the world a better place to be.
Terri Porrett, co-founder of the The Academy of Fab Stuff said:
Well it means that you'll go that extra mile again tomorrow. It puts the fuel in the tank to enable people to do it again day after day. So, it's incredibly important. And I think, if anything, the pandemic has shown how as communities, as individuals, we've come together to work, show our gratitude and try and support each other.
When we replace negative, stressful thoughts with positive, appreciative ones and focus on what we are grateful for, we dramatically change how we experience life. It is well known that grateful people are happy people.
People who keep gratitude journals are also more optimistic. They show increased determination, attention, enthusiasm and energy. That's not all that surprising. What is surprising is the regular focus on gratitude actually influences their behavior. Not only were they happier, but they also got more exercise.
Studies have shown that those who show more gratitude showed more activity in the hypothalamus (which controls essential bodily functions and influences metabolism and stress levels) and impacted the neurotransmitter dopamine (which makes us feel good and prods us to repeat the thing we just did).
In order to live a more grateful life we need to establish what gratitude is, and what it isn't.
Gratitude is all about taking a step back from our lives and taking a moment to appreciate everything that we are thankful for. It's not about comparing our lives and circumstance to those of others.
People who focus on comparing their lives to other people's lives simply don't experience the same joy as people who focus on gratitude!
Gratitude can rewire our brain. Gratitude engages our brain in a virtuous cycle.It's hard to focus on both positive and negative stimuli at the same time, so it makes sense to give our mind lots of gratitude fuel. Load up on gratitude and we won't have any space for futile comparisons!
When we understand how a grateful brain works, we'll see why making gratitude a regular practice is a smart thing to do. Gratitude isn't a quick fix, it's no good just going on a 'negativity diet'. we need to make a complete lifestyle centering around gratitude.
When we look for things to be grateful for every day, when we express it publicly, when we say thank you sincerely and often, in both our home, work and social life; we train our brain to make gratitude our default setting.We then change our behaviour and start looking for things to be grateful for.
This will change our outlook on life entirely, we will be able to focus on what is going right rather than what is going wrong!
This will have an effect on those around us and encourage others to adopt a kinder, more appreciative style of living. Gratitude grounds us, rather than dwelling on the past or worrying about the future, we live in the present, which is where life happens, and where we can make positive, deliberate choices to shape our world for the better.
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