Improve Your Mental and Physical Health with GratitudeJan 03, 2024
Nicole and I are excited about already working towards one of our BIG goals for the year - to double our impact by doubling our business. We plan to help many other families in 2024 get healthier, and to also help those that choose to partner with us to add an additional income stream to their household budget!
We trust you have things you are excited about as well in this new year.
This week, I want to share some powerful research and insights on gratitude, and how it can not only greatly enhance your life and relationships, but how it can also extend the length of your life.
Gratitude: Thankfulness, appreciation, gratefulness.
A fascinating Mayo Clinic study reveals something profound: people who practice gratitude tend to live longer, healthier lives.
This research confirms that God knew exactly what he was talking about when we told us to…
“Give thanks in all circumstances…” (1 Thess 5:18)
“Be thankful." (Colossians 3:15)
“Give thanks to Him and praise his name." (Psalm 100:4)
“Give thanks to God the Father." (Colossians 3:17)
“In every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God." (Philippians 4:6)
Why is gratitude so powerful?
First, it shifts our focus. In a world brimming with challenges and negativity, gratitude anchors us to the positive aspects of our lives – things we all have to be grateful for.
It has been said that it's physically impossible to truly be in a state of gratefulness and thanksgiving, and to be in a state of anxiousness/fear/worry at the same time.
This shift in perspective to focusing on gratitude isn’t just psychologically beneficial; it has tangible physical effects.
A Mayo Clinic study found that individuals who regularly expressed thankfulness had stronger immune systems, lower blood pressure, reduced symptoms of illness. enhanced sleep, and mood, as well as a decrease in depression, anxiety, chronic pain, and the risk of disease. They also tended to exercise more and take better care of their health.
Additionally, it noted that gratitude can lead to healthier, younger cells for one's biological age, decreased activity in the brain's pain network, and, interestingly, increased longevity!
This and other studies suggest that daily practice of gratitude, akin to taking a "magic pill," can lead to these benefits.
Who wouldn’t want all of that?
As if the health benefits aren’t convincing enough, worth noting is that gratitude strengthens relationships. For example, simple actions like thinking of something you're grateful for in another person and expressing it through a text, a note, or a kind word to them can lead to biological benefits, releasing hormones like oxytocin, known for enhancing connections between people.
There's good reason God, who cares so much about us living a happy, healthy, optimal life, tells us on multiple occasions in His word to give thanks.
As we go throughout our day, let’s remember, gratitude is a choice. We may not feel grateful but we can choose to focus on what we have to be thankful for, both in life and in others as well. Each day, we have the opportunity to focus on what we lack, or to appreciate what we have. What choice will you choose? Your choice can significantly impact your overall well-being, longevity and your relationships. Let’s each choose wisely.
Feeling grateful for you today and everyday. Thank you for reading.