November is the perfect month for taking the time to cultivate a little gratitude. With the changing of the seasons comes the colder time of the year, along with the season of giving and appreciating all that you have around you. Most importantly though, November marks the month of Thanksgiving, which our friends across the pond will celebrate on the 28th, but we’ve decided to take this event global!
During the lead up to Thanksgiving, we’ll have one blog post a week with a gratitude theme, and we thought we’d kick off today with a chat about all the benefits that adopting a gratitude attitude can have. We all have the ability to be grateful – it doesn’t take much time and it doesn’t have to cost any money – but the rewards are so great!
Gratitude encourages new relationships
Did you say thank you to the co-worker that held the door open to you? Or did you thank the postman as he delivered your parcel? These are small things that can make a huge difference, believe it or not! A 2014 study showed that thanking an acquaintance makes them more likely to seek an ongoing relationship, so by acknowledging other people’s contributions, no matter how big or small, can help you to flourish socially.
Gratitude improves physical health
It was shown in 2012 that people who practise gratitude more frequently experience less aches and pains. Of course, gratitude won’t fix a broken arm, but it will help you to feel more energised and more comfortable in your skin. It was also shown that grateful people tend to exercise more and attend regular check-ups at the doctors!
Gratitude improves mental health and strength
As well as physical health, it’s also definitely worth talking about the mental benefits that gratitude brings. By practising a thankful lifestyle, you can reduce the amount of toxic emotions you experience, like envy, anger or regret, as well as increasing happiness and reducing the effects of depression and anxiety. It was also highlighted in 2006 that gratitude can also play a major role in overcoming trauma, so it’s definitely worth taking that extra little bit of time to be thankful.
Gratitude can help you sleep better
Hands up, who’s guilty of overthinking on a night and worrying about life stresses? Did you know that by taking 15 minutes before bed to write down a list of things that you were grateful for that day can help you to sleep better and longer? Give it a go! You could even pick up a gratitude journal to write your lists in and decorate it to your taste.
Gratitude increases empathy
Gratitude has been proven to help people become more understanding and empathetic, even when given negative feedback or others react in less kind ways. Who would’ve thought that being more appreciative of your own life would help you to be more understanding of others?
Gratitude improves self-esteem
When you become more grateful for everything that you have in your life, you’re less likely to compare yourself to others. When you’re happy with your job, car, possessions and any other aspect that you feel grateful for, there is no need to worry about other people! Because of this, your self-esteem is boosted and you would find it easier to be happy about other people’s accomplished.
Who knew that taking the time to be a little bit more grateful could result in so many amazing benefits? We certainly didn’t, but we’re sure that there’s at least one thing that everyone can take away from this list.
Why not let us know how you’re being more grateful this season or why not show us your gratitude journal? You can tell us over on Facebook UK, Facebook USA, Twitter, Instagram UK, Instagram US, Pinterest UK or Pinterest US using the hashtag #crafterscompanion.