We all Love to be Appreciated
Because gratitude makes us feel good
It makes our efforts feel effortless
and it makes us feel seen and recognized
In short gratitude makes us feel loved and happy.
Gratitude for what we do is a wonderful thing. It lights up our lives and makes us feel amazing!
But appreciation caused by good things is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the power of gratitude. We are all familiar with reactionary appreciation, or, being appreciated when we do good things.
But what if I told you gratitude could cause good things to happen?
What if I told you that gratitude can make you lucky!
I know this may seem outlandish to some of you but thankfully science copiously backs up this claim from many different angles. So I invite you to suspend your disbelief for one moment and enjoy this little article, then, tell me what you think in the comment section below.
Let’s talk about the power of gratitude!
The Magic of Gratitude in Health
Appreciation, or gratitude has an enormous impact on your health in many ways. In scientific studies gratitude has been shown to boost the happy chemicals we make in our brains, causing us to feel a greater sense of well-being. This sense of well-being also boosts the functioning of our immune system
This is because stress famously inhibits the functioning of our immune system, so when gratitude steps in and gives us that happy boot, it is removing that stress that inhibits the immune system. Practicing gratitude makes everything in your body function better.
This greater functioning can cause you to be more resistant to illness, aid in illness recovery, have a positive impact on physical appearance and much much more. When your body functions better, everything about your physical well being also improves. This is the art and science of practicing gratitude for your physical health.
The Magic of Gratitude in Psychology
Gratitude has also been scientifically proven to have a positive impact on your mental/ emotional well-being.
Showing appreciation boosts the happy chemicals in your brain, which means, showing appreciation improves your mood and make you a happier person!
Neurologically speaking, we cannot feel both happiness and sadness at the same time, so when you “switch on” the happiness that gratitude causes, you are in effect, switching off all forms of unhappiness. One of the happy chemicals that gratitude enhances is serotonin which is the main happy chemical that most anti-depressant medications target. Having an “Attitude of Gratitude” is one of the best ways to increase your own happiness!
(This is not meant to discourage taking anti-depressants when needed! Gratitude and Western Medical interventions work very well together! Its not an either/ or situation).
The Magic of Gratitude in Experience
Having that “Attitude of Gratitude” can even cause good experiences to happen in your life. Why? The short answer is because scientific research has proven that we are only capable of seeing a fraction of whatever is right in front of us.
All day long our brains are filtering out tons of things because our brains can’t process as much of reality as there is to see at any given moment. The magic here is in how our brains do that filtering. Our brains decide what to filter into our conscious awareness by what we focus on and feel strongly about. So if you are focusing on gratitude then your brain will “factor in” more positive stuff that has been right in front of you all along.
In his famous book “Success Through a Positive Mental Attitude” entrepreneur and self-made millionaire Napoleon Hill discusses how using a positive mental attitude can actually help you see solutions instead of problems, opportunities instead of obstacles, and the path to whatever we want instead of a dead end.
Neuroscience even backs that up as is illustrated in the very famous invisible gorilla experiment. Science tells us that we literally cannot see what we are not focused on or what we don’t believe in.
Our brains will simply factor it out even if its right in front of us because of our limited capacity of what we can pay attention to.
So when you focus on gratitude for:
- What you currently have
- What you have previously received
- And for what you want but haven’t received yet
That focus will cause your brain to factor in more things to be grateful for. Gratitude has an enormous impact on the quality of the reality you see every day!
The Magic of Gratitude in Spirituality
The common thread in almost every single spiritual tradition on this planet is gratitude. Jesus said “thank you” before performing many miracles. Yes I said before! This is a great example of showing appreciation for what you want in advance.
Faith makes things happen because when you believe in something and focus on it as we do in prayer, your mind will factor in the way to get whatever it is you want. Chances are it’s been right in front of you the entire time.
Showing appreciation in advance is the highest form of faith there is. In Ho’Oponopono which is a form of Hawaiian spirituality, the main mantra that is chanted is, “I love you, Thank you”, this mantra is said to “clean” any situation and transform it into something good simply by saying, “I love you thank you”.
Having that positive mental attitude is really having faith that there is good in everything that happens even when it doesn’t seem like it.
If we believe in the good in things, that good will reveal itself to us. If we do not, the good aspects will remain the invisible gorilla on the basketball court of our lives.
Don’t let that happen! You deserve to see the wonderful aspects of life that saying, “Thank you” can open for you.
Even the root of the word Gratitude is amazing. The root discusses celebration, joy, and happiness. Every time we love something, we are really feeling deep appreciation for whatever it is we love. We celebrate what we love with deep appreciation. We feel lucky to have it and so we feel amazing. When we capture that feeling of gratitude, even when we have no cause for it, it will create a reason to feel that way right before our eyes.
If we appreciate our failures, we will start to see the opportunity in that failure. When we appreciate a loved one, the relationship will improve, when we appreciate anything, our minds will open and reveal all the good aspects of whatever we are appreciating.
And don’t forget to appreciate yourself as you are practicing all this gratitude! Gratitude for yourself is the most powerful gratitude of all! When you appreciate yourself first it becomes natural to appreciate everything else. Please don’t forget to shower yourself with your own love and appreciation. You deserve it!
Gratitude is good for the body, mind and spirit. It removes stress and so it “cleans” and improves the functioning of the mind, body and our very perception of reality. Practicing Gratitude is free and its easy.
You can do it anywhere and anytime. And the return on investment of practicing gratitude is astronomical. So get out there and practice saying thank you and watch your world transform into a reason to celebrate!
Gratitude really can make you Lucky!
So get started now and tell me what you are grateful for in the comments and start reaping the benefits right away!
Thank you for listening!
Written by Michelle Wittenborn,
MBA, ChT, NLP Practitioner,
and happy grateful person