Saying thank you is the right thing to do in many situations, but did you know that expressing gratitude is also good for your health? Keep reading to learn more about the health benefits of gratitude, and how to cultivate an attitude of greatfulness in your daily life.
5 health benefits of gratitude:
- Boosts happiness and optimism – Research from Martin Seligman, a leader in the positive psychology movement, shows that writing and sending a letter of gratitude to express previously unexpressed thanks boosts happiness, and this benefit can last for a whole month!
- Improves resilience – Gratitude has been shown to reduce depression, improve mental and psychological health, and even reduce rates of post-traumatic stress disorder.
- Builds relationships – Saying thanks is a proven way to improve relationships at home and work. So even if it’s your spouse’s job to take out the trash every week, you’ll feel more positive about your spouse if you say, “Honey, thanks for taking out the garbage.”
- Reduces stress – A study in The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine showed that even just three weeks of gratitude practice reduces stress. The gratitude practice involved writing in a gratitude diary and doing a guided gratitude reflection four times per week.
- Improves physical health – Another study showed that people who practice gratitude regularly tend to report better physical health than those who don’t. Gratitude is also positively associated with a willingness to seek help for medical issues.
Gratitude costs nothing yet gives so much in return. As country singer Willie Nelson once said, “When I started counting my blessings, my whole life turned around.”
If you’re interested in taking a more purposeful approach to cultivating gratitude, today is the perfect day to get started. We’ve put together a list of gratitude activities that you can use to feel and express more thanks each week.
4 ways to practice gratitude:
- Start a gratitude journal – Turn a notebook into a gratitude journal by writing down three things you’re grateful for every day. It doesn’t matter how big or small they are; being sincerely grateful is what counts. It’s okay to write about mundane moments such as, “I’m grateful that it only took me 20 minutes to fix my flat tire this morning.”
- Say “I love you” – Spend time with your loved ones and let them know you care about them with those three magic words. Even if you find it awkward, you won’t likely regret it.
- Be empathetic – Focusing on how someone else feels and putting ourselves in their shoes triggers feelings of gratitude.
- Give genuine thanks – Don’t leave your gratitude locked up in your journal; express it! Say thank you for large and small kindnesses. You can do this over the phone, in person, or by sending a thank you note or email. Being genuine when expressing your thanks makes it meaningful for you and the receiver.
Feeling and expressing gratitude is a simple and enjoyable way to improve your health and increase your satisfaction.
And at Hand & Stone, we’re grateful for our clients because you bring us joy and trust us to help you look and feel your best. If you’d like to relax after your daily gratitude practice, give us a call to book a Swedish massage and a rejuvenating facial.
Feel great, look great with Hand & Stone Massage & Facial Spa.
Massage. Facials. Waxing. At Hand & Stone, our registered massage therapists will help relieve tension, soothe tired muscles and ease headaches. Interested in our facial services? We know radiant, healthy skin reflects how you look and feel. Hand & Stone’s facials are performed by certified estheticians and we are proud to offer Dermalogica®, YonKa and Diego Dalla Palma products so you can enjoy a bright, beautiful complexion between regular appointments.
We’ll help you look and feel your best, affordably! Call today to schedule your appointment! We’re open 7 days a week with extended hours and gift cards are available for all occasions. Contact us today!