Are you having hot flashes, insomnia, weight gain, acne, painful sex: Those times when you feel you have the least to be grateful for? Well, there’s a reason they call it “choosing” gratitude.
But could choosing gratitude actually help you feel better during the toughest of times?
Yes indeed, without a doubt.
Choosing gratitude during menopause might not be what you would expect as a natural strategy. But don’t be too quick to discount this idea. The mental and physical benefits might surprise you.
What is Gratitude?
Gratitude: the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.
“But choose gratitude now?” You might say, “I feel so crappy! With all these mood swings, night sweats, anxiety, weight gain and more. I’m supposed to be grateful now?!” Well, yes. And here’s why.
Gratitude Has Perks!
The benefits of choosing gratitude are nearly endless. People who regularly choose gratitude by taking time to notice and reflect upon the things they’re thankful for experience a lot of great stuff!
- Positive emotions,
- Better sleep,
- Balanced hormones,
- Greater compassion and kindness,
- Stronger immune systems.
Choosing gratitude is a thankful appreciation for what an individual received, whether tangible or intangible. With gratitude, people acknowledge the goodness in their lives…As a result, gratitude also helps people connect to something larger than themselves as individuals.
A life lived in gratitude helps people feel more positive emotions, relish good experiences, improve their health, deal with adversity, and build strong relationships.
How to Foster Gratitude
Gratitude can be felt and expressed in several ways. Your feelings of gratitude can be for the past (thankfulness for past memories and blessings), the present (appreciating what you have), or the future (an optimistic outlook). If you want to foster gratitude in your life, there are many simple strategies you can try.
A Little Gratitude Leads to More Gratitude
When you make an effort to focus your mind and thoughts on things you are grateful for, you’ll start to notice more things to be grateful for. Brain scans of people who foster gratitude have shown changes to the prefrontal cortex that make them more likely to experience gratitude in the future. This means that as you work to have more gratitude in your life, the positive feelings of thankfulness will begin to flow more easily and naturally.
Fostering gratitude takes a little bit of time and intention, but your efforts will pay off. You will transform your mind and possibly even improve your physical and mental health by choosing to focus on gratitude.
So I urge you, this thanksgiving, start to choose gratitude and make it a daily habit. Keep a journal so you can go back and reflect. Think of the gift you’ll unwrap next thanksgiving when you see how choosing gratitude has changed your life. It’s as simple as a choice.
Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.
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