Using Gratitude To Attract More Of What You Want
Have you been hearing about the power of gratitude for positive transformation? Whether it’s Thanksgiving season or any time of year, the simple practice of giving thanks every day can set you on the path to your best life.
Gratitude is one of several positive psychology principles that has been shown in scientific studies to actually have a beneficial effect on brain health. This works by releasing feel-good chemicals that calm the nervous system. Over time, the more we practice gratitude, the more of a cumulative positive effect occurs, breaking us out of defeatist thinking patterns and helping to cultivate a positive, problem-solving mindset.
Here’s how gratitude works in practice, to set us on the path to a richer, happier life.
Gratitude breaks us out of negative cycles. When we’re in a self-defeating state of mind, our bodies feel the stress of constant worry and negative expectations. We expect things to go wrong, so they do. Someone who lacks appreciation for life’s gifts might find themselves battling the same old problems day in and day out. They need to change, but can’t find the way.
Giving thanks each day for the things that matter, that are good and that bring us joy, will help to calm and unburden the mind. This is the first step toward positive change because a positive mindset clears the path for possible solutions. Positive thinking actually resets the nervous system which is step 1 in an ongoing process.
Stress hormones are replaced with nourishing brain chemicals such as dopamine, serotonin and oxytocin. In a relaxed state, we are better able to summon our higher thinking powers and find different ways of doing things that actually work to help us face and solve life’s challenges.
Gratitude helps strengthen our relationships. When we struggle to get along with people we are close to, such as family members, husbands or wives, and friends with whom we share a good portion of our daily life, this can greatly impact our perception of the world. We might spend a lot of time trapped in an obsessive mindset where we review things that were said, replay scenes in our mind, and imagine what we can do or say next time to “win” the arguments that never seem to end.
However, when we focus our gratitude on those people that we have trouble relating to, something interesting happens. We begin to accept people for their differences. We recognize their ways of being that compliment our own. And we open our eyes to the good that they contribute in their own, unique way.
In doing this, we can conquer self sabotaging thoughts that have us repeating the same, negative patterns in relationships. From there we can move on to a fresh start, new ways of thinking and solving problems, and a greater awareness which results in personal growth and increased wisdom.
Gratitude helps us recognize our own personal strengths. There can be any number of reasons why a person might be low on self confidence. He or she may have lacked emotional support during the formative years. Perhaps a negative influence worked to color his or her self perception. Or maybe a situation of perpetual boredness and passive behavior was set early on in the person’s life as a result of being over indulged or being offered too many choices.
Empowerment has to do with feeling capable and ready to take action in one’s life. It’s about confidence in one’s abilities and fueled with purpose. We can use gratitude to take stock in our own unique gifts, and put goals into place. A daily practice of showing appreciation for our natural talents, becoming aware of what we are good at, and knowing that we have the strength to move toward what we want in life, can be giant forward leap on the path to self-fulfillment.
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