Gratitude. It might seem fluffy – like some positive thinking “jibber jabber” – but the evidence can’t be disputed: gratitude is your superpower.
If you’re new to the practice, or perhaps a sceptic, we’ve got two major reasons you should practice gratitude.
(1) Practising gratitude changes the way you see the world, for the better.
Our brain was designed to detect threats; it constantly scans the world for danger and makes sure we’re alerted to and focusing on everything that is ‘bad’ and ‘wrong’. It does this to keep us safe from harm – which is considerate (#thanksbrain) – but, it’s also incredibly unnecessary in the modern world. Continuous and constant 'threat detecting' is likely to lead to feelings of misery, sadness, and anxiety.
Practising gratitude is your superpower, because when we notice what’s ‘good’ and ‘right’, and with regular and repeated practice, it creates a positive loop: noticing the good makes us feel good, and when we feel good, we notice the good.
We tend to get over things quickly – like the buzz we feel when we get a brand new car or a promotion. We're excited at first but then we get over it. This is what psychologists call ‘hedonic adaptation’.
Practising gratitude circumvents hedonic adaptation – it encourages us to notice and continue to appreciate all the good things in our lives.
(2) Practising gratitude improves and enhances your psychological and physical health.
Increase happiness, positive moods, and make you feel more satisfied with your life
Reduces materialism (i.e., you stop wanting more 'things')
Decrease the likelihood of experiencing burnout
Improve sleep and sleep quality
Reduce fatigue and increase energy
Increase resilience and optimism
Encourage the development of patience, humility, and wisdom
With benefits like these, why wouldn’t you practise gratitude? Get started or reinvigorate your practise with our Gratitude Journal. Informed by positive psychology research, it has five evidence based practices for you to try so you can find the one that works best for you.
We think our Gratitude Journal is pretty special – it differs from many that you’ve seen around. It doesn’t instruct you to do the same activity over and over again. It’s not dated like a calendar, so you don’t need to start in January. And it’s not something you do every day (because seriously, who has the time or the energy).