Gratitude – A word which somehow always simulates all my senses. When I hear this word, it feels like holding a very soft blue colour blanket in my hands. Gratitude is one of the most Buzzing words these days and for me it only and only Gratitude which IS POWERFUL ENOUGH to encapsulate all your problems. Once you realise its Purity and Power, it outshines every emotion, it outshines anger and Jealousy completely and it overflows into every area of Life.
When I first heard about the Miracles of Gratitude, I shrugged at the concept as it sounded too simple in relative to the benefits it promised. Entire books are written about the benefits. My brain was brushing it aside, yet I found myself pulled towards this concept where you acknowledge what you have instead of always focusing on what you don’t. It is Simple, Isn’t it? Gratitude disconnects us from toxic, negative emotions, shifting our focus on positive emotions.
As the practice of gratitude suggest that you should start writing down the things you are thankful for in life, I started with sitting in silence for 10 minutes at my study table and then started with counting my blessings (YES, the cliché) and this was my list –
-For the tea and book on my table
-For the ability to write
-For having and excellent life partner
-For my hair being straight (I know, sounds too Pretentious😊)
It was just small, tangible things I could think of and as I closed my eyes again, I felt a massive wave of self-love running through my body. I was bewildered and all my analytical thinking and doubts about the power of gratitude vanished immediately without a trace. Slowly and softly you will start seeing abundance in every area of your life, the sweet nectar of gratitude will satiate every unfulfilled emotion.
Gratitude is an appreciation and acknowledgement for what we have, or we receive, whether tangible or intangible. Gratitude also helps people connect to something larger than themselves as individuals — whether to other people, nature, or a higher power. It is much more than saying Thank you; deep gratitude comes from within.
Practicing gratitude means paying attention to what we are and having a feeling of compassion towards the world. It can motivate people to make positive and lasting changes in their lives.
Scientific studies are now concluding that the feeling of gratitude has tremendous effect on happiness and well-being. Dr. Robert Emmons of UC Davis has been studying the effect of gratitude; results of his studies show that people who regularly practice gratitude experience benefits such as the following:-
Author Melodie Beattie articulated it beautifully, “Gratitude turns what we have into enough, and more… It turns problems into gifts, failures into success, the unexpected into perfect timing, and mistakes into important events. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow.”
Through conscious practice over a period, we can discover again how gratitude and all its related qualities—thankfulness, appreciation, compassion, generosity, grace, can become integrated and embodied in our lives.
So, if we want to understand this practice scientifically, gratitude activates hypothalamus, part of our brain that regulates several of our bodily functions including our appetites, sleep, temperature, metabolism and growth. Acts of kindness and feelings of gratitude flood our brains with a chemical called dopamine. Because this feeling is so good, we are motivated to feel it again and do good for others and therefore we feel at our best when we do something for others
So, start today, these are few things which you can do to develop Gratitude
Anything written on Gratitude will be incomplete without mentioning these lines
When a new day begins, dare to smile gratefully.
When there is darkness, dare to be the first to shine a light.
When there is injustice, dare to be the first to condemn it.
When something seems difficult, dare to do it anyway.
When life seems to beat you down, dare to fight back.
When there seems to be no hope, dare to find some.
When you’re feeling tired, dare to keep going.
When times are tough, dare to be tougher.
When love hurts you, dare to love again.
When someone is hurting, dare to help them heal.
When another is lost, dare to help them find the way.
When a friend falls, dare to be the first to extend a hand.
When you cross paths with another, dare to make them smile.
When you feel great, dare to help someone else feel great too.
When the day has ended, dare to feel as you’ve done your best.
Dare to be the best you can –
At all times, Dare to be!”
― Steve Maraboli, Life, the Truth, and Being Free