Gratitude

Amazing effects on lifting spirits

Last week I was pointing out that the neuroscientist, Alex Corb and author of ‘The Upward Spiral’ claims that developing a ‘gratitude mindset’ can have amazing effects on lifting our spirits. Here’s a follow on from that and also a short free meditation download.

A little gratitude can go a long way

A Canadian study showed that merely keeping a ‘gratitude journal’ for a week helped a group of insomniac students by improving their sleep, reducing worrying and reducing physical problems.

It boosts the production of serotonin through focusing on the positive aspects of life and encouraging more social interaction, amongst many other things.

A Swiss study of nearly a thousand people found that those people expressing more gratitude had better physical health as well as psychological health!

Apparently the greatest effects are found in people who are really depressed and hopeless and the effect of gratitude can even reduce the likelihood of suicidal thoughts.

Complex problems don’t always need complex solutions

Spending a regular time focusing on things that we are really appreciative of and then finding a way to express our appreciation seems to be a really simple solution to several complex problems. Can it be that easy? If it can bring even a little boost to physical health, reduce worrying and, at least partially, help reduce depressive thoughts, surely it has to be worth giving it a go.

Do you want to know more about what neuro science tells us?

We obviously know when we feel happier, more optimistic, sleep longer and deeper and have more energy. We don’t need neuro science to tell us that, but if you are interested in what areas of the brain are stimulated, where dopamine and serotonin are produced when we have a ‘grateful outlook’, then read the book ‘The Upward Spiral’ and you can find out these things and plenty more. All written in an easy to read style for the ‘non-neuro scientist’ but backed up by references to all the studies he quotes.