Gratitude is actually medically proven to lift our spirits and improve our health. And while this may disappoint some folks, especially those with a “bah humbug” attitude that least in terms of the health and happiness benefits which it creates.
1. Find it, find what you’re grateful for. The real uncertainty we face about our futures can make us quite fearful and sad.
Locating those things for which we can still be grateful, brings joy even in the face of those challenges without pretending they are not real.
2. Articulate it. Tell a friend or loved one a story about something for which you are grateful. Don’t be surprised to find yourself smiling by the end of that story.
3. Acknowledge it. That happiness and satisfaction are different. We can want more than we currently have and still be happy with what we’ve got. Wanting more does not have to get in the way of enjoying what we already have. If it does, we will never have enough.
4. Appreciate it. What you have, be it relationships or in material wealth is all relative. A person who lives in a $100,000 house in a neighborhood of $75,000 homes experiences living in a mansion. The same house in a neighborhood of $500,000 homes may feel like a dump.
5. Give it. Help yourself by helping others. The holidays are a great time to reach out to other people in need. Helping others address their needs is one of the best ways to relieve the anxiety we may feel about our own.
We all have something to give. No matter how difficult our circumstances may be, we can all offer support to those around us. Whether it’s a penny, a hug, or much more, the act of giving always makes us feel as if we have more than we thought we had.