6 Reasons Why Gratitude Is a Healthy Attitude!
It's National Gratitude Month—a time to "accentuate the positive and eliminate the negative," as the song goes.
Turns out, being grateful is healthy. Here are six reasons why you should adopt gratitude as an everyday attitude:
1. Makes you feel good.
A 2009 National Institutes of Health study showed that acts of kindness and gratitude flood our brains with a chemical called dopamine, which gives us a natural "high."
2. Reduces anxiety and depression
Research has also shown that keeping a gratitude journal—noting people, places, and things for which you are grateful—or writing and sending thank-you notes increased long-term happiness by more than 10% and decreased depression by more than 30%.
3. Increases energy
Gratitude research has repeatedly shown that thankful people have higher energy levels, and are more relaxed, happier, and healthier.
4. Helps you sleep better
Numerous studies have shown that gratitude increases the quality of sleep, decreases the time it takes to fall asleep, and lengthens the duration of sleep.
5. Lowers blood pressure
A 2007 study demonstrated that people who kept a gratitude journal had a significant decrease in their blood pressure.
6. Decreases pain levels
In a study conducted in 2003, ill patients who kept a gratitude journal reported reduced pain symptoms.
So, this month—and every month—adopt an attitude of gratitude toward all the people in your life: family, friends, caregivers, and co-workers. You'll be grateful you did.