Ah, the month of Giving Thanks. It's my favorite season! Thanksgiving is the best of all of them for several reasons. The food is delicious and time with family is more relaxed without the pressures of gift-buying in crowded shopping malls. It's easy to keep focused on the blessings, which is what it's all about.
Two recent articles, one from Harvard Health Publishing and another from Mindful Magazine discuss research on gratitude and both conclude what we all know--Gratitude is good for you!
The wide range of benefits from feeling grateful include a strengthened immune system, improved sleep, feeling optimistic and experiencing more joy, being more helpful and generous, feeling less lonely, isolated, and depressed. Gratitude helps us relish good experiences, deal with adversity, and build strong relationships.
There are many ways to feel gratitude. The key is that you should actually "feel" it and not simply utter the words out of habit. Genuine expression, genuine feeling of gratitude may take some practice. But what a payoff! The more you feel grateful, the more you notice things to feel grateful about!
Try this 30-Day Gratitude Challenge and see what difference it makes for you, and those close to you, because everyone benefits.
30 Days of Gratitude
Nov. 1 - Think of one thing you are grateful for and allow yourself time to “soak” it in. How do you feel that in your body?
Nov. 2 - Contemplate one of your unique gifts or abilities.
Nov. 3 - Consider a challenging situation that you have overcome and experience gratitude for the unexpected benefits.
Nov. 4 - Look outdoors. Acknowledge the beauty of what’s there.
Nov. 5 - Pick one convenience in your life and be grateful for it!
Nov. 6 - Think of a person who has waited on you and contemplate their effort.
Nov. 7 - Hold your heart’s attention on your family!
Nov. 8 - What makes you feel a sense of “awe”? Hold your attention there until you really feel it.
Nov. 9 - Look around you now. What are you grateful for?
Nov. 10 - Pamper yourself in some way and be grateful!
Nov. 11 - Set an intention to notice “Kindness” in others today.
Nov. 12 - Tell someone you appreciate them.
Nov. 13 - Think of all the ways you are thankful for your body.
Nov. 14 - Whatever the weather, step outdoors and feel it. Be grateful that you can be in it and experience it.
Nov. 15 - Set a timer for 10 minutes. Write down as many things as you can that you appreciate.
Nov. 16 - Before you fall asleep, think of 5 things that made you happy today.
Nov. 17 - Relish your health and well-being.
Nov. 18 - Be grateful for WATER and all the ways it appears in your day.
Nov. 19 - Be grateful for your 5 senses. And appreciate them during the day.
Nov. 20 - Do you take something for granted? Send appreciation for that person, place or thing.
Nov. 21 - Appreciate your abundance!
Nov. 22 - What traditions are you grateful for?
Nov. 23 - Before you eat, think of all the hands that made this meal possible.
Nov. 24 - What’s your favorite time of the day? Why?
Nov. 25 - Who are the people you can count on?
Nov. 26 - Consider all the loving ways you show up for YOURSELF!
Nov. 27 - Send a thank you note.
Nov. 28 - Who was kind to you today?
Nov. 29 - Intend to notice how good life is today.
Nov. 30 - Spend time in gratitude today. Embody the sensation.
Here is the downloadable calendar...
Yoga and meditation teacher since 2003, I love discovering and sharing information about natural health and the mind-body-spirit connection through yoga and mindfulness. Join me and be changed for good!