Remember to give thanks to starting each day off on the right foot by giving thanks.
What if you woke up today with only the things you gave thanks for yesterday? This has become a reality for many of us during the pandemic. Remember when we would say, “I have to go to a sales meeting.” Or, “I have to hold an open house.” With a new perspective, we look forward to the day we can say, “I get to go to the sales meeting.” The simple activities we took for granted, like taking a friend to dinner, are now valued and missed.
Writer Laura Kelly Fanucci states it beautifully.
“When this is over, may we never again take for granted A handshake with a stranger Full shelves at the store Conversations with neighbors A crowded theater Friday night out The taste of communion A routine checkup The school rush each morning Coffee with a friend The stadium roaring Each deep breath A boring Tuesday Life itself. When this ends may we find that we have become more like the people we wanted to be we were called to be we hoped to be and may we stay that way — better for each other because of the worst.”
- Laura Kelly Fanucci
Dr. Robert Emmons, University of California-Davis, has devoted much of his career to the study of gratitude. Here are five of his findings on the power of a morning gratitude routine.
Goals: Participants who kept gratitude lists were more likely to have made progress toward important personal goals (academic, interpersonal, and health-based).
Mindset: A daily gratitude intervention (self-guided exercises) with young adults resulted in higher reported levels of the positive states of alertness, enthusiasm, determination, attentiveness, and energy.
Giving: Participants in the daily gratitude condition were more likely to report having helped someone with a personal problem or having offered emotional support to another.
Health: In a sample of adults with neuromuscular disease, a 21-day gratitude intervention resulted in greater amounts of high-energy, positive moods, a greater sense of feeling connected to others, more optimistic ratings of one’s life, and better sleep duration and sleep quality, relative to a control group.
Well-Being: Grateful people report higher levels of positive emotions, life satisfaction, vitality, optimism, and lower levels of depression and stress. Grateful people do not deny or ignore the negative aspects of life. They put them in perspective.
Begin your day with the power of gratitude. As Dr. Michael Beckwith says, “You cannot bring anything new into your life until you are first grateful for what you have now.”