If you guys are anything like me, you've struggled [BIG TIME] with feelings of self-doubt (and worth), stress, worry and depression, in the past (maybe even recently). And I get it; it's easy for us to feel overwhelmed, and stressed, in life, that's true. Worries of money, time, relationships, not being enough, wanting more, etc. can cause us to feel the need to run ourselves ragged, just trying to 'do the best we can'. Sometimes, especially this time of year, the weather can have a huge impact on those feelings, as well. Never-ending winter can make us feel like our lives are just 'blah'; feeling as if we don't have really anything exciting to look forward to.
But what does feeling this way get us? Stressed? Overworked? Never feeling content, or able to enjoy life, freely? Yeah, it sounds pretty shitty to me, too.
The Magic Cure
What if I told you there was an easy way to relieve some of those feelings? What if I told you it was free? Creating better health, feelings of happiness, increased productivity, full relationships. Something that SO many of us are looking for, but feeling as if it's not possible.
The magic cure? Gratitude.
Now, I know what you're thinking. How can being grateful help me get more out of life? How can I feel grateful when I'm depressed?
According to an article in Forbes, "7 Scientifically Proven Benefits Of Gratitude That Will Motivate You To Give Thanks Year-Round", gratitude:
- "Opens the door for more relationships": Showing appreciation can help us make new friends. Say "thank you"!
- "Improves physical health": Grateful people are more likely to take care of their health, and experience fewer aches and pains.
- "Improves psychological health": Helps reduce toxic emotions like envy, resentment, frustration. Gratitude increases happiness.
- "Enhances empathy and reduces aggression": Grateful people are kinder, even to those who are not kind back. Showing understanding.
- Helps us sleep better: Spending around 15 minutes, before bed, jotting down grateful thoughts can help sleep quality and quantity.
- "Improves self-esteem": Gratitude reduces social comparisons; helping people appreciate their own accomplishments.
- "Increases mental strength": Helps reduce stress and overcome trauma. Recognizing everything you have to be thankful for, even in hard times, increases resilience.
After having countless conversations with friends, family and members I coach, I came to the conclusion that we all could benefit from some added gratitude, in our lives. With social media creating these ideas of people having the 'picture-perfect' life (literally), it's easy for us to feel as if we don't add up. Maybe we've received some bad news about our health, and we're immersed with feelings of doubt, or guilt. Perhaps we just are stuck in a rut (relationships, weather, normalcy).
In a couple short days, we'll be closing in on March, and beginning to welcome Spring. Spring, which is already a time for fresh beginnings, growth, bloom and color, seems like the perfect time to begin practicing more gratitude.
On my Instagram page, I'll be hosting a "Gratitude Challenge", for the entire month of April. What better way to bring in Spring than with thoughts of appreciation for what we already DO have! Each day will hold something different to be grateful for, and it's my hope that you consider that something, in your own life, and show it some added, extra love. Write about it, think about it, appreciate it and snap a photo. Each week, I'll be offering a sweet gift set to one lucky winner, who takes a photo of each daily item of gratitude, for an entire week. These sets will include some of my favorite products to fill my body up with: Ommie Bars, Four Sigmatic, WholeMe, Vital Proteins, Teeccino... just to name a few!
The thought here is, instead of focusing on everything we DON'T have, or AREN'T, or SAD ABOUT, we need to shift perception, and start paying attention to our own lives, and what we DO, currently have.
Practicing Gratitude is Practicing Self-Care
Being grateful isn't just about being positive; it's one of the best forms of self-care we can ever gift ourselves with. It's an internal form of self-care (the very best kind). Kind thoughts, and feelings root from your center, and when carefully kept (just like the most precious of plants), those roots become strong, and the plant begins to grow. A beautiful (and grateful) heart creates a beautiful (and happy) person!
I'll see you on Instagram!