Thanksgiving is a special time of year that reminds us to stop and think about all of the many blessings in our lives, and what we are truly thankful for. Some families do it with thankful jars and others make it point to go around the dinner table to share their happiness with others. But what if it is a difficult time in your life and no matter how deep you dig you just can’t bring something positive to the surface? This is a reality for many people this time of year and being reminded of the joy and happiness of others might make you feel even worse.
Researchers have been publishing studies for years about the effectiveness of using an intervention to produce a feeling of Thanksgiving. And while these tactics may not always work, they are a good place to start. Your health and wellbeing will also benefit from you finding things to be thankful for. Optimism helps to boost your immune system, lower your blood pressure, decrease depression, help improve your love life and can even help you cope better with stressful situations.
Try using these strategies to find out what you are truly thankful for all year long.
1. Keep a gratitude journal. Write down 3 things from your day that made you smile. Even if they are small and simple, they still add to your overall feeling of gratitude.
2. Practice being in the present. Stop dwelling on the past and worrying about the future. You can do nothing about either, so look for ways to enjoy the present.
3. Think bigger than yourself. Become involved in a cause that is important to you. You will begin to have a deeper appreciation of what you have if you become aware of those that are less fortunate than you. And helping others is a great way to boost your mood.
4. Thank yourself. Gratitude doesn’t have to always come from what others do for you. Thank yourself for the good things that you practice in your own life. Did you make your bed today? Super! Pass up a burger at lunch for a salad? Way to go!
5. Replace complaints with gratitude. Change your perspective. If you struggle to come up with something to feel grateful for, force yourself to stop and look for just one thing that is positive. Every day might not be great, but there is something great in every day!
We hope this holiday season is a time for you to be able to reflect on all the good things in your lives! Your Capehart Family is thankful for you!