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Wednesday, June 29, 2016

4 Ways to Practice Gratitude

A daily dose of gratitude can do wonders for your recovery as well as for your overall mental and physical wellbeing. Studies have linked gratitude to a number of health benefits, including improved self-care, fewer toxic emotions, sounder sleep, stronger willpower, and increased self-esteem. 

People who are able to be thankful for what they have rather than complain about all the things they think they deserve – not only handle stress better but they can also overcome trauma easier, according to researchers. 

If you attend an AA meeting, you may even hear the recovery slogan: “Have an attitude of gratitude.” The gist is that feeling grateful for your recovery will prevent you from relapsing. In other words, not taking your recovery for granted will ensure that sobriety remains something worth fighting for. 

Being Grateful Every Day
Like any worthy skill, having “an attitude of gratitude” takes a fair amount of practice. Here are four everyday tricks to get you started:  

  1. Keep a gratitude journal. Try listing three things for which you are thankful and three people to whom you are grateful. 
  2. Say “thank you” with thoughtfulness. The next time someone helps you, be sure to acknowledge the effort behind his or her actions as well as what the actions mean to you personally. This will help others feel more valued and you feel better about yourself and your life.
  3. Designate a no-complain day. Pick one day of the week and vow not to complain on that day. Better still: Use this time to note the positive side of any negative thoughts. 
  4. Perform a daily act of kindness. This can range from complimenting a friend to volunteering for an organization to writing a nice note to someone you haven’t seen in a while.
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