2021 is gone, we are in a new year. We hope to achieve better mental wellbeing. Keeping fit this new year should not only be about your body but also your mind. Mental fitness is equally as important as physical fitness. It makes your mind sharper. It boosts your emotional wellbeing and keeps you happy, it keeps you relaxed and helps you to focus. The benefits are numerous. You cannot fully experience success in your pursuit without it. Same way you cannot fully enjoy the beautiful things around you, without a healthy mind.
A lot happened in 2021, To some, it is a year they experienced a big loss; some made significant progress in their life, some others can’t hold on to anything significant. Where ever you fall in this category, the practice of gratitude is all you need to set your mind right for a bigger 2022.
According to Melody Beattie, Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow. Take on this practice on a daily basis as you start this new year. I’ll recommend you keep a gratitude journal. Start your new journal by showing gratitude for the previous year. Reflect on the new relationships that made you better, think back at the moment in your family when you celebrated good news, how about the new job and the new business idea. Write this beautiful moment down as they come to you. You will notice more thoughts as you continue to write. Write it all until you feel it is okay to stop. Another practice I have kept is sending notes or a thank you cards to the people who made a major contribution in the things I am grateful for in the past year.
I am not married, but for you, it might be your spouse. You would not have achieved success in your speaking engagements or your business if they did not show some support by standing in at home while you were out. You can also give a thank you card to your kids if they are old enough to read. They were good hence why you could do so much. If they weren’t, you wouldn’t be in the right frame of mind to do all that you did. Did you know this practice, can strengthen your relationship with your family too? Research has proven that people who practice gratitude find it easy to forgive hurt and are less narcissistic. They easily achieve all-around satisfaction in their relationship.
One benefit of writing down the things you are grateful for as you reflect Is that they help you remember and pay more attention to the key players in each of this event that made your 2021 beautiful. As you write, underline the names that made all this happen. This could also be a nice colleague at work who went out of his or her way to do some extra things that made you get the promotion at work. Could be your children’s nanny. He or she must be doing a good job with the kids hence why you are still using them.
Don’t hold back showing appreciation to all of these people. Starting from those that are family members to close friends and spread out. As little as this might sound it is powerful enough to set your mind right for a great start.
In a study carried out by Psychologist and researcher Jeffrey Froh, he introduced gratitude technique to a group of people over some time and nothing to the others. The group that practised regular gratitude showed increased positive emotion and were more optimistic about the future. Aside from psychological findings, another research carried out in neuroscience showed increased brain response to the feeling of gratitude. The brain responds by telling the body to release happy hormones like Oxytocin and other neurotransmitters like Dopamine and Serotine. With increase Serotonin the level of cortisol reduces (Cortisol causes stress in our body)
The body in so doing reduces the level of stress hormones thus causing relief. This explains the relief, peace and joy you feel when you constantly practice this.
Daily practice of gratitude will make you happier in 2022. Keep a gratitude journal. Before you go to bed every night write down one or two things that made your day. You can also create a gratitude jar. It is simply a jar as the name implies. Put your note into this jar. You can open the jar at the end of the month or in two months and read all you’ve written. Send a gratitude letter to the key players if you so desire. Watch how this will transform your mood. A recent study also added that this practice results in a better quality of sleep and reduces depression. Are you always moody and restless? Try this. The increased level of Dopamine when you practice gratitude creates a feeling of satisfaction and pleasure. It gives you the ‘’I feel good’’ factor.
Your mental health is more important than the soccer game, the shopping, the promotion and whatever drives you. It is a small factor capable of hindering your progress in every other thing if ignored. Implement the practice of gratitude in 2022 and watch your mental health experience all round success.