Gratitudes Can Change Your Brain

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If you've been through a Ninja installation, you'll know that one of the first things they teach you is to do your daily gratitudes. (If you haven't been through Ninja, sign up for the next course here!) It might sound hokey - saying what you're thankful for, like kids writing things down on their handprint turkey at Thanksgiving - but clinical studies have proven that it can have a lasting impact. And not just on your career, but your health and happiness too. 

Feeling more hopeful, healthy, having increased self esteem, better resiliency, and more empathy and helpfulness are just a few of the personal gains you will see from training your brain to be more grateful for the people, things, and opportunities in your life. Lowered blood pressure, an improved immune system, better heart health, and better sleep habits are also benefits you can enjoy by being more grateful. 

So what does it take to be more grateful, particularly in a day and age filled with negative headlines and regularly occurring personal stress? It can be as simple as reflecting each day on the positives in your life and what you're thankful for. If you need a physical reminder, many people find a five minute journaling session to be a therapeutic and trackable way to maintain your gratitude goals. There are apps that can help keep you on track.

If you'd like to take it a step further, consciously try to be more positive to the loved ones and strangers in your life. Be deliberate in noticing the things in your life that you're grateful for. Thank your waiter. It will give you an instant boost of positivity which can have long term effects on your outlook. 

What kind of agent would you be if you woke up each day thankful for what you have? What kind of service would you be able to provide your clients if you have a positive outlook each time you see or contact them? What kind of life will you have outside of work if you come home having had a good day...almost every day? And if your positivity promotes your career, how much extra time would you have for the things and people you love? 

Maybe the newest diet fad or workout trend isn't the answer to a healthier happier you, not that you shouldn't also treat your body positively. But for many, a simple change in attitude could make all the difference. What do you do to ensure you stay grateful?