Unlock the Fullness of Life this Simple & Free Activity
It’s morning. Which would aptly describe the first thing that comes to mind?
“Good morning, Lord!“
“Good Lord, it’s morning?!”
For most of us, it takes little effort to see how we can be bombarded by negative news and happenings every day. But yet, one of the ways to combat burnout in life in our PRISM model is that of practising gratitude (under “Meaning”).
There are research studies conducted to ascertain the place of gratitude in our life. Most conclude that gratitude is great for one’s physical and mental well-being. This research by the University of California, Berkeley, for example, concludes that gratitude is literally good for the heart and found that those who are more grateful tend to “sleep better, are less depressed, have less fatigue, have more self-confidence to take care of themselves, and have less systemic inflammation.”
We found that gratitude fully or partially accounted for the beneficial effects of spiritual well-being on sleep quality, mood, confidence in self-care, and fatigue. That is, the observed relationships between spiritual well-being and better mood and sleep quality in our patients were in fact due to the specific contributions of gratefulness.
… There are many ways to cultivate gratitude. Praying more often has also been found to help people to be more grateful. The simple act of writing down what we’re grateful for, which we used in our research, can increase gratitude. No matter what the form, simply asking each day “What am I grateful for?” can bring awareness and appreciation to the positive features within and around us, helping us to embrace life as it is with all of its imperfections. When gratitude is present in our awareness, everything changes and we can find ourselves transformed. By cultivating gratitude, our research suggests, we cultivate well-being.”
In another study on the effects of gratitude on those struggling with mental health challenges, they found that “practicing gratitude on top of receiving psychological counseling carries greater benefits than counseling alone, even when that gratitude practice is brief.”
Most interestingly, when we compared those who wrote the gratitude letters with those who didn’t, the gratitude letter writers showed greater activation in the medial prefrontal cortex when they experienced gratitude in the fMRI scanner. This is striking as this effect was found three months after the letter writing began. This indicates that simply expressing gratitude may have lasting effects on the brain. While not conclusive, this finding suggests that practicing gratitude may help train the brain to be more sensitive to the experience of gratitude down the line, and this could contribute to improved mental health over time.”
And so, I hope I have been able to show you how gratitude plays a part in helping you combat the effects of burnout, keep it at bay and help you be more at peace.
And if you struggle with knowing what to give thanks for, here’s an activity you can use to help you reflect on what you can give thanks to God for. It can be used as both an individual activity or even as a group activity.
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” ~ The BIble (Philippians 4:6-7)
Gratitude is such a powerful tool in our lives:
Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow.” ~ Melody Beattie
Want to thrive at work and beyond? Connect with us to find out how we can bring mental well-being talks and workshops to workplaces to help individuals and organizations prevent and overcome burnout.