Gratitude, a Rare Commodity

When was the last time you said “thank you”?

When was the last time you genuinely meant it?

For some it may be a few days or a week (that’s too long by the way) but for others it may have only been a few hours or even minutes.

What are the reasons for a lack of gratitude being habitual in our daily lives?

We don’t have time is a common statement.  Let’s be honest with ourselves; that’s an excuse.  We have plenty of time to honestly offer thanks to the guy that let us ahead of him at the bank.

Do we think we are more important than we really are; ergo, we think we are constantly too busy for the seemingly minor things as taking from our own valuable time to show gratitude?

Some of people claim they actually feel awkward saying thank you to someone. It may be a lack of focus on gratitude in their upbringing (conditioning). To feel awkward for thanking another person may be based on ego, fearful pride, misplace shyness et al.

Be the brave soul that reaches out her hand to others, and you may be surprised as to what you find in your own hand as a result – deeper relationships, new friends, more blessings, the list will go on on on …

The lack of heart-felt “thank you” only serves to breed a further deficit of gratitude in your life, as well as the lives of those around you.

Think about it.

When did you last give someone an honest show of appreciation for something, anything?
Have you ever allowed it to cross your mind that someone in your life may deserve to be appreciated [and sincerely thanked] just being a good person? Try it, you may feel good from taking this action. As the saying goes: ‘Try it; you might like it!’

Here are some questions that you may need to answer:

  • Do you have a person like this in your life that you should go to and say ‘thank you’?
  • Do you not take the time to appreciate the gifts in your life that are due to the actions of others?
  • Do you allow your ‘ego’ to stop you from showing true gratitude, for fear that the act will crumble you instead of humble you?
  • Do you walk away in silence every chance you are offered an opportunity to say ‘thank you’, for this fear of emotional expression?
  • Do you distance yourself from those that have assisted you in your past to avoid your perceived awkward moment of saying ‘Thank you’?
  • Do you focus on the lack and not the blessings in your life, creating a habitual lifestyle that minimizes or erases gratitude?
  • Do you fear that showing gratitude to others will make you appear weak?

Gratitude – thankfulness, gratefulness, or appreciation is a feeling, from the heart or attitude in acknowledgment of a benefit that one has received or will receive. The experience of gratitude has historically been a focus of several world religions, and has been considered extensively by moral philosophers such as Adam Smith.

The systematic study of gratitude within psychology only began around the year 2000, possibly because psychology has traditionally been focused more on understanding distress rather than understanding positive emotions. However, with the advent of the positive psychology movement, gratitude has become a mainstream focus of psychological research.

The study of gratitude within psychology has focused on the understanding of the short term experience of the emotion of gratitude (state gratitude), individual differences in how frequently people feel gratitude (trait gratitude), and the relationship between these two aspects.

A large body of recent work has suggested that people who are more grateful have higher levels of subjective well-being.

  • Grateful people are happier, less depressed, less stressed, and more satisfied with their lives and social relationships Grateful people also have higher levels of control of their environments, personal growth, purpose in life, and self acceptance.
  • Grateful people have more positive ways of coping with the difficulties they experience in life, being more likely to seek support from other people, reinterpreted and grow from the experience, and spend more time planning how to deal with the problem.
  • Grateful people also have less negative coping strategies, being less likely to try to avoid the problem, deny there is a problem, blame themselves, or cope through substance use.
  • Grateful people sleep better, and this seems to be because they think less negative and more positive thoughts just before going to sleep.

Thank someone and mean it.

The spiritual axiom to this Action of Gratitude is that YOU will receive more benefits from this expression that the receiver.

Gratitude has been said to have one of the strongest links with mental health of any character trait.

Numerous studies suggest that grateful people are more likely to have higher levels of happiness and lower levels of stress and depression.

YOU deserve it, Take Action.

Gratitude is contagious, so is a lack of it.

 Honest gratitude is a rare commodity these days. 

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