THE GRATITUDE KEY TO JOY
Updated: Jan 30
"Gratitude is the healthiest of all human emotions. The more you express gratitude for what you have, the more likely you will have even more to express gratitude for."
Nothing can cure the blues like finding something to appreciate about your life. We consciously add value to our lives by being grateful. It's like we literally throw our life away when we don't appreciate it. Not only do you bless yourself when you focus on the blessings of life instead of the failures and abuses, but you bless others. I have struggled with depression most of my life. It is just a fact of life, the cares of life can come along and steal your joy if you let them. I have had to make a choice and a commitment to keep learning from the setbacks of life and to focus on what good has come out of them, so that I can learn how to be happy every day.
Psalm 9:1 I will give thanks to you, Lord, with all my heart; I will tell of all your wonderful deeds.
Focusing is key. I now keep a gratitude journal and see it is like placing a ray of sunshine upon my own path, while murmuring and complaining is like turning on a siren and keeping it spinning around my head. If we ever want to experience peace in our hearts, we will have to feed joy in our lives by planting thoughts of gratitude in our minds. Joy is a strength to us, and seeking out the inspirational writing and videos of others can help us to keep focused and develop a disciplined mind. Joyce Meyer's Battlefield of the Mind is a great resource for overcoming self defeating mindsets and learning to renew our minds. It always helps to seek the advice of someone who has overcome and praise God for their victory, and then know there is hope for us too.
It is encouraging to know that as we take steps forward toward the goal to have more joy in life, we will find the answers we are looking for. So many people of many faiths are sharing their insights and experiences. So many are finding success and want to help others find it. If you are looking for help, you will find it.
Raise Your Immunity
Studies have proven gratitude raises our immunity and is good for the heart. Many of us have suffered from a broken heart, whether it is the loss of a loved one, loving someone who doesn't love you back or continual physical and mental abuse. We can't change the past or other people, but we can take steps to help the healing process move forward in our lives by focusing on what we have to be thankful for.
Paul J. Mills, PhD, professor of family medicine and public health at the University of California, San Diego, published a study in the journal Spirituality in Clinical Practice®. It focused on people who had prior heart damage, and after practicing gratitude via a journal, their health improved. In the NPR article Gratitude Is Good For The Soul And Helps The Heart, Too Mills concluded, “It seems that a more grateful heart is indeed a more healthy heart, and that gratitude journaling is an easy way to support cardiac health.”
This small act of being grateful can lead to big changes in our lives. We can grow in strength spiritually, physically and mentally just by doing something anyone can do - giving thanks!