How We Can Leverage The Power Of Gratitude To Improve Our Overall Mental Wellness

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Medium

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Focus on your blessings. Keeping a gratitude list and/or gratitude journal keeps your mind in constant state of appreciation, abundance and recognition of the endless number of blessings around you. In this state of mind, a person is more open, able to receive, more creative and more resourceful. Even when circumstances arise that may be challenging or may be a loss at first, the power of gratitude can help you connect to a higher power and you can look beyond what’s immediately in front of you so that you can bring in or find the blessings. While I was recovering from my many surgeries, I went through a spectrum of emotions. What I learned was that the more grateful I was, the better I healed. The more gratitude I had for simply being able to get out of bed, walk a little further each week, get stronger — — the more I was empowered with the knowledge that I was a strong, resilient force — capable of just about anything.

  1. Find the gift or create one. When my father passed away from cancer, I was devastated. I could not find any positive take-aways from the situation. So, I had to create one. I found myself deeply appreciative of my parents at an age where most of my friends were more concerned with college parties and getting through the classes that semester. Life fast-forwarded a learning that would probably not have come to me until much later, as an adult or as a parent myself. At an earlier age, I was able to appreciate my parents and my grandparents in a way that has cultivated deep compassion in me. This compassion has been a strong force in my mental resilience and my ability to work with others through difficult situations.
  2. Simplify the complex. Many of us go through a cycle of overwhelm, stress and anxiety that can loop back around on a regular basis (daily, weekly) or even just the occasional basis. However, when we go through these loops, we are complicating our circumstances instead of simplifying it so that we can resolve whatever problems are at hand. Taking a moment to focus on gratitude can allow you to ground and re-center yourself, opening up possibilities and solutions that you might not have thought of initially. These are characteristics of a leader and can actually inspire others around you to be part of the solution. Especially with multiple projects going on at the same time, I have found that being grateful for every opportunity allows me to stay focused on the goal, on the delivery of service to others, and away from the feelings of overwhelm that can paralyze you from being productive.
  3. Focus on your blessings. Keeping a gratitude list and/or gratitude journal keeps your mind in constant state of appreciation, abundance and recognition of the endless number of blessings around you. In this state of mind, a person is more open, able to receive, more creative and more resourceful. Even when circumstances arise that may be challenging or may be a loss at first, the power of gratitude can help you connect to a higher power and you can look beyond what’s immediately in front of you so that you can bring in or find the blessings. While I was recovering from my many surgeries, I went through a spectrum of emotions. What I learned was that the more grateful I was, the better I healed. The more gratitude I had for simply being able to get out of bed, walk a little further each week, get stronger — — the more I was empowered with the knowledge that I was a strong, resilient force — capable of just about anything.
  4. Connect with nature. What we all really need to thrive and survive, comes from nature. The sun is necessary for our immune system, the ocean is healing whether you are in the water or just listening to the waves crash. Most of the whole foods we consume comes from seeds that grow in the earth. At the end of the day, the true cost of these things is very little. Mother Nature doesn’t make us earn any of these things. For those of us in first world countries, we have easy access to all things that nature provides. When you focus on gratitude for mother nature, for our planet and that which is likely a higher power beyond ourselves, you begin to realize how much you have and how attainable everything you need, actually is. It puts your mind back in a space of abundance or prosperity. Mental health is so often associated with feeling a lack of love, lack of self-love, worthlessness, anxiety, fear, or loss. When we are able to look around and see how much there is around us, that there is enough for all of us so as long as we just use what we need, there is no fear of lack. A mentality of abundance will only bring more abundance.
  5. Empower your words. There is a great deal of power in the words we use. The words behind the thoughts in our minds and the words that come out of our mouths. What if those words always reflected gratitude in its definition? What if instead of being “unlucky”, you saw your circumstances as an “opportunity” to find the gifts. Instead of being “busy”, change your words to reflect “blessed”. The energy and focus of your attention will shift and in turn, build mental resilience and a healthy mindset. Choosing your words to include an energy of appreciation is a simple, effective way to use the power of gratitude to improve your mental health as well as the mental health of those around you. I found this to be extremely helpful with my own team. As the calendar fills up, it’s very easy to say that you’re busy, which does not carry the same energy of gratitude as the word “abundant”.

This content is strictly the opinion of Chef Serena Poon and is for informational and educational purposes only. It is not intended to provide medical advice or to take the place of medical advice or treatment from a personal physician. All readers/viewers of this content are advised to consult their doctors or qualified health professionals regarding specific health questions. Neither Serena nor the publisher of this content takes responsibility for possible health consequences of any person or persons reading or following the information in this educational content. All viewers of this content, especially those taking prescription or over-the-counter medications, should consult their physicians before beginning any nutrition, supplement or lifestyle program.

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