We hear a lot of people talking about making gratitude lists or practicing gratitude affirmations, but what does a gratitude practice look like exactly, and how does it benefit our lives?
Like a lot of mindfulness exercises, there isn’t an all-purpose approach to practicing gratitude.
Some people like to set aside time to write in their journal to express daily appreciation.
Others like to incorporate gratitude into their meditation routine.
While others turn to gratitude during difficult times, and use it as a tool to relieve their stress and anxiety.
No matter how you go about it, there is no wrong or right way to show gratitude. Even something as simple as reciting gratitude affirmations can do wonders for shifting your mindset.
Below we take a look at the many benefits of a gratitude practice and how using gratitude affirmations can benefit you and your well-being. Plus, we’ve included some examples of gratitude affirmations that you can make your own and help you start a regular gratitude routine.
Benefits of gratitude
Here are just some of the many ways that gratitude may benefit you.
Gratitude can improve our well-being. Studies have shown that gratitude can improve our well-being. When we take stock of the good things we have going on in our lives, we’re more likely to increase our happiness and self-esteem.
Gratitude can improve our relationships. Studies have also shown that expressing gratitude can even positively influence our relationships, both personal and professional. When a manager goes out of their way to thank an employee for a job well done, that employee will so much more confident and appreciated.
Gratitude can improve our sleep. If you have trouble sleeping, a gratitude list before bed may help you achieve a good night’s rest.
Gratitude can improve heart health. Maintaining a gratitude journal or the act of being more grateful has been shown to lower blood pressure.
With that said, gratitude shouldn’t be confused with toxic positivity. Gratitude isn’t about forcing ourselves to see the glass as half-full by shoving down our feelings, or deluding ourselves into thinking our lives are perfect. Rather, a gratitude practice is about recognizing the not-so-positive things in our lives along with the positive ones. Instead of dwelling on one, specific negative aspect, a gratitude practice allows us to recognize the different facets, and see the whole picture.
Let’s say, for example, that we’ve had a bad day at work. One of those days when you’ve had a horrible morning commute, you’ve spilled coffee on yourself, and your inbox is overflowing with messages that demand your attention. When you have a day like that, it’s easy to get stuck in a negative loop. We start to think “this day sucks” and then suddenly this escalates into “this job sucks” and then “everything sucks!””
It’s important to remember that ur thoughts are not always rational or reliable. And our mind is not always a fair judge of reality. That’s why, if we find our thoughts going down a negative path, it can be helpful to pause and take a moment to reset.
A gratitude practice allows us to open our eyes to things we may have overlooked.
How gratitude affirmations can help
As you can see, a simple gratitude practice can go a long way towards improving our health and our overall outlook on life.
And an impactful way to express gratitude is through gratitude affirmations.
Words have power.
When we find ourselves saying negative things about ourselves, it’s so easy to fall into the trap of believing that those negative things are true.
On the flip side, when we say affirming things about ourselves, or when others bolster us with positive words, we feel that positivity and strength.
When we combine gratitude with affirmations, we can bolster ourselves with these positive, encouraging words.
How you can incorporate gratitude affirmations
You can record these gratitude affirmations in a gratitude journal and reflect on them in the morning to jumpstart your day or at night to ensure a restful sleep.
Or you can write these up on colorful post-it notes and place them around your home for daily inspiration.
You can turn to these gratitude affirmations whenever you need a reminder of all the good things you have going on in your life.
Below, we’ve listed different examples of the types of gratitude affirmations you can use. Use these as a jumping off point and feel free to add specific details from your own life to make these affirmations your own.
The more specific you can get with your affirmations, the more they will deeply resonate with you.
Think of the people in your life you are grateful for. Think of the sights and sounds you see everyday that make you feel grateful to be living where you are.
The very act of remembering these specific details can help ground you in the present moment and flow with gratitude and peace.
Gratitude affirmations for home and community
- I am grateful for my partner
- I am grateful for my family
- I am grateful for my friendly neighbors and community
- I am grateful to have a home that makes me feel safe and comforted.
Gratitude affirmations for work
- I am grateful for my supportive coworkers
- I am grateful for my boss who inspires me to do my best
- I am grateful to be doing what I love
- I am grateful for the opportunity to shine
- I am grateful for the opportunity to grow and take risks
Gratitude affirmations for your health
- I am grateful for my strong legs that help get me places
- I am grateful for eyes that help me see the beauty in everyday
- I am grateful for the ability to sleep peacefully
- I am grateful for my breath