The Science Behind Gratitude

In an article entitled “Neuroscience Reveals: Gratitude Literally Rewires Your Brain to be Happier” featured on DailyHealthPost, we read about how the effects of actively being thankful can benefit us. Here are some research findings (paraphrased):

  • It leads to an overall increase in feeling positive and optimistic about life.
  • It improves sleep quality and reduces anxiety and depression.
  • When we are focused on feeling grateful, the areas of the brain that show increased activity are those linked to reward, empathy and value judgement, leading to an increased sense of positivity towards others.
  • By affecting the hypothalamus, gratitude increases dopamine, our feel-good hormone. It also tends to have a positive metabolic effect on stress.
  • The practice of gratitude increases our sense of self-worth and compassion for others.

By consciously increasing our levels of gratitude we can increase our overall sense of well-being. The act of being thankful also tends to increase our ability to be open minded, as the focus naturally creates a direct path to our feel good emotions.

To read the full article:

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4 thoughts on “The Science Behind Gratitude”

  1. This also ties so elegantly to your reminders that we are a relational species, here we see the benefits of attending to our relationship to the world around us, and also our relationship with ourselves. A wonderful lens of gratitude with which to view our relationships and ourselves.

    • Thank you Gurlie for such a thoughtful response – a lovely focus considering our long suffering run of a pandemic that has potentially interupted the relationships in our lives. Your thoughts are appreciated 🙂


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