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8 Amazing Things Will Happen When You Start Practicing Gratitude

8 Amazing Things Will Happen When You Start Practicing Gratitude

Do you want to be more grateful? There are lots of benefits to practicing gratitude — for starters, you will be a happier person who is more content with their life. There are lots of different ways you can be more grateful. You can keep a gratitude journal, or you can practice saying “thank you” to one person every day.

Practicing gratitude is one of the fastest ways to improve your life. Check out the following 8 amazing things that will happen when you start to practice gratitude.

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1. You will sleep better

If you don’t feel grateful in your life, you may struggle to sleep at night because you feel discontent. However, you can fix this by practicing gratitude. According to a 2009 study, thinking about the things that you are grateful for will improve your quality of sleep. You will also sleep for longer and feel better rested when you wake up.

2. You will be less stressed out

Stress is one of the most common problems for adults today. Many people lay awake at night, stressing about their relationships and their career. However, stress and being ungrateful go hand in hand – a study published in Research on Aging found that older people who were grateful for their lives experienced less harmful effects from stress.

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This even applied to the people who had lived in difficult circumstances, like poverty – which goes to show that your outlook is more important than anything else.

3. Your health will improve

Do your body a favor by being grateful. Practicing gratitude doesn’t just alter your mind – it even affects your body physically. Researchers have found a link between gratitude and having lower blood pressure, as well as fewer aches and pains and improved immunity. Grateful people even have healthier hearts!

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4. You will have better relationships

It makes sense that the most grateful people are often the most popular. Saying “thank you” and appreciating kind gestures makes people want to form an ongoing relationship with you, according to a 2014 study published in Emotion. Saying “thank you” is often a conversation starter in itself – and let’s face it, being rude rarely makes you friends!

5. You will have more energy

Being aware of the things that you are grateful for may actually help you to achieve your dreams and goals. A 2003 study found that the participants who kept a gratitude journal reported higher levels of enthusiasm, determination, energy, and alertness. When you start being thankful, you notice every small bit of progress that you make, which helps to motivate you to keep going.

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6. You will manage pain better

Gratitude helps you to maintain a positive outlook, helping you to manage your stress and stay mentally strong even during the hardest times. A study published in Behaviour Research and Therapy found that war veterans who maintained high levels of gratitude experienced lower levels of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.

7. You will improve your leadership skills

Do you lead and manage people during your work day? If so, being grateful at work will make you a better leader; according to research from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, grateful leaders motivate their employees to be more productive. The study found that employees who had been thanked by their leader made 50% more fundraising calls than the employees who hadn’t been thanked.

8. You will feel more self-confident

Lots of studies have found a link between gratitude and higher levels of self-esteem. Some studies found that being grateful reduces social comparisons, so you are more likely to be happy in yourself instead of comparing yourself to others. Instead of feeling jealous of other successful people, focus on your own achievements and successes so that you can have a happier life.

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Amy Johnson

Freelance writer, editor and social media manager.

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Last Updated on August 16, 2018

10 Ways To Step Out Of Your Comfort Zone And Enjoy Taking Risks

10 Ways To Step Out Of Your Comfort Zone And Enjoy Taking Risks

The ability to take risks by stepping outside your comfort zone is the primary way by which we grow. But we are often afraid to take that first step.

In truth, comfort zones are not really about comfort, they are about fear. Break the chains of fear to get outside. Once you do, you will learn to enjoy the process of taking risks and growing in the process.

Here are 10 ways to help you step out of your comfort zone and get closer to success:

1. Become aware of what’s outside of your comfort zone

What are the things that you believe are worth doing but are afraid of doing yourself because of the potential for disappointment or failure?

Draw a circle and write those things down outside the circle. This process will not only allow you to clearly identify your discomforts, but your comforts. Write identified comforts inside the circle.

2. Become clear about what you are aiming to overcome

Take the list of discomforts and go deeper. Remember, the primary emotion you are trying to overcome is fear.

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How does this fear apply uniquely to each situation? Be very specific.

Are you afraid of walking up to people and introducing yourself in social situations? Why? Is it because you are insecure about the sound of your voice? Are you insecure about your looks?

Or, are you afraid of being ignored?

3. Get comfortable with discomfort

One way to get outside of your comfort zone is to literally expand it. Make it a goal to avoid running away from discomfort.

Let’s stay with the theme of meeting people in social settings. If you start feeling a little panicked when talking to someone you’ve just met, try to stay with it a little longer than you normally would before retreating to comfort. If you stay long enough and practice often enough, it will start to become less uncomfortable.

4. See failure as a teacher

Many of us are so afraid of failure that we would rather do nothing than take a shot at our dreams.

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Begin to treat failure as a teacher. What did you learn from the experience? How can you take that lesson to your next adventure to increase your chance of success?

Many highly successful people failed plenty of times before they succeeded. Here’re some examples:

10 Famous Failures to Success Stories That Will Inspire You to Carry On

5. Take baby steps

Don’t try to jump outside your comfort zone, you will likely become overwhelmed and jump right back in.

Take small steps toward the fear you are trying to overcome. If you want to do public speaking, start by taking every opportunity to speak to small groups of people. You can even practice with family and friends.

Take a look at this article on how you can start taking baby steps:

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The Number One Secret to Life Success: Baby Steps

6. Hang out with risk takers

There is no substitute for this step. If you want to become better at something, you must start hanging out with the people who are doing what you want to do and start emulating them. (Here’re 8 Reasons Why Risk Takers Are More Likely To Be Successful).

Almost inevitably, their influence will start have an effect on your behavior.

7. Be honest with yourself when you are trying to make excuses

Don’t say “Oh, I just don’t have the time for this right now.” Instead, be honest and say “I am afraid to do this.”

Don’t make excuses, just be honest. You will be in a better place to confront what is truly bothering you and increase your chance of moving forward.

8. Identify how stepping out will benefit you

What will the ability to engage in public speaking do for your personal and professional growth? Keep these potential benefits in mind as motivations to push through fear.

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9. Don’t take yourself too seriously

Learn to laugh at yourself when you make mistakes. Risk taking will inevitably involve failure and setbacks that will sometimes make you look foolish to others. Be happy to roll with the punches when others poke fun.

If you aren’t convinced yet, check out these 6 Reasons Not to Take Life So Seriously.

10. Focus on the fun

Enjoy the process of stepping outside your safe boundaries. Enjoy the fun of discovering things about yourself that you may not have been aware of previously.

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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