While there are several ways gratitude can be addressed, it is a feeling of self-awareness and one’s ability to appreciate the positive and meaningful aspects of life. There can be a variety of things a person can be grateful for. From appreciating a healthy body to accepting and flaunting all the natural flaws. From the accomplishment of small tasks to achieving something you have always dreamed of; gratitude can be anything that inculcates the feeling of appreciation and worth.

Since November is a national gratitude month, there could not be a better time to have an insight into how it affects our mental well-being.

Understanding the Nexus

Research has proved that people who practice gratitude regularly are more likely to have a resilient, productive, and positive outlook on life compared to those who don’t. Gratitude increases the dopamine or so-called “feel-good hormones” of your body preventing many psychological and emotional problems.

Moreover, the stress hormone cortisol decreases in your body, thus reducing anxiety, and sleep problems. It helps increase happiness and decrease depressive disorders like depression, panic, psychotic and bipolar disorder. It actually acts as a protective factor for your mental health.

Practice Gratitude; Stay Connected

Wait what? Just being thankful can boost my social life.

Yes, you read that right.

No matter how irrelevant it might sound, gratitude can actually help you build and maintain social and family relationships. It keeps you well aware of your surroundings, elevates your mood and gives you a broader perspective to recognize, appreciate, and communicate your emotions.

Since the basis of sustainable healthy relationships lies particularly on these things, you can strengthen the bond with your loved ones through gratitude. Man is a social animal, and healthy relationships are a keystone of his mental well-being.

An Antidote to Negativity

When you have a habit of being grateful, your mind automatically trains itself to focus and dig out things that you can appreciate. When your center of focus is always something appreciable, it helps to divert your mind and counterbalance any negativity and toxicity around you. You are much less likely to be triggered and succumb to stress and anxiety when you are thankful for even the smallest things. It gives you a different and innovative perspective of analyzing people, emotions, and situations hence improving your overall mental well-being.

Building Resilience

Gratitude helps you recognize and regulate your emotions even when it is very difficult to do so. Problems are inevitable in life, but gratitude and positivity help you bounce back from every calamity. The adverse situations are much less likely to affect you when you are self-aware, and you know how to focus on the good things despite all the adversity happening around you. On the other hand, if a person is habitual of entertaining negativity even during normal days, the adverse situations will certainly have a great impact on his mental health.

The Takeaway Message

As a mental health counselor, I have seen clients with positive reframing and better coping abilities after they start focusing on gratitude. Cooking yourself a good meal, having a chat with your loved one, going out for a walk, or just sitting at a riverside are often underestimated. But let me tell you, celebrating little things around you can have a huge impact collectively. We should inculcate this small but impactful practice in daily life to boost our emotional, physical, and social well-being.


”Counting your blessings makes you feel better!”


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  2. Seligman, M. E., Steen, T. A., Park, N., & Peterson, C. (2005). Positive
    psychology progress: empirical validation of interventions. The American psychologist, 60(5), 410–421. https://doi.org/10.1037/0003-066X.60.5.410
  3. Tolcher, K., Cauble, M., & Downs, A. (2022). Evaluating the effects of gratitude interventions on college student well-being. Journal of American college health : J of ACH, 1–5. Advance online publication.https://doi.org/10.1080/07448481.2022.2076096
  4. Cunha, L. F., Pellanda, L. C., & Reppold, C. T. (2019). Positive Psychology and Gratitude Interventions: A Randomized Clinical Trial. Frontiers in psychology, 10, 584. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2019.00584

About the author

Author: Mayeling Angelastro MA, LMHC is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor dedicated in helping individuals, families, couples, children and teenagers in the Horizon West, Windermere and Dr Phillips area.

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