“I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought; and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.” G.K. Chesterton
We humans may be very similar to animals in terms of our physical mechanism. However, our minds have become much more superior to the animals, and we are able to find peace and happiness in our hearts based on our actions.
Thanksgiving is the time when our hearts open up. We stop and think for a moment in our busy lives, and take the time to be thankful and express gratitude to people and also be thankful for all of our blessings.
Psychological benefits of thanksgiving
Jonathan Fader Ph.D, wrote in an article on psychologytoday.com that when he was a kid, his mother used to tell him that he must express gratitude for at least three things every night, before going to bed. This made him to focus on his day, before going to bed, and reflect back on the day thinking of the good things that he had done or achieved throughout the day.
Human beings have a natural tendency to focus on the negative things. Our survival instincts have evolved and taught us that way. We remember the negative things so that we can better prepare ourselves for the future. It is important to avoid repeating mistakes, however, thanksgiving allows us to focus on our past, and express gratitude for the positive things.
When we express gratitude for everything that we have achieved throughout the year, such as friendships, relationships, and good health, it gives us happiness.
Thanksgiving and health
We know that expressing gratitude gives us peace and happiness, but does it help us live a healthier life?
Although you may think that eating a turkey and mashed potato dinner may not be the healthiest of meals (at least not the way most people cook), it’s actually a healthy dinner. Expressing gratitude has many psychological and physiological benefits, so thanksgiving affects our physical and mental health and wellbeing. Giving yourself treats now and then, could be a way of rewarding yourself and should be enjoyed and not feared.
There have been a number of studies done that shows that a thanksgiving dinner can help lift your spirit, help people to manage depression, and improve well-being. It has been found that thanksgiving improves relationships, brings people together, improves mood and reduces stress, as a result. Thanksgiving can help you lower cholesterol and sleep better at night.
Thanksgiving is not just a tradition; it brings people together, improves relationships and helps us reduce stress, anxiety and depression. Grateful people find more energy to stay healthy, workout more often, and find inner peace and happiness.
A traditional turkey dinner can also be good for your body. Be somewhat mindful of how you cook but don’t be afraid to also treat yourself and loved ones on this special occasion.
So get together with your friends and family this thanksgiving, enjoy a great dinner, and feel happiness and inner peace – Happy Thanksgiving!
Source: Alternative Health Concepts
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