Posted on 7/25/2016 by Mark Hutchinson, Partner at WEO Media
"No one who achieves success does so without acknowledging the help of others. The wise and confident acknowledge this help with gratitude." - Alfred North Whitehead
"As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them." - John F. Kennedy
We make ourselves. You are both the artist and the art. Of course that line of thinking can get a bit confusing but, as Mr. Whitehead researched and espoused during his career, it is important to realize that these things are interrelated processes. Each impacts the other in an ongoing cycle.
A simple analogy is to imagine you have a cup of weak tea but you are wishing to have a cup of clear water instead. If you put drops of clear water into the cup, the tea will become more and more clear until it is pure water. But if you put in drops of dark tea, the cup will become darker and darker tea. What happens if you alternate drops of clear water and drops of dark tea?
Now here is the cycle of interaction: If the cup is on the clear side, then you’re more likely to put in drops of clear water. If the cup is on the darker side, then you’re more likely to put in drops of dark tea.
As it turns out, gratitude is a great source of pure water you can put in to your cup. Beyond the philosophical, religious, and sports-related entreatments supporting gratitude, a growing body of scientific knowledge points to the amazing effects of gratitude in direct and measurable ways on our mind, body, and overall experience of life.
Using simple gratitude exercises, like writing down a few things you are grateful for each day, scientists have measured improvements in heart rate variability (measure of will power and cardiovascular health), hormone balance, increases in DHEA production (anti-aging hormone), immune system response and more. How long did it take to generate those results? Just a few weeks!
Building an “attitude of gratitude” does more for your health, performance, and well-being than was previously thought (and likely more than we know). So you have a choice to make – be grateful that you have that choice, and another drop of clear water goes into your cup!