Mindful Monday: A Season of Gratitude and Gratefulness

Practicing gratefulness daily can prime our brains to look for more reasons to be grateful which shifts our outlook, perspective, and mood.

McCraty and colleagues (1998), in one of their studies on gratitude and appreciation, found that participants who felt grateful showed a marked reduction in the level of cortisol, a stress hormone. They also had better cardiac functioning and were more resilient to emotional setbacks and negative experiences.  

Positive psychology and mental health researchers in the past few decades have established an overwhelming connection between gratitude and good health. Keeping a gratitude journal, for example, reduces stress, improves the quality of sleep, and builds emotional awareness (Seligman, Steen, Park and Peterson, 2005).

You can practice your awareness of gratitude by:

  • Journaling about what you appreciate
  • Offering kindness
  • Meditating about what gratefulness is for you
  • Receiving that which is given to you

Gratefulness can also temper grief.  Let’s listen briefly to a meditation practice for experiencing more gratefulness, which is just a state of thankfulness.

Practicing gratefulness daily can prime our brains to look for more reasons to be grateful which shifts our outlook, perspective, and mood.

So, feel your full heart, the delight as well as the dark velvet blues. Experience any grief and look for silver linings and opportunities to be grateful.

We have room to experience the full breadth of it all.

REFLECTION:  Have I let people in my life know I am grateful for them?


Lisa Wellington
Lisa Wellington

Lisa Wellington is a Certified Mindfulness Teacher who writes about integrative practices that downshift stress, increase insight, and jumpstart joy.

She is best known for her work with law enforcement professionals as well as those challenged by housing instability and addiction. Trained in the Fine Arts at Washington State University, she specializes in group training that engages participants’ inherent creativity.

If she is not under a stack of books about psychology and spirituality, she can be found at a Puget Sound beach or nearby trail, always searching for the absurd, which is her superpower. 

Mario Lotmore

Mario Lotmore is originally from The Bahamas and for the last seven years has called Mukilteo, WA his home. Having lived in every region of the United States has exposed him to various cultures, people, and approaches to life. Lotmore created the Lynnwood Times to represent the character of a diverse and growing Lynnwood. The launching of the city’s community newspaper will only help bring neighborhoods together. Lotmore was an industrial engineer by trade and proven success implementing and managing lean accountable processes and policies within his eighteen years of operations excellence, strategic development, and project management in the aerospace, manufacturing, and banking industries. Over his career he has saved and created hundreds of union and non-union jobs. Lotmore is the President of a Homeowner Association, an active Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics volunteer in his community, and former Boeing 747 Diversity Council leader. Mario’s talent is finding “that recipe” of shared destiny to effectively improve the quality of life for others.

Mario Lotmore has 1350 posts and counting. See all posts by Mario Lotmore

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