30-Day Gratitude Challenge

By Carolyn Flynn

Researchers have discovered that daily expression of gratitude can be as effective for elevating mood as a daily dose of an anti-depressant. How can this be you may ask? Well the secret lies in that thoughts are more than just thoughts.

Thoughts are bio-chemical messages sent from your brain to your body. When you express a positive thought, such as gratitude, you are sending positive bio-chemical messages surging through your body and brain, which in turn affects how you feel. The reverse is also true. When you have a negative thought, such as anger, sadness, guilt, or regret, thousands of negative bio-chemical messages start surging through your body, easily triggering a snowball effect of more negative thoughts and feelings, increasing fear, depression, and anxiety.

Now I’m not suggesting you stop your anti-depressant if your doctor has prescribed one for you. But I am suggesting that you have the power to turn your negative emotions and feelings to positive ones by daily focusing on the positive and what you are grateful for. If you are on prescription medications, this daily gratitude practice can enhance your feelings of well-being, and under the guidance and approval of your doctor may allow you to reduce your medication dosage.

Regular practice of positive thinking can create a cascade of positive emotions, thoughts, feelings, and actions in your life. Your daily expressions of gratitude whether written in your journal or verbally expressed will trigger feel-good neurotransmitters in your brain and send feel good bio-chemical messages and feelings throughout your body.

This month I challenge you to naturally elevate your feel good feelings with a 30-Day Gratitude Challenge. Each day express at least one thing that you are grateful for that was different then the prior days. Boost the challenge benefits by expressing as many things that you are grateful for including at least one unique item each day that you haven’t mention before.

Below is my list of 30 things I am grateful for to get you started in this mood-boosting challenge: Read the rest of this entry »

Carolyn Flynn is a Relationship Expert and author of Heal Your Grief, SMART Talk, and Holiday Peace And Joy.