How Being Grateful Will Boost Your Mental Health & Help You Cope with COVID Stress

You are wound and tired of social distancing– and being yelled at cuz you are not wearing a Mask.
Reminding yourself what you’re grateful for can boost your mental health and help you cope with coronavirus anxiety

You are not alone.  Over 300 M Americans can join you in a massive scream.

Be Grateful– Ya,  that’s right. Be Grateful and pick up on how this power list on how to do it will help you get back on track.
See quoted sources with action-ables.

Here is the List, in tact, as posted in WSJ   See the link at the bottom of this posting.

Prepare yourself.

Spend time in nature. Listen to relaxing music. Slow down and pay attention to your surroundings.
You need to start in the right frame of mind, [Per Elizabeth Pinel, a psychology professor at the University of Vermont. “Gratitude can’t be forced.”

Keep a gratitude journal.
 Write down things you are grateful for each day.
Think of them as gifts. Reflect on your feelings and the depth of your gratitude.
“Writing things down helps you focus on the details and makes the feeling more tangible,”
Says Robert Emmons, a professor of psychology at the University of California, Davis, and author of “Gratitude Works!: A 21-Day Program for Creating Emotional Prosperity.”

Give back.
Find ways to use your strengths and talents to help others.
“We become more grateful when we become a giver rather than a receiver,” Dr. Emmons says.

Think about the bad.
Recalling the worst times in your life can make you grateful you made it through
Be grateful for what you learned in the process
and how it made you stronger, and grateful, hopefully, that things aren’t as bad now.

Go through the motions.
Gratitude is an attitude, not a feeling that can easily be willed,
But by performing grateful motions, you may be able to trigger real gratitude
Smile. Say thank you. Fake it till you make it.

Watch your language.
Grateful people use thankful words: gifts, blessings, fortune, abundance.
“Less-grateful people are preoccupied with burdens, curses, deprivations and complaints and their words reflect this focus,” Dr. Emmons says.
Tell yourself you “get to do this” rather than you “have to do this.”

Practice the three S’s.
Be open to surprise each day; surprise amplifies positive feelings.
Be specific—dwell on the concrete ways in which you are supported and sustained by other people.
Pay attention to scarcity.
Is there a benefit or silver lining to the current situation that you will not have in the future?

Write a letter.
It feels good to make someone else feel good.
But research shows that even if you don’t send the letter you will benefit
That’s because you have strengthened the brain’s gratitude circuitry
And activated the region of the brain that produces dopamine.

Say thank you. A lot.
Especially to the people you’re living with right now. It will make you both feel better.
Take action. This may help you focus on your positive feelings longer.
Take a photo. Seek out experiences that make you feel grateful.
“By taking action, we are telling our brain this matters,” says Alex Korb, a neuroscientist.
“And then that feeling gets highlighted by the brain’s circuitry,
Instead of floating away like a random thought.”

Think of happy memories.
This increases the production of serotonin, a feel-good neurotransmitter, in the brain, Dr. Korb says.

Focus on the future.
Think of the reunions.
Imagine how good it will feel to eat at your favorite restaurant or get back to your favorite hobby.
This will help prevent you from taking things for granted in the future.

WSJ article – “Surprising Way to Reduce Stress” –

“There is a lot of change coming our way and that can be disorienting and knock people off course,”  “Gratitude makes me resilient.

“Gratitude makes me realize that things are not nearly as bad as I made them out to be initially,”  – Ms Gardner.

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