Why Gratitude Works At Work and at Play

It is often said that it's wise and helpful to keep a gratitude diary: to think of three things last thing at night and first thing in the morning for which we are thankful. It is said to be a wonderful technique in the pursuit of lowering our stress levels and lessening anxiety: studies show, it works.

So, what is the science behind it - NEUROPLASTICITY. In a nutshell, the connections in our brains are made by us, through years of practice of certain beliefs and behaviours, we rehearse and rehearse and embed and embed. Thus, the neural pathways are dug and the little country lane in our mind becomes a super highway with a constant flow of traffic. It's very tricky to stop traffic on these roads and some of these can be vehicles which are out of control and on a mission to self-destruct. So, in keeping a gratitude log, we are 'practising' keeping the more controlled cars which can help us reach our destination at the forefront of our minds. And how do you feel when you are able to see your road clearly: relieved, able to think clearly, lucky, pretty good. Once we have this clarity, this in turn influences our thoughts and behaviour and, hey presto, a better chance of a better day.

If this is true in our personal lives, it also stands up at work. Are you grateful for your colleagues, your role, your salary, your benefits, holiday etc etc? By reinforcing the positives of our jobs and the people surrounding us, we are likely to enter into more productive and rewarding endeavours.

Why not try it, next time you are feeling less than good at work, start to see the things that you are grateful for. In fact, why wait, try it right now!