Make gratitude the key to move forward in your life and career

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Happy woman holding smiling balloons drawingYou hear and read about expressing gratitude so often that it can easily make you think that it’s just a trend, or fad that’s just fashionable to talk about.

Particularly in a consumer-orientated society, you can end up focusing on what you don’t yet have. However, research has shown that spending more time appreciating what you actually have can help you live a healthier, happier and longer life.

Making ‘gratitude’ part of who you are will help you cultivate a much more positive mindset that prevents you from dwelling on the ‘negatives’ you perceive in your life. That’s not only a much better place to be but also an immensely stress-relieving technique as well.

By fully appreciating what’s right in front of you and making the most of it, rather than feeling the need to try to change or alter it, allows you to enjoy life much more.

By practicing gratitude you stop feeling restless, or looking for short-term fixes, or craving instant gratification from immediate results. Instead you learn to appreciate ‘what is’ and so gain rich experience from all that you go through. As a result, you build emotional intelligence and resilience as you go.

9 benefits practicing gratitude will bring to your life and career:

  1. It opens up your heart.

This lead you to be more receptive to your own needs as well as being more empathic towards others. You see people for who they are, appreciating their uniqueness and accepting their differences, without feeling the urge to try to change them. Just being grateful for them being in your life, one way or another.

  1. It awakens your creativity.

When you feel good about yourself and your life you are open to different approaches and new ways of thinking. The world around you expands in a constantly creative process in which you happily explore and try out new things unconcerned about making mistakes or being perfect, because you understand that life is actually a continuous journey of self-discovery.

  1. It reduces your stress.

Studies reveal that showing gratitude is also beneficial at a physical level too. Since you feel happier you sleep better, which lowers your blood pressure, and because you sleep better you are also more productive, among other things.

  1. It makes you discover that there’s no better place than the present.

When you live in the present you don’t feel the need to escape to your past or your future because the ‘here and now’ is the perfect place to be. You experience a sense of flow, seeing life as a sea of opportunities opening up before you … just waiting to be embraced.

  1. It improves your relationships.

You strengthen bonds with friends, family and colleagues when you show that you are appreciative of them being in your life, bringing mutual joy and the willingness to help each other in both the short- and long-term.

  1. It improves your decision making.

As your vision of what matters most to you becomes clearer, you trust in your intuition more because you are being closer to your true self. Practicing gratitude allows you to see the wood for the trees, readily perceiving the different options and solutions that are open to you.

  1. It enables you to appreciate yourself much more.

As gratitude becomes a more integral part of your life, you begin to perceive time and age differently. Less and less drawn to the quest for ‘permanent youth’, you know where you are in life and understand that it’s the ideal place to be, somewhere you can accept yourself fully and able to appreciate your own unique beauty. You are ‘perfect’ as you are and so those around you.

  1. It allows you to value your own talents more highly.

When you are ‘more present’ you use your talents and strengths to make your life and those of others better. No longer fearful of the present or the future, you see life as an adventure making you feel alive.

  1. It means you experience joy from life’s ‘little gifts’.

You feel energised and grateful waking up each morning, running for the bus, taking in the scent of flowers you pass by as life suddenly becomes filled with a succession of moments that add more and more value to your life in many new ways.

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However don’t mistakenly think that being grateful means giving up your ambitions or thinking about the future, far from it. By making gratitude part of your live, you gain a new way of looking at the world, one that allow you to open new doors and create fresh opportunities both personally and professionally. You become more content in yourself and better connected to others, feeling part of something greater than yourself … and isn’t that what life is all about?

Author Bio

Maite Barón is a multi-award winning author passionate about courageous leadership, happiness and wellbeing. She is a co-founder of The Corporate Escape, which specialises in helping professionals rekindle their passion for life and reinvent themselves as business owners. She’s an international speaker and a regular contributor to the influential Huffington Post, Global Banking and Finance Review (GBFR) and Entrepreneur.

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