Monday, December 31, 2012
Christmas day is over. While we put away our Christmas trees, stockings, and ornaments, we can keep the important parts of Christmas to our lives every day: faith and gratitude, love and caring for family and friends, and friendliness and compassion for those meet.
This New Year's eve I join you in welcoming in 2013. I plan to share the Top 7 blog posts of this past year over the next couple weeks. Here's your chance: which of my blog posts were your favorites? Please let me know so I can add them to the Top 7 list. Thanks.
Saturday, December 29, 2012
We have learned about gratitude this holiday season, I hope you join me in recognizing the great benefits we can gain by practicing gratitude. How do we begin to practice gratitude? In his book, Thanks, Dr Emmons offers several suggestions on how to add gratitude into our lives.
· Get a journal and pen/pencil (whatever type of book and pen you want to use) and write every day.
· Be mindful of bad times in the past. Keep the perspective that “it could be (and has been) worse”.
· Consider the positives you see in your life. Think on these things.
· Learn and use prayers which include gratitude.
· Make a vow to practice gratitude.
· Utilize visual reminders.
I liked what author and practicing psychologist Dr Brenda Wade has to say about gratitude at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zakTt-9EesY&list=PL8669D8BC4BEF2FBF&index=1&feature=plpp_video
I recommend Thanks! How Practicing Gratitude Can Make You Happier by Robert A Emmons, PhD to those of you who would like to read a scholarly discussion about gratitude,.
Thursday, December 27, 2012
65 couples participated in a University of North Carolina at Chapel
Hill study which looked at how gratitude affects relationships.
“Feelings of gratitude and generosity are helpful in solidifying our
relationships with people we care about, and benefit the one giving
as well as the one on the receiving end.” Showing Gratitude for Partner’s Generosity Strengthens Bonds, http://news.health.com/2010/05/26/showing-gratitude-for-partners-generosity-strengthens-bonds/#
Todd Kashdan, associate professor of psychology at George Mason
University questioned whether gender plays a role in being able to
express gratitude. His research found that women feel “less burden
and obligation and greater levels of gratitude when presented with
gifts. In addition, older men reported greater negative emotions
when the gift giver was another man.” This researcher went on to
say that our society teaches men to conceal their softer emotions
which may limit their well being. Key to Happiness is Gratitude and Men May be Locked Out, http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090313145939.htm
Gratefulness benefits teenagers. A study followed 700 New
Yorkers ages 10 to 14 over a four year period. They found that
“grateful teens are more likely than their less grateful peers to be
happy, less likely to abuse drugs and alcohol and less likely to have
behavior problems at school.” Growing Up Grateful Gives Teens Multiple Mental Health Benefits, http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/08/120806093938.htm
Tuesday, December 25, 2012
I wish you and your loved ones a wonderful Christmas day. I am grateful for the Christ child, God’s son who came to earth as a baby. Because of Jesus, we have the gift of forgiveness and salvation offered to us. I hope you enjoy this youtube video of “Mary Did You Know” by Mark Lowery.