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How to Co-Create your World-A Recipe Card for Manifesting Intention

ashley_walsh_intention_may13

Part Eight: Gratitude

“If the only prayer you said was thank you, that would be enough,”
Meister Eckhart

Just as kale and blueberries are classified as super foods, gratitude could be considered a super emotion — it increases happiness, strengthens relationships, promotes wellness, and reinforces pro-social behavior. Cultivating this super emotion increases our intake of emotional nutrients.

The Link Between Gratitude and Happiness

Taking M. Eckhart’s advice to heart and action, a first step in sharing gratitude is as simple as saying, “Thank you.” My practice of giving thanks starts with my family. They have always believed in me and given me the freedom to be all that I want to be.

Even writing and sharing this sentiment has made me smile, and lifted my mood. According to a 2005 article in American Psychologist, “A one-time act of thoughtful gratitude produces an immediate 10% increase in happiness and 35% reduction in depressive symptoms.” Not only am I happy in the present moment, but gratitude is proven to have a lasting positive effect based on this research.

Gratitude is a Relationship Strengthener

The act of sharing creates closer relationships. In our daily lives, we maintain relationships with our work, with family and friends, coworkers, pets, significant others, and above all else, with a spiritual or higher being. One study (by Kubacka in the June, 2011 Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin), found that “gratitude motivates partners to engage in relationship maintenance.” Next time you see a good friend, make an effort to give thanks for your friendship. This act, so easy to forget, will strengthen the bond between you.

Wellness Increases When Gratitude is Shared

Research at the Human Energy Systems Alliance (HESA) is focused on innovative products, pathways, and techniques that transform human health, energy, nutrition, and longevity. HESA findings confirm that gratitude is a necessary component for optimum health. In studies with patients recovering from heart-related illnesses, they documented that those who expressed gratitude for their care on a regular basis experienced significantly shorter recovery times.

Gratitude Encourages Pro-Social Behavior

By demonstrating gratitude on a daily basis – whether in a meeting, towards a work colleague, in an email to a client, or to a stranger in the supermarket line –you are consciously promoting pro-social behavior: voluntary acts intended to benefit another. In doing so, you are bringing yourself more joy and sending more happiness into the world.

The proof is in the practice:  Writing “thank you” notes to my family was uplifting just as it is a gift to share my experience through this column. Gratitude knits the ultimate connection to the source. When we give love and share our love with all, we feel elevated.

Start imparting gratitude now. Upon waking, give thanks and while doing so, pay attention to how this gracious act makes you feel.

Next, we step towards the final stage of our intention-setting series – Practice the Presence.

Ashley Walsh is the Vice President of Marketing for Intentional Chocolate ™, her family’s business, (intentionalchocolate.com). An integral part of their company is to teach the science and spirituality of intention setting. She practices yoga, meditation, and chocolate eating daily as she believes all are vital to good health. Connect with me at [email protected]

 

 

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