If you’ve been to class recently you may have heard me mention showing gratitude or being thankful for our practice. Well there’s a reason for this as after some recent research it appears that being grateful really does have a positive effect on our emotional brain. In fact it’s a sign of emotional well being and intelligence. Even the process of thinking and searching for something to feel thankful about enhances the production of serotonin and dopamine(feel good hormones) automatically lifting our mood and making us feel better. Although this isn’t a natural process for most of us we have to remember to do this. So why not get yourself a gratitude jar…..a friend brought me one of these a few years ago which you fill with notes of anything that you’re thankful for. Or pop a reminder on your fridge…What am I Grateful for today? Try asking yourself this now. For me it’s having an opportunity to help out a friend and fellow yoga teacher this morning by covering his class last minute, having food in my cupboards and time in my day to practice Yoga.
Gratitude requires thought but it’s by giving it some attention that we begin to feel it’s benefits. Perhaps take a moment to sit with these thoughts of thankfulness in meditation you’ll be surprised how good it feels. And lastly our deepest sense of gratitude comes through grace and being humble, if you can cultivate these feelings alongside whatever your object of gratitude is placed on you’ll find it quite impossible to feel negative, no matter how hard things get there is also something you can find to feel grateful for.