3 Ways Gratitude Amplify Your Positive Emotions

Is it common for you to feel flaky, hazy, or overly selfless when you express gratitude? Do you feel stuck, unhappy, or that you're always seeking joy and happiness at the same time?

Giving appreciation a try could help you on your path to improved health and happiness. Scientific research on thankfulness demonstrates that it is associated with more significant pleasant emotions when gratitude is frequently practiced.

Gratitude serves as a portal to pleasant feelings in three ways:

1. Gratitude aids in the processing of other pleasant feelings, such as joy.

It's likely that if you practice thankfulness for at least two to eight weeks, you'll feel more positive emotions like curiosity, enthusiasm, joy, and pride.

Gratitude raises levels of dopamine and serotonin in the brain, which are crucial neurotransmitters that make us feel happy. When we express gratitude more frequently, the neurological circuits that produce happiness improve, similar to how exercise strengthens the body.

The University of California by Berkeley's Greater Good Science Center recommends thankfulness writing for 15 minutes three times per week for two weeks to notice good results. According to Janet Miller, a Forbes magazine writer, it takes eight weeks for brain patterns to alter and create favorable consequences.

Making appreciation a regular practice, in whatever form you choose, is the first step toward your objective of feeling better and liking yourself.

2. Gratitude allows people to cherish good times for longer periods of time.

Researchers examine how thankfulness "maintains pleasant emotions stemming from a positive encounter" in a study published in the "International Journal of Applied Positive Psychology." To put it another way, these researchers found that appreciation can "keep heightened levels of good feelings" for the time being.

The participants were told to write about a recent accomplishment (i.e., a "good experience"). Then, for 15 minutes, participants were asked to write down reasons they were glad that led to their accomplishment (i.e., the "gratitude intervention"). According to the study, in comparison to those in the control group, the thankfulness intervention resulted in increased pleasant emotions at a later stage.

According to a 2019 study, expressing gratitude for a pleasant event allows you to cherish it.

3. Gratitude and joy are symbiotic, meaning they feed off one other.

Gratitude and joy go hand in hand, according to a study published in The Journal of Positive Psychology. The study concludes that there is "a fascinating upward loop connecting gratitude and joy: as one nurtures the attitude of thankfulness, the regularity of experiences of joy rises, which in turn should develop the propensity for joy, thereby enhancing gratitude."

Even though no particular gratitude therapy was employed and only trait thankfulness was examined, the link between gratitude and joy is evident, suggesting a symbiotic relationship that may be recreated in all of us.

To summarize, gratitude may be the most valuable weapon in your toolkit for individuals who want to feel better—and feel better more often. One of the many significant impacts of a regular appreciation practice is the upward spiral of happy feelings, including more prolonged periods of happiness.

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