Use Gratitude to Shift Your Energy (and your physical health)

Feb 08, 2024

That grateful thought is not just about social etiquette, it’s healing your body and energy. Did you know feeling gratitude and positive thought can change your physiology? Let’s talk about exactly how this is possible.

What is Gratitude?

Gratitude is all the rage. Gratitude journals. Gratitude in yoga class. Gratitude in meditation circles. You can even find decor at your favorite box store that mentions gratitude. And for good reason. This simple thought is a powerhouse when it comes to influence. Research shows keeping a simple gratitude journal can shift your thinking and decrease doctor visits in as little as ten weeks (Harvard Health).

What exactly is gratitude? It is a feeling of appreciation and thankfulness, according to Oxford Languages. When you feel gratitude, it brings with it a feeling of happiness and wellbeing. As you focus your mind on gratitude, it gives you a boost: it’s impossible to feel anxious or depressed as you direct your mind to focus on gratitude. In fact, directing your mind to gratitude changes your physiology; the magic lies in the biochemistry of our emotions.

Your Brain Loves Gratitude

When a thought comes into your mind, it kicks off an emotional response: thoughts create emotion. What happens when you feel an emotion? The emotional response moves through your body with chemicals – neurotransmitters and neuropeptides. There is truly a chemical change in your body in response to an emotion! These chemicals course through your body and affect how you feel. They also immediately influence your nervous system. The amygdala, the part of your brain that kicks off your physical reaction to stress, is also a prime emotional processing center. If the emotion you feel is stressful or unpleasant, your brain tells your nervous system to start pumping out stress hormones. This chain reaction then affects your heart rate, breathing rate, blood pressure, digestion, immune system, muscle tension and more.

This chain of influence maps the mind- body-energy connection: thought to emotion to communicators to brain to nervous system to big body impact. That’s a lot of science to say this: what you think creates how you feel which then sets off a stress response or a relaxation response, depending on how you interpret those thoughts and feelings. This impact chain has a direct impact on your body’s function and energy system.

The Gut Brain Connection

There is research showing your gut microbiome, the immense ecosystem living in your intestines, responds physiologically to stress within moments. That means the composition of good and bad bugs in your belly are sensitive to your emotions and how you feel. Why does gut health matter?

Let’s take serotonin, a primary feel-good neurotransmitter. This hormone controls your mood. When it is in healthy balance, you feel happy. It helps regulate sleep and wake cycles and plays a role in pain levels. This hormone is super important for your mental health; you want to have enough in your body! So where is it made? Your gut produces 80% of the serotonin in your body. Who would’ve thought the gut produced that much of a neurotransmitter? How do you ensure you have enough to feel good? By focusing on your gut health through diet, managing stress, and cleansing your energy. Gratitude, in conjunction with other lifestyle factors, is an effective and simple way to boost gut health.

According to WebMD, 13% of US adults are on SSRIs, the most commonly prescribed type of antidepressant. Guess what these drugs do? They block the recycling of serotonin so there is more available, a fancy way of saying they increase serotonin.

What if you could increase your serotonin without medication? You’d feel happier, sleep better, and have a deeper sense of wellbeing. Well, I’ve got great news for you! You can, by intentionally focusing on gratitude to shift your thoughts.

How to Use Gratitude for Healing

Use gratitude easily and effectively to shift your mood and coax yourself into a more positive mindset in less than five minutes per day. Honestly!

  1. Get a notebook. You can opt for the 25 cent ones at your local big box store or find a lovely journal that makes you feel happy. It doesn’t matter one bit – you just need a place to write your thoughts.
  2. Set aside time right before bed. You’ll just need a couple of moments. Doing this process before bed has the benefit of setting the tone of your night into positivity. You’ll increase the likelihood of drifting off to sleep feeling good.
  3. Just three things. For each day, list three things you were grateful for that day. Write “I am grateful for…” on each line in your journal. If you had an amazing day, these will be easy. I’m grateful for the new business deal. I’m grateful for the support my partner gave me.” If however you had a rough day, go for basics. “I’m grateful for my warm house.” “I’m grateful for the sunny day.” “I’m grateful for my refrigerator full of food.”
  4. Do this each night right before you go to bed. Place your journal where you will see it, so you can make this a new habit.

In my experience and the experience of my clients, this simple practice can have a huge impact. Within a few weeks, you’ll likely catch yourself noticing gratitude in moments throughout your day. This is a sign your subconscious mind is shifting. Remember, those thoughts will shift your physiology and energy, helping your body feel stronger, more resilient, and more peaceful.

Gratitude and Your Energy

Gratitude generates a positive surge of energy in the body that promotes healing. Positive feelings and thoughts create positive energy that begins to align the immune system and nervous system with health. If you find it hard to focus on gratitude or identify positive thoughts or feelings, your energy likely has restrictions or blockages that make this activity difficult. In fact, you may feel you cannot feel the positive energy of gratitude, even when you focus upon it. In this case, you likely have subconscious energy stored in your body or mind, blocking your progress. Just a few examples of energy blockages include past physical or emotional trauma, family beliefs that it’s not safe to feel good, or not feeling worthy of joy. These patterns are subconscious and become trapped in the body. Affirmations, prayer, meditation and even walking in nature are great ways to get your energy moving. Try adding these simple activities to your daily routine. If that doesn’t work and you still feel stuck, seek out the assistance of an energy healer. These blocks must be surfaced to help you align with the higher vibration future you want to create.

Gratitude is a simple and highly effective way to shift your body’s health, all by using the power of the mind. As the mind focuses on positive thought, the body’s energy and physiology are calmed, boosting health in a myriad of ways, from the gut to mood to the endocrine system. With less than $5 in materials and less than five minutes per day of your time, a gratitude journal is effort well spent! Make this small investment and watch your mood and energy rise.

Sarah Lascano is the founder of RayZen Energy where she is a master energy medicine practitioner. It is her passion to help people recover their health and reclaim their lives through expert energy medicine and practical wisdom. Learn more at rayzenenergy.com.

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