Mixing Grief and Gratitude? Really?
After a loss, being thankful might not be at the forefront of your mind – but it should.
How do you focus on gratitude in the midst of grieving? Start by thanking your loved ones, all those who have been your support system during this difficult time – family, friends, colleagues, neighbors, acquaintances. The act of sharing your gratitude will initiate positive feelings.
Be thankful for the love you had. That’s a gift for a lifetime; it’s never lost.
And be thankful because it’s healthy. An article in The New York Times on 11/21/15 notes: “…gratitude stimulates the hypothalamus (a key part of the brain that regulates stress) and the ventral tegmental area (part of our “reward circuitry” that produces the sensation of pleasure). It’s science, but also common sense: Choosing to focus on good things makes you feel better than focusing on bad things.”
Wherever you find yourself this Thanksgiving, be grateful for your strength and resolve in moving forward. You provide comfort and guidance to those around you. Inevitably, they are just as grateful for having you in their lives.
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