How Gratitude Changes Your Brain
Updated: May 4, 2020
MRI scans show long lasting changes in the medial prefrontal cortex of the brain of subjects who practiced being grateful on a consistent basis during a University study.
Did you know the average person is said to have anywhere from 12,000-60,000 thoughts per day, 80% of those thoughts being negative, and 95% percent are repetitive? This means we are mostly repeating those same negative thoughts throughout our entire day. No wonder why depression and anxiety are so common. I think it's especially important that we take back control of our thoughts.
Counting your blessings tends to help people feel happier and less depressed. Those who practice writing gratitude letters over time have shown long-lasting changes in the front of their brains (the medial prefrontal cortex) and their brains release serotonin, similar to what an anti-depressant does, that makes you feel good.
If this isn't something you already do, I challenge you to commit to being grateful every day. We spend so much time focusing on feeding our bodies with proper nutrition, exercising to make ourselves stronger, but what are we doing on a consistent basis to exercises our minds to be in a positive headspace? Today, write a gratitude letter, or a gratitude list of all the things you are most thankful for, and watch how overtime toxic thoughts will transition into positive ones.
If the saying is true that whatever you focus on will grow, then we must put our focus on gratitude, and in return, we will have more to be grateful for.
What are you most grateful for?