Gratitude Challenge Day #5

Posted by Lauren Eyer

He who enjoys good health is rich, though he knows it not.
Italian Proverb
The gift of good health is something so many of us take advantage of having until one day we lose it.  When we are healthy, we go through our days, rarely even thinking anything of our health.  Fortunately for a majority of us, the worst health we've felt is something minor like the flu which may keep us in bed sick for a few days.  But even when we do come down with something minor like that, the only thing we think about then is our health and we want to feel better again.  In those times, nothing else seems to matter.  So why do we take such advantage of feeling healthy and normal all the time?  Health is something that could slip away so easily, so we better start practicing gratitude for our health as well.
Good health is truly a gift that so many of us are very fortunate to receive every day.  We have to be grateful for it in order to continue to receive more of it.  As with everything else we've discussed so far in our Gratitude Challenge, the more you practice gratitude for you health, the more it will improve for the better.  Gratitude for your health can eliminate stress and tension in your body.  When you live with chronic stress you have decreased energy, a weakened immune system, your thoughts are foggy, and pretty much every function of your body and mind is compromised and weakened.  In fact, science has shown us that chronic stress is the root of many diseases.  If you take a quick read of this abstract portion of the study Life Event, Stress and Illness by Mohd, Razali you'll see all the negative things that can happen when your body is under chronic stress.  And we know that practicing gratitude decreases stress, so we must practice gratitude daily to heal faster and live longer.

Today for our Gratitude Challenge, you are going to practice gratitude for your gift of health.  Whether you are currently healthy or not, this is for everyone because we can only feel better with the practice of gratitude.  All you have to do for today's exercise is read the following paragraphs which each focus on a part of your body.  When you read the italicized portion of each paragraph, close your eyes and repeat it.  
Think about your legs and feet.  These are the main source of transportation in your life.  Think about all the things you use your legs for.  The ability to walk gives us freedom to enjoy life.  It allows us to walk on the beach, walk around the mall, dance, exercise, run... Say thank you for my legs and feet, and really mean it.
Think about your arms and hands and how many things you pick up and hold throughout your day.  Your hands are like tools.  They allow you to write, eat a meal, use your phone, pick up things and hold them and give you the ability to pretty much do everything by yourself without needing assistance.  Say thank you for my arms, hands and fingers.
Think about your senses.  Your sense of taste allows you to enjoy the many flavors of delicious food and drink.  Your sense of smell lets you experience beautiful scents like perfume, flowers, clean sheets, fresh cut grass, the ocean, a fire, the rain.
Think about your sense of touch.  If helps you sense if something is cold or hot, sharp or smooth.  You can touch the people you love and feel their hands holding yours. Or the soft fur of your pets.  Think about the miracle of your eyes and your ability to see.  The gift of sight allows you to see the world!  The colors of nature, amazing places, faces of people.  You can read books and watch TV, and look at art.  Think about your ears.  Your ears allow you to hear your own voice and the voices of others so you can talk to people.  Without ears and your hearing you could not use a phone or hear the sounds of the world around you.  Our senses are AMAZING when you take the time to think about them.  Say thank you for my amazing sense of taste, thank you for my wonderful sense of smell, thank you for my precious sense of touch.  Thank you for my eyes that allow me to see everything, and thank you for my hearing.
Of course, none of these senses that we have would even be possible without our functioning brain.  Our brain processes over a million messages a second through our senses.  Our brain allows us to experience life in these ways - through touch, taste, smell, sound, sight.  Say thank you for my brain and my beautiful mind.
We're going to go even deeper and think about the trillion of cells working nonstop for our health and body.  Think about your life-sustaining organs which filter, clean and renew your body, and the fact that this all happens without your conscious effort.  Most miraculous of any organ is your heart.  Keeping blood and life flowing to every system in your body.  Say thank you for my cells, my organs working perfectly, and for my strong and healthy heart.
The last think you need to do for this exercise is get a piece of paper, and write down THE GIFT OF LIFE IS KEEPING ME ALIVE.
Take this piece of paper with you and put it somewhere you know you will see it often.  At least 4 different times during your day, when you see those words you wrote on your paper, read them and try to feel the gratitude as you read them.
It's been said that if gratitude were used in conjunction with conventional medical treatments, we would see a health revolution, and recovery rates and miracles like we've never seen before.  So remember to practice gratitude for your health every day to increase your energy and bring yourself more good health!
Your checklist for the day:
1. Make your list of the 10 things you are grateful for.  Remember to say "thank you" 3 times after you read each item on your list.  Gratitude List Worksheet
2.  Write THE GIFT OF HEALTH IS KEEPING ME ALIVE on a piece of paper and keep it with you during the day, and read it at least 4 times, thinking about how grateful you are for your health.
3.  Tonight before bed, pick up your gratitude object and think through your day about all the good things that happened.  Pick the BEST think that happened to you today and say thank you!

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