Count Your Blessings, Not Your Problems

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“Count your blessings, not your problems.”

Our primitive brain ruminates more on problems and failures than on blessings and successes, according to a number of research studies. We are simply wired that way. But the modern world problems can be far more complex than that of our predecessors, making us prone to the debilitating effects of stress. That is where positive psychology comes to the rescue.

Dubbed “The Father of Positive Psychology,” Dr. Martin Seligman believes that psychotherapy shouldn’t focus solely on negative emotions and disorders, but also encourage patients to talk about their positive emotions and their strengths and virtues. Accordingly, he has developed methods to relieve symptoms of depression and reduce stress built around this principle.

One of the effective methods is “three blessings,” an exercise where you have to write down three things that went well that day, and say why. In the experiment given to depressed patients, 94% of severely depressed people became less depressed after doing the exercise and 92% said they became happier, with an average symptom, relief of 50%!

Research studies found that by simply counting our blessings, we can increase our happiness, decrease our anxiety and depression, reduce our materialism, and make better relationships. And because it makes us resistant to stress, it improves the quality of our sleep and strengthens our willpower to make better decisions. Lastly, gratitude breeds humility, kindness, and patience, for it is hard to be ill-tempered when the mind is filled with positivity.

Have you counted your blessings lately?

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