Through my years of practice as a health coach globally, I have seen clients who live on just salads and healthy juices and yet struggle to fight fat. They exercise for two hours or more and eat all the right foods—but still stay obese. The obstacle for such folks is something we usually don’t consider: stress.
There are many things that cause stress to the body at a cellular level. Some of these triggers are:
- Eating with guilt
- Exercising too hard and too much
- Lack of sleep
- Improper nutrition
- Smoking and excessive alcohol
- Emotional turmoil
…the list goes on.
Take resentment, for instance. Did you know, something as small as the inability or unwillingness to forgive can cause immense stress to the body?
Some of this stress we don’t even feel as it slowly but surely eats into us, chewing away pieces of our being. Stress lowers and destroys our immune system, making our body vulnerable to infections and diseases. Weakened immunity is known to cause lethargy and fatigue, which leads to indigestion, bloating, acidity and a number of other ailments. Thus begins the cycle of popping pills, which ultimately triggers other health problems.
If we can identify our stress triggers and manage them with awareness, the whole game changes. Of course, we will always have some stress. Who doesn’t? But how we handle it can lead us to the road to great health.
Use gratitude to heal your life
Whether it’s a client with a life-threatening illness or someone who just wants to lose weight, 90 per cent of my job revolves around working with their minds. If there is any one tool that I swear by in the healing and counselling process, it is gratitude. This simple yet powerful phenomenon changes lives.
All religions preach the virtues of being thankful. Yet, in our hectic lives, we fail to find time for it. Gratitude is magical. Many books have been written on the subject of gratitude and the benefits it brings along. Most of us are relentlessly focussed on how fat we are, or how sick we are, or how much our knee or back hurts.
The cure is never in the pill—it’s in your mind
If you want to heal an illness, focus on everything else in your body that is working well and be thankful. In other words, take your attention off the disease and put it on everything that is working for you—you will begin to recover faster. Try it! Gratitude has no boundaries. It can be practised regardless of your domination, your beliefs, customs and traditions.
Life is full of positives, negatives and everything in between. By acknowledging your sadness, heartache, worries and fears with gratitude, you can flip on your positive switch and appreciate the good that you have.
The physical benefits of gratitude
Studies have shown that acts of thankfulness and appreciation
- Trigger more time exercising
- Lower blood pressure
- Decrease the perception of pain
- Improve sleep quality
- Encourage relaxation
- Lower depression symptoms
- Increase overall energy
In other words, by taking the time to show gratitude you improve your health, both mentally and physically, thus bettering the quality of your life as a whole.
Try this exercise
On a sheet of paper, list all the things that you are grateful for. Really feel what you pen down. If you are struggling to lose weight, be grateful that you have healthy legs to walk, run or work out with. If you have work stress, be grateful that you have a job or a business. If you have relationship stress, be thankful that you have people in your life who care about you. No matter what your situation, you can always find something to be thankful for. And that starts the process of healing. The cure is never in the pill—it’s in your mind.
Continue your efforts to eat clean, sleep well, and stay physically active, and then let your body do the rest. Whenever you find yourself stressed, worried and anxious, stop and count your blessings. Practising gratitude enriches your life and the lives of those around you. It also helps you focus on possibilities which, in turn, helps you achieve your goals in all spheres of life.
Gratitude is a simple route to get your life back on track, to gain back our positive focus and manifest your desires.
Most problems in life exist because we choose to focus on them. And we don’t just focus on the situation, but rather focus on the negative part of it. We get obsessed with our problem and close the door to the “big picture,” or the bright side of the equation. If you are consistently complaining about things, stop it now. This will automatically make you focus on the positives. Apply gratitude to your health and lifestyle and watch in awe as it transforms your whole life.
Spot an error in this article? A typo maybe? Or an incorrect source? Let us know!