the benefits of being thankful

Dr Jess says: One of my favourite ever quotes by Oprah Winfrey is: “Be thankful for what you have, and you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough.” This simple quote explains the practice of gratitude in a nutshell.

Practising gratitude puts the Law of Attraction in action. By focusing on what we love and enjoy, we get more. I have felt this in my life many times. Whenever I am at my lowest, I look at the amazing and wonderful things in my life and the gifts that I was given. Even when you can’t find anything, starting with a warm, safe bed and having food to eat can be enough.

Gratitude journals are an incredibly positive tool to help you to acknowledge the things you are thankful for, and the process of writing it down seems to make it more powerful.

Being thankful has been shown to reduce stress by up to 25%. A study of pregnant women found that practising gratitude four times a week had a significant impact on reducing cortisol (stress hormone) levels by nearly 25%.1 Several studies show the huge benefits of gratitude on stress2 and even in those suffering from PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder).3

Practising gratitude can actually reduce physical pain. Studies have shown that practising gratitude regularly can actually reduce symptoms of…


  1. Matvienko-Sikar K, Dockray S. Effects of a novel positive psychological intervention on prenatal stress and well-being: A pilot randomised controlled trial Women Birth. 2017 Apr;30(2):e111-e118. doi: 10.1016/j.wombi.2016.10.003. Epub 2016 Oct 31. PMID: 27810284.
  2. Cheng ST, Tsui PK, Lam JH. Improving mental health in health care practitioners: randomized controlled trial of a gratitude intervention J Consult Clin Psychol. 2015 Feb;83(1):177-86. doi: 10.1037/a0037895. Epub 2014 Sep 15. PMID: 25222798.
  3. Van Dusen JP, Tiamiyu MF, Kashdan TB, Elhai JD. Gratitude, depression and PTSD: Assessment of structural relationships Psychiatry Res. 2015 Dec 30;230(3):867-70. doi: 10.1016/j.psychres.2015.11.036. Epub 2015 Nov 25. PMID: 26626947.