Why gratitude is good for you 為什麼感恩對你有好處

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對他人說 “謝謝” 是好事,不過這對你自己也有好處嗎?有研究顯示,懂得感恩對我們的身體和精神健康都有積極的影響,對我們的人際關系也有好處,本文淺談感恩的好處。

詞匯:gratitude 感恩

Gratitude is more than just saying ‘thank you’ to someone who has helped us or given us a gift. Gratitude is a deeper appreciation for someone or something that makes us feel a positive emotion. And this positive emotion can be good for our health – our emotional and physical health, as well as the health of our relationships.

Let’s start by looking at the emotional or mental health benefits of expressing gratitude. There have been many studies, as described in a 2018 paper from the Greater Good Science Center titled ‘The Science of Gratitude’ , showing that writing a gratitude letter to another person or writing in a gratitude journal, if done regularly, improves mental health. One reason for this, is that gratitude stops us from ruminating on toxic, negative emotions, and writing a ‘thank you’ letter, for example, shifts our attention so that we focus on positive emotions. But even if we don’t share our writing with anyone, like in a journal, the act of completing the exercise alone makes us happier and more satisfied with life. And this gets better with time. As we are essentially training our brain to be more in tune with noticing the positive, after several weeks or months, this becomes more intuitive. And so, the more we express gratitude, the more positive we feel.

Gratitude can also make us feel good in our bodies. There are studies linking a gratitude practice to better sleep quality, better eating habits, and reduced inflammation in people who have had heart problems. So gratitude is clearly good for us, but is it also good for the people in our lives?

The simple answer is ‘yes’. When shared – spoken or written – gratitude is about feeling valued and helping others feel valued too. Feeling valued can help build stronger relationships – be it with family, partners, friends or even colleagues. And that’s on top of all the other ways gratitude is clearly good for us. Maybe we should all stop counting sheep or counting calories and start counting our blessings instead?

詞匯表

deep 深層次的
appreciation for 對…的感激之情
emotional 情感的
mental health 心理健康
express (v) 表達
study (n) 研究
ruminate on 反覆思考
toxic 令人不愉快的
shift your attention 轉移你的注意力
the act of …的行為
satisfied 滿足的,滿意的
essentially 本質上,基本上
be in tune with 與…一致
intuitive 憑直覺的
practice 實踐
reduce 減少
inflammation 炎症,發炎
feel valued 感覺受到尊重
count your blessings 常懷感恩,知足

測驗與練習

1.  閱讀課文並回答問題。

1. What are two ways of expressing gratitude in writing?

2. True or False? Writing one ‘thank you’ letter improves mental health.

3. How does gratitude stop us ruminating on negative emotions?

4. Give three examples of how gratitude can be good for the body.

5. How can we make others feel valued through gratitude?

2.  選擇意思恰當的單字或詞組來完成下列句子。

1. Teachers’ Day is a day to _______ teachers and thank them for their hard work throughout the year.

shift your attention        express appreciation for        be in tune with        feel valued

2. She spent weeks _______ the difficult decision to leave her husband.

linking to                       counting her blessings          reducing                  ruminating on

3. Sometimes, the solution to a problem comes without thinking. It’s _______.

intuitive                         deep                                      mental health          satisfied

4. Smoking is _______ heart disease and other health problems.

inflammation                 on top of                                linked to                  toxic

5. We were in a car accident but weren’t badly injured. We _______ it wasn’t worse.

count our blessings       are in tune with                     gratitude                 satisfied

答案

1. 閱讀課文並回答問題。

1. What are two ways of expressing gratitude in writing?
Writing a gratitude, or ‘thank you’, letter to another person, and writing in a gratitude journal.

2. True or False? Writing one ‘thank you’ letter improves mental health.
False. If done regularly, writing a gratitude letter or writing in a gratitude journal improves mental health.

3. How does gratitude stop us ruminating on negative emotions?
It shifts our attention so that we focus on positive emotions.

4. Give three examples of how gratitude can be good for the body.
Better sleep quality, better eating habits, and reduced inflammation in people who have had heart problems.

5. How can we make others feel valued through gratitude?
When we share our gratitude with them – in spoken or written form.

2. 選擇意思恰當的單字或詞組來完成下列句子。

1. Teachers’ Day is a day to express appreciation for teachers and thank them for their hard work throughout the year.

2. She spent weeks ruminating on the difficult decision to leave her husband.

3. Sometimes, the solution to a problem comes without thinking. It’s intuitive.

4. Smoking is linked to heart disease and other health problems.

5. We were in a car accident but weren’t badly injured. We count our blessings it wasn’t worse.