In this blog, I share how I use a gratitude journal to keep me counting my blessings, not my stressors.
As the sun is setting earlier and the sunny days are getting shorter, I am refocusing on a great strategy that I use to avoid getting down during this darker time of the year, my gratitude journal.
One of the major strategies I use to keep my mood uplifted through the darker time of the year is writing down all the things I that make me feel grateful.
Gratitude is noticing.
Witnessing all that I have to be grateful for on paper helps me when I may experience the feelings of nervousness or despair. I commonly find these same thinking patterns in my patients because discouragement often results from living with a vestibular disorder.
My perspective on life shifts as I write in my gratitude journal, because the things that are wonderful move to the forefront of my mind.
Cultivating gratitude on purpose helps me focus on what is good in my life, not on the problems or concerns that I might face.
In a scientific study, a group of people were asked to a keep a weekly Gratitude Journal, while another group recorded life’s hassels or neutral life events. The study found that “a weekly benefit listing was associated with more positive and optimistic appraisals of one’s life, more time spent exercising, and fewer reported physical symptoms.”
In the same study, when people with a neuromuscular disorder were asked to keep a gratitude journal, they found it resulted in “greater levels of positive affect, more sleep, better sleep quality, and greater optimism and a sense of connectedness to others.”
I know I begin to feel better when I focus on what I have to be grateful for, so I was not surprised at all to read the results of this study showed a more positive outlook on life and greater optimism. The results that did surprise me were that the researchers found gratitude journaling led to improved sleep quality, fewer reported physical symptoms and more time spent exercising.
Interesting! I am in.
To get more detailed, I can begin to feel grateful for my two legs, my eyes, my hands, my kidneys, my beating heart, my straight teeth… and the list goes on.
When I slow down and “notice,” I can come up with a huge list of things that I am grateful for today.
If you are someone who is living with a vestibular disorder, or you are suffering from dizziness, vertigo or imbalance, I invite you to join me in focusing on all that you have to be grateful for today. I believe this strategy will help prevent you from going down a negative emotional spiral of confusion, nervousness, despair, hopelessness and, in extreme cases, loss of the will to live that are all too common among those living with vestibular disorders.
In the past, I have also used other strategies such as mental health counseling, medication, and prayer to lift myself out of difficult emotional times.
This blog is provided for informational purposes only. The content and any comments by Dr. Kim Bell, DPT are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. The details of any case mentioned in this post represent a typical patient that Dr. Bell might see and do not describe the circumstances of a specific individual.
So how much vita min D should we take, and what if your lactose intolerant or plant based? Thanks
Thank you for your question about how much Vitamin D to take and what form.
The recommendation of how much you need will be based on your own results from a blood test that your doctor can prescribe to check your vitamin D level.
Below 30 on the lab test is considered Vitamin D deficient.
Some people like to target even higher levels of vitamin D for various reasons, such as pain reduction.
My suggestion is to discuss this with your Doctor.
I personally have found a Vitamin D supplement made by Carlson’s that is suspended in MCT oil, so I add a drop to my water in the morning.
You can find a variety of Vitamin D supplements that will meet your dietary needs.
Dr. Kimberley Bell, DPT
Doctor of Physical Therapy
Specializing in Vestibular Rehabilitation
Speaker, Educator and Laughologist
I have just found your wonderful website. I found you as a consequence of my search for ways to generate feelings of love and gratitude. I,m working my way through the archives. Best wishes
I am glad you came across my website. I have found that directed strategies to uplift and stabilize the mood really help to speed up the recovery time for myself and my patients.
You might also enjoy my blog post on the Health Benefits of Laughter.
Thank you for your supportive comment.