Being thankful is, in my mind, a way of life. Life is too short and precious for negativity. I was delighted to find this Washington Post article, which provides affirmation on the practice of gratitude.
People who practice daily gratitude tend to be happier and healthier.
In this article, reporter Colby Itkowitz interviews researcher Robert Emmons, who studies gratitude. I love the comments. They capture the essence of an approach to life that has gotten me through a lot of good times and tough times.
"Gratitude is too good to be left at the Thanksgiving table. I believe that gratitude is the best approach to life. When life is going well, it allows us to celebrate and magnify the goodness. When life is going badly, it provides a perspective by which we can view life in its entirety and not be overwhelmed by temporary circumstances. People who live under an “aura of pervasive thankfulness” reap the rewards of grateful living; conversely, those who fail to feel gratitude cheat themselves out of their experience of life. And why would we want to cheat ourselves?
This approach that needs to be cultivated, it’s not going to come easily or automatically. This is when gratitude displays its power and potential. This is when we need to press into our sources of gratitude more deeply — family, faith, freedom — all those circumstances, people, opportunities that we give thanks for each and every day, not just on the fourth Thursday of November."
Futher, Emmons comments on dealing with stress and negativity:
"Indeed, gratitude rescues us from negativity. Left to their own devices, our minds tend to hijack each and every opportunity for happiness. Negativity, entitlement, resentfulness, forgetfulness, ungratefulness all clamor for our attention. Whether stemming from our own internal thoughts or to the daily news headlines, we are exposed to a constant drip of negativity. Doom and gloom is on the horizon, as financial fears, relational turmoil and health challenges threaten us. Weighed down by negativity, we are worn down, worn out, emotionally and physically exhausted.... We need to constantly and regularly create and take in positive experiences. Gratitude is our best weapon, an ally to counter these internal and external threats that rob us of sustainable joy. In gratitude, we focus on the giftedness of life. We affirm that goodness exists, even among the rancor of daily life. This realization itself is freeing, liberating, redeeming. Gratitude works!"
What are you thankful for? Make a list every day. Practice gratitude. Your mind, your health, your friends, your family, your future self will thank you for it.
I am thankful for the trust and the faith from my patients and their families. One of my patient's mothers shared her inspiring story in Woman's World magazine, on the newsstands Thanksgiving week. This amazing family reminds us to count our blessings, as they do every day. After epilepsy surgery, little Noah has been seizure-free for over 2 years and counting. It is wonderful to see him grow up and to celebrate his #brainiversary! Read Noah, Mallory, and Craig's story here.
Pediatric Neurosurgery team
Things we are passionate about
my TCH blog post on
- organizing your medical records for doctor's appointments
- Craniosynostosis 101
our patients' moms blog about their family's
- epilepsy surgery journey
- craniosynostosis surgery journey
some of our inspiring patient and family stories in the news:
- epilepsy surgery
- craniofacial surgery
Comments on health policy in the #NeurosurgeryBlog
Sharing on the "ask-the-doctor" series on the Children's Craniofacial Association's blog
- helmet FAQs: after endoscopic craniosynostosis surgery
- helmet FAQs: positional plagiocephaly