Book Notes

August 5, 2010 at 3:07 pm

 Attitudes of Gratitude: How to Give and Receive Joy Every Day of Your Life by M.J. Ryan. (1999)

A Book Review by Barb Schroeder*

The author, M.J. Ryan, teaches us how to unlock the fullness of our hearts and lives through the expression of gratitude.

The book is divided into three sections: the gifts of gratitude, the attitudes gratitude, and the practices of gratitude.  Each section provides simple practices to help us reflect on the theme of the section.

Through the chapters of the book, the author shows us a path to make our practice of gratitude come alive.

So why is gratitude important to us? In recent years, many scientists have begun examining the links between religion and good health.  Two psychologists are now working to unlock the puzzle of how faith might promote happiness.  The researchers say their initial scientific study indicates that gratitude plays a significant role in a person’s sense of well-being.  The study reveals that daily gratitude exercises resulted in higher report levels of alertness, enthusiasm, determination, optimism and energy.  According to these findings, people who feel grateful are also more likely to feel loved.  Also, the researchers found that gratitude encouraged a positive cycle of reciprocal kindness among people since one act of gratitude encourages another.

So the act of noting five things you are grateful for each day can make a difference.  Even in dark times we can find things to be grateful for.  For some it helps to say these out loud or to share them with another person.

November is Family Caregiver Month.  During this month, find time each day to acknowledge five things you are grateful for.  It can make a big difference. 

Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.

~ Author unknown


* Barb Schroeder, MS, RN, is a Clinical Nurse Specialist in the field of organ transplant.  In her role she helps patients and family members find ways to hope and cope with their journey.  Barb is an avid reader looking for the perfect book to inspire people to achieve their dreams.  A special area of interest is gratitude.  Gratitude for the moment and the day.  In the course of her nursing career she has had many opportunities to learn new things.

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