My norepinephrine is rockin’ and rollin’!
My serotonin is doing back flips like a gymnastics star on the balance beam!
My oxytocin is gathering a bunch of pals together for another bonding session!
My dopamine’s “pleasure meter” just maxed out!
With all this activity going on, my cortisol decided to “get out of Dodge”… taking my cytokines with it. Good riddance! 🙂
What’s the Big Deal???
According to the latest neurocognitive (brain) science, it’s what my neurotransmitters and hormones do when I am GRATEFUL!
Since today is Thanksgiving, I have been doing my own “field research.” An experiment with a sample size of one — ME! 🙂
This all started yesterday, after a dear sister told me about her Gratitude Journal. It’s an idea she picked up from a recent bestselling book. It is full of stories about real people who expressed their gratitude to others, and the outcomes of all that cup-overflowing thankfulness.
I could hardly believe it, Lord! No sooner had I left her, I turned on the radio in the car. After a few other amazing “coincidences” I wrote about yesterday — HA! No such thing! 🙂 — I heard a brief interview with Dr. Scott Ries, National Director of Campus and Community Ministries for the Christian Medical and Dental Associations.
GUESS WHAT HE WAS TALKING ABOUT? Oh, that’s right… You already know! (Since You’re the One who orchestrated my hearing him talk about this particular subject just minutes after my friend had raised it!!!)
I LOVE it when You do things like that, Lord!!! 🙂
Dr. Ries explained some of the latest research proving the health benefits of Gratitude! WOW! Turns out our level of gratitude helps strengthen our immune systems and lower our blood pressure. Some studies even claim gratitude reduces blood sugar!
The “friends” I cited above all have specific functions that are enhanced — or diminished — by our gratitude.
Mood transmitters like serotonin and norepinephrine help produce higher levels of positive emotions — joy, optimism happiness. They also help reduce feelings of loneliness and isolation.
Oxytocin is a “social bonding” hormone, which helps… well, social bonding. (Go figure!) Dopamine increases our sense of pleasure. Woo Hoo! Cortisol (STRESS hormone) and Cytokine (INFLAMMATION hormone) both go down.
Anyway, I have spent most of the day counting my many blessings, Lord… and thanking You for them! And, not surprisingly…
I FEEL GREAT!!! 🙂
It is no surprise to You, either… is it, Lord? After all, You’re the One who made us!
You even told us about this gratitude “phenomenon” long before this fairly recent science began to “prove” it!
“Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18)
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:6-7)
And those are only the first two out of MORE THAN THIRTY-FIVE!!!
You throw the BEST parties, Abba! 🙂
Movin’ & groovin’…