#BrainFactMonday โ€“ Should You Stop Saying You’re Lucky?

Posted on 6th November 2023

A while back, I launched a poll right here on Linkedin with a simple question: what do you tend to say most often: "๐—œ'๐—บ ๐—น๐˜‚๐—ฐ๐—ธ๐˜†" or "๐—œ'๐—บ ๐—ด๐—ฟ๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ฒ๐—ณ๐˜‚๐—น"?

I was pleased to see that the majority of people said "I'm grateful" ๐Ÿ˜€

Many of us use the terms "lucky" and "grateful" interchangeably, believing they express similar sentiments. However, our brain processes these two phrases differently, and it has a significant impact on our overall well-being. In this #BrainFactMonday we look at ๐Ÿง  The Neuroscience of Gratitude vs. Luck ๐Ÿ™Œ

1๏ธโƒฃ "๐—œ'๐—บ ๐—Ÿ๐˜‚๐—ฐ๐—ธ๐˜†" - ๐—ง๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—Ÿ๐˜‚๐—ฐ๐—ธ ๐— ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ฑ๐˜€๐—ฒ๐˜
When you say, "I'm lucky," you tend to attribute your successes or positive experiences to chance, fate, or external factors beyond your control. This mindset can unintentionally ๐˜‚๐—ป๐—ฑ๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐—บ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ฒ ๐˜†๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ฟ ๐˜€๐—ฒ๐—น๐—ณ-๐—ฒ๐˜€๐˜๐—ฒ๐—ฒ๐—บ, as it implies that your achievements aren't a result of your efforts or abilities.

2๏ธโƒฃ "๐—œ'๐—บ ๐—š๐—ฟ๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ฒ๐—ณ๐˜‚๐—น" - ๐—ง๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—š๐—ฟ๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ถ๐˜๐˜‚๐—ฑ๐—ฒ ๐— ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ฑ๐˜€๐—ฒ๐˜
When you say, "I'm grateful," it shifts the focus inward. It acknowledges the positive aspects of your life and highlights your appreciation for them. This mindset encourages you to recognize the people, opportunities, and experiences that have contributed to your well-being/success/achievements, empowering you and suggesting you are an active participant in ๐—ฐ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐˜†๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ฟ ๐—ต๐—ฎ๐—ฝ๐—ฝ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ฒ๐˜€๐˜€.

Neuroscientific studies have shown that practising gratitude has several positive effects on our brains and lives. When you cultivate a gratitude mindset:

๐Ÿง  Your brain releases dopamine and serotonin, enhancing your mood and overall well-being.
๐Ÿ’ช It reduces stress, anxiety, and depression.
๐ŸŒฑ It fosters resilience and strengthens your ability to cope with challenges.
๐Ÿ™ It improves relationships by enhancing empathy and compassion.

So, while the words "lucky" and "grateful" may appear to be similar, they influence your neural pathways and thought patterns differently. By choosing to be grateful, you ๐—ฎ๐—ฐ๐˜๐—ถ๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ๐—น๐˜† ๐˜€๐—ต๐—ฎ๐—ฝ๐—ฒ ๐˜†๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ฟ ๐—ฝ๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐—ฐ๐—ฒ๐—ฝ๐˜๐—ถ๐—ผ๐—ป ๐—ผ๐—ณ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐˜„๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—น๐—ฑ and, in turn, create a more positive and fulfilling life.

So, from now on, make a conscious effort to cultivate gratitude in your daily life. Whether it's in your career or personal relationships, the power of "I'm grateful" is a small shift in language with a profound impact on your brain and, ultimately, your life. Tried and tested it... believe me ๐Ÿ˜

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