Operation Gratitude

operation gratitude

Science has shown that gratitude is the single greatest correlation with human well-being than any other character trait. Operation gratitude is an in depth look into the affects of gratitude on your well-being and a guide to finding your inner happiness. So, to begin we must first understand, what is gratitude?

Gratitude Synonym

“Grace, gratefulness, appreciative, obligation, acknowledgment, thanks, recognition.”

Grateful Definition

“Feeling or showing an appreciation of kindness.”

It’s been wisely said that, “life is a journey, not a destination. It’s not about getting there, it’s about who you become along the way.” So, this begs the question, “how do I become the best version of myself along the way?” Well, the best place to start is actually through gratitude.

  • Gratitude and appreciation for life
  • Being grateful for what is, as it is

The Science of Gratitude

An Attitude For Gratitude

  • Emotional swings
  • Anger
  • Guilt
  • Fear
  • Depression

These are all common reactions to daily pressure(s), chronic stress and broken relationships. Understandably, these are the challenges and chaos that can evoke a life of ingratitude, ‘heaviness’ and despair.  However, it’s precisely these times when you need to dig down deep and find away to transform these life stresses into grateful states of gratitude and order.  But how??

balancing act

How To Achieve Balance

We usually experience an ‘emotional charge‘ when we see more positives than negatives, or more negatives than positives in:

  • A person
  • Situation
  • Circumstance

And, the greater the charge the greater the emotion.  So, when we begin to experience lopsided emotions, we get further from our true nature. We lower our self worth and can assume a false persona such as:

  1. Self righteous and cocky when we see more positives than negatives
  2. Self deprecating and bummed out when we see more negatives than positives

However our true self is neither. Our true self is a:

  • Centered
  • Poised
  • Stable
  • Humble
  • Open hearted being

One that seeks the hidden blessings and balance in every situation.  Therefore, when we are in a state of gratitude, we are better able to balance our perceptions.

gratitude journal

The Art Of Gratitude

The best place to start in developing the art of gratitude is by taking some time each and every day to write a list of that which you are grateful for in a gratitude journal.  Initially this may seem difficult and perhaps repetitive. But with daily practice, new neural pathways will develop in your brain, pruning away old negative thoughts that were holding you back. In time you will create a new state of mind and eventually gratitude will be a part of your new identity.

“Many psychologists now believe that emotional intelligence is more important than IQ—both at work and at play.”

It’s All About Perception

Practice being mindful of your thoughts (metacognition) each day. Eventually you will develop the skill of balancing your perceptions by asking yourself what are the benefits (positive) and drawbacks (negatives) of the situation, circumstance or person. By doing this, your certainty and non-judgement will rise proportional to your level of gratitude.

So, now that you understand the connection between gratitude and perceptions of mind, you can now work towards:

  • Becoming more inspired and unconditionally loving
  • Decreasing the divisiveness in your mind
  • Increasing your self worth

Ingratitude is often associated with depression and despair. Whereas gratitude increases your dopamine and serotonin levels in your brain, acting as a natural antidepressant. Also, YOU must address all areas of your health for your body to heal such as your:

Many people make it all about one thing (i.e., Nutrition or exercise) and neglect the rest.  However this alone will not give your body the opportunity it needs to heal.

Looking for additional support on finding inner happiness? See how meditation can benefit your health and assist you in finding enlightenment and gratitude along the way.

Kids Practicing Gratitude (and 10 things I'm grateful for)

Operation Gratitude – The Key To Happiness

In conclusion, everyone wants to be loved and appreciated.  And, the appreciation you have for others is directly impacted by the appreciation and love you have for yourself.  So, once you implement operation gratitude and achieve a ‘grateful state of mind’ you, will begin to unconsciously fulfill your purpose in life by attracting the right kind of:

  • People
  • Places
  • Things
  • Events

Remember, be grateful for what you are given and you will be given more to be grateful for.

Click here for a simple action plan to work on developing an attitude of gratitude today. 

What’s Next?

In my next blog we will continue our talk about controlling our emotions.  How thinking is the language of the mind, and feeling is the language of the body. Therefore if we don’t keep our thoughts and feelings in check, our bodies eventually become the mind.

All Stressed Up For The Holidays

stressed out

The mere suggestion of holiday stress evokes memories of the past and anxiety of what’s yet to come, robbing us of our health and what should be a happy holiday season.

When we think of stress, we think of the emotional kind that comes from too much to do and so little time to do it.  But that’s only one form we need to be aware as there are three types that can keep us from showing up as the best version of ourselves during the holiday season.

Physical Stress

Physical demands simply multiply during the holidays. With long days on our feet shopping the malls, wrapping, lifting and running around.  Add to that, sitting at a computer all day and perhaps being overweight which all contributes to weakened postural support.

Chemical Stress

Probably the greatest holiday stressor – you’re eating habits.  Overindulgence in food and drink.  Smoking and excess alcohol.  High blood sugar levels… and what about the medication you take to settle all that discomfort.  The ongoing exposure to chemical stresses over the holiday season wreaks havoc and “wear and tear” on your entire body, right down to the cellular level.

Emotional Stress

Now we’re talking;

  • Meeting deadlines
  • Relationships
  • Memories
  • The perfect gift for that special someone
  • Credit cards stretched to the limit

And on and on…

Click here to learn,”5 Natural Solutions For Coping With Stress!”

types of stress

How Can We Handle It All?

The best way to cope is first be aware of the three forms; physical, chemical and emotional.   Learn how they can affect your health and how to respond to them.  Don’t let it leave you dis-empowered.  Be disciplined and take control by striving for optimal physical, mental and social well-being.  Particularly over the holiday season when temptations lurk around every corner.

The Effects On Our Body

All three forms of stress affect your nervous system.  It will show up where we are most vulnerable.

  • Our neck
  • Our low back
  • Tightness between the shoulders

Stress can also increase the frequency of headaches and compromise our sleep.

Chiropractic care, with its purpose of reducing neurological stress, can be helpful.  Of course chiropractic care can’t eliminate it, but it sure can improve your ability to tolerate it.

Regular chiropractic care now, especially with holiday stress around the corner, could be a wise investment for a healthier version of you.

From all of us at Family Health Advocacy, we wish you a happy and healthy holiday season.

Unleash The Power Within

unleash the power within

In my last blog I introduced you to the Six Human Needs.  The driving force and motivation behind everything we do.  I urged you to familiarize yourself with these needs.  Identify the two needs that you care about most as these two things will be the single greatest influential factors in your life.  Now I want to take what you discovered and help you unleash the power within.

Modern psychology teaches that all human motivation can be explained as the desire to meet one or more of these human needs.

Refresher On The Six Human Needs


The need to feel safe, avoid pain and be comfortable.  To feel secure in our environment and relationships.

Key words: stability, safety, comfort, predictability


The need to be challenged and experience variety in our emotional and physical world.

Key words: stimulus, change, surprise, unpredictable


The need to feel important, needed and wanted.

Love & Connection

The need to love and be loved.  Well connected with others.

Key words – belonging


The need to be able to learn and develop physically, emotionally, intellectually and spiritually.


The need to give and contribute to others beyond our selves, without expecting anything in return.

Everyone is hard wired to meet the first four needs.  They are essential for human survival. Fundamental needs of the personality.  Everyone must feel that they have met those needs, even if they have to lie to themselves, create a problem, or violate their values in order to meet those needs.

The last two needs, growth and contribution, are the needs of the spirit.  They are essential to experiencing fulfillment, which we should all aspire to.  However, not everyone meets these two needs.

What Is The Significance Of The Six Human Needs To Your Life?

The Six Human Needs is a model of thinking and understanding yourself and others.  You become less judgmental at this deep and useful level because you understand the cause of a particular behavior or attitude.  I like to think of it as a game you don’t even know you are playing.

Once you are aware of this dynamic, you will be able to interrupt your own self- limiting or destructive behaviors.  Changing the way your needs are met, which begs the following question.

“How Are Your Top Needs Being Met?”

Needs are being met by what we refer to as vehicles.  Everyone finds these means or vehicles to meet our highest two needs, those that we favour the most.  Interestingly, some of these vehicles can either empower or disempower you in your quest. This happens through either constructive or destructive behavior.

We behave in certain ways because consciously or unconsciously, we believe that by doing this, feeling this, or by acting this way, we will meet one or more human needs.

For instance, most people will have you believe that their non clinical depression happens to them.  However, they are actually using depression as a negative vehicle to satisfy the need for significance.

Depression is also a vehicle used to meet the need for love and connection.  Certainty with depressions predictable emotional state.  I use depression as an example to show that anytime you associate with a vehicle (overeating, drinking, gambling) that meets three or more needs, you become addicted to it.

Chronic complaining or hanging onto a problem is another example of a negative vehicle to fulfill a need.  I believe it is the greatest addiction of them all.  Most people hang onto their problems because it meets their needs without having to risk facing their greatest fears.

Conversely, many needs are met by positive vehicles such as a strong work ethic, dedication, caring, providing and learning to site a few.  Click here to read, “WHY DO I DO WHAT I DO?”

Unleash The Power Within

Relationships and marriage are probably the greatest psychological relevance of Human Needs.  Let’s briefly explore this dynamic by asking ourselves “what is stopping you from having the life and relationship you want?”

Human needs are the primary source of meaning in our relationships.  For instance, in conversation with your partner, you can experience the conversation in terms of your greatest need of significance or in terms of your partners greatest need of love and connection.  This conversation may take on a different meaning which may create a conflict.

Who Are You In Your Relationship?

Remember, the needs you value determines who you are.  So a person who values security (certainty) will have a very different life from someone who values adventure (uncertainty).

Someone who values family (love and connection) is quite different from someone who values success (significance).

These are potential land mines of conflict between two people.

Simply put, you cannot enjoy a relationship at the highest level unless both people are meeting the others needs and putting each other first.  If you can achieve this your relationship will transform before your eyes.

Human Needs and its situational applications and nuances are endless.  Only by identifying your primary needs and that of others, will you be able to eventually peel back a layer of insight.  Understanding why we do what we do, what life is about for you and unleash the power within.

As a life coach, to better understand a client’s world, it is necessary to determine your most important needs.

In our next blog we are going to talk about our values.  While our needs are required for our survival, our values are what is important to us.  Needs and values are distinctly different but highly interrelated.

We all have a hierarchy of values.  And, if we live in congruence with our highest value we will live a more meaningful and fulfilling life.

6 Human Needs

6 human needs

Sometimes on the surface life seems OK.  However, down deep we actually feel unfulfilled, empty and dissatisfied.  We can’t seem to put our finger on why we feel the way we do. This can happen when one or more of our 6 human needs are not being met.

The 6 Human Needs Include:

  1. Certainty
  2. Uncertainty/Variety
  3. Significance
  4. Connection /Love
  5. Growth
  6. Contribution

At some level, we may believe, consciously or subconsciously that we are meeting our psychological needs by what we do, feel or experience.  However, there is a lot more to it!

diversity and commonality

Diversity And Commonality

We all come from a different orientations, backgrounds and beliefs.  Also differing are our:

  • Education
  • Rules
  • Language
  • Religions
  • Cultures

In fact, this is what makes our individual fabric so unique.  We are all diverse in how we think, feel and behave.  However, that said, we are all hard wired with the same 6 Human Needs.

We strive to meet each of these needs with varying levels of success determining how we think, feel and act.  The problem arises when our fundamental needs are not being met enough, being met too much, or not being met at all.

fundamental needs

Fundamental Needs

In Life Coaching, the 6 Human Needs is a a very useful strategy to balance and re-prioritize your life in optimal ways.  Although this strategy was presumably birthed from Maslows heirarchy of physiological needs – The 6 Needs differ as they are psychological needs that we should be aware of.  In order to achieve a higher level of happiness and fulfillment, they need to be met and continually improved upon.

Have you ever listened to Anthony Robbins spin his magic during a strategic intervention?  He is primarily using and mastering, the art of identifying the 6 Human Needs.

In life coaching it is important that the client understands the 6 Human Needs to further understand themselves and others at a deep and useful level.  People will generally be less judgmental of themselves and others with an understanding of the cause of a behaviour or attitude.

Click here to read A Scientific Validation Of Your Emotions to get a deeper understanding of your emotions.

Tony Robbins - 6 Human Needs (Adult Content Please Be Advised)

The 6 Human Needs

Every individual needs to fulfill them to survive as they are the basis and motivation for every choice we make in life. So let’s dig into them a little deeper.


This need is the driving desire to feel safe, comfortable and secure in our environment and our relationships.  The fundamental need to avoid pain and seek pleasure.  Even though certainty is necessary to all of us, the degree of certainty required is different for every person.

Certainty may be met by living in squalor with the bare essentials while others feel certainty only if they live in luxury and abundance.

Code Words For Certainty
  • Comfort
  • Security
  • Safety
  • Stability
  • Feeling grounded
  • Predictability
  • Protection
uncertainty out of your comfort zone

Uncertainty/ Variety

Variety is the spice of life.  Everyone needs variety and challenges.  Physically, mentally and emotionally, we require uncertainty for our overall well being.  When Life gets boring and routine we seek change and variety.  Something different, and the excitement that it brings us to feel alive.

Examples of variety and uncertainty might include:

  • Travel
  • Extreme sports
  • Compulsive sex
  • Stepping outside your comfort zone
  • Going to the movies

A major source of variety is to experience our problems.

Code Words For Uncertainty
  • Fear
  • Instability
  • Change
  • Chaos
  • Entertainment
  • Stepping outside our comfort zone
  • Suspense
  • Exertion
  • Surprise
  • Conflict
  • Crisis


A throwback need from infancy to be number one.  As children we competed with our siblings to be special and unique.  Significance comes from our roots of comparing ourselves to others as superior or inferior.  The need for significance can be filled by achievement and success. It can also be met by a destructive act or bringing someone down.

A positive act of significance can help raise our standards, but if we are overly focused on significance (it’s all about me) we will have trouble connecting or expressing our love to others.  Significance can come from:

  • Providing for family
  • Philanthropy
  • Major achievements
  • Acquiring wealth
  • Humanitarian work

However, conversely done by being a failure, having low self worth, or a criminal record.

Code Words For Significance
  • Pride
  • Importance
  • Achievement
  • Perfection
  • Discipline
  • Competition
  • Rejection
love and togetherness


Again, a need that is nurtured during infancy and childhood.  In fact, infants who are not held and touched will die.  The need for connection continues into adulthood that everyone strives for.  Romantic love as we know it in our culture does not exist in many other cultures. However, connection is necessary whether it be in the family, workplace or community. The need to be loved is something we all share.

Code Words For Love/Connection
  • Togetherness
  • Passion
  • Unity
  • Warmth
  • Tenderness
  • Caring
  • Desire
personal growth


When we are green we grow. When we are ripe we rot, and when we stop growing we die.  Therefore there is a continual need for us to develop physically, emotionally and spiritually throughout the various stages of life.

Growth can be met through education and reading. Also by nurturing, developing and expanding your health, resources and relationships. Growth helps to define fulfillment. One needs something to serve that is larger than themselves (family, community, the world) to give us the initiative to grow in order to give beyond ourselves.



Like growth, contribution is a need for the spirit and fulfillment.  A need to give back to others.  It is our nature to have a sense that we are making a contribution to leave a positive mark to make the world, community, family and/or job a better place.

The 6 Human Needs In Summary

The first four needs are for human survival as everyone must meet them at some level.  The last two needs, growth and contribution are essential to human fulfillment.  Not everyone finds a way to satisfy these needs of the spirit, although they are necessary for lasting fulfillment.

Click here to read Top Tips To Manage Your Emotions.

six human needs exercise

A Worthy Exercise

First, try to determine where each of your six needs are being met. Next, determine which two needs are most important to you.  Once you are able to identify your needs and the needs of others, we can then determine which needs are in conflict. Thus causing you to feel unfulfilled, empty and dissatisfied. Furthermore why healthy relationships are not being met.

By completing this exercise, you will have a greater appreciation for my next blog, Unleash The Power Within.  There, we will explore the 6 Human Needs at a practical and much deeper level.

A Scientific Validation Of Your Emotions

emotional synonym

Emotional Synonym

exciting, poignant, affecting, impassioned, sensitive, heated, hysterical, passionate, moving, nervous, spontaneous, touching, sentimental

I have read many definitions of emotions while studying human behaviour and as you can see when researching “emotional synonym” many words can be used to describe the same thing.  The scientific discourse on the subject has drifted to many meanings and there appears to be no clear consensus on a definition.

In this article I am going to weigh in on the subject of emotions by sharing the teachings of my former teacher Dr. John Demartini who draws his concepts from Universal Laws and principles.

Universal Law

Universe Laws state that there exists a divine design, a magnificent balance , a perfect underlying order that exists even at times of apparent disorder.  So let me try to explain what all this has to do with the nature of human emotions in the context of these laws.

Freeman Dyson, a renowned theoretical physicist was able to demonstrate that “our thoughts and emotions are nothing more than a cloud of charged particles of light energy,” thereby taking principles of the physical world and applying them to the metaphysical world, or the nature of the mind.

This gave scientific validation and a clearer understanding of our emotions from a universal perspective.

Universal Law Of Symmetry

The first principle that can be applied to our emotions is the Universal Law of Symmetry.  Newtonian physics states that there is not a positive without a negative, or negative without a positive, creating a perfect balance in our existence.

This speaks to the dualities that exist in our physical world and in our personal lives and in particular our emotions.  For example for every attraction there is repulsion, for every elation, a depression.  You cannot have joy without sorrow, happiness without sadness, pain without pleasure, or infatuation without resentment.

Emotional Synonym: What Does The Word ‘Emotion’ Really Mean?

As mortal beings we try to defy this Law of Symmetry.  In our illusionary world of instant gratification we seek pleasure, avoid pain and honour only our one sided nature.  Despite our illusions, our lesson is that this divine order prevails.

If we wordsmith or break down the word EMOTION, it playfully means to EMOTE (give off) IONS (positive or negative charges).  When we see more positives than negatives or more negatives than positives in our perception of any person, circumstance, situation or thing, we will have either a positive or a negative emotion.

The greater the charge the greater the emotion and stress has often been defined as lopsided emotions.  Extreme emotions takes us away from our true nature and we lower our self worth.

We tend to gravitate towards a false persona, acting either self righteous when we see more positives, or acting self deprecating when we perceive more negatives.  Our true nature is neither.

Perception Of The Mind

Perfectly balanced perception of mind is the highest form of self worth.  When we are emotionally centered , balanced, humble, and open hearted, we will naturally start to attract people, places, circumstances and events into our lives to help fulfill our destiny.

Another way to express this concept is through the Universal Law of Simple Harmonic Motion.  It states that your thoughts and feelings are unsteadied by extreme emotions and you will oscillate like a pendulum.

Note:  Looking for another emotional synonym?  Look here for another word for emotional

Emotional Duality

When your emotions are extreme you will need to steady them by minimizing the pendulous swings.  The pendulum swings between your emotional dualities of likes/dislikes, joys/sorrows, happy/sad, etc.  The pendulum will oscillate unless you are centered by balancing your perceptions of mind between these dualities.

Your thoughts and feelings are often unsteadied by ingratitude and uncertainty, living with memories of the past or seeing the future through the lens of the past, Sometimes this is referred to as our future imagined fears or our past remembered guilt’s.  Click here for a great read about Gratitude – An Attitude For Success!

Extreme emotional swings may spell a bipolar nature.  If you allow yourself extreme constant elation, you invite depression.  While a slower, smaller in amplitude, pendulous swing will minimize our emotional charges and with it, bring about order and certainty of mind.

To summarize, when your thoughts become unsteadied, you will go through these periodic emotional cycles and only by acknowledging the balance of your emotions can you express your true nature and your highest self worth.

This is a departure from traditional understanding of emotions, but certainly an interesting perspective most worthy of consideration.