Graham had come in for some criticism for his contributions in recent weeks, but he hopes that Sunday's display can kick-start his Sunderland career.
"I worked hard for the team against Newcastle and I was pleased with my performance," he said. "I didn't get on the score sheet but I think that was the best I've played in a Sunderland shirt.
"Of course I would have liked to have scored, but if ever a game was about the result, rather than individual glory, then the derby is it.
"It was a great team performance, a fantastic victory which has lifted everyone around the place and that's what counts.
"But it did my confidence a world of good too because we are very attack minded now and that suits my game."