Updated: Oct 29, 2020
It's officially Fall and October is a month that we tend to focus on what we are thankful for. With Thanksgiving just around the corner, this reminds us of all the things that we should and can be thankful for!
In a day and age where instant gratification seems to be the new normal, we along with our children tend to lose sight of all the wonderful things we may take for granted.
Here are my 5 tips to hit the reset button for teaching gratitude:
1) Model Gratitude
Children model your behaviours more than you know, ever caught yourself saying "oh my she/he takes that after (insert relatives name here). By expressing gratitude, your kids will be sure to follow your lead.
2) I'm Grateful For...
Before bed, why not incorporate stating what you are grateful for as part of your bedtime routine.
It can go something like this...
"Tonight I'm grateful for..."
trying a new recipe that I wasn't sure the family would enjoytaking a break from answering emails so that I can watch a show with my kids
Then throw the 'ball in their court,' "what are you grateful for?"
Your child might follow suit with...
trying something new in classtalking to a new kid a recess
3) Always Look For The Positive
Find something positive in frustrating or disappointing situations and discuss it. Helping our children under that, there is still something to learn from a situation or mistake, allows us to be open-minded and bounce back on our feet a lot faster.
4) Follow-up With 'Why'
As our children get older, they are able to communicate the reason/message behind their statements. Continue the conversation and praise their thinking. This not only assists with the whole concept of gratitude but strengthens problem-solving & reasoning skills at the same time.
5) Create A Gratitude Jar!
Encourage your kids to write or draw what they are grateful for and ask that they place it in the jar. Have the jar in a common area such as the kitchen. I love reading items from our gratitude jar both on special occasions and on random days.
Why not start yours today and read what your family is grateful for at your thanksgiving celebration.
Gratitude is a positive attitude, that will teach your child how to live a life with the glass is 1/2 full mindset. Living a life with appreciation makes our children happier, more mindful of others and enable them to appreciate the small wins that lead to more significant victories.
When we adopt a grateful mindset, we cannot only improve our coping strategies but can bounce back and shake things off a lot quicker and try again.
What are you grateful for?
Here are some of the things my family is currently grateful for:
Our daughter (13 years old)
"Family, because you are part of my life, and I love you."
"You guys do so much for me and are always willing to help me."
Our son (10 years old)
"Our special handshake before school."
" Our health, it's something we should never take for granted."
"Creating memories for our family so that they will always have some things beautiful to look back on."
Sylvia Corzato is a parent consultant & behaviour coach, and owner of Success in Steps. With over 20 years of experience supporting children and their families, Sylvia provides parents with tailored support and strategies to help them understand the 'why' behind the behaviours along with 'what' is maintaining them.
Her mission is to enable parents to be the driving force behind reaching and maintaining their family goals.