Gratitude Monday – Building Gratitude Muscles
“Gratitude can transform common days into thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, and change ordinary opportunities into blessings.” ~William Arthur Ward~
It is said that a habit is created in 21 days. What a more relevant time to start the daily practice of gratitude for yourself and your family than the actual month of Thanksgiving? It’s a no-brainer, right? The “official” day of Thanksgiving is in 25 days, giving us a little wiggle room to scratch out a plan for this month. The internet is filled with ideas for gratitude journals, activities, quotes and inspiration to fit your family’s needs.
Probably almost a year ago I created personalized gratitude journals for myself and for my kids, yet despite my good intentions, the busyness of daily life butted in and I lost my momentum (and quite honestly, I got tired of the whining and eye rolling from the older ones). However, despite this, (or because of it?) I have every intention to get back on the gratitude wagon today. I’ll begin again by having us write one (or more, hopefully) things we are grateful for in our notebooks, then share each night at dinner (now that sports are thankfully winding down and we can actually eat consistently together again… Hey! There’s my first entry!)
Last year for my youngest, we created a brown paper tree on the wall and would write each thing she was grateful for on autumn-hued construction paper leaves, and then taped them up each night. It was the highlight of her day and our family loved reading her sweet, innocent notes. In fact, her childlike gratitude was contagious because friends, family and neighbors who stopped in would add a leaf as well and by the time Thanksgiving rolled around, we had a very bushy tree filled with love, gratitude and abundance.
My family was surprisingly disappointed when I finally took the tree down after Christmas (I admit, I have an obsessive/compulsive need for decluttering after the holidays) but in my defense, I did take photos for the memories, kept a few special leaves and plan on repeating this experience once again this season.
So, like I did, you may experience resistance, sighs, snickers and eye rolls, but forge ahead brave people, because deep down, they love it and more importantly, they need it! The habit of gratitude is one that will serve your family for a lifetime.
Here are a few simple ideas to get you rolling…
For younger children: A free gratitude printable booklet
A sweet idea for big kids:
A fun outdoor Thankful Tree:
Share with us how you cultivate an attitude of gratitude in your family~