Being grateful is a skill and conscious choice – it’s about feeling thankful for what we have (without wanting more) and appreciating the small moments that makes us smile. Gratitude can help adults and children live happy, satisfying lives while finding increased self-esteem, hope, empathy and optimism.
Children learn by watching your behaviors and attitudes, so how do you teach them gratitude?
Dr. Sheila Cason, pediatrician at CPCMG Redhawk, shares five ways to encourage your family to embrace gratitude:
- Keep a gratitude journal: write down what makes you thankful and share with your children. Ask what makes them happy.
- Model gratitude: say “please” and “thank you” to show appreciation and encourage them to do the same.
- Speak positively: watch your complaining and negative words. It’s hard to be grateful and complain at the same time.
- Look for the upside: demonstrate how to get through tough moments and find the “good” that’s in every the situation.
- Laugh and relax: loosen up and enjoy the moment, helping you to see the good that is already there…learn to appreciate it!