Webster’s dictionary defines thankfulness as, “the state of being grateful; to express gratitude.” Would you describe yourself as one who is full of gratitude? Do you take time each day to consider the things in your life which deserve thanks? Many people do not. Are you a more proficient complainer than a “thanker”? Is your glass half full or half empty? Unfortunately, most of us don’t truly appreciate what we have until it’s gone. If you do consider yourself grateful, do your actions reveal such a person or do you only tell yourself and others you’re grateful.
Living a life full of thanksgiving and gratitude is a skill like any other; it takes practice to perfect. You can not become a grateful person merely by thinking you want to be grateful. You must develop new habits through recognition of the countless things in your life and our world worthy of thanks. Acknowledge and appreciate the small, everyday good things in your life, don’t take them for granted.
Begin thinking outside of yourself and you’ll take another step towards achieving a more thankful life. I often tell my own children that the less and less they think of their own needs and desires; the happier their “self” will become. It may take a few years for this concept to make sense to a child but eventually, when you witness your children modeling great acts of compassion for others, you’ll see the joy and happiness in their hearts.
Mom, you are your child’s best role model. Are you modeling the traits to your children that you want them to model to you and others? As you prepare for the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday, determine some specific ways to cultivate more thankfulness and gratitude in your own life. Prepare a list of things for which you are grateful and recite them during your Thanksgiving festivities.
Remember this important truth; the many blessings we receive are beyond our ability to create. Consider these words from Charles E. Jefferson, “Gratitude is born in hearts that take time to count up past mercies.”
Kirsten Berger Coaching