Your Attitude of Gratitude Counts, Mama

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Here we are already well into the holiday season, and I can’t help but find it ironic that my mind has been thinking a lot about gratitude. 

Tis the season to be thankful, right?

Here are the two main thoughts circulating through my mind:

1) I want to be grateful and thankful for all things and in all circumstances, because I truly believe blessings are everywhere and things don’t just happen by chance. 

2) I really want to instill in my children the spirit of thankfulness and gratitude. 

Now I really want to take this time to break down these two thoughts for you because, if you’re anything like me, you’ve got similar thoughts floating around inside your mind, too. 

To start, I really do desire to be grateful and thankful for all things, and I can honestly say that this was not my natural disposition throughout the course of my life. In the past I’ve focused a lot on the negative, have had a hard time seeing the joy in every circumstance, and didn’t have that mind’s eye of gratitude. 

But now, after much deliberate practice and repetition, I can say that I am now more naturally disposed to the feelings and thoughts of gratitude and joy. 

For one, a MAJOR life event just happened to me and my husband and, while most people would be in utter panic and disarray, we look at this time and this opportunity as a blessing. We see the true goodness in the situation and our eyes are more fixed instead on what is to come and not on the present moment. 

Like I said, it took much time and practice to put gratitude first instead of fear, worry, anxiety, or anger. And for many, many years I have incorporated a gratitude journal into my daily prayer and mindset practice. 

All I do is write down five things I’m thankful for each morning, and most of the things I list are very tiny or commonly insignificant parts of life… the birds chirping, nature, my home. 

At least once a week you’ll see that coffee has made the list. 

(Hey, I’m a mama to two little humans, a wife, and a business owner… of course coffee made that list.)

In all honesty, I really wish everyone would work on this spirit of gratitude in their own lives because I’ve seen what a difference it has made in mine. (And, now that I’m “on the other side,” it’s almost painful to watch those who don’t live with this spirit of gratitude. Life was meant to be enjoyed, cherished, and celebrated, so let’s see how we can best live that out.)

And secondly, I truly wish to instill the spirit of thankfulness and gratitude, and as is evident with my own life, sometimes we have to teach others (our kids) to practice that spirit of gratitude. 

So, for me and my family, now is the time. Now is the time to practice the spirit of thankfulness and gratitude, when our babies are young, because then they won’t know any different. They won’t know what it is like to live in a home that is absent of gratitude. They will be brought up with gratitude and thankfulness spoken of in their home. 

Those early years, man, that’s when all the magic happens. That’s when we can instill in our children the different virtues and character traits that are important to us, and we can do so rather easily. But when you haven’t been raised in that type of environment, it takes a lot more work as an adult to change that mindset and perspective. It’s possible, but it’s tough. 

So, how about this holiday season we speak more about those feelings and attitudes of gratitude. 

In front of your children, comment on the fact that you are so thankful for family time together, for laughter and joy, for a community that is rich in hospitality, for beautiful weather, and for this time to take a second and breathe. 

And begin asking your children, even very early on, what they are thankful for, what they are happy about, what they find joy in… and that, my mamas, is how you begin instilling gratitude into your family’s life little by little.  

 

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Laura Lynn, a native of Kansas, is a proud wife, aunt, friend, Kansas Jayhawk basketball fan, Parent Coach & Child Behavior Consultant, and momma to her adorable children, John Paul (April 2018) & Emily (February 2020). Laura Lynn began dating her husband, Michael, in January 2016 and quickly realized that when she said, "There's no place like home," she was no longer referring to Kansas as Auburn would become her permanent home. Life has been a whirlwind for Laura Lynn since meeting her husband: she married Michael within one year of dating him and their house flooded as soon as they got back from their honeymoon, thus causing them to live in a hotel for over two months as a newly married couple. As soon as a tree came through the roof of their home, they decided to make life easier by moving into a new house and having a baby within a months time of each other. Let's just say that Laura Lynn likes to make things interesting! When she isn't playing on the floor or making John Paul & Emily laugh, Laura Lynn devotes her extra free time to to her online business: coaching parents and educating them on child behavior, parenting tips, and raising children. You can find Laura Lynn on her website at: www.LauraLynnLaPointe.com and on Facebook / Instagram / Pinterest @lauralynnlapointe.