“Make Gratitude a Habit in Your Home” by Savannah Slone

Our lives get hectic and we get stressed. It happens to the best of us. We get sucked in and forget what is important in life. We move from one task to the next, without remembering to appreciate our lives and the people we care for. When we take the time to adopt more positive outlooks, our perspective shifts and we feel less weighed down. When we’re kind to others, they are uplifted and feel driven to pay kindness forward. Take a few minutes every so often to look around and notice what and whom you’re grateful for. Even the smallest details deserve to be appreciated. Say thank you like you mean it more often. This can be to your coworkers, your partner, your children, your barista, or the person who held the door open for you. Let those around you know that they are valued.

To make gratitude a habit in your home, spend time journaling about what you’re grateful for. Create daily lists of your privileges and opportunities, any small moments that made you smile, and people who made your day better than it would have been had they not been present. As you write in your journal, be sure to appreciate yourself, as well. Reflect on occasions where you made yourself proud or were kind. You deserve self-love and appreciation just as much as everyone else.

Another way to further incorporate gratitude into your family’s lifestyle, make a habit of discussing what you’re each grateful for over dinner. We don’t have to wait for Thanksgiving to show our appreciation. When I was a teenager, I attended summer camps that had gratitude circles in the yard before going in to eat each meal. We would take turns voluntarily stepping into the circle and naming what we want to express gratitude. Sometimes it would be to thank a fellow camper for being inclusive or helpful and other times it would be to thank the weather for being beautiful or the deer for strolling through and reminding us that this is their home, too. We’d show our gratefulness for the food we ate and the opportunity we had to attend the camp. With this being said, you don’t have to be at a camp that values gratitude to adopt this mindset. If you open yourself up and allow yourself to be aware of all of the good that naturally occurs in your everyday life, you will be positively affected. By making the mealtime routine of being grateful, as a family, you will all begin noticing more. You’ll want to be mindful so that you can have a mental list to report over the table that evening. This is an excellent practice for yourself, but will really benefit your children. By learning the importance of being a kind, mindful and thankful person, they will grow into adults equipped to change the world for the better.

The art of sending thank you cards is slowly dying out. My mother instilled this practice in me from an early age, after receiving gifts at birthday parties. Now, I like to send them to people who gift me with anything, whether it a physical item or a compliment or act of kindness that brightened my day. Sending and receiving letters is fun! To open up the mailbox and find a note informing them that they are appreciated can make their day, in return. Do good deeds for others and when they do good deeds for you, thank them with sincerity. What you put out into the world will come back to you.

When you’re giving and being kind, you will find gratitude in your heart for making someone else’s day better, as well. A great way to make a habit of being mindful and kind is through Get it Going Now’s monthly kindness box. Each month, Get it Going Now subscribers receive a box which contains instructions, materials and cool souvenirs that result in a project to perform a good deed. By subscribing to Get it Going Now, you will feel inspired by your monthly opportunity to practice kindness.

Learn more about Get it Going Now here: https://www.getitgoingnow.com