Practicing the gratitude attitude as a family is a meaningful activity and encourages you and yours to have a thankful and grateful heart and mind.
Whine, whine, whine. I feel like that is all my kids do somedays. They complain that they have to go to school, that their younger siblings are “so annoying”, and that their dinner is “too” healthy. (And honestly, anything and everything in between).
So as we are heading into Thanksgiving, I wanted to turn the focus away from what they don’t have (ice cream for dinner) and to the many blessings they do have. Hence, the invention of the “Gratitude Attitude”.
How exactly was I going to encourage this change in mindset? I wanted the kids to start looking for the many blessings they have in their life and I wanted to lead them to this realization through discussion. I knew I would have to ask them guiding questions and that I wouldn’t be able to leave the questioning as open-ended as “What are you grateful for?” (Answer: my toys.) So I decided I would give them a specific and different question each night to really get them thinking and to keep it fun.
If you’ve been following along, you know that at dinner, we go around the table and everyone gives their “high and low”. Their “high” is the best thing that happened during their day and the “low” is their least favorite part. Since we already had a bit of structure to our dinner conversation, I decided it would be easy enough to add another talking point to the mealtime discussion.
To introduce the “Gratitude Attitude”, one night I simply stated, “Thanksgiving is a time to be…” And I let the kids chime in with “thankful”. I told them we were going to be implementing something called the “Gratitude Attitude”. Every night at dinner we would have the opportunity to discuss all of the amazing things that we have in our lives. The first night, I asked everyone to name someone not at the table that they are thankful for and why. Their answers were so sweet and insightful! I couldn’t wait to go forward!
To make the activity easy to incorporate, I wrote up a list of possible questions ahead of time. Take a look at them below.
Gratitude Attitude Questions
- Name one person, not at this table, you are grateful for and why.
- Tell one thing you used today that made your day easier.
- What is one act of kindness someone showed you today?
- Give one reason you are grateful for the person sitting across from you.
- Tell everyone a friend you are thankful for and why.
- Name a place in the house that makes you most happy or peaceful to be in.
- What is an invention you are grateful for and why?
- Tell one reason you are thankful for your school/work.
- What is a skill or quality you are thankful you possess?
- Who is someone you consider to be a hero and why?
- Which trip did we take that you are so grateful you had the opportunity to experience?
- Name a profession you are very thankful exists.
- Tell one thing you are grateful you don’t have to worry about.
- Why do you personally feel blessed to know and learn about Jesus?
- Tell why you are thankful to live in the United States.
- Which meal (that mom makes) are you most grateful for?
- State something unique about your family that you are proud of.
- Name an activity you are happy to participate in.
- Tell about a time someone let you borrow something of theirs and you were thankful for their generosity.
- Name someone younger than you whom you are grateful for.
- Which part of your everyday are you the happiest at?
- Who is someone in your community you are thankful for?
- Name a group or organization you are happy to be a part of.
- Which sound, smell and touch are you most grateful for?
- What about you are you most thankful for?
What’s great about the “Gratitude Attitude” is that you can implement it at any time. You could do the week of Thanksgiving, the entire month or, realistically, at anytime during the year. Gratitude is always welcome.
An Added Benefit:
When I started the “Gratitude Attitude” I figured the scope of it would last through dinner and possibly awhile afterwards. However, when I hear too much whining, I find myself calling out “Gratitude Attitude!” and the kids know I am giving them a gentle reminder to look for the good instead of focusing on their perceived bad.
I hope you join in the “Gratitude Attitude” soon!
Looking for amazing Thanksgiving recipes? Click here.