Ready or not, the holidays are here! ‘Tis the season for delicious foods, sharing traditions with friends and family, and taking time to reflect about what we are thankful for in our lives.
We kick off the holiday season with Thanksgiving and there is no better time to stop and count our blessings. Talking together as a family about what everyone is thankful for can be a great way to help children realize that not everyone in the world experiences the same comforts and opportunities as them. They may not understand that not everyone has a loving family, food to eat, and a safe place to play.
It is easy, even for adults, to take what we have for granted or to forget that even some of the simplest things we have are reasons to be thankful. Reflecting on all of those things helps to make happier adults and happier kids, too. In fact, kids who show gratitude for what they have are shown to do better in school, are more optimistic, and feel more satisfied with their lives. Take some extra time together during the holidays to talk about what it means to be thankful and what you have to be thankful for.
You can keep it simple by asking questions like, “What makes you happy?” or “What happened today that made you feel good?” You can also model being thankful by letting your daughter know you are grateful for her, too. If you are spending some quality time just the two of you, tell her how thankful you are for having that time with her and how special she is to you.
This blog post from Girl Scouts of the USA also has some great tips on how to be thankful during the holidays and how to incorporate gratitude into your daily lives all year long.