An attitude of gratitude

A short while ago I wrote about the importance of delayed gratification to happiness and success in regard to spending and in regard to life. I think another important value or skill to teach our children and indeed ourselves is to have an attitude of gratitude.

thank you in every language

 

Photo Credit: Woodleywonderwork

By being genuinely thankful for a lovely meal placed before us we  tend to eat it more slowly, taste each mouthful, sit at the table longer and have more relaxed and better conversations. We are satisfied and happy. Whoever cooked for us feels respected and valued, they are probably smiling too feeling that they are absolutely good enough and that you understand how hard they have worked. Alls well with the world.

Imagine the opposite. We sit down in a hurry, annoyed the meal has interrupted our TV show. We are annoyed too that there is no gravy. We don’t say thank you or look impressed so whoever cooked for us feels disrespected and that they wasted their time. The meal is eaten quickly interspersed only with a bit of nagging and frosty silence.

My goodness saying thank you and appreciating what has been done for you make a big difference.

My children after every meal say thank you mummy for  a lovely meal-  its a rule – they have to say thanks and they have to acknowledge the food. Okay I’m not a great cook, it may not always be genuine, but I am hoping they will do this at other peoples houses and that the importance of acknowledging and thanking people who have worked for or helped them is going in.

An attitude of gratitude stops us always wanting more or better. It is good manners. It is anti-greedy. It is to appreciate what we have right now today.

It is important.

At night my children say a gratitude prayer for the day where they thank God for 3 good things about their day. Even if you don’t have faith you can still encourage your children to end the day focused on and acknowledging three positive  things, This will help them sleep well it will encourage them to have a positive outlook and value what has gone well during their day. A positive outlook and a sense of appreciation will stop them feeling dissatisfied and wanting more.

Whats this got to do with money and budgeting?

Well a lot really. If you value and are grateful for money that comes your way you will spend it wisely and take care of it. You wont just fritter it away, gamble it or waste it.The same is true with possessions, if you are truly thankful for them you will take care of them, they will last longer and fully serve their purpose. You will also thank people properly who have treated you and of  course this way they are more likely to treat you again too.

Dissatisfaction, and wanting more are  often the attributes of a person who  overspends, over drinks, overeats. Try and foster an attitude of gratitude in your home. Start by role modelling, rule making and by creating new habits.

 

Thank you for taking the time to read such a long post!

 

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13 Comments

  1. judithwelltree
    April 4, 2012 / 21:19

    This is so important, it is a lovely post and reflects a lovely family! Thanks for sharing it with us.

    • Becky
      April 5, 2012 / 07:12

      Thankyou

  2. April 5, 2012 / 11:43

    I love the link you have made here. I agree, we can budget all we want but if we fail to nurture a basic satisfaction with what we have we are just going to be deeply unhappy. Hankering after stuff is bad for our well being.
    Thanks for posting xxx

    • Becky
      April 8, 2012 / 19:19

      Than you for taking the time to comment. isn’t it heartening when we realise wso mnay of us share the same values for our children

  3. April 8, 2012 / 19:06

    Wonderful post. We had a conversation about this very subject with the children today. You are a very special lady dear Becky xx I have bookmarked this and will reread often.

    • Becky
      April 8, 2012 / 19:13

      What a lovely comment Tracy. Thank you .

  4. April 8, 2012 / 19:07

    Hello, new reader here. I totally agree and I think putting the focus on what we do have not what we don’t makes for a happier life. I want my children to be grateful and happy.

    • Becky
      April 8, 2012 / 19:15

      Hello Ella, I completely agree with you greateful happy and content is so much better than striving driven and comeotitive,

  5. The Thrifty Mum
    April 9, 2012 / 19:51

    Argh it really annoys me when people are unthankful and grabby and greedy! I was brought up to be grateful for everything our parents worked hard to provide. I think children who are ungrateful turn into adults who are constantly comparing themselves to others and believe they deserve more (why haven’t I got a better job, more pay etc etc). It’s a really horrible character trait!

    • Becky
      April 9, 2012 / 19:59

      Oh I so agree stamp it out!!

  6. mother.wife.me
    April 23, 2012 / 12:44

    Hello, great post! It brings to mind that saying about knowing the cost of everything and the value of nothing. Something which can occur very easily in our culture. It is so important to instil good values in our children from the youngest possible age!

  7. April 25, 2012 / 20:34

    Lovely post and a lovely reminder to be more grateful for things I often take for granted 🙂

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