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.
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!