My Books

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Bratitude or Gratitude? by Linda McQuinn Carlblom

We're only a week away from Thanksgiving and everyone's talking about being thankful. It's a good practice, but one we sometimes don't let filter down to our kids. Let's face it--kids can be kinda selfish. Without some intentional guidance they can turn into downright brats. I hate that word! I never called my kids brats and never let anyone else say that about them either. How dare they! But truth is, they sometimes were.
And so am I.
And so are you.
So how do we avoid being brats, whatever our age?
Thankfulness. Gratitude. Living with appreciation for the people in our lives. Even the ones who are tough to tolerate. They teach us patience. Even those less fortunate. They teach us compassion. And especially those we love. They teach us joy.

How can we pass this grateful living on to our children? By pointing out blessings.

"Look at that cute old couple holding hands."
"I'm so thankful for this cold ice cream cone on this hot day."
"That sunshine feels glorious."
"Look how beautiful those flowers are."
"Seeing those kids riding their bikes through the puddles makes me feel happy."
"Look how kind that man is to his dog."
"Thank you for taking your plate to the sink."

Statements like these train your child's eye to see the good in the world. It cultivates appreciation. It transforms bratitude to gratitude. And it makes the world a nicer place for us all.

So go ahead. Start looking for blessings and feel your thankfulness overflow.