The Importance of Gratitude: Why Thanksgiving is More than just a Holiday



Thanksgiving is a delightful holiday. It’s that time of the year when families gather and spend a lot of time together. It also kicks off the season of many holidays and it’s normal to get lost in the hustle and bustle of the season. However, during the busiest time of the year, it’s important to remember the core value of what we are celebrating: gratitude.

One of the most important life skills we can give our children for their lifelong emotional well-being is gratitude. Children are generally more receptive when it comes to learning about gratitude and this can greatly contribute to their overall well-being and happiness.

During a season where our innate desire is to receive, we can teach our children a thing or two about gratitude that will go a long way as they grow older. Here are a few tips to remember when instilling gratitude during the Holiday season.


Have a mindful Thanksgiving reflection ritual.

Often, we ask our kids what they want for Christmas or what deals they are waiting for on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Create a balance by taking time off the festivities to create a quiet space for your and your little ones and list down all the things they are thankful for. This reminds them that while getting new things maybe exciting, being thankful for what we already have can be quite exhilarating too. Soon, you will see your kids being more thankful even when its not Thanksgiving.


Spend time in Nature.

Gratitude begins when we still our minds and focus on what is instead of what was or what will be. This can be done by taking short walks or even hikes in nature and taking a moment to appreciate the beauty of the world through the beautiful things nature has provided us with. Spending time with family members without the gadgets is such a special experience and is always a reason to be thankful.


Make thank you notes for guests / hosts.


Just right before your big Thanksgiving party, give your children a chance to reflect on those around them by encouraging them to write thank you notes to the guests who will be visiting your home. If you are visiting family, ask them to write notes to the hosts. This will teach them not just gratitude but also kindness and these two virtues always go hand in hand in creating memorable experiences that they will remember for a long time.

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