Are you looking for an easy way to practice gratitude, boost your mood, and make focusing on the good (instead of just the laundry!) a normal part of your mom life?
In this post we’ll first discuss why gratitude matters so much for Moms and then we’ll cover some practical ways you can add gratitude to your already busy schedule. Let’s dive in…
How do I fit a gratitude practice into my busy Mom day?
this is a question i get a lot when a Mom friend or reader wants start at the beginning or when she’s tried to start a gratitude habit but can’t get anything to stick. the truth is while there are MANY benefits of practicing gratitude, as a Mom you have to be able to do it in a way that works alongside all your other responsibilities. otherwise, you’ll forget or give up (been there!).
for Moms, practicing daily gratitude can mean many things. maybe you want to:
- start a gratitude habit so it becomes a more natural, normal part of your day
- start a gratitude journal to keep track of your blessings and watch them add up
- start a gratitude list because this feels the most doable in your busy mom life
- help your kids focus on gratitude so they appreciate more of what they have
perhaps you recently purchased the Kid’s Gratitude Journal Collection, grabbed the Time Out for Moms Gratitude Journal for yourself, or heard a podcast about the benefits of practicing gratitude. maybe starting a gratitude practice sounds like exactly what your mom-life needs but when you think about your day you’re left wondering:
“How in the WORLD am i supposed to fit one more thing (gratitude) into my already busy schedule?”
now THIS is a question i can’t wait to answer! so before we dive into the “how” to start a gratitude practice (and stick with it!!), let’s answer this important question first:
WHY does gratitude matter for Moms?
your time as a Mom is limited. without a clear “WHY is it worth it to do this when my day is already jam packed,” i am completely, totally, and 100% sure no matter what inside scoop i share with you on HOW to start a gratitude practice, you will lose steam in a few days.
so the best way to answer your “how do i start a gratitude practice” question is to first show you “why gratitude matters in your life as a Mom.”
to help, i’d like to share a few of my very favorite quotes from research and other smart, well-written people. these are the EXACT quotes and facts i focus on after a long day when i find myself thinking…
“Why is it worth it to practice gratitude as a Mom?”
well for starters, this is exactly what comes up when i google “the importance of gratitude” (note – i had to zoom OUT because there is always so much goodness here). i don’t know about you but when i google something and THIS MANY qualified sources are saying it matters, i tend to listen.
you don’t even have to click on the links here to be convinced that gratitude is a game changer when it comes to appreciating the small moments, creating a positive mindset in your home, boosting your health, and feeling like you are enough. but when i did click on the links, here are some of my favorite points (that i know you’ll love too!):
- Gratitude is a thankful appreciation for what an individual receives, whether tangible or intangible. With gratitude, people acknowledge the goodness in their lives. … Gratitude helps people feel more positive emotions, relish good experiences, improve their health, deal with adversity, and build strong relationships. (health.harvard.edu)
- In a series of studies, my colleagues and I have helped people systematically cultivate gratitude, usually by keeping a “gratitude journal” in which they regularly record the things for which they’re grateful. We’ve studied more than one thousand people, from ages eight to 80, and found that people who practice gratitude consistently report a host of benefits…Physical – Stronger immune systems and sleep longer and feel more refreshed upon waking. Physiological – Higher levels of positive emotions. Social – More helpful, generous, and compassionate. (greatergood.berkley.edu)
- Giving thanks and expressing gratitude is one of the oldest concepts in society. It reminds us of how special, beautiful, and blessed our lives are even when we are faced with challenging, stressful, and overwhelming situations. (verywellmind.com)
my next favorite resource when i need some motivation to start or get back to my gratitude practice is henri nouwen. do you know him? oh my goodness he has all the best words. here is a favorite quote from him on gratitude:
“To be grateful for the good things that happen in our lives is easy, but to be grateful for all of our lives – the good as well as the bad, the moments of joy as well as the moments of sorrow, the successes as well as the failures, the rewards as well as the rejections – that requires hard spiritual work. Still, we are only truly grateful people when we can say thank you to all that has brought us to the present moment. As long as we keep dividing our lives between events and people we would like to remember and those we would rather forget, we cannot claim the fullness of our beings as a gift of God to be grateful for.Let’s not be afraid to look at everything that has brought us to where we are now and trust that we will soon see in it the guiding hand of a loving God.
the final go-to i want to share today when it comes to the why gratitude is so important for your Mom life is a part of an article i read here at everydayhealth.com. it was kind of random but i clicked on it in one of my many searches and this quote really stood out to me (my favorite parts are in bold):
“Ultimately gratitude can help adults and children alike, and the best thing parents can do is be a good role model for their children. So the next time something good — or even not so good — happens, express your appreciation out loud. Everyone will benefit from it.“
when i read this, it reminded me of a facebook post i read once where a mom wrote about encouraging her son to look for the player who lost the best. i’ve looked and looked and i can’t find it again but the main idea was, after each baseball game she and her son would choose the player from the losing team who they both thought lost the best.
the point was to pick out the player who was keeping a positive attitude (showing gratitude the best) despite losing. it struck me as SUCH a good way to teach this lesson – the importance of looking for the good even when things don’t go our way – and it is something my son and i do now at his baseball games.
so let’s get back to the original question...HOW DO YOU START A GRATITUDE PRACTICE? well first you have to decide on your WHY. why is it important to YOU to practice daily gratitude? here with just these few examples, it is clear that the benefits of gratitude for Moms include:
- relishing good experiences. this means savoring the small, joyful motherhood moments that often get overlooked in the chaos of the day.
- feeling more positive emotions. this means even on those days where nothing goes as planned, you’ll still be able to count your blessings and see the good because you are in the habit!
- trusting God’s guiding hand. gratitude has a sneaky way of leading to more gratitude. the more our blessings add up, the better we are at seeing God’s presence in our days (even the messy, hard ones!).
- setting a good example. Moms who model gratitude raise kids who are also better at choosing gratitude. check out THIS POST for 5 Surprising Benefits of Gratitude and Kids!
- better health. this includes a stronger immune system and BETTER SLEEP. i don’t know a Mom on this planet who doesn’t need better sleep!
which of these game-changing benefits stands out to you? write it down, put it in your phone, or otherwise remember this why. then when life gets busy, nothing seems to be going right, and you don’t know how you can possibly fit gratitude in your day, you can remember why gratitude matters to you as a Mom and stay motivated to keep up your practice!
be sure to check back next week when we get to the “how to practice gratitude.” i have a NEW PRODUCT to share with you that will make it super easy to weave gratitude into your day, no matter how busy your schedule might be!
other helpful resources:
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