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Teach your child gratitude | The Guardian Nigeria News

In a world where children feel entitled to what they get from their parents, instilling gratitude for what they have can be a huge task. Gratitude, according to the Oxford Dictionary, is the quality of being grateful; Be willing to show gratitude for and return the favor

Young children can be particularly self-centered in a joyful way, so teaching gratitude from this age helps them internalize this culture. A 2019 study published in the Journal of Happiness Studies found that gratitude is linked to happiness in children by age five, meaning that instilling gratitude in your child at a young age can help him become a happier person.

Practicing gratitude sets children up to be more sensitive and empathetic to the plight of others, as well as less demanding and possessive overall. While understanding how to be grateful is essentially a lifelong learning process, there are many ways to instill these qualities in your child in gentle and relatable ways.

Modeling gratitude in an obvious way. Although it helps our little ones to embrace this quality easily, most parents are not faithful to it. Children learn and absorb much of what their parents do, so if you don’t actively practice outward praise and gratitude in an accessible and expressive way, there’s a good chance it will become a more difficult concept for your child to learn.

Your child should be encouraged to say ‘thank you’ regularly. Offer gentle reminders, ‘Your brother let you go first, what do you say to him?’ or ‘What do you tell grandma to give you cookies?’ Although a ‘thank you’ may seem forced, it does not evoke any genuine gratitude; Consider this a first step in the process. This can help children begin to recognize when others have given them something, whether it’s something tangible like a gift or something intangible like time.

You should read the book with your child, as they will develop the insight of gratitude. Reading with your child is important on many levels; Your child will be exposed to a variety of wonderful children’s literature that will build their mental and emotional understanding. There are books focused on gratitude to further develop this trait.

Engage in giving with your child. It could be her perfect clothes, shoes and toys, making sure she is involved in putting a smile on another child’s face. It will help instill a sense of generosity, encouraging connection and empathy.

Make sure you have conversations about gratitude with your child. As a parent, talk to your child about what they should be grateful for, what they think and feel about the things they are grateful for, and what they should do to express gratitude. As your child goes through life, receiving experiences and even gifts, these conversations will help increase their mental, emotional capacity for appreciation and gratitude.

Most importantly, make gratitude a part of your day, every day. This can be by expressing gratitude after a family meal or before going to bed, just keep it regular. This daily practice will help your child get into a routine of practicing thinking about gratitude throughout their day.

Making gratitude a priority in your home will not only benefit your child, but adults will likely experience a much-needed boost in happiness and well-being as well. Experiment with different strategies to help determine which gratitude practices help everyone best experience and express their feelings of gratitude.

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