Heartfulness

Gratitude

 Activities Pre-teens and Teens

Journal

  1. Select a journal and decorate it if you like.
  2. Pick a pen or draw what you're grateful for with colored pencils.
  3. Schedule a time. Routine makes it easier to remember! 
  4. Happy Journaling!

Bedtime routine

 

Before going to sleep, play a mini video of your day in your mind from the time you woke till  now.  

 

What are 3 things that you are grateful for today?

 

Gratitude letter

 

Who will you write a gratitude letter to?

 

Friend?  Family member? Coach? Teacher? ...

 

Think about it! 


Activity Children

Gratitude for Younger Children

Younger children many need some prompts.

It takes practice!

Engage with them by letting hear what you're grateful for.

 

 "I’m grateful for…"

"Thank you for…"

"I appreciate…" 


 Activity Children, Pre-teens and Teens

Four Ways to Foster Gratitude

 

Grateful kids and teens are less likely to experience depression or jealousy, and more likely to do well in school, according to research from the American Psychological Association. Researchers have identified four parts of gratitude that help children practice gratefulness using the “notice-think-feel-do” questions:

 

Notice: This helps children see the amount of thought that goes into a gift. For example, if they’re given a sports jersey you could say, “Notice how it’s your favorite player’s name?” or “Notice how it’s in your favorite color?” 

 

Think: Help children understand why they received the gift by asking, “Why do you think you received this gift?” Maybe it’s for a birthday, or holiday—or maybe just because someone loves them.

 

Feel: Give children the space to process their emotions by asking, “How does this gift make you feel?” Common answers could be happy, excited, or loved. 

 

Do: Remind children to express thanks by asking, “Is there a way you want to show how you feel?” It could be by making a card, giving the gift-giver a hug, or simply remembering to say thank you. 

Kids may not always be able to answer all of these questions, but practicing them will reinforce the habit of expressing gratitude and appreciation over time. 

 

                                                                    Source: https://www.mindful.org/four-ways-to-foster-gratitude-in-children/

Book on Gratitude for Children

"An awesome book of thanks" by Dallas Clayton.

It reminds us of so many things to be grateful for!

Read A loud : "An awesome book of thanks"


 Activities Pre-teens and Teens

Gratitude is Magical!

Studies have shown that people who practice gratitude regularly:

  • feel 25% happier
  • are more likely to be kind and helpful to others
  • are healthier, more enthusiastic, interested and determined
  • sleep better

Children and teens who practice gratitude

  • get higher grades,
  • are more satisfied with their lives,
  • are more integrated socially
  • and show fewer signs of depression.

Kind Thoughts

Activity Children, Pre-teens and Teens

Sending Kind Thoughts

Train your Brain to be Kinder

The Science of Kindness


Positive Neuroplasticity

 Activities Pre-teens and Teens

Here’s how to take in the good to make the positive stick

rather than slide away  in three simple steps.

 1. Look for good facts, and turn them into good experiences. 

Good facts include positive events – like the taste of good coffee or getting an unexpected compliment – and positive aspects of the world and yourself. When you notice something good, let yourself feel good about it.

Try to do this at least a half dozen times a day. There are lots of opportunities to notice good events, and you can always recognize good things about the world and yourself. Each time takes just 30 seconds or so. It’s private; no one needs to know you are taking in the good. You can do it on the fly in daily life, or at special times of reflection, like just before falling asleep (when the brain is especially receptive to new learning).

Notice any reluctance to feeling good. Such as thinking that you don’t deserve to, or that it’s selfish, vain, or even shameful to feel pleasure. Or that if you feel good, you will lower your guard and let bad things happen.

Barriers to feeling good are common and understandable – but they get in the way of you taking in the resources you need to feel better, have more strength, and have more inside to give to others. So acknowledge them to yourself, and then turn your attention back to the good news. Keep opening up to it, breathing and relaxing, letting the good facts affect you.

It’s like sitting down to a meal: don’t just look at it—taste it!

 

2.  Really enjoy the experience. 

Most of the time, a good experience is pretty mild, and that’s fine. But try to stay with it for 20 or 30 seconds in a row – instead of getting distracted by something else.

As you can, sense that it is filling your body, becoming a rich experience. As Marc Lewis and other researchers have shown, the longer that something is held in awareness and the more emotionally stimulating it is, the more neurons that fire and thus wire together, and the stronger the trace in memory.

You are not craving or clinging to positive experiences, since that would ultimately lead to tension and disappointment. Actually, you are doing the opposite: by taking them in and filling yourself up with them, you will increasingly feel less fragile or needy inside, and less dependent on external supplies; your happiness and love will become more unconditional, based on an inner fullness rather than on whether the momentary facts in your life happen to be good ones.

 

3.  Intend and sense that the good experience is sinking into you.

People do this in different ways. Some feel it in their body like a warm glow spreading through their chest like the warmth of a cup of hot cocoa on a cold wintry day. Others visualize things like a golden syrup sinking down inside, bringing good feelings and soothing old places of hurt, filling in old holes of loss or yearning; a child might imagine a jewel going into a treasure chest in her heart. And some might simply know conceptually, that while this good experience is held in awareness, its neurons are firing busily away, and gradually wiring together

 

Any single time you do this will make only a little difference. But over time those little differences will add up, gradually weaving positive experiences into the fabric of your brain and your self.

 

SourceRick Hanson, Ph.D.

A simple animation about the impact of focusing on the important things in life.