Today’s kids and teens seem to feel entitled to anything they want. On the extreme side are those youngsters who have a demanding attitude towards everyone in their lives. Why some kids are ungrateful or uninterested in helping others is a mystery. So, as a parent, you must teach your children why and how to have an “attitude of gratitude.” The holiday season is the best time to teach empathy towards others, so here are some ways to teach gratitude.
1. Spend Your Money Mindfully
Do you buy everything your kids ask for? Do you bribe your children with gifts for doing chores or getting good grades? Stop doing that. Instead, teach your kids to be responsible because that’s what they should do, not to get a material reward.
Give them gifts only on special occasions and holidays. If they want something badly enough, show your child how to save up for it or have them wait until a birthday, for example.
2. Be the Best Example You Can Be
Show your kids how to have a mindset of gratitude and service. If your kids get birthday gifts from relatives, sit them down to write thank-you cards together. If you volunteer your time someplace, take your children with you occasionally, so they can see you doing good deeds. Teach your kids caring and an attitude of gratitude by example.
3. Encourage Your Children to Be Considerate of Others
When the holidays or a birthday comes up, encourage your children to make a card or craft a gift. If they have a job, ask your child to set aside some money to shop for the holidays. They can make their own list and you can go shopping together. If you have an elderly neighbor, make baked goods and a card for them and bring it over together. Your child will learn how good it feels to help others.
4. Motivate Your Children to Help Around the House
Instead of paying your child to do chores, reward them with your time. Your children should do chores to help around the house. This is their way of showing their gratitude for all the work you, as parents, do on a regular basis.
So instead of giving them money, take a walk, watch a movie or play a board game, for example. Make sure to spend quality time with your child instead of spending money on them.
With these four simple steps, you can gift your children with an attitude of gratitude this holiday season.