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  • Writer's picturePaula Azevedo, PhD

Inviting More Gratitude

Last week I started a series called Cultivating Self Compassion. Today’s post is a part two of this five part series. I’m creating this series about self-compassion as a response to the intense emotions and challenges I’ve witnessed other educators have and even experienced myself during these challenging times. Many educators have been extremely hard on themselves even though we’re all doing the best that we can during extraordinary times. It really benefits no one, especially our students, if we’re constantly beating ourselves up and running ourselves ragged.

Last week I spoke about inviting self-compassion in and one way we can cultivate self-compassion. By the way, if you missed that post you can check it out HERE. In today’s post I’m going to share another technique you can incorporate in your daily routines to nurture self-compassion.

Daily gratitude practice

The second way to cultivate self-compassion is by having a daily gratitude practice. You can start or end your day with writing down what you’re grateful for that day. This practice doesn’t take long to do and it’s something that I just add to my daily planner. These thankful moments in your daily routine can help put life into perspective. So often we get stuck in our inner thoughts, which may be negative and replaying old stories and events. A daily gratitude practice can break the negative thought patterns and you might even begin to observe yourself catching yourself in a moment of negative thoughts and recognize that actually the negative talk is not the present reality and you drop the negative thought and bring in some gratitude.

There have been studies conducted about the practice of gratitude and researchers have found that people who maintained a gratitude journal reported being more content and optimistic in their life. Other studies have shown that being aware of what you’re thankful for can help you feel more connected with others and willing to help, and yes even being more self-compassionate. There are so many benefits to including a daily routine of thankful moments, and you can of course include your students in practicing gratitude too.

You can include in your lessons a gratitude journal entry each week or create a bulletin board where students can post their thankful moments. You can include a gratitude activity in your morning meeting routines and so much more. Introducing gratitude to our students lives is an easy way to support their own growth, development and compassion towards others and themselves. I have a video where I share one way to incorporate gratitude into your classroom routine.

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