What Third Graders Can Teach Us About Gratitude

November 23, 2017


It’s easy to be thankful today, and every day, for our blessings: loving family, supportive friends, delicious meals, great jobs.


But, think about all the blessings that arise from what you don’t have.


Recently, I watched a video of some third graders who made a classroom presentation about being thankful … for what they don’t have. Today, I want to share the transcript of this presentation because I LOVE what these eight- and nine-year-olds are learning.


In class, we talked a lot about having a growth mindset instead of having a fixed mindset, so instead of saying, “I don’t know,” we say, “I don’t know ... YET.”


Instead of saying, “This is too hard,” we say, “This may take more time and effort.”


So how can we apply having a growth mindset to “gratefulness,” which is the word of November?


Many people say:


-   “I am thankful for my life.”

-   “I am thankful for my friends and family.”

-   “I am thankful for the food I enjoy and clean water to drink.”

-   “I am thankful for my education.”

-   “I am thankful for my health.”

-   “I am thankful for all I have.”


It’s easy to be thankful for the good things, but people forget to be thankful for their troubles.


-   Be thankful that you don’t already have everything you desire. If you did,     

    what would you look forward to?


-   Be thankful when you don’t know something, for it gives you an opportunity

    to learn.


-   Be thankful for the difficult times. You grow strong during those times.


-   Be thankful for your limitations. They give you opportunities for



-   Be thankful for each challenge because it will help you grow your strength

    and character.


-   Be thankful for your mistakes. They will teach you valuable lessons.


-   Be thankful for when you are tired, because it means you made a difference.


So finally, be thankful for your troubles and make them become your blessings.


I’ll write more about turning troubles into blessings in the coming days, but today, I am thankful for this: Failing with the first iteration of my company because it allowed me to refocus on my strengths and find my joy again.


Happy Thanksgiving. May your troubles become your blessings.


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