Thankfulness Brings Joy

thankfulness brings joySo… I was working on the artwork for this post, the one that says “Thankfulness Brings Joy” and I got the strangest look from the family.

Thankfulness = Thanksgiving = Pilgrims

Joy =  Christmas = Santa.

They were trying to figure out how the Pilgrims brought Santa to America.

(See, my kids make me laugh every day.)

This is day six of the 31 days of Joy in Motherhood.

Thankfulness?

Remember on Day 2 when we defined Happiness?

happiness defined

Look right in the middle of that definition.

See the word “contentment?”

[box] Contentment – a state of happiness and satisfaction. Gratified.[/box]

Gratified is just another word for Thankful.

Joy <– Happiness <– Contentment <– Gratified <– Thankful

What does that look like in life?

Look at your kids.

When they have a serious case of the “gimmies” are they happy?  When they see the commercial for the all new and improved  piece of plastic, are they satisfied with what they have?  Are they content?  Do their existing chunks of plastic (aka toys) bring them Joy?

If they’re like mine, the answer is no.

My kids have a really hard time playing with the toys they have when they are deep into “toy lust” for something new.

But when I unplug my kids and get them away from those commercials, things change.  They can play for HOURS with a small box of plastic stuff. They are content with what they have. They feel blessed when I hand them an old toy I discovered in the junk drawer. They find Joy in a cardboard tube from an empty roll of paper towels.

If I can see such a profound change in my kids, isn’t it reasonable to assume that applies to ME as well?

If I could implement some small change in my life that helped me not walk around with a bad case of the “gimmies” wouldn’t it be worth it?

If there was some small act that would help me stay content and to see the small blessings in my life, shouldn’t I do it?

For me, that act is called intentional thankfulness.

For me, deliberately taking time to be thankful leads to contentment with the blessings I have.

Thankfulness –> Contentment –> Joy

Intentional thankfulness looks different for different people.

Some people keep a thankfulness journal on their night stand and jot down three things each night.

Some people use an app and share their thoughts daily via their smart phones.

Some photograph and instagram the things that bless them.

For me, I write Thankful Thoughts for each Sunday.

On Sundays, I post “Thankful Thoughts

I’m thankful every day of the week.  Knowing I have a post to write helps keep me in the frame of mind where I am looking for things to be thankful for.

Honestly, I’m thankful for a lot of little boring stuff that isn’t normally good blog material.

For me, writing that one post each week helps keep me in the habit of being thankful each day.  Even if no one read my post, I’d still write it because it helps me.

What I’ve proved in my own life is that this very simple habit of being thankful has profound implications.

Thankfulness Brings Joy

Tomorrow, I’ll post my thankful thoughts as part of the 31 Days of Joy in Motherhood series.

As your “joy assignment” this weekend, I want you to join me.  Sometime over the weekend, take time to be thankful.  Jot down a list or grab your camera.  Go with what works for you to express yourself.  When you’ve taken time to be thankful, take a look at your face… see a difference?  Thankfulness looks GOOD on you.  Joy in your heart gives you a glow.

You might want to go play with your family some more too.

If you are struggling with gratitude (at times we all do) then try reading my post about being thankful for some really annoying stuff (like the zit on my nose).

[author] [author_image timthumb=’on’]http://thishappymom.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/DSC_0036.jpg[/author_image] [author_info]Houston Mom Blogger Susan Baker has a passion for encouraging weary worn out mothers to find joy in everyday motherhood. She has two elementary school boys, one engineering husband, and one cat. She has a strange fascination for eggs, socks, and books. She spends far too much time on Social Media and at Target. She is crazy in love with her family. She serves an amazing God. She lives an ordinary life filled with wonder. [/author_info] [/author]

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Susan Baker
I have a passion for encouraging weary worn out mothers to find joy in everyday motherhood and peace in unlikely places. I have two elementary school boys, one nerdy husband, and two cats. I have a strange fascination for bad puns, the color pink, socks, and books. I worry about running out of toilet paper, wine, and chocolate.. I serve an amazing God. I live an ordinary life filled with wonder.
Susan Baker
Susan Baker

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Comments

  1. I actually used this concept yesterday. On my way to the bus stop, I listed as many things as I could think of that I’m thankful for where my kids are concerned. It made a real difference. It made the mental transition from ME to MOM much easier. Thank you!

  2. Tammy Howard says:

    You are VERY blessed indeed. And yes to embrace joy you need to sit and count your blessings. I think I need to post one of these kind of posts once a week. A time to write down all that I am thankful for. No matter how big or small.

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