Liv·a·ble (adjective): worth living; enjoyable
Every Livable Lesson will encourage you to prioritize your own health and happiness by:
1. Sparking inspiration from a quote/research.
2. Connecting the quote/research to what you deserve as a teacher.
3. Promoting accountability with related actions to implement inside and outside your classroom.
4. Encouraging reflection with a related wellness question.
“In positive psychology research, gratitude is strongly and consistently associated with greater happiness. Gratitude helps people feel more positive emotions, relish good experiences, improve their health, deal with adversity, and build strong relationships.” – Harvard Medical School
“Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough.” – Oprah Winfrey
What You Deserve
When is the last time you truly expressed gratitude? And no, this doesn’t include a quick, no-eye-contact “thank you” for someone holding the door open for you.
Gratitude is gravity—it keeps us grounded and humble. When we start to fixate on the things we don’t have, gratitude has the power to bring us back down and open our eyes to what we already do have. If we keep living life for something we don’t have, true happiness will constantly escape us. Gratitude fuels our eagerness, determination, and joy; expressing and acknowledging gratitude is essential to maintaining positivity in your life and your teaching career.
Around the holiday season, we are more intentional about using words like “thankful” and “grateful.” It’s special that there are times throughout the year when these feelings are discussed more openly, but this should also serve as an eye-opener to how little we openly and honestly express gratitude.
A lot of the goals we establish for ourselves push us to go, go, go. We are reaching for the next opportunity, wanting that newly released thing, planning how to hit that next milestone, planning the next lesson, etc. We are often so caught up in the blur that we can’t always see what’s right in front of us.
Having a consistent gratitude practice that lasts through all seasons is powerful, mood-shifting, and inspiring. But it is a practice. You have to actually do something to feel the benefits of gratitude.
What does this look like? It’s different for everyone. Personally, I like to write things down, so I jot down five things I am grateful for every morning in a journal. You could thank someone different in your life every week (family, friends, coworkers, students, etc.). Meditation is another way to practice gratitude. You could also try incorporating gratitude into your commute; for the first few minutes of your drive to school, consider all of the things you already feel grateful for that day.
Invite abundance, hopefulness, and passion into your life the second you open the door to gratitude.
At School: Can you incorporate gratitude into a lesson with your students? What about creating a gratitude wall in your classroom?
At Home: Determine when and where you can incorporate a gratitude practice at home.
How do you practice gratitude in your life?
What’s holding you back from a consistent gratitude practice?
In health and happiness,
Founder of Livable Learning