Discover Yourself Gratitude

The Grateful Tree and why you should plant one

March 12, 2018
The Grateful Tree and why you should plant one

The Grateful Tree and why you should plant one

 

Last week I visited my MIL at her aged care facility and noticed in the foyer a Grateful Tree which the residents had made. Residents and others were encouraged to add to the tree what they felt grateful for.  I thought it was a lovely idea and a perfect reminder that we need to give thanks each day and look at the positives rather than the negatives in our lives.

Gratitude was also the subject of my latest guest in my Over 50 & Thriving series, Shirley Corder, who has taken and written about the Two Thousand and Eighteen Gift Challenge.  You can read about it here.

Although the photograph is not that clear, I wanted to share some of the thoughts from both residents and their families that were written on the tree with you.

  • Being Alive!
  • People who continuously push me to become better
  • that I share such a special bond with my grandmother
  • Love and caring
  • For being here at Marycrest
  • Caring staff xxx
  • Friendship
  • My beautiful family
  • I’m grateful for the caring people around me
  • Love, life, family and friends
  • I’m 100 and grateful for my parents
  • Sunshine and lollipops
  • For health, family and friends
  • Our amazing grandad
  • I’m grateful for every day I wake up to enjoy another day of life

This was a wonderful idea to promote being grateful and as you can see, no matter what age we all value our life, family and friends.

I was reminded of a recent trip to an exhibition where I volunteered to go with the residents and help.  I pushed a lady around in a wheel chair to see the exhibition and on the way home in the bus she tapped me on the should and said ‘Thank you for looking after me’.  I had done nothing really but was touched that it meant so much to her.

We can all have a positive influence on others and our own lives if we feel gratitude, look past ourselves and our problems and try to give back to others.

The Grateful Tree is just another version of journaling, or comtemplating our gratitude each day. I wrote previously about a Keeping a Jar of Positivity where each time something positive or wonderful happened in life, you wrote it on a post-it note and put it in a jar.  On New Year’s Eve you open and read all the notes you have written during the year.

I’m thinking of making one and putting it in my study and adding to it each day as a reminder.  Imagine what it would be like after a year – hopefully bulging with gratitude.

How do you express gratitude?  Would you consider making a Grateful Tree to remind yourself?

Let’s Keep Sizzling!

 

 

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45 Comments

  • Reply Donna March 12, 2018 at 07:17

    ‘The Grateful Tree’ and ‘The Positivity Jar’ are both wonderful ideas. I love what was written on the GT at your MIL’s residence. Very inspirational!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric March 14, 2018 at 08:23

      Yes they are great ideas as physical reminders for us Donna. I love the residents who are just so positive about life even in their 90s. x

  • Reply Ingrid March 12, 2018 at 08:08

    Before going to sleep each night I think about three things I am grateful for from that day. Sometimes they are little things, other days they are bigger things but it helps me go to sleep in a positive frame of mind!

    Ingrid
    http://www.fabulousandfunlife.blogspot.com.au

    • Reply Sue Loncaric March 14, 2018 at 08:23

      Hi Ingrid! Yes, sometimes there are only little things to be grateful for but they all add up to a wonderful life don’t they? Have a wonderful week and thanks for stopping by to comment. x

  • Reply Leanne | www.crestingthehill.com.au March 12, 2018 at 09:48

    What a lovely idea – and it’s interesting to see how simple and small the things are that the residents are grateful for. We often wait for big things to happen before we remember how blessed we are – this is a great reminder to appreciate the little things too. I started a gratitude jar this year and aim for one a week – easy to do and it makes me remember how fortunate I am xx

    • Reply Sue Loncaric March 14, 2018 at 08:25

      I think sometimes we put pressure on ourselves to find things to be grateful for and then it becomes a chore. Your idea of a weekly addition to the Gratitude Jar is a manageable one and will mean much more than just thinking of something for the sake of it. x

  • Reply Vanessa March 12, 2018 at 12:19

    Hmm. With a lousy sleep last night and in some of the most challenging weeks of my job cycle right now, I’m not sure where I can find gratitude. I suppose that I have a job… not sure that’s enough for me right now haha.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric March 14, 2018 at 08:27

      Yes sometimes it is hard to find something to be grateful for isn’t Vanessa and we are constantly told we should be grateful every day. Maybe it isn’t a bad thing to have some days where we are honest and realise that life isn’t always easy. I hope the work challenges are resolved and your sleep improves.

  • Reply Rebecca Forstadt Olkowski March 12, 2018 at 15:30

    I love the idea of a Grateful Tree especially for people in nursing homes. The Positivity jar is a wonderful idea too. I want to start one for myself.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric March 14, 2018 at 08:28

      Yes it is such a positive way to encourage the residents to find some good in their lives, even though they may not be as mobile or aren’t 100% well.

  • Reply Sydney Shop Girl March 12, 2018 at 17:26

    Really lovely ideas, Sue! I think I need to start a grateful tree on a wall in my office too! It’s a brilliant way to practice gratitude and mindfulness.

    SSG xxx

    • Reply Sue Loncaric March 14, 2018 at 08:30

      Yes perhaps all workplaces should have one SSG? I think they are a great idea and so pleased I wrote about it. Have a great week!

  • Reply Denyse March 13, 2018 at 18:35

    This is lovely. What a great idea. I get hot and cold remembering to do 3 things I am grateful for on a daily basis. However, I certainly AM grateful for more and more these days as I live my life more in the present.

    Great post with such inspiration from those who know!

    Thanks for linking up for #lifethisweek 11/52. Next week’s optional prompt is “From My Window I See…” Denyse

    • Reply Sue Loncaric March 14, 2018 at 08:33

      Hi Denyse, I sometimes find it hard to keep up the gratitude thoughts each day but if we try more often than not then that isn’t too bad. Thanks for your lovely comment and support and have a beautiful day xx

  • Reply Jennifer Jones March 13, 2018 at 20:10

    I do love the grateful tree at the nursing home Sue. Such a wonderful thing for the residents to contributee to that would help them to focus on the positive rhings in life. I think we all need to do this

  • Reply Min@WriteoftheMiddle March 14, 2018 at 10:11

    That is such a wonderful idea for an aged care facility. Gratitude is so helpful to keep our mindset in the right place. My post tomorrow talks a little about this. You did a wonderful thing for that lady Sue. You took time out of your day for her. Giving of our time for others is one of the greatest gifts! xo

    • Reply Sue Loncaric March 15, 2018 at 06:53

      Hi Min it really made me feel good when I walked in and saw it on the wall. Such a simple idea but so powerful x

  • Reply Christie Hawkes March 14, 2018 at 10:26

    I love this Sue! I was touched by the very first one–being alive! I sometimes wake up a little grumpy, and I’ve started saying to myself, “I am full of gratitude for another day on this earth” before I even get out of bed. It helps me shift from feeling annoyed that I have to get up to feeling grateful that I can. I hope you have a lovely gratitude-filled day!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric March 15, 2018 at 06:55

      That was the first thing that struck me as well Christie. We really do need to be thankful for each day and this becomes even more important as we move into the later stages of our life. I hope you have a beautiful day, my friend. x

  • Reply Patrick Weseman March 14, 2018 at 13:34

    I so need to do this. What a wonderful idea. Thanks for sharing it. #MLSTL

    • Reply Sue Loncaric March 15, 2018 at 06:55

      It is a great idea isn’t it Patrick? So simple yet so powerful

  • Reply Cherie March 14, 2018 at 18:01

    I love this idea. It’s always a good way to freshen your attitude by looking to the positive.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric March 15, 2018 at 06:59

      It certainly does Cherie although sometimes it is difficult. I find that if I do try even if I’m feeling a little negative just thinking of one thing can improve your mood. Thanks for visiting and have a beautiful day x

  • Reply Debbie Harris March 14, 2018 at 20:47

    This is just delightful Sue and yes we all need to plant one! Well done on making us all aware and reminding us of why we need to show how grateful we are.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric March 15, 2018 at 06:59

      I thought it was a lovely idea Debbie and really lifted my spirits when I walked in and saw it. So easy to do and one of my readers suggested she was going to ‘plant’ one in her office so she is inspired every day x

  • Reply Debs March 14, 2018 at 21:23

    What a fun idea – sometimes it’s very easy to concentrate on negative things that are happening – we need a reminder to concentrate even more on the positives!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric March 15, 2018 at 07:00

      We certainly do Debs and it is was so lovely to read what the elderly residents were grateful for. I felt quite humble reading them. Have a fabulous day and thanks for stopping by x

  • Reply Bren Lee March 14, 2018 at 22:26

    Hey Sue,

    This is such a heartwarming post. I think the grateful tree is a fabulous idea. Who comes up with these things? 🙂 I wake up every morning and feel grateful and thank my higher power for allowing me to wake up yet another morning. For every day I wake up, I like to do at least one good deed a day to give back. Most of the time it’s more than one, but who’s counting. LOL

    Thank you for sharing this. Passing it along to my social so it can spread like wildfire!

    B

    • Reply Sue Loncaric March 15, 2018 at 07:02

      Hi Bren, lovely to hear from you! This is such a simple idea and yet I had never thought to do it myself. Thank you so much for stopping by to comment and also for sharing. That is your good deed for the day for me! 🙂

  • Reply Victoria March 14, 2018 at 22:54

    I think we get busy and forget to be grateful for all of the wonderful things God does for us. Every day is a blessing and something to be grateful for.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric March 15, 2018 at 07:02

      We do get busy Victoria and mostly of our own doing. I know that I fill my days sometimes rather than taking more time to reflect and give thanks. Have a beautiful week and thanks for stopping by xx

  • Reply Michele March 15, 2018 at 02:46

    This is a lovely idea. I think what we focus on does happen, so it makes a lot of sense to focus on things we are grateful for!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric March 15, 2018 at 07:03

      It is a beautiful idea Michele and I think we could all just make one for our home as a daily reminder. Have a fabulous week and thanks for stopping by to comment. x

  • Reply Jo Castro March 15, 2018 at 04:42

    Such a great reminder to count our blessings and live everyday Sue. Having a visual gratitude tree is also a fabulous idea in a public place. Would be a nice idea for somewhere like a public library too, wouldn’t it. So nice of the lady to tap you on the shoulder and say Thank You, and how meaningful for you too 🙂 Shared this post too.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric March 15, 2018 at 07:05

      Hi Jo! Yes the public library is a wonderful idea and even in schools so children can learn early in life to be grateful for all that they have. I do feel such a warmth when I volunteer and the ‘thank you’ just tops it off for me. I’m learning so much from the residents and hopefully I’m bringing them some joy as well. Enjoy your birthday!

  • Reply Donna March 15, 2018 at 07:49

    Shared on my Social Media!

  • Reply Linda | Hello Sweet Life March 15, 2018 at 14:39

    Feeling grateful is the best motivator and the best relaxation technique! When I am feeling anxious or tired, feeling grateful makes me relax. Gratefulness has magic powers!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric March 15, 2018 at 18:54

      I love our last sentence Linda – Gratefulness has magic powers! I hadn’t thought about gratitude helping you to relax but you are right. If we are thinking of good things we feel less anxious don’t we? Have a beautiful week and thanks for stopping by to commentxx

  • Reply Kalpanaa March 15, 2018 at 15:26

    What a fabulous idea. I think the one I like best is I’m 100 and I’m grateful for my parents. Honestly, there’s nothing like actively practising gratitude for improving one’s mood.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric March 15, 2018 at 18:55

      Yes that was my favourite post too! I was so impressed to see how the residents really are grateful even in the twilight of their years.

  • Reply Kerrie March 17, 2018 at 07:44

    This idea is awesome!! I’d love to document what we are grateful for, just to remind us how lucky we are!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric March 17, 2018 at 11:19

      I thought it was a beautiful idea Kerrie and knew that my readers would love the idea as well. Have a lovely day and thank you for stopping by to comment. x

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