Updated: May 16
By Christy | The Practicing Pro
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Gratitude is being appreciative of the big and small things in your life.
People that are appreciative also are humble, and when you are humble, you are also “teachable”. This is what we want right?
You need to be “teachable” to be a good student, right?!
Being appreciative makes you more humble because you recognize other people’s kind acts, something that was kind that someone did or said for you. Maybe someone helped you out, whether you needed help or not, or was just nice and made you feel good. When people do things for us that lift us up and make our life easier, more fun, or make us feel good, it strengthens us as a person and helps us to feel valued and important.
The opposite is also true. When someone is ungrateful towards your kindness, it can make you feel undervalued and unimportant. - Ingratitude is being unaware of all of the things people are doing around you, or recognizing them but not showing appreciation.
In some quiet way, the expression and feeling of gratitude has a wonderful cleansing or healing nature. Gratitude brings warmth to the giver and the receiver alike.
Gratitude for what we have brings peace—a peace that allows us to not canker our souls for what we don’t have. Gratitude brings peace that helps us overcome the pain of adversity and failure. Gratitude on a daily basis means we express appreciation for what we have now, without qualification for what we had in the past or desire in the future. A recognition of and appreciation for our gifts and talents which have been given also allows us to acknowledge the need for help and assistance from the gifts and talents possessed by others.
An attitude of gratitude is where it’s at!
Here is a simple and fun activity that brings awareness while practicing your instrument to the little things around you that you can be thankful for. You can print them, colour/paint them, and stick them with sticky tack to the wall Have some fun!
Practice a song or a drill spot then fill in a leaf. Cut them all out before you start practicing. Put them up on the wall at the end of a great practice to celebrate. Fill out the sheets and then cut them out to read out loud during your thanksgiving dinner! (I hope you have pumpkin pie - that’s my favourite!)
Variation on a stick:
Hang your gratitude leaves with string on a stick and hang it on the wall. I got this birch branch in the woods when out for a hike. It was fun to go out looking for something to bring home to use for my Gratitude project!
Variation for your music teacher:
Make your gratitude stick all week about all of the things your music school/ music teacher does for you - and give it to your music teacher at the lesson before Thanksgiving for a gift.
(Let's just say that your child is sometimes rude to their teacher - this activity will help them to be more gracious towards their teacher. Or, your child is neutral towards their teacher and their music lessons - this activity will help them internalize and recognize the work that their teacher does for them that they might not have noticed otherwise. This will help them develop an attitude of gratitude NOW while things are good to make them even better. Prevention is always better than trying to fix something gone awry.)
INVITATION from Christy Hodder:
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Checklist for a Successful Music Practice
Your easy checklist to have successful home music practices from Christy, the practicing pro. Whether you are a new or seasoned practice parent, this checklist will help you organize before, during and after practices for effective and fun practices.
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