DIY Thanksgiving Centerpiece: Build a Gratitude Tree

This Thanksgiving, pass the potatoes with an extra helping of gratitude at your dinner table.

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This Thanksgiving, try passing the potatoes with an extra helping of gratitude at your dinner table.

Practicing gratitude four times a week—by keeping a gratitude diary and listening to a guided recording for fostering gratefulness in life—lowered study participants’ levels of depression and stress and increased their happiness within three weeks, according to a recent Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine study. See also 4 Science-Backed Benefits of a Gratitude Practice

How To Build a Gratitude Tree

To share the joy-bringing benefits of thankfulness with friends and family, craft an easy, interactive gratitude tree for your holiday centerpiece.

  1. Fill a glass vase with cranberries or pebbles, and in its center prop up a tall branch with offshoots (find one outside or at a crafts store).
  2. Cut leaf shapes out of autumnal-colored paper, punching a hole along the bottom edge of each.
  3. Put a leaf at each place setting with the guest’s name on one side; at mealtime, ask everyone to write something they’re thankful for on the other side of their leaf and then reveal what they wrote.
  4. Hang the leaves from the “tree” with ribbon or twine.

See also YJ Gratitude Challenge: Build a Simple Daily Practice