• Nadia Ballintine

Gratitude is The Best Attitude

You may have heard about Baader-Meinhof Phenomenon before? In fact, you might have heard about it for the first time quite recently. If not, then you just might hear about it again very soon. Baader-Meinhof is the phenomenon where you stumble upon perhaps some strange or new piece of information, maybe an unfamiliar word or name, or something you may not have heard for a while and then soon afterwards encounter the same thing again, often repeatedly.

The word I want to explore isn’t unfamiliar to me and I’m very sure it’s not to you, but recently I’ve been reminded of its impact and its recurrence over the last few weeks has prompted me to raise its profile.




  1. the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.


  • Gratitude allows us to authentically & purposefully celebrate the present

  • Gratitude blocks toxic emotions & negativity

  • Grateful people are more stress-resilient

  • Gratitude strengthens our social ties & self-worth

I’ve been really fortunate to hear Paul Rangiwahia speak who provides an excellent wellbeing wake up call.

We can spend a lot of time worrying about things we cannot change from the past. This may also present as the “when I…” syndrome; I’ll feel so much better when I… I’ll be happy when I… except ‘when I’ get there, there is always a new ‘when I” to replace it. How about if we just tried being present? People will truly benefit from your gratitude towards them when you are fully and authentically present.

Another heart warming reminder was an email I was Bcc-ed into from a Principal prior to an appraisal review meeting this week;

I have been reflecting on how awesome you have been over the past year and the growth in confidence I have seen in your leadership.

Thank you so much for your passion and drive for the education of our tamariki...seeing you driving the TAI and hearing you buzzing around where it can lead to in terms of outcomes for kids learning gives me a buzz also.

You are making a massive difference to the change of culture at our school and the impact that your leadership will have in the years to come will benefit not only our akonga but also the community and province.

I needed to just let you know that I think you are doing an outstanding job and I feel very lucky to have such a knowledgeable, fun, honest and caring co-kaihautu leading our waka.

As you can imagine there were some happy tears from this leader and we had a really positive session together.

I often have school leaders say “I do really appreciate…” or “I think they know I’m grateful for…” but do they share that? As the saying goes, “feeling gratitude & not expressing it, is like wrapping a present & not giving it”.

So my challenge to you is to consider how do you practice being grateful?

If you don’t perhaps you could make a start & build a new habit:

  • Start your day with being grateful

  • Take time during the day, pick one thing you’re grateful for, quiet your mind & focus on your breathing

  • End the day in a positive space - what are you grateful for today?

  • Take the time to show gratitude to others & acknowledge the ‘genius’ your colleagues bring to our kuras or the joy your whānau brings to your day.

No time you say? Actually you’ve got all the time in the world - right now. Write down 5 things you are most grateful today.

Take 5 to send that email or write that note to share your genuine gratitude & brighten someone’s day.

They just may thank you for it.

Be grateful for what you have &

you’ll have everything you need.

#Wellness #Leadership #Topical