I call it Vitamin G for the soul. A big dose of daily gratitude can\u2019t hurt, and no one who lives with an attitude of gratitude can go wrong. In fact, I believe we will go far in life with it. So what\u2019s this buzz about gratitude all about? The word itself simply means having a quality of being thankful. Something supposedly so simple is gaining much momentum and popularity around the world.\u00a0 This is also largely thanks to many well-known names like Tony Robbins and Arianna Huffington, amongst others, who have written about it in their books. What Is A Gratitude Journal? All the hype about gratitude has led to a trend in writing gratitude journals. Over the years, I have kept some form of gratitude journals of my own. This year, I started my kids on theirs. Yes, this sneaky mother is insisting on an attitude of gratitude. They write their gratitude journals daily like taking in their daily dose of vitamins. A gratitude journal is simply a recording of things that you are thankful for. You can write it down in a notebook or diary, or if you\u2019re more digitally inclined, use a gratitude app of your choice. This journal is your private affair, so you don\u2019t need to share it with anyone if you don\u2019t want to.\u00a0 The Incredible Benefits Of Writing A Gratitude Journal Image credit: Ketut Subiyanto from Pexels When we go poking our faces looking for good things in our lives, it naturally makes us feel better. It gives us a more positive outlook as opposed to wallowing in our problems. This state of positivity that we feel is what drives home the benefits. Researches and studies have shown benefits of people who live in gratitude. Harvard Medical School sums it up as follows: \u201cIn 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.\u201d Paul J. Mills, PhD, professor of family medicine and public health at the University of California, conducted a study on gratitude said this: \u201cWe found that more gratitude in these patients was associated with better mood, better sleep, less fatigue and lower levels of inflammatory biomarkers related to cardiac health.\u201d While these benefits are great for adults as we are the ones who tend to harbour more everyday issues that lead to mental and physical stress, kids too can benefit from them.\u00a0 Never underestimate the mental and emotional state of being children today. They too may face different kinds of stress and anguish from their young lives. Setting them up on this path of generating a more positive outlook is helpful to the mental, emotional and character development. My Personal Experiences On The Benefits Of My Gratitude Journal Image credit: Jonathan Robles from Pexels Life is never perfect. We don\u2019t always get good days. Some days can be so hard and awful. Even on such days, and especially on such days, it is a must to dig out that gratitude journal and find something to be grateful for.\u00a0 The brain can be a terrible trickster, making something bad appear worse than it is. We do this by harping on that bad incident over and over, until we are so clouded and tunnel-visioned that we can\u2019t see the light. During this time, when I force myself to look on the brighter side of things by finding something to be grateful for, I never fail to find some. By the time I list down three to five things, the bad stuff of the day don\u2019t seem as bad. The problems don\u2019t go away completely, but they aren\u2019t looming so largely on me. As for my kids, I\u2019ve noticed that they started off with being thankful for the \u201clarger\u201d things in life. Over time, they have learned to be grateful for even the small things in life and not take them for granted. I want to highlight one thing about the kids\u2019 gratitude books. I don\u2019t go prying into their journals. This is to give them the confidence to write anything they want, without judgement. Sometimes I keep a lookout for how they\u2019re doing by casually asking, and they would gladly show me a page here and there.\u00a0 It\u2019s from these little peeks that I am sometimes pleasantly surprised. In our daily lives, we hardly go around to tell people we love that we are grateful for them in our lives. Verbalising it may be awkward for some kids (maybe even adults!) But it is heart-warming to see it being expressed in a journal. After months of journalling, it has become almost second nature to the kids. I find them doing so without being reminded. It puts a smile on my face when I spot them journalling at their desk for a few minutes each day. It doesn\u2019t matter exactly what they are grateful for, as long as they are grateful for something in life. That\u2019s good enough for me. How To Start Writing And Maintaining One? Image credit: Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels Any way you like! :)\u00a0 The beauty of it is that it is entirely up to your creativity or convenience. The objective is to record what you are grateful for. You can write them any way you wish, be it in bullet points, or in narrative form. Do what feels right for you. It is recommended that we write it daily. You can determine how many you want to list down. I tell my kids they need to write at least three things they are grateful for each day. And of course, they are not to be repeated like a broken record just to be done with. It must be something that they are genuinely grateful for. Some people like to write their gratitude journals first thing in the morning when they wake up. Some like to reflect on it at night before they go to bed. Again, this is entirely your call. I don\u2019t have a fixed daily time for mine. Sometimes when I\u2019m stuck in traffic and a grateful thought comes along, I\u2019d grab my phone to quickly record it. I use the voice recording function so that I don\u2019t need to take my eyes off the road. I\u2019d then transfer that to my journal later on. So find your own way that works. Let your kids do it the way they want, too. Teaching Children To Be Thankful For Life Itself One of the things I'm grateful for this exercise is that it teaches my kids to be thankful for life itself. To wake up healthy, happy and safe. We must have our basics set right in order to live a happier, healthier and more fulfilling life. I hope you and your kids will start this. It doesn't take much to start. In the beginning, you may just want to set a reminder for yourself to do it, in case you forget in the midst of a busy day. I would like to leave you with one of my favourite poems, by William Martin titled \u201cMake The Ordinary Come Alive\u201d Do not ask your children to strive for extraordinary lives. Such striving may seem admirable, but it is the way of foolishness. Help them instead to find the wonder and the marvel of an ordinary life. Show them the joy of tasting tomatoes, apples and pears. Show them how to cry when pets and people die. Show them the infinite pleasure in the touch of a hand. And make the ordinary come alive for them. The extraordinary will take care of itself. \u2015 taken from the book The Parent's Tao Te Ching: Ancient Advice for Modern Parents.