Gratitude is an amazing thing. It does something inside of us, that very few things can do. Many times, parents wish their children would be more grateful.
Ask yourself: Is it about not giving your children everything? Is it about making them work for what they want? What about making sure they see what others do not have? Or, teaching them to share? These are some of the strategies I have seen parents use in order to teach gratitude.
As I was giving this some thought, the answer, in my opinion, became quite simple: the experience of feeling grateful is what creates gratitude.
Gratitude is about having a true and authentic experience of being grateful.
Here are three ideas that you can use with your children to nurture gratitude:
#1: In the morning, start your day with sharing what you are grateful for. It could be a good night sleep, sunshine, rain, friends we get to see, a favorite cartoon, our favorite teacher, the home we live in, food to eat, health, family, a pet, a game, a book, the weekend, sleeping in, etc. Each person can share 1-3 things to start creating the habit of looking for things to feel grateful for.
#2: At dinner, have everyone share what their gratitudes or appreciations are for the day. We do that every night in our home, and it is a great way to see what is important to your children, as well as to nurture gratitude in their hearts. They also get to see what happens in your day, and what is important to you as well. Again, it is about getting into the habit of looking for, and expressing, gratitude. What we focus on expands.
#3: At bedtime, invite your children to share three things they were grateful for today. You share too. If your children enjoy writing, offer for them to keep a gratitude journal. Writing things down (especially what you are grateful for) is very powerful.
Pick one of these activities and just make it fun. You also want to make it informal. Do not press your children for gratitudes; it defeats the whole purpose. And, feel free to give them ideas if they are struggling to think of something. New habits take practice. The habit of gratitude, when nurtured daily, grows pretty quickly. You are planting seeds and fertilizing the soil with consistency and love.
Enjoy creating a grateful family.
Where do you find the motivation to write a daily journal entry? Good question. Life is busy enough so why sit down and write in your journal? Read these three motivators to maintain daily journaling success.
Perhaps you know some of the benefits of journaling but haven’t been motivated to make it a daily habit. Journaling is the most important action you can take today to increase your success rate, stay focused and maintain a positive mental attitude. If those aren’t reasons enough, then keep on reading.
1. Getting and Staying Organized
Well, journaling is the best time and place to combine some very important daily habits: getting organized in your mind and your daily action plans, visualizing a better life and to reconnect with your inner-self and what is really important to you. Taking time each morning to mentally prepare how you want your day to unfold will set the wheels of focused energy in motion. It will be easier for you to recall your to-do list and top priorities when you’re in the midst of a hectic day if you actually took pen to paper (or typed it on in a word processing document).
2. Mindful Meditating
Daily journaling is a form of mindful meditations. You learn to relax and let go of stressful thoughts when you learn to journal. Whether you write about your diet habits, your feelings toward your annoying boss or how you’d like to build your own on-line business, journaling daily will help you focus on what you really want and discard the thoughts that keep you from attaining those desires.
3. Treasured Personal Time
When you journal daily, you’ll start to reconnect with your inner voice. This quiet voice tends to get overlooked in the harried lifestyles we live. Being disconnected from it will leave you with a sense of unfulfillment. As kids and young adults, we had more time and those quiet times lead to listening to this inner voice. Regain that insight by sitting down daily with pen, paper, you and your thoughts. You’ll come to cherish these moments alone.
Start motivating yourself today to write daily in your journal. Get up and journal in the morning with your morning cup of coffee or tea and discover that this quiet time will be your most treasured. You’ll find your day flowing more smoothly with these daily mindful visualizations, a deeper sense of purpose and organization. What more motivation could you need?
Blogging has been around for years now and a good percentage of netizens have already tried their hand at blogging. Others have grown out of it, while others have invested time and energy that their blogs have become a source of income. If you have never tried blogging, you might want to consider the benefits of the sport of online literature that is blogging.
Blogging is typically used for publishing an online diary. Composing a journal entry and publishing it online for everyone to see can be rewarding especially when you know that there is someone out there who is interested in your life, and is going through something similar in their life. It is also a form of networking with other bloggers, and if you join a blogosphere (blogging community), you will receive comments from people who enjoy blogging or reading blogs. It is a great way to make new friends online.
Although journal writing is what most people do with blogs online, its purpose is certainly not limited to that only. Over the years, companies have added a blog section to their websites where they can update their customers with the latest news from their end. This is very useful and informative, as customers are able to be informed at their own will. Companies don’t have to spam their clients with newsletters, as blogs are equally useful but less invasive.
Blogs are used by scholars who enjoy publishing the latest information about their chosen specialty. Blogs are generally set up in a way that they can be socially bookmarked if the particular post is a recommended read. Visitors can also comment on every post. Blog layouts are also very simple to browse, so it is not limited to the computer literate population.
A fun way to blog is to fill up a site with collaborative content. Friends can all have user accounts, and everyone can blog whenever they want to. The contents are made public to each author’s circle of friends, and everyone can contribute either a post or a comment.
Although many blog for fun alone, a handful of bloggers out there provide content to the public to earn an income. They earn an income through advertising on the blog space. They have to provide a good number of posts every week and have to keep the content fresh for regular visitors. It takes a lot of time and thought to post such entries but it can truly be worth it in the end.
What you do with your journal depends on many things.
You may be using the materials for personal development – to understand yourself better through the objective recording of your story. Or you may use it as a unique resource for your fiction writing, recording stories drawn from life – your own and other people’s. You may write down conversations overheard on public transport, or in the pub, or at the doctor’s surgery. And you can turn all this into a story without end – writing this in daily or weekly installments until it grows into a volume of anecdotes with its own themes and enhanced with images, cartoons and objects whether discarded tablet packets or sea-shells.
From either of these kinds of journal you have ideas and notes which will make your fiction and your autobiographical non-fiction authentic. And this will mark out your writing’s unique selling point – its individual ‘voice’.
When you come to review your materials, of course, other issues become significant.
OK. So you’ve had an interesting life; your journals are waiting to be mined for information; your family and friends are clamoring for ‘the book’. What next?
Autobiography is now an industry and – as with any other kind of writing – certain rules underpin success. Even if you are thinking of self-publication, consideration of these can make all the difference between a book people want to read and a book that stands neglected on the shelf.
Your reader – the audience – is as ever in pole position. Who are you telling your story to? This will dictate what words and expressions you employ. Would you, for example, want your mother to read what you write for your friends?
And then, there’s the thorny issue of what you include and what you leave out.
The trick lies in the vexed issue of goal-setting. A recent visit to a writers’ group left me convinced that not one among the seven people who read their ‘stuff’ out had the least idea about goal-setting, either for their literary career or for their individual project. Planning for this group was anathema and so was review. People wrote what came into their heads with no idea of where to go with it. The resulting prose excerpts were shapeless, unstructured and cliché-ridden. Their material was raw beyond belief – although not irretrievable. And their goal, if any, was to enjoy their writing. So – in that sense – they had achieved one goal. And yet – in spite of all this – they still hoped that publication would happen.
We have so much to be thankful for in our lives. It’s very easy to overlook everything that we have, which is why you should be writing in your gratitude journal each day.
What’s a gratitude journal? It’s like any other diary or journal, but in a gratitude journal you’re only allowed to write positive things. There’s no negativity allowed.
If you don’t already have a gratitude journal, you can start one day and write down 5 things that you are grateful for in your life.
The whole point is to look at the positive things in your life that you are thankful for.
Maybe you are having the worst day in your life, but if you change your thinking and write down 5 things that you are grateful for, it can really change your entire mindset. Maybe the day turned out to be not so bad, after all.
When we go through the bad days, that’s when a gratitude journal can really shine – it will make you think of the positive things in your life and that’s when we really need the journal. If you continue to write in it, you can go back and see everything in your life that you are grateful for.
Don’t you think that would change your mindset – from focusing on the negative and what’s bad in life, to what is positive and good in our lives? It can be a real life-saver when we tend to be pessimistic people who only focus on the bad things in life.
Everyone can think of 5 things they are grateful for.
Are you grateful that you have a roof over your head? Write that down.
Are you thankful that you ate today? Write that down. There are people in this world who have had nothing to eat today and have no home to go to.
It doesn’t have to be the big things in life – each person is grateful for different things in their lives.
This is not just an exercise in positive thinking. You can become really creative when you are writing down in your gratitude journal. The point is to be conscious of what is positive in your life and be grateful.
Come up with at least 5 things to write down in your gratitude journal each day. You can do this at night or first thing in the morning.