Creating a Gratitude Jar
I learned of a Gratitude Jar early last year and immediately made my own. A friend had shared a post that she found on Reddit about someone who wrote down what they were grateful for each day and put it in a jar or vessel. One a day, that’s it. It seems simple enough, but as I have learned this past year, writing down what you’re grateful for can often be challenging.
It isn’t challenging to find one thing each day for which I am thankful, that’s easy. There’s always something to appreciate. Whether it is the beautiful sunrise or having the people I love in my life, it’s easy to find the joy. Taking a moment to write it down each day is a little more difficult.
Creating a Gratitude Jar is easy. I use a large glass cookie jar that you can find at Target or online, if you don’t already have one. Any vessel will do, but I like one that closes and that is large enough to hold 365 notes, even if I don’t write that many.
The rules are simple, each day write down one thing for which you are grateful, and place the note in the jar. Wash, rinse, repeat. At the end of the year, on New Year’s Eve, open your Gratitude Jar and read each note. If you’re like me, you’ll feel warm and wonderful afterward.
Last year I used Post-it notes, but found the stickum on the back stuck to other notes. This year I’m using paper from the recycling bin, but you can use something more formal like note cards, stationary or some specialized paper.
For the first month I was on fire. I diligently wrote a note each night and placed it in the jar. The second month, as life got a little busier, I would forget for a day or two and then play catch-up, by the end of the summer it had been a month since I placed a note in the jar.
And that is ok.
The goal of the Gratitude Jar is not to feel guilty because I forgot to put a note in the jar. The goal is to remind myself, by way of writing the note, that there is something wonderful each day to be thankful for. At the end of the year, when I sat down and read all my notes, I was reminded how wonderful life truly can be, even while in the midst of some big challenges.
This year, I’ve set a reminder on my phone, so I have no excuse for not placing a note in the jar, isn’t technology wonderful?