Turn your gratitude practice into a visual reminder by writing down what you are grateful for and putting it into a jar. Don’t make this complicated. Simply have slips of paper available and once a day write down something you are grateful for and put it into the jar. If you don’t have a jar, use a basket or even a shoebox, it doesn’t matter as long as you like it.
Then, if you are having a hard time, or feeling down, take out one or two slips to read. These gentle reminders are often enough to shift your perspective and help you celebrate the good things in your life.
Gratitude is one of those things that everyone knows is a good thing but is sometimes hard to practice. This is especially true when life becomes stressful or hectic. The more you turn your focus to being grateful, the easier and more natural the practice becomes. There have been countless studies about the science behind gratitude, and they all come back to say the same thing – people who work towards incorporating gratitude into their lives are happier, healthier, and feel more fulfilled.
Literally, go find a jar, right now, I’ll wait. A canning jar is fine, or a vase, or even that big plastic container that pickles sometimes come in, I won’t judge, you shouldn’t either. Ideally, it should be clear so that you can see the slips of paper and all the many blessings and moments of gratitude that you have collected. Find some paper and cut it into strips, colorful is fun but not required. Find a pen. Put your gratitude station where it’s easy to see and invite the family to capture moments of gratitude along with you, or even better, make filling out a slip a regular part of your day. Watch the gratitude jar fill!
A few years back I tried something like this for the first time. To make it special I cut out paper leaves and had people write what they were grateful for and then they got to put the leaves on a tree. Seeing the tree get more and more leaves warmed my heart as my tiny kids found things to write on their leaves. At Thanksgiving, we took down the leaves and shared some of the things that we wrote. It was a very sweet moment. It was a challenge to remember to do it every day, but it was worth it.