We spend much of our mama lives in a constant state of go. All of the busy- the rushing around and doing- keeps us focused on what’s coming up next. Which kid needs to be where, what we need to pack, what we need to get from the grocery store on the way home. All of this focus on the next is great; necessary even if we’re going to manage that busy calendar. I realized a couple of years ago, however, that always looking forward to the next was keeping me from noticing and enjoying all of the sweet little moments in the here and now.
I wanted to do something relatively small to change my trajectory. I only had time for a mini life shift! Something to help me refocus some of my attention on the beauty of the moment I was in, even while I was chauffeuring kids, packing lunches, and keeping everyone (including myself) looking kinda presentable.
While thinking about all of this, I came across an idea created by Elizabeth Gilbert- the author of Eat Pray Love. Elizabeth taught me that yoga and spaghetti can change the world, which I believe wholeheartedly. So when Elizabeth talks, I listen. Elizabeth shared something about Happiness Jars, and I was hooked on the idea. The concept behind Happiness Jars is that each day you write down something on a piece of paper that made you happy. It’s nothing monumental. It’s sometimes as small as a great cup of coffee or the smell of rain when you stepped outside in the morning. But the amazing thing is that when you know you’re going to have to write something down on that little piece of paper, it puts you on the lookout for happiness. And when you look for something, you’re more likely to find it!
We’ve been doing a Happiness Jar in my family for about two years. We all add notes to the jar, including the kids. It’s been a small but amazing way to shift our focus to the little moments that bring joy, which in turn inspires gratitude.
Your challenge this week Mamas- each day, write down something that made you happy, no matter how small. Put the note in a bowl, a jar, anything. At the end of the week pull out your little notes and read them. Pay attention to how this exercise feels for you.
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What are you grateful for?