Happy New Year!
Like most of us, I feel motivated to make all sorts of changes this time of year. I usually make the typical New Year’s resolutions – like being more fit, losing weight, saving money, being kinder and having more patience with others and cooking more healthy foods.
Year after year, I put these resolutions on my long list and year after year, they fade away before the spring season. When another year ends, I recall all those things I said I would change and didn’t. And I get down on myself, feeling like a failure.
So this year, I decided to skip the whole thing….all of it. I would not make one resolution. And I was okay with that decision but still, I felt a need to do something to acknowledge this new year. But what?
Then a post by Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love and Big Magic, showed up on my Facebook feed which made me stop in my scrolling tracks. It read, in part:
“I have this sacred object in my life called a HAPPINESS JAR. Mine is a big old glass apothecary jar that I found at an antique store years ago, but the vessel itself doesn’t really matter. What matters is what’s inside of it.
Every day, at the end of the day, I write down the happiest moment of my day, and I put it in the jar. It’s that easy. It takes one minute — if that. I don’t use fancy paper or special pens; I usually just rip off the corner of a bill, and jot down the happy moment somewhere on a blank spot and throw it in the jar.”
She goes on to explain her Happiness Jar further, including what it’s done for her over the years. You can read her post in its entirety here.
I was immediately inspired and sprung into action. I grabbed a big jar I bought at a yard sale in Napa Valley a couple of years ago for $2, dumped out the candy inside and got a Wine Glass Writer. I chose the gold metallic pen and went to work on my jar.
I decided that in a effort to always try to live my richest life, I would call it “My Rich Life Jar” and I’d fill it every day with notes about what made my day rich. I adorned it with some stars and gold ribbon left over from the holidays. All of this happened in a matter of 15 minutes from the time I read the post to the time I set the jar on my dresser in my bedroom.
I was so excited to begin this ritual. I immediately knew that taking a break from resolutions had been the right choice for me.
To help me stick with this practice, I created a little kit for myself. I took a small box and filled it with squares of paper (plain index cards cut in half). I added my very favorite ball-point pen, which happens to be gold and glittery, and I included some paperclips. Occasionally I will attach money – like a $5 or $10 bill – with a paperclip to my note as a way to save up for something special like a spring getaway next year or a Christmas gift for my husband.
I keep the box in the top drawer of my dresser and take it out to write a note to place in the jar at the end of each day.
There is something that is both satisfying and comforting about having daily rituals. And a ritual so focused on positivity, gratitude, abundance, and mindfulness is destined to be a good – a rich – thing to do.
Do you make New Year’s resolutions? If so, do you find they work for you?
If not, how do you acknowledge a new year? Or do you?
Reminder! The first How I Wear My of 2016 is happening later this week. The theme this month is Gloves! The deadline for submission is Tuesday, January 5th (that’s tomorrow!). Send a photo of you in your gloves, along with a description of your look to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Happy New Year!
Make it a rich 2016!