Two years ago, I stumbled upon a challenge on Tumblr that summoned volunteers to try out a gratitude exercise. Little did I know then how much of an impact it would make as I took on the challenge. Every day for a year I would have to write a small note about what I was thankful for that day, and slip it into a jar. During New Years Eve, you have to empty the jar and read all the strips of paper. It was a great way to recap the year, and welcome the new one with a grateful heart!

Simple things such as enjoying my favorite chocolate bar or hearing a song on the radio would go on the torn-up sheet of paper.There were some days that I skipped the challenge because of mere forgetfulness, but each night that I did the exercise, I felt good going to bed. I would even recount the many other things that made me smile during the day.

Last year, a good friend of mine, Miel Abong, posted a great idea on social media which she called the Empty & Full Jar Challenge. It was similar to the challenge I took on the year before, but with an added twist. She explained that she wanted to add another jar–the full jar–to the challenge. Here’s my take on trying to explain her awesome idea!

Some steps to help you with the challenge

What You Need: Two jars of your choice, colored/artsy paper, colored pens

The Empty Jar 

You can label it as your gratitude jar if you like! Before you go to bed, you simply write down at least 1 thing that made you happy or grateful for the day, fold the strip of paper and slip it in the jar!

The Full Jar

Before the year begins or at the beginning of the year, you write down all the dreams and goals you want to achieve for the year. Be specific, and write it as if you already have received it. I started my strips with “Thank you, thank you, thank you for _______.” What’s important is to feel grateful as you’re doing it.

This exercise reminds me a lot of Rhonda Byrne’s The Secret and The Magic. And truly, these things work. I’ve had a vision board for years, and whatever I pin to the board comes true! Write down in as many strips of paper as you like all the things you want this year be it financial, health, career-wise, etc! For example, if you want to travel, don’t just say “Thank you for the opportunity to travel this 2015” but instead say “Thank you for the two-week trip to London, Ireland and Scotland with my best friend this July 2015. She and I had an amazing but safe time traveling around, meeting friends, etc…” You get the drift 🙂 It’s YOUR dream, so you can imagine whatever you want! Go crazy with details!

My full jar sits on my bookshelf while the empty jar, which increases day by day, sits at my desk, so that I am reminded to take a few moments to review the highlights of my day.

Will you take on this challenge with me this 2015? I’d love to hear what you think about it.

Thank you again to Miel for allowing me to share this great idea!

About the author

Izzy launched Days in Wonderland as an avenue for avid music fans and travel bugs to find inspiration. Days in Wonderland features concert photos and write-ups, song suggestions, interviews and travel guides.

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