Why is it that remembering the difficult times seems so easy, while remembering the good times is often difficult? It is critical to the human heart to remember, to recall the events of our lives and to ponder them. It gives us a sense of history and story. It helps us have better knowledge of who we really are, not just how we feel in the moment. Try this together as a couple, as a family, or on your own – make a point to remember the Good Stuff this year.
I wonder if remembering the good stuff is more difficult because the good things tend not to leave a mark. Scars are easier to remember than smiles because they leave a lingering reminder. That is why it is so important to mark the good things. If you want a history that is focused on the good stuff, then you need to write it down. Spend time focusing on the good things and how those things have affected your family culture.
Archeologists report that people in different cultures have remembered the important elements of their history because of three factors: length of exposure, meaningful associations, and cultural knowledge. That means that if you want your family to remember the good stuff then you need to rehearse the positive stories, celebrate these stories in a way that shows their value and importance, let them become part of your family culture.
We have a great way to help you accomplish all three of these goals. Create A Good Stuff Jar. Here’s the idea; throughout the year family members write down Good Stuff that happens on slips of paper. They tell something good that happened and why it was important to them. These slips are stored in a jar which is displayed in view throughout the year. At Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, or on New Year’s Day the slips of paper are read aloud. By doing this the family shares important time together taking account of all the good things that have happened and how it has changed the family. This practice promotes thankfulness and deepens gratitude. It also tightens family bonds.
When you are finished, these slips can be added to a journal. Through the years you can see the greater story of how Goodness has surrounded your family. It will be a treasure for years to come, especially seeing the handwriting of family members from years gone by. Creating a Good Stuff Jar is not only a great way to remember the good things, but it is also a way to record history for your family. This is important because knowing our “story” gives us a sense of place and belonging. It knits us together.
Make your own Good Stuff jar or purchase one from our store!
“The only thing faster than the speed of thought is the speed of forgetting. Good thing we have other people to help us remember.” ~Vera Nazarian
Write down the Good Stuff that happens throughout the year and celebrate it at year's end. Think of all the Goodness that is lost because we don't keep it close. Save Goodness!