At a recent Toastmaster's meeting I was asked the question, "With such small odds, why do you think people continue to purchase lottery tickets?"
My answer: hope. Even with odds so small, the fact that there is a chance has an allure that keeps people going to that counter. While I've never played the lottery and have a strict casino budget of ten dollars (yes - ten dollars), I'm an avid believer in the power of hope and this year for New Years I decided I wanted to speak to my future self while I was feeling the optimism of new beginnings through a hope jar.
What's a hope jar?
While I certainly can't trademark the term, my idea of a hope jar is a large glass container filled with pretty gems and multi-colored paper with inspirational quotes written on them. Your quotes can be about life, something amazing you heard someone else say, or even some of your favorite bible verses. The only thing required is that the quotes make you think beyond your current moment, and bring you to a place of gratitude or inspiration.
The hope jar and it's materials cost me about twenty-five dollars at Michael's, but you can probably do it for even less with a coupon. I used construction paper that blended well with my living room decor, faux pearls from the jewelry section, and a confetti banner that I cut apart to mix in with the pearls.
Where can a hope jar be implemented?
From a personal standpoint I like to keep it in my living room since I spend most of my time there. It's easy to forget about it when you're in a rough patch, so keeping it in your view is a must.
I'm also working on implementing one on my desk at work for coworkers that may be having a hard day - myself included.
For teachers and others who work with young children I think a hope jar could be an easy way to get a conversation started with a student who may be acting out or having a tough time in the classroom. Also, when you are having a tough day you can pull from the jar and get a quick boost to remind you that you can get through the day.
For those working in Human Resources, implementing a hope jar could be a way to facilitate some of the more difficult conversations you have to hold and help people see the bright of the situation during disputes.
What can a hope jar do for you?
There's a famous quote out there that says "Motivation doesn't last but neither do showers and that's why we do it daily". Hope jars help to renew hope and remind us that we can. They help us remember lessons from the past so that we don't make the same mistakes we've made before. They help us to see the glass full even when it's empty.
I hope after reading this you take some time to make your very own hope jar and use it to spread positivity and happiness everywhere you go.
Gabriella Payne increases engagement in teams and communities through inspiration and strategic development. She works with universities, athletic groups, and corporations to help students and recent graduates transform their futures through strategy development workshops. She is also an advocate for healthy relationships and teaches a series called "See It Coming".