The general idea of a Happiness Jar, as the name says, is to fill a jar with happiness. Your happiness, which in its own simplicity it is rather brilliant! If you think I am trying to trick you just keep on reading. I promise I won’t be suggesting you go out and try to catch a ray of sunshine or fill the jar with some fresh air from the countryside. In fact let’s skip straight to the basic recipe:
1 empty jar or container of any kind. This can be an empty, cleaned pickle jar or nutella glass, a ceramic plant pot, a tupperware snack box you don’t need or even one of those piggy banks you need to break when you are ready to “cash in”.
1 small piece of paper for every day you keep the Happiness Jar going.
2 pens. 1 to write with and 1 back up in case you lose the first one. Easily done with pens.
1 minute to reflect on your day
When you pack your suitcase to visit London or Dublin for your Internship programme, simply add the above listed ingredients. With regards to the container, I suggest you use something light weight that doesn’t break easily. It can even be a plain plastic bag. If you want to be more specific in your preparations, why not get a London or Dublin themed pencil case? If you are very creative, you may even want to make your own. The choice is entirely your own. There is no right or wrong.
The day you arrive at your destination and finally get to unpack your suitcase at your host family’s house, try to put the Happiness Jar in a place where you will see it every day so you don’t forget about it. After all this is probably a new thing for you and with all the many experiences you will have each day, it is easy to get distracted.
Starting on the very first evening, once you’ve showered the travels off your shoulders and got comfortable in your pyjamas, take a minute to reflect on the day you had and pick the moment you felt most happy at. Don’t worry if it wasn’t an overly joyful day because you were too nervous about meeting your host family or too concentrated on not losing anything at the airport. Simply think of something that either made you smile or feel otherwise content. Like a friend helping you carry your stuff, the airline crew being particularly friendly or the moment you met your host family and instantly felt welcome and secure. Basically anything that brings out a positive feeling inside you, no matter how insignificant it may have felt at the time.
Once you’ve made your choice, write it down on a small piece of paper. Just a few words. No need to write a whole essay. Although of course if that is what you prefer to do then so be it. After all it is supposed to be YOUR happiness jar.
Pop the piece of paper with your happy moment into the container. Job done.
Repeat this exercise every evening and by the time you’ve finished your Internship programme, you will have a jar filled with happy moments that will stay with you forever. It is up to you whether you wish to read them all again as soon as you get home or if you want to leave them for a while and just pick one out whenever you’re feeling low. Some people say it helps them reinforce positive feelings and confidence whenever they feel stressed about upcoming challenges.
Seeing how you managed to fill a whole jar with happy moments when most likely every day will have filled you with some form of anxiety or unsettled nerves should remind you that no matter how far you travel beyond your comfort zone, you are extremely capable of creating happy and meaningful moments within.
PRO TIPP: I know most of you are extremely savvy in today’s tech world. So if the above described method of making a Happiness Jar is too “old school” for you, there are apps who pretty much allow you to do the same thing electronically. I can’t endorse any particular ones as they have not been tested by any of our staff, so please use them with caution seen as you will be entering personal information on a daily basis.
ADC College organises Internship Programmes in London and Dublin, eligible for funding from Erasmus+. Don't hesitate to contact us if you would like more information about what we do and how to get funding. Call a Country Manager today on +44 2084249424 or send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org.