How to Grow Your Own Positivity in a Jar

Boost Your Positivity and Quickly Overcome Adversity

30 January 2018

“Hurricane warning is now in effect for Antigua and the rest of the Leeward islands. It is time to secure life and property. Battening down is required.” National Hurricane Centre notification,  6th September 2017.

A record breaking hurricane season for all the wrong and terrible reasons, was about to make the Caribbean famous.

This was the moment I realised we were not monitoring the news, we were the news! An immediate positivity fail hit me like a brick!

Staring into the jaws of impending annihilation gives you a perspective like nothing else. We consumed the news reports and gorged on tales of first-hand storm experiences in fascinated slack-jawed horror.

First Irma tore a devastating path through our sister island Barbuda; ripping through neighbours St Maarten/St Martin, Anguilla, the Virgin Islands, and others as she barrelled her way to Florida.

Then less than 10 days later, Maria unleashed her pent-up fury on Caribbean, delivering crushing blows to Dominica, Puerto Rico, and a host of other islands. Imagine an epic aftermath of a Hollywood disaster movie.

These are places my husband and I have lived and where we still do work. Friends and colleagues are still facing the paradox of enormous personal and livelihood loss and blessings to be alive. The long, uphill, rocky road to recovery stretches far ahead.

Category 5 Hurricane Brainpokes

If you make it through adversity, things will never be the same. You change or the experience changes you.

Luckily and by the grace of a higher power, my home island, Antigua, escaped the worst of hurricane Irma’s destruction. Grateful seems an inadequate word; but is the best I can muster under the circumstances.

It was a terrible and sobering experience – the kind that puts your courage to the test and asks BIG questions of your mettle.

1. Will you be laid low and give up?

2. Will you reflect and *unlearn-learn? * You can read more about this super skill here.

3. Will you pivot and press on?

Many times, you feel like you have lost the plot. I know those feelings all too well.
Don’t throw in the towel. You simply must not give in.

Refuse to be bullied by creeping anxiety.

Object to being press-ganged into fearful submission.

Dig into the nooks and crannies of your spirit. Find ways to rally the remnants of your grit.

3 Questions to Ask Yourself in Crappy Situations.

As the impact of the hurricanes continued shake us to the core, I scrambled to claw some sense out of the chaos.

The key to overcoming adversity is building a mindset that allows you to find ways to keep going.

This easier said than done, but not impossible.

Begin each day determined to lift your morale. Start with answering these 3 questions to help you to extract yourself from crappy situations.

1. What can I unlearn and learn?
2. What am I grateful for in this moment?
3. What is the good or positive I can take from this?

During the worst of the storms I reflected on these 3 questions many times during the day – beacons of light in the dark moments.

At the end of each day I scribbled my sense-from-chaos answers on notes and popped them in my Positivity Jar. I wrote as if my sanity depended on it; and truth be told it did.

Just after the New Year I emptied the jar. Out tumbled notes from 2017 – records of triumphs over adversity, memories of unexpected opportunities and planned wonderful things that actually happened over the 12 months. My heart filled with gratitude as I celebrated each and every hard won triumph.

How to Grow Your Own Positivity in a Jar

It’s easy-peasy to do. Get your hands on a method has been tested and proven to work under hurricane conditions.

Four years ago I stumbled across the ‘gratitude jar’ project and it inspired me to create my own version – a ‘Positivity Jar’.

“My Positivity Jar” photo by Nicole Antonio-Gadsdon

Now it is a tradition I do every year.

My positivity jar sits on my desk with these words taped to it.

“Starting NOW, I will fill this empty jar with notes about the good things that happen and great experiences I have shared as I chart a new course. 12 months from today, I will empty it and celebrate the unexpected, that wonderful things did happen and my journey was all the more rewarding for it.”

Step 1: Make Your Positivity Jar (Plain or decorative – your style, your choice)
You will need:

  • 1 clean empty jam jar (other type – e.g. pickles.)
  • Glue or tape.
  • Scissors.
  • Paper or labels.
  • Beads, ribbons, twine, glitter, trinkets, talismans – whatever you fancy to decorate your jar.

Step 2: Find a Suitable Location for Your Positivity Jar
It is very important to place your Positivity Jar where you can see it every day. This is your visual prompt to write a note and drop that positivity seed in your jar.

Step 3: Use Your Positivity Jar Daily
It is like catching positivity fireflies in a jar. (No fireflies were harmed in creating my positivity jar)

First, write down at least 3 positive things you experienced.  Images that inspire positive feelings or words that motivate you are perfect for stuffing in your positivity jar.

At the end of a tough day, write your feelings and thoughts about the challenges you faced. How can you peel positivity from each experience. Again, here are those 3 questions to help you.

1. What can I unlearn and learn?
2. What am I grateful for in this moment?
3. What is the good or positive I can take from this?

If you manage to write more than three notes, you are really on a roll.

Next, pop these captured moments and experiences into your jar immediately and begin to grow your own positivity vibes.

When you demotivation threatens to overwhelm you, pull a few of the positivity notes from your jar and have a read. A dose of positivity and perspective is sometimes all that is needed to lift your spirits and help you get back on track. It works for me.

Psst! Remember you get the best results when you practise this daily.

Let’s start 2018 with an empty jar. Get ready to fill it to the brim with gratitude and positivity throughout the year.

Share this positive vibes post with your circle. It could be just what they need to read today.

Try making a Positivity Jar or your create your own riff on it. Let me know how it is working for you.

Share pictures of your decorated jar too. I’d love to see them.

Wishing you buckets of positivity as you journey through 2018.

Until we meet again down The HR Rabbit Hole…





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2 thoughts on “How to Grow Your Own Positivity in a Jar

    1. nicoleg Post author

      Hello Shawn, thanks for stopping by The HR Rabbit Hole blog. Please keep me posted how you get on creating your jar and your daily practise of writing positivity notes.


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