When the jar is full, she sits down with a cup of coffee and reads the notes.
It’s such a simple thing, but it refreshes each memory in her mind. It makes her feel the happiness all over again. It ensures she doesn’t forget life’s pleasant moments.
Most of the time it’s our problems that get the lion’s share of our attention.
Someone says something irritating to you at work. An unexpected large bill shows up in the mail. Your sister didn’t send you a birthday gift. Again.
It’s natural for your minds to focus on these things. Our tendency is to want to solve our problems, so we think about them.
But when you think about them too much, your quality of life declines. Your mood follows your thoughts. Humans generate stress hormones whenever we dwell on worries or irritating events.
We need what my friend has created for herself. We need ways to create a memory bank full of happiness. That’s especially true in relationships.
When you hit a rough patch in your relationship, it’s easy to focus all your attention on the obstacles and forget the good things. If you don’t have a memory bank of happiness cued up and ready to go, it will be harder to remember the good times.
This creates an imbalance.
You need to take the time to remember the good…as a couple.
There are several ways to do that. My friend’s method works well for her, but it’s not the only way to root yourself in happy memories. If you’re a writer, you might try keeping a journal. You could add an entry every time you and your partner have a really good day.
When you’re not feeling as optimistic, go back and read a few entries to each other. Allow yourselves to feel the joy you felt before.
Another option is to build a memory bank of happiness with your partner. The next time you two are on a date, make a game of it.
Start by asking him to tell you about the first time you made him laugh. Then share the first time he made you laugh. Keep the conversation going, talking about little things. The first good movie you saw together. The first time you held hands. The first time you bailed each other out of a comically awkward moment.
With each situation you recall, you’re building a stronger bond and making deposits in your shared memory bank of happiness.
You can explore good memories together like that over and over again for years.
Eventually, you’ll be talking about your favorite shared vacation, the times you felt the closest, and even the most amazing intimate moments you’ve experienced together.
The point is to remember on purpose.
Take the time to revisit happy moments. This simple habit will enhance the joy in your relationship and solidify the bond you feel with your partner.