At its core, it’s very simple. You thank Hashem for something, you write it down and you drop it in the pushkah. At some point in the future you relive your grateful moments.
Frequently asked questions
How do I use the pushkah?
How often do you recommend using the pushkah?
It really depends on you and what you want to get from it. If you are trying to create a new habit, regular use integrated into a routine will help, e.g. part of your or your family’s bedtime routine. Some people would prefer a time in the week where they reflect, while others will prefer to be more spontaneous. Experiment with what works best for you!
How often do you look at your notes?
Again, there is no right answer for this one. If you are trying to create a habit, a routine is often helpful. We have found that Shabbos is a perfect time to reflect back on the week and relive those grateful moments. Depending on if you have a “family” pushkah or individual pushkahs – reviewing them together at the table can provide a unique opportunity to talk about your grateful moments.
How many pushkahs should I get and where do I put them?
We live in a world where we are bombarded with distractions from all around us. Similarly, the more you are reminded to thank, the more likely you will. For this reason, placing pushkahs where you frequently spend time will help. e.g. Kitchen, bed side tables, office desks and car cup holders. In addition, placing a notepad on the fridge is another reminder (magnets are included). Having the notepad in an easy to reach place is essential because in our busy world having to take time to find paper will make it less likely that you will actually do it.
My pushkah is full, now what?
Firstly, you are doing great! Some people have preferred to fill it up every week – review on Shabbos and throw them out - starting with an empty pushkah for the new week. Others may prefer to empty them into a bag/ziploc or something of that sort for safekeeping. This has an added benefit which will allow you to be able to reflect back on months/years of grateful moments in the future, e.g. erev Rosh Hashanah.
What am I thanking for?
Everything and anything!!
I like just thinking about thanking, why do I have to write it down?
The pushkah is not an alternative to thanking in anyway you do already. It's an additional tool to make gratitude a more integral part of your life. The act of stopping to write something down allows you to become more conscious of things in your life and has profound effects on creating a thanking habit for you and your family. In addition, one of the obstacles in developing a thanking habit is that you forget all that happened in the day, the week, and even more so in a month. The things that you were once appreciative for become second nature with the course of time. Reviewing those moments will rekindle your gratitude.
Is this for me, or for my children?
Yes and yes. Ages 2- 120. Children who are too young to write can draw pictures of the presents they got, the trips they went on or their favorite snacks. As we all know teaching by example is infinitely more effective than lecturing on how important it is to be grateful.
What does pushkah mean?
Its Yiddish for a little container/box. Historically this was used as small box to collect money for charity... now, to save your grateful moments!
Do I have to be religious/Jewish to use the pushkah?
No and no. We believe that acknowledging life’s gifts and expressing gratitude for them, is a fundamental qualitiy that every human being should strive to acquire.