Saturday, 17 September 2016

Making a calm jar - not only for children!

A calm jar, or mindfulness jar is the simplest thing, yet is very beautiful and effective. 
It is basically a jar full of water, with some glue and glitter added and works just like a snow globe.

When you feel agitated you shake the jar and just watch as everything settles (it takes a few minutes depending on how much glue is in the jar).
It's originally suggested as a tool for an agitated child and gives them a kind of time out,
but it's equally effective for adults who just need a few minutes to stop stressing about things.
It's also a really good analogy for the mind.
When you shake the jar and everything moves really fast this can be what the thoughts are like, non-stop, incessant and constantly whirling.
But if we intentionally take time out to stop, breathe and notice where we are and what is happening
our thoughts, feelings and emotions start to settle by themselves, just like the glitter in the jar.

This is what the calm jar looks like once it has been vigorously shaken.

And these are the next few stages, as the glitter (thoughts, feelings, emotions) start to settle.
You'll see in the next 3 photos how the glitter gradually sinks to the bottom of the jar.

Until it ends up completely still.

And it's so easy to make a calm jar!
This one is glass but if children are handling it best use a plastic bottle.
I used glitter glue (called confetti glitter glue from Hobbycraft) but you can add glue and glitter separately. You have to experiment with amounts depending on the size of the jar but you need enough water to nearly fill the jar. 
If using glitter glue use boiling water and put it into a bowl first and stir really well to make sure the glue separates and doesn't stay in clumps.
You have to be patient at this stage and I left it overnight.
Then add the mix to the jar and seal the jar lid with some superglue as you close it.
You really don't want the lid coming off as you shake it!
And that's it! enjoy!

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