How do you capture joy? What does joy “look” like? Where do you find joy? Why does joy often seem so elusive?
“Joy” and “Happy” are not the same.
Happy is a response to something. We experience happy when we’re having fun, spending time with someone who makes us smile, watching a funny movie, playing with a grandchild, entertaining a group of wonderful people in our home (IF we’re relaxed and having a great time too), taking a vacation in a place we love, or completing something successfully (a class, an athletic endeavor, an interview, even an organizing project).
Joy is INSIDE YOU. Joy resonates within your spirit. Joy isn’t as temporary as being happy. Joy fills you up.
I’ve said for a long time that I want to walk through this life with JOY and GRACE. I mean that. I want to live a life filled with grace. I want to be joyful. I want to BE joy.
To experience the peace that comes from being joyful, you first have to figure out what really matters to you. It’s not that what matters to your children or partner or parents or a friend is unimportant, it’s simply that you have to make what REALLY matters to YOU a priority. If you don’t do that, you are less well equipped to “be present and joyful” for anyone else. If you don’t feel right with God (or your Higher Power) and yourself, it’s really tough to be right with other human beings.
Give yourself permission to feel good, feel happy, and feel okay even when the rest of the world isn’t on the same page as you.
Be willing to fall on your face (figuratively if you don’t have great coordination, in your line of work if that’s where you have that fear, or in a personal relationship if it’s troubled) and not let that be a moment that “defines you”. If you keep rehashing the moments you “fell”, that energy isn’t being used to make space for new experiences. Take what you learned and run with it.
Chase a dream. Kurt Vonnegut said, “of all the words of mice and men, the saddest are, “It might have been.’”
Have a sense of humor and don’t take yourself too seriously.
Understand what brings you joy, inside your home, outside your home and most importantly inside YOU. This is really different from what you think SHOULD bring you joy. Glom onto what makes you smile, laugh, feel a little lighter in your step.
Take care of yourself. Forgive yourself. Learn from the past.
Give up those things and people who don’t work. Whether it’s hanging onto a hurt, a friend who doesn’t honor you (that person is NOT a “friend”), a bunch of “clutter” that’s suffocating you, or tension with people you live with, LET IT GO. Clearly, this is “easier said than done”, but that’s why it’s important. Don’t consider it personal failure. Consider it personal growth. Getting rid of toxic makes room for healthy.
“Relish what is, instead of being confined to what isn’t.” Linda Brownback shared this gem of hers with me recently. How wonderful.
Relish What Is.
What a beautiful entry into a Peace Full Home.