By Duane Hewitt
Our desire for joy is intrinsic to our natures. Joy gives us feelings of peace and contentment that can approach bliss. And joy can add longevity to your life while making that lifetime feel all worthwhile. When a person learns the various ways of practicing joy, even the simplest passing moment can present itself as an opportunity to find joy.
There are various ways to develop a predisposition for joy. People who frequently experience joy typically have their own unique ways of finding joy. And yet, for many of us, how are we to find joy – particularly in such uncertain and troubling times? What follows are some suggestions that may help you find joy in a seemingly troubled world…
- Calm thyself: If we can learn to stop fretting and just be present in the moment, where we become conscious of our bodies, our every breath, and what our busy minds are thinking, it allows us to take control and settle down, to put our anxieties aside and calm both mind and body.
- Appreciate the simple things: Learn to look for and appreciate little pieces of magic in the world around you. We can all learn to observe and appreciate simple things that might often pass us by… feeling a gentle breeze, observing the clouds, watching kids play in the park, even appreciating the hum of that cooling fan on your desktop. The world around us is full of fascinating little gems that we often take for granted but that can help clear our minds and elevate our mood.
- Find meaning: We all need purpose. Find meaning in your day, your week, your lifetime. Even if that purpose seems small and humble. Purpose allows us to feel positive momentum and that in turn can silence those yapping dogs of misgiving and doubt that prevent us from feeling joy.
- Welcome people: We need people in our lives. We are social beings and when our people-experiences are positive, it can soothe, enrich, and excite us. The all-important component of having people in our lives is often what brings meaning to our lives.
- Take joy and comfort in who you are: We are always with ourselves and so it’s to our benefit to learn to love and appreciate who we are; to find peace within oneself about the person you are. Get to know the authentic, unique you that is worth spending time with. One important tip: don’t be too critical with yourself.
- Laugh! Our brains basically do what we train them to do. Teach yourself to find humor in life, even throughout the day. The levity that laughter provides can hardly be beat for the pathway that leads to joy.
- Don’t worry about what you can’t change: Even when the world seems to be spinning out of control, worrying won’t do anything to change the outcome. Carrying the world on your shoulders is not a recipe for joy!
- Give: Find a way to give something back to the world. It can be as simple as kindness, or it can be more involved such as volunteer and community work. Our daily lives provide many opportunities for “giving back” to the world. It’s worth giving it a try.
We’ve all known people who seem most contented when they’re bitter and angry. But if we have a choice, joy is the better option. Joy produces good results and joy is fully self-rewarding. With just a bit of effort, we can all learn ways of practicing joy that suits our individuality.
Copyright 2020 Duane Hewitt.