Are you experiencing feelings of joy less that you would like? Do you feel like joy only arrives during big moments of success or celebration? Joy isn't a mysterious ether that just appears once in a while, in fact joy can be more present if you learn how to see it.
The trouble for many of us is we associate joy with an event, something good happens to us and we feel excitement and joy and then blah, back to the day to day. That leaves a vast open space of life that we often just coast through instead of truly being part of the experience.
With intention and a bit of practice we can see joy show up in our life more often. You deserve to delight in this adventure called life and have joy be more than an occasional guest star. Here are some tips to help you get joy to show up for you more often.
"There are souls in this world which have the gift of finding joy everywhere and of leaving it behind them when they go.”
―Frederick W. Faber
1. Be in the moment with one of your daily rituals
Most of us have a morning cup of coffee or tea, instead of sticking it in a mug and running out the door why not get up a few minutes earlier and sit and enjoy the fragrance and flavor. Start by feeling the warmth of the mug in your hands, bring the mug under your nose and close your eyes as you take in the aromas. Then slowly take a sip and really let the flavor dance on your taste buds. Simple exercises of appreciation like this can connect you with your senses and with practice, things like eating and drinking can be appreciated in a way you never thought of before.
2. Dive into the natural world around you with wonder
We have all heard the term stop and smell the Roses yet how many of us walk by a flower or something beautiful everyday with little notice. Take one moment each day to revel in the magnificence of a tree or the grandness of the clouds in the sky. Consider pausing at a beautiful flower and really look at it, then bury your nose in the flower and inhale. Walk barefoot and really let your feet feel the ground, sand or whatever is beneath you. Any one of these is a captivating exercise that is free and connects us with the awesomeness that surrounds us daily. I bet you can't do anyone of them without experiencing joy. Studies have shown that communing with nature can lower stress levels. Here is a helpful article that can tell you more http://breakingmuscle.com/health-medicine/research-says-nature-provides-...
3. Get physical
Give more hugs, get more hugs; most of us love a good hug and sometimes we are too shy to do it. I have found that when I have made a practice of giving hugs, people relax and give more hugs in return, It's a win win and it also let's other know they can do it too. Hug your spouse, your kids, your family, your friends even your pooches. Every hug counts and every hug adds more joy to your life. It's a simple prescription for joyful living and it doesn't cost a dime.
Run around with children, if you have children in your life but are typically a bench sitter when they play challenge yourself to get out there and chase them around. Not only will they be delighted but it will reawaken a joyful part of you.
4. Get Creative
You don't need to be a Picasso or Martha Stewart to be creative all you need is an open mind and a willingness to explore. You can draw, paint or cook a new recipe, it really doesn't matter so long as you chose something that interests you. You can color in a coloring book or bake premade cookies, the goal is to get you to do something with your hands and creative mind. Getting lost in a creative process can act as a sort of calming meditation and calm and creativity enhance joy.
5. Write an old fashioned letter
Pick up a pen and write an a card or letter to someone you love. There is nothing like the surprise of getting a personal card in the mail. Take some time, make it count and write something personal.
6. Write a list of things you are thankful for
It doesn't need to be a long list in fact for maximum impact start out with a couple items each day. Then each morning add something to it. After a month you will be amazed at all the things you have to be grateful for. If you keep this ip for a year imagine the size of the list you will have. When you are having a no so great day or need some inspiration, pick up the list and read some of your items. It's a sure fire way for a mood pick me up and it's cheaper than a cup of coffee.
These are just a few tips to get you going in the right direction. The most important thing to remember is that it is rarely the huge things that leave us with feelings of long lasting joy but rather a piling up of simple things that create a life that fills us up.
If you have some great ideas of your own I would love to hear about them.