Finding Joy In Our Daily Lives – We Might Be Looking In The Wrong Place
As we get older some of us seem to lose the sense of wonder, happiness and joy we experienced as young children. Where did it go? As adults, the pressures we face day after day – job stresses, dealing with health issues, money issues, children, parents, the pandemic, rising inflation and a host of other challenges and problems – can wear us down and wear us out. The world seems to get darker and harder to navigate. At some point, we realize we have lost it. And we naturally blame “the world” and the challenges it hands us day after day.
But is it possible we are looking for the answer in the wrong place?
Greg Bishop, in an article written about athlete Athing Mu, wrote the following in Sports Illustrated:
“Athing Mu, the 20-year-old middle-distance runner from New Jersey who specializes in what’s arguably the sport’s most brutal race. There’s not even a lot of argument. The task: sprint almost as hard as she can, for two full laps around the track, saving enough energy to separate over the final 100 meters but not so much that she’s not in position to separate at all.
That’s precisely where Mu’s other specialty comes in. She runs while exuding an emotion that’s rarely displayed in track, at least not during a race. It’s a simple concept—and yet, an elusive one. It’s what separates her from other elite competitors—and what will power her drive to break a controversial world record that has stood for 39 years.
The joy that resonates and motivates Mu is available to everyone. However, not everyone chooses to live in joy on a daily basis.
If this is a simple concept, exactly what is it?
We must choose joy and we must choose it every day in order to experience this life-defining all-encompassing emotion. Joy is our natural default but it gets lost in the busyness of everyday life.
There are many ways to bring joy into our lives but the easiest path is through gratitude. The more grateful we are, the more joyful we will also be. As we go about our day, it is easy to say, “I am grateful for my nutritious breakfast. My car has plenty of gas. Traffic is light today. My boss is in a great mood.”
While it is easy to say these things, we get busy and distracted and don’t follow through with gratitude every day. Without regular gratitude, it’s hard to obtain the status of joyful. And that is why the emotion of joy is elusive.
Here are some other suggestions of ways to move into the joyful state that inspires Mu:
- Start the day by reading a devotional or inspirational book. Take time for prayer or meditation.
- Make gratitude a part of your morning routine. Make a list of a few things you are grateful for or say thank you out loud and think of some of your blessings.
- Choose to be around other positive people and avoid the negative naysayers.
- Take time for yourself whether it be reading a book, taking a walk, or getting to bed early. Your body, mind, and spirit all need this reprieve from the stresses of everyday life.
- Spend time with family, friends, and those who love you. They are your tribe and they will always be there for you. The hugs, smiles, and laughter are all so good for you.
- Do all the healthy things – eat nutritious meals, drink plenty of water, and get regular exercise. You will not feel joyful if you’re not feeling well most of the time.
- Get out in nature as often as possible. The trees, flowers, bees, and water all help your mind and spirit to reconnect to the earth. You will feel revived, and again, more joyful.
If you’re not an athlete running sprints on a track, what are the benefits of living a joyful life?
- Joy releases all the feel-good hormones into our bodies.
- It makes us more resilient.
- We will feel more positive.
- Joy inspires us to be more loving, kinder, and to do good things for other people.
- But one of the biggest benefits of being joyful is a sense of connection. We feel more connected to ourselves, to those we care about, and the world we live in.
No matter where we are in life, there are many benefits to seeking joy and many ways of finding joy. We all have to figure out what works best for us and reach for the gold.
Discover Your Joy – I have to thank my publicist for this beautiful section.
How does one actually live a life filled with joy? Best-selling author and motivational speaker Louise Pistole has discovered the key to doing just that. She gives us that key in her best-selling book, ‘Discover Your Joy: Daily Splashes of Inspiration for Living an Abundant Life of Happiness, Blessings, and Inner Peace’. It is a book unlike any other you will ever read. ‘Discover Your Joy’ was awarded Honorable Mention in the Spiritual/Religious Category at the 2022 San Francisco Book Festival
While many of us believe that happiness is found at the end of some long, arduous process, it is instead that we begin from a state of joy. Some of us have it backwards. Joy is not a reward – it is a choice. And because it is a choice, it is something over which we hold total control. That choice can be made now – today.
Many of us feel hopeless and joyless. Perhaps our intentions are out of alignment with our actions. Surprisingly we can live in joy every day of our lives, but again – it is a choice.
“I made my choice one Sunday morning about 12 years ago when my minister spoke about being joyful and watching out for joy-stealers,” Pistole stated. “His message resonated with me and I began my journey to joy through reading, studying, and writing. As I began choosing joy day after day, it gradually became a habit in my life. Now my mission is to guide others to discover their own joy through these daily inspirational readings.”
In Discover Your Joy, readers will:
- Enjoy daily inspiration for happiness and joyfulness,
- Learn how to live an abundant life filled with gratitude, hope, and joy,
- Discover inner peace through encouraging words,
- Discover how to become a Joy-Fanatic and enjoy one’s best life.
A quick inspirational read every morning helps readers discover ‘moments of joy’ each day. Chock full of encouragement and motivation, readers will learn to seek and experience gratitude, hope, and true joy.
Readers and reviewers alike have praised ‘Discover Your Joy’. One said, “Each page in “Discover Your Joy” is a simple and beautiful reminder that the world may not be perfect, there will always be the ups and the downs, but we have the ability to CHOOSE each day how we will use this gift we call life. I highly recommend this book!!” Another stated, “Pistole gives great insight into ways to remind us that our joy is important and to beware of “joy stealers”. This book is a great way to start your mornings with a great cup of coffee and to discover your joy each and every day!”
You’ll also enjoy these articles –
Living an Inspired LIfe Full of Joy
The Difference Between Happiness and Joy
Thank you for joining me today for Finding Joy in Our Daily Lives – We Might be Looking in the Wrong Place.
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This couldn’t have come at a better time in my life. Ive been through several situations this week that just make me want to give up. This made me realize that you have to choose joy, it won’t just come to you. You also have to make a habit of practicing things that make you joyful to really keep it in your life.
Thanks again! This made my day!
Excellent! Yes we do have to choose joy and choose it every day! You’re well on your way.
Loved this read! I’ve also discovered the road to joy is filled with gratitude. Love your blog!
Yes… the road to joy is filled with gratitude. Love it!
Great post, and I love the story of the runner who uses joy to fuel her success on the track!
I, too, thought the athlete was an amazing sory.
Amazing tips on how to find and create more joyful moments in our lives. Taking time for yourself is key. Awesome post. Thank you
i have been discovering more ways to bring joy to my life
Yay! You’re on your way.
I feel I was called to your post tonight. I normally am a joyful person but not of late. I have lost my way, I am thankful for this reminder!!
Danielle, I have sometimes lost my joy-light. Go deep in gratitude and see if it helps to restore your beautiful joyful nature.
Much love, Louise
I love this! Choosing joy is so essential and not the same as being happy. We can choose joy even in a difficult circumstance. It’s important to find the things we can be grateful for. There is always something.
Your words are beautiful and I totally agree with you.
Love the article. Gratitude is a lost emotion as of late. Anything that beings joy is a welcoming site. Thanks for sharing!
Mike, thank you for your comment. I don’t hear from many men so you are my welcoming sight today!
Thank you for your article. I keep wondering how or if I can depend on myself for full joy in my life?