You know what I wish I could invent? I wish I could invent a joy battery pack.
We recently went to the beach, which is about an hour away. I stood there, looking at the waves and the surrounding hills, breathing in the sea air, filled with absolute joy. I was fully aware of how fortunate I was and I stood there trying to hold on to that moment with all of my senses.
I never wanted to forget.
Then as we were leaving, we had to run across the hot, dark sand and burned our feet. Then sat in traffic for two hours, all sandy and itchy. Then, when we finally made it home, my husband and I got all frustrated and snippy with each other over something that I can’t even remember twelve hours later.
What happened to the joy?!
If we allow it to dissipate over such small irritants, how can we possibly retain it when real-life problems come up?
Today I don’t come to you with any answers, but invite you to join me in sitting with the questions. Because I think they’re worthy questions to be having with ourselves (and with each other).
How do we keep joy alive?
I sit here, in the dark, as the sun is starting to rise. I see the pink horizon. I hear the roosters crowing off in the distance. I see the silhouette of our banana tree. I focus all my senses on being fully present.
Ah! There it is!
Maybe joy is never as far away as we think it is.
I have long believed that our focus determines our bravery. That if we focus on the things that scare us or overwhelm us that we’ll live into that focus. We will both physiologically and emotionally react which will, in turn, affect our behavior and thus our results. Perhaps joy is the same.
Our focus determines our joy.
So then, if we want more joy in our lives, it makes sense that we must take responsibility for our focus. For we can leave it to chance and spend our days in reaction to the negative stimulus that will certainly be there, or we can live in choice. Which is more powerful? Which yields the best result?
Today I choose joy.
The sun is rising. The birds make up the music of the morning. It’s going to be a good day!
Ah! Joy! Won’t you join me?
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