I’ve been feeling quite “Eh” (as my beautiful daughter puts it) for a few days now. “Eh” as in not horrible, but not good. “Dull” is a good way to describe it, and it’s wearing on me. There’s no specific reason. In fact, if I tally the truly important things, everything is actually really good. So, where’s my joy? Do you have yours with you today?
I’m pondering, feel free to join me… Where’s my joy this week and, importantly, how do I get it back? I’m not seeking perpetual bliss, but the light feeling of “all is well”, and the peaceful awareness of all that is good in my life. This morning I recognized I have been feeling weighed down and how uncomfortable it is. I don’t like it at all.
This train of thought was triggered by a news anchor. I heard her say “It was a joy”, and I realized that’s my problem! I have not been feeling joyful this week.
It’s been a couple of minutes of introspection now, and I’ve had an epiphany. As I considered events and recalled moments from the last two weeks, there have been some “heavy” things that occurred. However, there have been LOTS of good things too. Here’s my epiphany: My joy didn’t leave me at all, I buried it under a bunch of “shoulds” and unproductive worry.
Here’s something I know to be true about joy (but obviously forgot in the past few days): When I pay attention, I experience moments of joy throughout each day. I haven’t been paying attention.
Good news though! In the few minutes since I started writing, I’m feeling lighter. A smile came across my face as I looked out the window and saw the sun shining on the lake. A huge Monarch butterfly passed, and I realized Irma’s aftermath has finally receded enough to allow our dock to re-emerge from the high water. (And it appears to be intact – bonus!)
Too often we put joy way out in an unattainable place. We think maybe we will experience it when, or if, some big thing happens. As I already admitted to doing, we also bury it under stress, disappointments, frustrations, and heartaches.
The truth is, joy is available to us right here, right now, every-single-day. It runs parallel with us through all of life’s moments. To find it, we simply need to shift our focus. When we pay attention, joy comes in the simplicity of a good cup of coffee; a conversation with a friend; a new idea; finishing a task; and listening to your sweet dog snore next to you. I’m recalling now, last week I found incredible joy in electricity!
Some think joy is an esoteric state that most never attain. That’s not true, but you have to recognize it to experience it. If you aren’t sure whether or not you ever feel joy, I invite you to look for it and welcome it in the moment. It feels warm, gentle, and peaceful. It’s found in a genuine smile, a hearty laugh, the faces of your loved ones, and so much more!
Joy isn’t reserved for the extraordinary events of “someday”, it lives in the “ordinary” moments of now. Notice the things that are right in your world today. Look around you; spot something beautiful and someone you appreciate. Feel that joy.
Everything isn’t perfect right now, but I did find my joy. Did you?
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