What Brings You Joy?

What Brings You Joy?

Awhile back, I started to take a joy inventory of my day each night.  My inquiry would be to the question, “What brought me joy today?  What brought me happiness today?”  Somenights I felt satisfied that I had had enough joy and happiness in my day to call it a good day.  However, I was disappointed to find many nights that my day was dismally lacking in joy.  Dismally lacking in joy days were full of busy-ness, marked by tasks, unmemorable events and lacking in any of those ‘moments’ when I stop, look, listen, and appreciate.

I began to see a pattern of the things that actually make me happy and bring joy.  As my1170782_267817763349902_42602197_n nightly list grew with the things that brought me joy, I became aware.  Awareness is the first step to change.  I began to consciously integrate some of the tried-and-true joys into my everyday life.  Joy begets joy.  I began to look for joy in my day.  What you look for, you find! 

As you might imagine, this step is not all that easy.  Life is always throwing tasks our way and we all have an inner taskmaster that harangues us with, “Do this, do that. Did you call this one, email that one, do this task or another?”  Quiet please!  My head is going to explode!

As children we are told to finish our tasks/chores/homework and then we can play.  That works for children because there is an end to their tasks but as adults there is never an end.  We can go on and on and on.  We have to draw the line, so to speak, between work and play.  That line can be blurry.  For instance, I can sit down at my computer to write something (the creative process brings me joy) and find new emails waiting that just ‘must’ be answered (isn’t it hard not to look!).  In a flash, I’m into something that I won’t be able to put on my joy-list that night.  I know you can relate to this, my friend. We actually have to fight for the time and space for joy in our lives!  Who would have thought?

I invite you to try this experiment and let me know what you discover brings you joy and makes you happy and puts a smile on your face at the end of the day.  We’ll conduct our own little research project!  Keep your joy list and let us know how you manage to put more of what brings you joy into your everyday life.

You can go to my Contact page and write it all there.  I will put it together (no names) and in some future blog report back to you.  Haven’t you ever wondered what others are doing to bring themselves happiness?  I certainly have. Now is a chance to find out. 

-sent with my love

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5 Responses to What Brings You Joy?

  1. Kathleen says:

    Hi Marcia,
    I love this! Taking a daily joy inventory is a wonderful practice to include everyday that will bring many positive outcomes not the least of which is feeling more joy! I use the same practice and it has expanded the perception of my life and created the awareness that I have many reasons to be in a state of joy and much to appreciate. I highly recommmend it!

    ~Kathleen~

  2. nanette Ford says:

    “what brings me joy?” I like ” what I look for I will find.” what brings me joy? candles throughout the house instead of electric lights, lavender salts in a hot bath, dr haushka skin care products, getting a new client who actually WANTS to be there, anything to do with my son; lazy weekend afternoon watching tv or doing our own homework in the house, in peace, smelling a fireplace buring on a cold winter day.

  3. Beck says:

    What a great time to get this blog, as I am rushing around my daily life. Being productive does actually give me joy but I know that reflection is something that does not get enough of my time. Thanks for the right message at just the right time.

    Love the daily inventory. Being aware allows one to see so many opportunities!

  4. Mary Beth says:

    Wonderful practice, Marcia. I have felt the same sense of overwhelm as you expressed. Several years ago I began a practice I call my “Bottom Lines.” These are my spiritual and physical exercises and my creative work in the world. As I plan each day, these are my priorities. Other tasks and chores must fit in the remaining time or wait for another day. Sometimes my “Bottom Lines” get omitted. But I have gotten better over time at keeping this promise to myself.

    I share my “Bottom Lines” practice when I speak to groups about life balance. People often give me positive feedback about it.

    Warmly,
    Mary Beth

  5. gail says:

    i’ve been doing a joy inventory, but not regularly. I like the thought of finding something each day. I’m guessing i will become more mindful of the simple pleasures

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