Need more joy?
Don’t wait for it to arrive.
You can cultivate more joy in your life.
Follow these steps.
Then, repeat. Again and again.
This is a life-long process.
Commit to it.
Your joy will grow.
DIG INTO THE EARTH.
You have a choice to make.
You could walk on pins and needles in your life. Continue to complain or blame other people. Live in a constant state of anxiety.
You could make the conscious choice to investigate your own joys.
Investigate your joys. Dig into them.
We ‘re all capable of joy. We’re born with this skill.
What are the simple, physical activities that give you joy and ease?
Painting? Reading Calvin and Hobbes. Going to forums to discuss Marvel movies. Digging in the garden.
What if you organized your life around your joys?
PULL OUT THE WEEDS.
Do you feel anxious that you’re not good enough? Does your anger about the way the world SHOULD be prevent you from living right now? Do you need to be productive to feel worthy?
You’re not alone if you feel like this. After all, we live in a culture that isn’t built for joy.
And if you grew up in a hard place, you learned these behaviors so early that you believe these are simply your personality.
If you were taught that your feelings don’t matter, then you never learned to live with joy.
Time to pull those weeds.
This might be the hardest work you’ve ever done. I’m not claiming this is easy.
But this is the path to joy. When you understand how the mind works, you can start to work with your mind.
You can start to live your life with joy.
TEND TO YOUR JOY.
Once you’ve committed to investigating your own joys and realizing what is blocking your joys, you’re well on your way to living a more joyful life.
Does that mean you’re done? Nope.
Anything worth doing requires daily practice.
You can’t plan a garden in the spring, then walk away. You need to be in the garden, every morning, pulling those weeds, watering the flowers, and tending to your spot of earth.
No one is good at gardening at first. It’s hard work. But the more you pay attention to that garden, the more blooms. Every month, every year, your garden grows fuller and more satisfying to tend.
Pulling weeds becomes easier. You even start to enjoy that task.
When you understand how the brain makes patterns and rewards good choices with dopamine, you’re starting to cultivate your joy
SHARE WITH YOUR NEIGHBORS.
Once you’ve cultivated more joy, share it with others.
Our brains are built to experience joy. You can have more joy.
But also, when you’ve cultivated your joy, you want to share your joy. You naturally start to work for the joy of other people as well.
Start with yourself. Then, teach your family how to create a habit of joy. Share with your friends. Think about how many people’s lives you could change.
What would it be like if every person you met was joyful?
Not falsely pretending, nor hiding their pain to put on a happy face. But joyful — practicing patience and compassion, having a damned good sense of humor about life, and built on a bedrock of hope.
Be the change you want to see.
This is how you cultivate your joy.