The pursuit of JOY

I’m running on less than five hours of sleep and didn’t exercise as planned this morning, BUT I drank a warm, wonderful cup of coffee, ate a fabulous breakfast and got a pedicure with a new friend. Then, I experienced the best customer service at Bed Bath & Beyond and witnessed a gentleman complimenting a Chick-fil-A employee on the great job she was doing directing traffic in the drive-thru line.

(Don’t judge – I was only enabling my husband on his cheat day and not partaking!)

The last one particularly made me think to myself:

What a wonderful world.

I chose (the operative word being “chose”) to keep the good vibes going by politely waving the woman on who nearly hit me with her car in a crosswalk and telling another woman in the parking lot that her hair color looked great on her.

It has been a great day!

Choose happiness joy.

One of my mantras since high school has been “choose happiness.” This helped me through some tough times, especially during my childhood and even the fortunate life events that have brought on some type of change.

I’ve always been pretty good at being happy. I do it by exercising, eating things that are good for me, spending time with my family and friends, getting involved in activities I enjoy and working a job that I love with people whom I love.

…but what’s left on days when my healthy habits slip, I can’t see my family and friends, I don’t have the resources to do what I want to do and I have a tough day at work?

This is where joy comes in.

Happiness vs. joy

It’s this simple: Happiness is fleeting. Joy is lasting.

Danielle LaPorte, a bestselling Canadian author, motivational speaker, entrepreneur, and blogger, explains this beautifully on her website, which discusses entrepreneurship, spirituality, and personal growth:

Joy is the fibre of your Soul. It’s the stuff of your essence. And since you, your Soul, can never be annihilated (yes, that would make you eternal and omnipresent), your access to joy never vanishes. Because joy is so foundational to your true being, every other state or emotion can rest on top of joy, it can accommodate everything.

This means that it’s possible to grieve with your whole heart, and still sense your joy. You can feel rage, and be aware of joy waiting patiently for you to return, and take deep comfort in that.

The last paragraph spoke volumes to me. I’ve been grieving how drastically my life changed more than a year and a half ago. However, just like I choose to exercise and eat healthfully, make time for family and friends, do things that I enjoy and go to work every day, I’m choosing joy.


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