Tag Archives: joy

I recently met Joy

Do you ever feel that you’re all in your head, thinking about this or that?  Oh, I sure do.  I wonder about and consider things so much, that I tend to go seriously serious.  Granted, while a lot of what I’m considering is fascinating and worthy of much consideration, it’s not my intention, but my “thinkiness” holds me back and dampens my mood.  It’s impossible for me to be both analytical and joyful at the same time.  Knowing this, I head off to my favorite local hiking trail to enjoy myself.  IMG_9188 copy

Still pondering universal naval fluff, I focused on my breathing and on navigating my way around the newer trails.  On my return route I saw a man and his puppy heading my way.  The minute I saw the puppy I felt my heart jump.  He was happy to see me too.  He jumped up licking my hand, did a couple of pirouettes, jumped up and licked my hand again.  It was a love fest.  I chatted for a couple of minutes with his person while I petted this adorable puppy.  It was time to continue in our opposite directions.  After a couple of steps, I looked back and saw the puppy had stopped and was looking at me.  He seemed to be wondering “you’re not coming with us”?  I said goodbye and turned back to my walk.  I never asked his person what the puppy’s name was, but I would have named him Joy.  Imagine people asking what’s your dog’s name and answering “this is Joy”!   Joy showed up at just the right time, excitedly encouraging me to get out of my head and to choose lightheartedness.

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Habits That Create The Best Possibilities (for me)

Here are some things I practice to be aware of.  We all have our own ways to be at our best and attract our best possibilities and these may or may not work for you.  It’s whatever supports you and empowers you.  For me, with so many experiences that I’m having just about every day now, it’s helpful to remember and practice whatever feels right at the time.  It’s pretty ordinary yet offering a beautiful shift in my day.

  • Practicing self-kindness by doing all the things I enjoy every day such as yoga and meditation, making time for exercise, and time for art.IMG_1843I’m not at my best when I let these things slide and, at this writing, some of these have been sliding off the scale. So off I go to walk on my favorite nature trail.
  • Watching my self-talk and turning it around when it goes south
  • Being my real-deal self.  You’re great too, but I don’t want to be you.
  • Remember that it’s nearly impossible to make a difference by playing it safe, or be a people pleaser.
  • Build a small community of support and let the unsupportive relationships fade
  • Allow others to assist me and remember to ask how I can assist them
  • Cultivate lightheartedness no matter what.  Lightheartedness brings opportunities.
  • Notice when I play smaller because of fear, insecurity, or some other lower emotion.  Remember it’s not the truth, and get back to being my magnificent self.
  • Gratefulness for pretty much everything
  • Being good with sometimes feeling uncomfortably stretched, and therefore vulnerable, and standing out for unusual ideas.  It’s a game…wonder what I’ll do today that will be a stretch for me?  But this is not to be confused with pushing ahead on something that’s not in my best interest.
  • Use my imagination and imagine me already doing that which I want to do and the opportunities show up to assist me.
  • Take a stand for the seemingly impossible possibilities
  • Create incremental changes and look back once in a while just to appreciate how far I’ve come
  • Enjoy a relationship with my awesomely mind-blowing amazing guidance that’s always there within me, always encouraging, supporting, assisting, loving me
  • Be both uncomfortably stretched and happy at the same time.  See those feelings that seem to be at odds, as success.

Aligning With Our Purpose – It Isn’t Possible…

…to make a mistake.  All it takes is a dance.  To realize our dreams takes perseverance, action, letting go of total control, and experiencing joy.  It isn’t an intimidating dance, just a series of steps.  When I dance I have some unique moves, especially when driving.  In the car I sing and dance but I still hold back when I pull up to traffic lights.

My desire is to take those joyful feelings when I dance and sing in my car, and to also feel them in everything I do.  And, from what I’ve experienced, aligning with our purpose takes a good amount of lightheartedness.  We create our best expression of ourselves by aligning with that which brings us joy.

Do you believe you need to learn more, figure it all out before taking steps, or be more perfect first?  You know yourself better than anyone.  Sometimes there’s a handy dandy excuse to play smaller and hold back.  But sometimes you may want to wait for a good reason.  But there’s probably some step you can take.  It’s only for you to know.  All the friends, family, self-help gurus, coaches, counselors, advisors, leaders, will not know you like you know you.  You can run your considerations by those you trust, but at the end of the day, it’s how you feel.  Learning to read how we feel and making decisions from our own feelings is a good place to be.  You’ll figure it out, it’s you learning you.  You can’t make a mistake.

There’s lots of thoughts and feelings that help light the way.  CreateLearning to pay attention to them is very helpful.  If there’s excitement around the action you’re taking, that’s awesome.  From your actions, you’ll receive what you need, even if it’s not necessarily what you think you need.  Making decisions out of fear or worry, doesn’t result in the most terrific of possibilities.  However, feeling genuinely excited and joyful, creates our best opportunities.  We might even find our best opportunities challenge us…in a good way.

My analyzing and perfecting sucked the joy out of a moment faster than I could sneeze.  I had to learn what living joyfully meant.  Duh right?  I was waiting for it to happen as a result of doing certain things. I learned it’s about cultivating a lighter state of mind, anytime.

Seems to me we have more than one purpose in our lifetime, some we share with all of humanity, plus those that are unique to each of us.  Perhaps one of the purposes we share with humanity is learning to release our heaviness and to live more joyfully.  Also seems like a good path towards experiencing unconditional love.  Cultivating lightheartedness.

Against the Odds – Me & The Bosun’s Chair

For this week’s WordPress Photo Challenge

img_2670Our halyard…the line at the top of our sailboat mast was stuck.  One of us needed to be hoisted up, alongside the mast, in the bosun’s chair to determine the problem and fix it.  “Boaty” was I and very comfortable on the water.  Grew up on boats, power boats from antique to speed and we also had a little Sunfish sailboat.  However, I was just learning how to sail on larger sailboats.  And this is a subject for another blog post that I’ve been putting off…sailors…jeeesh.

Anyway, back to my thighs, I mean the bosun’s chair.  This is the against the odds part…you see I was nominated as the person most likely to be easily hoisted up the mast to snap a few photos and bring them back to my not yet husband so he could figure out what the problem was.  Or, better yet, while I’m up there, fix the problem.  Yeah right.  So we were still dating then, not yet married, and he was so concerned for my safety and a bit nervous (this I didn’t pick up on) that when I was ready to come on back down, he forgot to release the clutch that holds the line in place…meaning unable to bring me down and he didn’t know why.   Now he thinks the bosun’s chair is stuck.  So he sends up another line, on another winch (I sure hope someone out there knows what I’m talking about) for me to clip into on the chair so he can bring me down on that line.  Oi. We politely and calmly shout our conversation to each other since we’re not near to each other and need to hear these important instructions and responses.  This means I have to first clip into the new line and un-clip from the other one…never mind just know it was dangerous if you’re me.  Totally unncessary of course but we don’t know this yet.  I clip, un-clip, and whatever.

A nice person swims over from the sailboat near to us.  “Is everything ok?“he asked.  My husband a bad ass sailor, used to race, can fix an engine or any mechanical problem like nobody’s business of course says, “Thanks, everything’s fine” as the bosun’s chair is now digging into the underside of my thighs.  I wave happily to the nice person.  Yup the @#!&* chair experience is wearing on me now but I’m in love and life is good.  Wave, smile, no worries here.  Against all odds I return to lower altitudes and my not yet husband tells me he realized he forgot to release the clutch…oops I guess I was a bit nervous having you up there, he says.  He gets big points for telling me he was so nervous and forgot to do something kinda basic.  You see why I married this man?  The circulation returns to my legs and we settle down to cook and watch the stars before heading back the next day.

As I’m writing this he comes into my office to show me a bluebird box he just made.  God I love this man.

 

Invitation to enjoy

I just received my formal Invitation.  For a while now, I’ve had an ongoing informal invitation for joy.  Sometimes I show up for it but then I get lazy and go back to serious, analytical mode…What’s down the road?  What will the end result look like?  How do I get there?  Am I doing enough?  Am I enough?  Will I make a difference? 

Jeez, I don’t have to take my freaking “journey” so seriously.  It’s not just about doing what I love to do, because that’s the easier part. The greater challenge for me is, what frame of mind am I in when I’m doing what I love.

Yesterday my doctor calls and tells me I have to go back for another test because they see something.  I have two ways to deal with this and both made an appearance….1-Bad word.   Just when my life is totally kick-ass I’m going to die.  OR, 2-It’s probably nothing they’re just being extra buttoned up which is great, that’s their job. I’m going to approach this with a light heart and trust it’s all going to be fine.  And I went with #2 and gratefully it ended with…”you’re good, come back in six months just to be sure”.

The possibility of having something truly serious and truly challenging in my life got my attention.  It wouldn’t have been the same old worries and internal dialog that usually consume my thoughts.  Whatever the outcome today or going forward will be, the situation appeared as an invitation to show up in my own life differently.  Sea Ocean Sand Beach Vacation Coast Chill Bare ConceptIt’s such a good time to accept this invitation because I’m ready to start creating some exciting things and what better time to enjoy myself.  I’m hearing “accept and enjoy every invitation…there’s one every second”. 

Life isn’t a marathon – Observe a child

It’s an honor to be in the presence of a child.  Children have the most free spirits and unbridled joy.  They can swing to tears in a mere second, but in the next moment they’ve moved on.  They put their happiness out there, totally enjoy the moment and don’t care how their happiness pours out of them.  They skip, jump, and say really cute stuff.  I notice they don’t self-edit. If a child wrote this blog post, the post might say something like…had fun yesterday!, went bowling, ate fun food, spent time with my Aunt and Uncle, bowled, held my Aunt’s hand, did I tell you I went bowling?, colored on my place mat, I really like to bowl.  

I’m taking my cues from kids.  There’s no class, workshop, book or leader that can teach happiness as well as a child can. hands-touching I’ve been running a Marathon to be at ease, be myself, cultivate joy, and create what I came here to create.  But there’s an undercurrent of seriousness I’m trying to shake off because it’s not helping.  It’s all good.  Whatever, right?!

So here’s my blog post for today…Yesterday was a really great day, I went bowling with family, wore my STRIKE bowling socks that AOL gave me during one of our many team building events…before they laid me off, the socks and I came in last but I had lots of fun anyway, we went to a restaurant that looked like a beach hut, I ordered tater tots and soup, borrowed a crayon and colored a little on the place mat next to me, held my great nephew’s hand, I’m in awe of him and his brother, drove home, wanted to go to an art gallery reception but instead wrote a (serious) blog post on friendship, really wish I’d gone to the art gallery reception, I love meeting artists, so I’m going to the next art gallery reception no matter what, woke up early today and I’m writing this blog post, going to go out for lunch for a crepe even though it’s not gluten free and sit on the city dock and look at the water and eat my crepe, take photographs, go for a walk, and maybe paint, maybe fill out the lawyer’s form to do our will, really hope I paint instead of filling out the form, put the date for the next art gallery reception on my calendar, did I tell you I love art galleries?!

Equisite Life Lessons

Exquisite  aha moments are frequent these days.  Maybe not so exquisite as obvious.

I’ve been so confused lately about friendships.  It appears I’m in a transition period and, as a result, I feel I have some decisions to make about some of my friendships.  So much has shifted in my life over the past few years that my friendships are shifting as well.  With the country going through so many raw emotions now it’s easy to get into the habit of being upset, feeling hopeless, and seeing the negative.  But those are not emotions I want to cultivate.  I get it, something very upsetting happens and we go to fear, seeing the worst in everything, feeling dread and waiting for the worst to happen.  However, my belief is that feeling hopeless and angry offers the world or me nothing of benefit, it offers only struggle.  Instead, I choose to see possibilities.  I choose to literally create what I desire.  As I’m creating positive, I’m experiencing more positive things in my life.  And, when I look back, I see a direct correlation between when I began to choose to look to myself to create better thoughts, healthier habits, and when positive experiences began to show up for me.  So I’m not budging because this is working really, really, well for me.

However well things are going for me, I do feel a bit lonely hanging out here in positivity land as I don’t exactly fit in with some of my friends any longer.  I’m having a really hard time listening to them.  However nice it is to get together with people, I don’t enjoy being with friends that prefer to go to fear and dread.  And, it’s impossible to create what I want to create if I surround myself with people who have fear and dread.  It’s like trying to create a healthy lifestyle while smoking a pack of cigarettes.

When a friend and I recently spent time together, I wanted to enjoy our time by talking about anything but how bad things are.  I realized I’d been watering myself down in this friendship.  I rarely share what I’m excited about, or talk about some of the things I’m doing.  I don’t tell and the friend doesn’t ask.  So explaining why I don’t want to look at all that’s seemingly dark out there, I shared why I now choose to see possibilities, hope, and inspiration.  I brought her up to date by sharing some of the amazing things that I’ve experienced, how hard I worked to get here, what I had to look at to get to this place, how excited I am about what I’m working on now.  That I’m not interested in focusing on the drama and popular events that pull us down into hopelessness and fear.  Unfortunately, I not so subtly conveyed through my evident frustration that day, and this is how I feel about all your negativity.

I can’t speak for my friend, but this was not about how often we get together but more about the authenticity and quality of our time together.  It’s about letting friends see all of me now, especially the parts I’m apt to hide because I think a friend won’t like those parts.  It’s about being seen and then asking if the mutual interest isn’t there, why are we?  It’s a lesson in letting go.  Being a better and kinder friend might mean allowing some friendships to fade away for our mutual benefit.