Anticipating Joy

Anticipating Joy

Anticipating Joy

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Every day there’s something in the news or online that is terrifying. It could be another school shooting, data breaches, anxiety about world leaders and war, climate change, etc… all of these things can make getting through each day difficult.

We need more joy in our lives. We need to celebrate the little things that are often the most important things more than ever before. It seems as though we’re walking around in a sea of doom. Whether due to political upset, the 24 hour news cycle, world events, or the negativity that encompasses social media, we seem to be experiencing joy less and less.

Have you ever noticed how easy it is to find joy when you’re on vacation? Of course it is, you’re not thinking about work and all the millions of tasks you need to complete. Joy is always present, but when you’re thinking about getting the presentation completed or meeting with the boss to go over a project you might miss it. On vacation your mind is clear to see all the wonders around you.

So joy is always there, it’s just a matter of recognizing it and celebrating it, but how do you do tha, especially when you aren’t on vacation?

Anticipating Joy

Breathe – If you’re at work and can’t find joy in anything take some time to breathe. There are some wonderful apps available for your phone that can help you breathe for a few minutes each hour or whenever you feel the need to do so. Taking deep, mindful breaths can clear your mind and make the impossible seem possible. It gets your blood flowing which can stimulate creativity which may help complete your tasks faster and more effectively.

Play – Take some time each day to play. Play with your kids – get down on the floor with them and enter their imaginary world of robots, princesses and dinosaurs (or whatever they enjoy). Embrace the moment and revel in it. They’ll be happy for spending time with you and you’ll be able to unwind a bit. Don’t have kids? Play with your pets or play a video game. Allow yourself to play and experience the joy that comes with it.

Take a Walk – A walk not only gets your heart pumping, it also gets your dopamine and seratonin pumping too. While you’re walking look for the beauty that is all around you. From the singing birds in the trees to the color of the sky and the smell of the freshly cut grass (or whatever is going on around you) breathe it in and marvel at the wonder of it all.

Music – Throw on your favorite album and sing as loud as possible to it. Get up and dance to it. You’ll feel wonderful.

Try Something New – Accomplishing a new goal feels wonderful. Not only will you learn something new, but you’ll boost your confidence which will make learning new things easier.

Eat Great Food – We all get in ruts when it comes to what we eat. Try something new. Whether you go to a restaurant and have someone else prepare it for you, or you learn a new dish, take the time to really experience the new tastes and texture in your mouth. Eat diliberatly and you’ll discover meals can be joyful.

Family – Spending time with family you haven’t seen in a while can bring incredible joy. Ask you father out to lunch to catch up or invite your neice to a movie. Do something special with the people you love in unexpected ways and you’ll discover the joy in the little things.

About the author:

Dr. Janna Fond lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband and two children. When not seeing clients, playing with her kids or working on her latest manuscript, she enjoys cycling, yoga and relaxing on the beach.

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