Joy can be a confusing idea. Those three little letters seem simple enough. And the definition is quite straight-forward: a feeling of great pleasure and happiness.
Should we feel happiness every day? No, of course not. Sometimes bad stuff happens and when it does, we need to bemoan, regret, even weep.
The real problem is not the bad days.
The real problem is the many excellent days in between that slide by totally unnoticed and unappreciated.
It’s happens quite easily.
We go to work and listen to friends who hate their job.
No joy there.
We go home and listen to a newscast full of natural and human disasters.
No joy there.
We go to bed wishing our favorite ice cream had not been recalled.
Seriously no joy there!
It can feel like a 24/7 festival of bad news and negative energy so of course we don’t pick joy. That thought never enters our brain. Why?
Preliminary research from the Laboratory of Neuro Imaging at USC says we have about 70,000 thoughts a day – many of mine apparently now about ice cream.
That’s a lot going on; but the real headache is that as much as 70% of those thoughts are negative. And much of those are reoccurring – meaning the same joy-robbing thoughts we had yesterday, we’ll have again today and again tomorrow.
So when given the choice, why do our thoughts clutch at the negative? Why do we not grab on to positive thoughts instead?
Do we not want to be happy?
Here is the wonderful truth about being happy: we have complete authority to pick joy anytime we choose.
Your mind is like the little first grader who knows the right answer. He’s bouncing in his chair, wildly waving his hand in the air and whispering “pick joy, pick joy, pick joy.”
That’s a mighty power.
Come on, be the little first grader – pick joy!
Until next week, I hope your life is full of joy and gratitude,
Linda Sterling Sease is a professional speaker, career coach & writer on the power of joy to transform companies, homes and communities. To explore how Linda can work with your organization, call 303-319-5829 or email her at Linda at SterlingSease.com.