Joy happens in the present but so many times we are caught thinking about the past or focusing on the future we forget to be in the present. Joy is trying to show its face, to make an impact on our soul, but we aren’t able to experience it.
I took Daks for a walk today and across the street I saw a couple walking their Golden Retriever. This dog was happily trotting along carrying in its mouth a round thick branch at least the length of his body. Watching this dog go about its business. happy with no care in the world- other than his big stick, caused a warm glow to permeate my soul. I felt such joy watching this fluff ball on its morning walk. I soon realized I was able to experience this joy because I was present in the moment. If my mind was focused on something else I would have not seen the pup across the street. Ask yourself when was the last time you experienced joy? Can you even remember? When was the last time you felt your heart swell and a warm glow flowed through your body?
When I do any sort of mindset coaching one activity I ask all clients to do is create a Joy List. What brings them the most joy? What I’ve discovered with this exercise, a lot of times many items on the list are dependent on other people. I’m not saying others can’t bring you joy, however, the basis of joy should stem from with-in. You have to be able to make yourself joyful and not rely on others to do so.
Focusing on the past is based in fear. Fear of past mistakes, consequences, or choices that we are bringing into the present. We are definitely not capable of experiencing joy, if we are stuck in fear.
Focusing on the future causes anxiety, worrying about the what-if’s. Anxiety is the mind and body trying to remain in control. The only thing you can control is the present moment. Worrying about the future prevents joy trying to show up in the present.
I challenge you to make your own Joy List. Can you name ten items/situations that bring you joy? For some people this is the hardest part, finding ten things that actually bring joy. What’s on your joy list? Are a majority of items dependent on other people? If so, recognize you are putting your happiness and self worth in the hands of others. You are giving away a lot of your power. Love yourself first, find joy in you first. Doing this will allow you to be more present and experience more joy in the everyday. You will find your joy isn’t dependent on others but they can add to it. Remember, Joy happens in the present!