Spring cleaning (actually life cleaning is more like it) has arrived in my house. Once again, I have been cleaning out closets, drawers, boxes of old memorabilia, etc, looking for something. I have thrown out bags of trash….too many to even talk about and still couldn’t find that something I was looking for. I searched events, people, clothes, decorations, etc. and still could not find it. It has taken me a long time of searching and feeling like it is somewhere, yet not quite certain where it is.
Wouldn’t it be something if I could feel JOY like all the time?
JOY Yep that is it!
I want to feel JOY all day long! And…YES…even when life’s little nuances bless me…I still want to feel JOY!!!
It has been quite the journey to feel……..
Years ago, I read the book – The life-changing magic of tidying-up by Marie Kondo. In it she speaks to – finding joy in your things. Tidying up your house – the things you own, the clothes you wear, the objects you use, the decorations in your home – can transform your life. In the midst of putting your ‘things’ in order….you essentially bring order to your life. Her life-changing wisdom can also transform EVERYTHING you are and EVERYTHING you do by answering her one simple question:
DOES IT FEEL YOU JOY?
I love this question. It literally is the answer to my every prayer.
At first, it was fun questioning my every feeling. Oh, the dishes need to be done. Nope! That does not feel like joy…can’t do it! Do I go shopping or fold laundry? That’s easy….folding laundry does not feel joyous, so I guess I must go shopping. It sooo brings me joy-feeling goodness!
Then, all of a sudden, I had a BIG decision to make. I sat there staring at the wall……walking outside in the fresh air…..asking myself the question over and over – Does it feel me joy? No laughter came, no excitement, no giggles…..it was a frozen moment of nothingness!
In order to answer, I had to unfold the parts of me I had hidden away. It’s like peeling back the layers of an onion (tears and all). Each layer unlocked more tears just like when cutting an onion and it releases amino acid sulfoxides which interact negatively with the water in your eyes causing tears to form. The tears are actually productive since they wash the irritant away. (from chemistry.com)
I have done lots of self-discovery work. And yet…moments like this still awaken me in a deeper way like a lightning rod on a warm summer’s eve. It works for all of us like that. Some event or person typically causes you to be frustrated, angry, irritated AND you have to release an emotion in order to wash away the toxicity of it. In the processing of washing away and cleansing, you begin to define and organize what you like and don’t like, what you believe and don’t believe, and what you want to do and not want to do. Lately I am learning this renewal is all about what feels good and not good. This organizational process is the key to defining who you are. Knowing who you are is the vital foundation to living a conscious lifestyle.
Lance Secretan once said, “Authenticity is the Alignment of Head, Mouth, Heart and Feet – Thinking, Saying, Feeling, and Doing the Same Thing – Consistently.”
For some time, I had been observing my thinking, my speaking and my doing. Marking those moments that seemed aligned naturally.
DOES IT FEEL JOY? can only be answered once you firmly understand who you are AND listen to your body. Knowing who you are is the compass that navigates your everyday decision-making based on what is important and what you value.
Feeling joy is about taking who you are and discovering the sparkle within your body as you experience the things you own, the people in your life, and the moments that comes your way.
Stress is caused by being ‘here’ but wanting to be ‘there’. –ECKHART TOLLE
We cannot feel joy in our lives if we are unhappy, mad, pissed off, frustrated, always thinking about the future, always worried about the past, and trying to please others. Joy can only be felt in the present moment and that moment has to be aligned to who we are.
DOES IT FEEL YOU JOY? Are you feeling it? If you cannot seem to feel it, here are some 3 ways to awaken that JOY feeling…
· Peel back.
I’m not talking about taking off your clothes. I am speaking to feeling more authentic and less hidden. Be willing to feel risky as you are seen and heard for who you are. Stand up. Speak out. Remove what no longer serves you – distractions and all. Choose you and how you feel first! Busyness is just an avoidance mechanism. Get real about feeling real.
Get excited about the newness of life. Beginnings! Firsts! The Starts! These are extraordinary moments!! Be open to feeling all the feels each one offers. Never stop learning and growing who you are and your passion. Discover something new everyday! Read a book, read an article, try an activity, EVERYday ask, “What did I learn today?” Learning can be adding new ideas, thoughts, information to your already defined self OR it can be deleting what no longer serves you in living a conscious lifestyle. There is JOY-feeling each time we expand our knowledge and understanding of the world we live in.
· Find your ‘gravitas’.
One of the most powerful ways to feel the majestic-ness of life is to be YOU! We all have some influence, something truly unique to who we are, and something that can bring JOY to others. Find yours and use it everyday. Own each day as YOUr moment to shine. Being confident is courageous and contagious. There is an energy that alludes us when we are confident in who we are and are willing to be our true selves in EVERYthing we do. JOY-feeling is showing your confidence and owning who you are.
At the heart of it, pay attention to what your life is telling you, what your body is telling you and what your circumstances are telling you. THAT is the only way to feel JOY! And once you feel JOY…..don’t let it go. Savor the JOY-feeling moments and more will come your way.
“Joy is the holy fire that keeps our purpose warm and our intelligence aglow. “ -HELEN KELLER
I DARE YOU – Does it feel you joy?