Sometimes when chaos erupts on the homefront; it is not easy to cultivate joy. It's not really easy to even function--let alone function with a smile, happiness or true joy. In honor of Linda Joy's new book--I would like to share a few quick tips of my own on finding joy in the midst of chaos. What do I do to find joy in the midst of the chaos which often creeps into my day?
I Journal. No--I don't keep a "Dear Diary" style journal from long, long ago--but, I do try to find time several days a week (in the early mornings) to focus on grounding myself, finding meaning in an event--or simply making sense of the chaos around me. Much of my overscheduled, run-run-run, chaos is self induced. Family scheduling is my job. I over-scheduled us. Sometimes I need to stop each morning and reflect on why the day's activities are important. Sometimes I need to step aside from my schedule and journal about an area of my life that simply brings me peace and joy. Writing it all down often puts the chaos into place and allows my busy mind to enjoy the moments of the day rather than worry about the tasks at hand.
I Pick 5 Moments of Joy. Every evening, in my morning journal where I try to motivate myself for my day, I write down 5 moments of the day that made me smile or brought me joy. Some days, I will admit, this task takes a bit of thought--but, it is OH SO WORTH IT. It is SO easy to get discouraged by missing dance shoes, 7th Grade Integrated Math, overflowing laundry piles, leaky dishwashers and computer glitches. Set those aside--in the hour before bedtime--and focus on finding five moments throughout your day that brought you a smile. Any smile. Write them down--share them with someone you love and enjoy those moments.
I Keep it Positive--or Walk Away.
My middle daughter began running cross country this year--and this has been the most positive experience ever for our family. Ever. Most of the parents are simply excited for their kids to finish an endurance run. While there are some screaming, ranting, crazies at the meets--for the most part--every parent we meet is ready to cheer on the winners--and the stragglers. At. Every. Meet. Other sports in which our girls participate are not so positive. Parents complain about coaches, criticize both their own competitors and other children. We used to get sucked into that negativity. Now we opt to keep it positive--or walk away. While I apply this to my children's sports--it can certainly be applied to the workplace as well. Distance yourself from the water-cooler gossip and stay busy or focused on the positive aspects of your day. I do a lot of walking away. There is a lot of negativity in the world--but, that does not mean that you cannot be happy and full of joy each and every day.
I Take an Early Walk Every Day. This isn't easy. It is difficult to make time--but, the effort is SO rewarding. In fact, my husband and I take a walk together every morning at 5:30 a.m. Find a park or a peaceful street. Look at the stars. Watch the sunrise. Connect with the sounds of nature around you. For those of us who are too stressed to meditate...or too "busy" for a time out--even 30 minutes on a nature walk is so valuable. In our case, my husband and I are able to talk and laugh--without the kids--and we are able to get in some valuable exercise time as well as some valuable reflection time. Our 30-40 minute morning walk gets us charged and ready for whatever our day brings....
I Focus on My Purpose. Every year--I choose a "Word of the Year" rather than setting 80 New Years Resolutions destined for failure. A couple of years ago--I chose "Purpose" as my year's word. I needed to accept that my role in our family had a Purpose. Last year, I chose the word "focus". I think these two words bring daily joy when I bring them TOGETHER. I need to stay focused on my personal purpose. If I feel useful and fullfilled--I am filled with joy.....even during times of chaos.
I invite you to share how you cultivate joy in the midst of everyday
living in the comments below. Be sure to check out Inspired Living
Publishing’s much anticipated new book, Inspiration for a Woman’s Soul: Cultivating Joy and grab your copy today at www.CultivatingJoyBook.com to receive over 50 transformational gifts.
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