Several weeks ago, my bestie S and I were walking during our lunch break. It was the kind of day native Floridians long for and beachgoers dream about.
The sun was shining in a cloudless bright blue sky. The temps were hovering at a balmy 65 degrees and the birds serenaded us as soon as we opened the front door.
Despite our glorious surroundings, the morning had been filled with constant interruptions, conference calls that gave us extra work, a craft fail, and canceled plans for dinner.
I was this close to forgoing our daily walk so I could troubleshoot problems and work through lunch at my desk.
But I knew if we didn’t fight to get some exercise in at lunch, we’d spend the rest of the day wishing we had.
So, we kept our promise and forged ahead.
Truthfully, the walk started out with a major vent sesh that left us both grumpy.
Knowing things were about to quickly go downhill if we kept trying to fix something that couldn’t be fixed, I blurted out, “What brings you joy?” mid-conversation.
“This isn’t your woo-woo stuff again, is it? Because we have a lot on our plates, and we don’t have time for the woo-woo today.” S said which gave me the giggles immediately.
“There is nothing woo-woo about joy,” I replied, “Now just tell me what brings you joy so we can have something pleasant to talk about.”
Reluctantly, S played along and for the next 15 minutes, we shared aloud all the things that brought us joy.
The big things, the little things, the things that seemed insignificant, things that were mundane, and things that could only be considered lavish.
Truthfully, those 15 minutes wound up to be the most important part of our day and it set the tone for the rest of the workweek.
I don’t know about you but sometimes one or two things can steal my joy and derail the entire day.
The expectation I set for myself and others can be really high. Sometimes, so high, it borderlines on perfectionism.
It’s in those moments of unmet expectations, frustration, overwhelm, or chaos that I’ve learned to take a completely different approach in an effort to turn the day around.
To say no to the drama and yes to joy because I know time is a precious gift that is to be treasured.
This technique definitely takes practice, but the effort is always worth it.
As we close out the month and celebrate a new season, it’s my hope we can all make a conscious effort to choose joy.
Even when the day gets hectic or something we have no control over threatens to rob us of our otherwise happy and peace-filled day.
We still have the ability to choose joy despite it all.
Here’s a look at 75 things we currently have on our joy list in no particular order…
- Bread (that was the first thing S said ?)
- Random acts of kindness
- Waking up to a clean house
- Dad jokes
- The minute you realize you’ve solved a problem
- An organized______________ (drawer, pantry, closet, purse, you name it)
- Afternoon naps
- Living in a home you love
- Getting in your car and realizing you have a full tank of gas
- Flowers just because
- Catching up with my sisters
- Making white space to create
- Unscheduled afternoon drives to get custard
- A coffee table full of books that inspire
- Treasure hunting with my Mom
- Thoughtful comments
- Bird songs
- Flowers blooming
- The farmers market
- Afternoon tea
- Coffee with my parents
- Unexpected gifts
- The sound of the Amazon truck pulling up
- Being able to get what you need when you need it
- The Crowned Goat Cottage
- Our porch swing
- The cabin
- Eating dinner outside with fairy lights
- Breakfast tacos and Bloody Marys
- Celebrating big wins and little wins
- Curbside grocery pick up
- Vintage china
- Fresh cut grass
- Water rushing over our feet at the beach
- Hiking the AT
- Daily lunch walks
- Walking into a bookstore filled with the scent of coffee, baked goods, and paper
- Shrimp rolls on the coast
- The way my aunt tells a story
- Sun-dried linens
- Good movies
- Hydrangeas in summer
- Funny things the littles say
- Sunshine and blue skies
- Meal planning
- Folding the last load of laundry
- Generous coffee mugs
- Time-saving hacks that actually work
- Candles with dinner
- Quiet time
- Lemonade from Chick fil A
- My Mom’s encouraging word text of the day
- Mums in the Fall
- Keeping Sunday sacred
- Sleeping in
- Pup cups
- Reading a magazine from cover to cover on a rainy day
- Homemade freezer meals
- Women supporting other women
- Migraine free months
- The garden center
- My aunt’s snickerdoodles
- Watching my nephew ride horses
- The pecan grove
- Bird eggs
- The way my uncle sings any Journey song
- Fresh starts
What’s on your joy list?Until next time, I’ll see you on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest.
Other Encouragement of the Month Posts to Enjoy:
When Things Don’t Work Out as Planned (January)
Encouragement for the Weary (February)