March is the month that I’ve devoted to walking towards that which startles me – to start having the types of contact lines that make me feel uncomfortable.  And you may be surprised to learn that these aren’t difficult conversations I’m talking about but being joyful. Sharing joy with others can easily be seen in life’s most exciting moments.

But the experience of sharing joy can also be seen in smaller moments; The method of sharing the excitement; The practice of sharing success; Rejoicing takes guts to do!
It’s easy to complain and get stuck in unhelpful and unnecessary language or to worry and make up stories about what we don’t know, can’t do – or to believe we can’t change or feel good in our relations. Negative is easy to come by.

Well, today, I’m saying it aloud even though it’s hard to do.

“It takes courage and love to share our happiness with ourselves and others; to show great appreciation and delight in our lives.”

I am so happy!  I will say that again; I am happy I get to share with you the practice that has helped me to become the type of mom, wife, friend, daughter, and person, I’ve longed to be.
I am over the moon that I get to see how this practice of communicating in a kind, honest, and helpful way changes lives.  And I feel such joy in knowing that this month, I get to bring more laughter and smiles to you.

You see, it’s beautiful to rejoice and feel good inside. To let the sun shine even when it’s cloudy outside, to smile with others in a world torn apart and laugh from within when we want to cry. We need to celebrate being in a state of joy and show it. Yes, express it to ourselves, our families, neighbors, and the world.

I am not saying to forget about your pain, what I am saying is to make room for joy, happiness, and laughter. To set aside time to rejoice in life. We’ve talked before about how satisfaction is a direction, not a destination in life. It’s a feeling and purpose one carries with the self through the collection of daily activities, whether that’s getting a hug from your kids, cooking a meal, or enjoying the sun in your face, it’s an emotional buffer that protects one from the letdowns and confusions of life. But what is the practice of being joyful?

To be joyful is to see the positive in things and to maintain a sense of sunny cheerfulness. You know it when you see a joyous person, with their wide smile and glowing energy. It’s an aura one carries about them, being as external as it is internal at times expressing the love for life.

To achieve this, one must recognize the strategies that work and the tactics that do not work. For one, many people associate having worldly things, and wealth is the key to happiness, whereas reality shows that wealth provides only temporary joy. It can even be a source of resentment and emotional challenge with friends and family. 

In earnest, the one strategy to live joyously is to live with intent and aim to be joyous. It is the people who consistently reflect and point toward the joy that is naturally more inclined to feel joyful. It is here that we find that the practice of being joyous, with ourselves, with nature, and with others, is the right way to experience and find happiness.

Joy with the Self.

To be happy with others and the world around you, you must first be satisfied with your being. That doesn’t mean you avoid growth and self-reflection, nor does it mean one should be conceded and arrogantly self-righteous. Instead, it means you’re as accepting and honest with yourself as you are with others: when you make a mistake, you don’t beat yourself up over it, but instead, you take it as a learning experience. You understand that you are a person, and like all people, are imperfect. Knowing this and accepting it will help you feel joyful and ultimately enable you to truly practice joy with others.

Joy with Others

At times, it can seem like those around us are more difficulties people, preventing us from succeeding or stymying our progress. Ultimately, the genuinely joyous person recognizes that the capacity to manage and make progress is within the self, and even if others are legitimately working against you, they still deserve the honor and respect you seek. To be joyous with others is to readily accept you as they are, even if you choose a path different from theirs.

To us, one fundamental way of keeping this in mind is by acknowledging this simple truth:  Every one of us starts on a different part of the road to find joy. Nurture and help others on their way as you would help yourself.

Joy with Nature

The natural world is full of wonder and awe, and all too often, the unhappy fail to appreciate it. On the other hand, it’s the mark of a joyous person who makes time for nature and who sees value in it. Life is both a complicated and straightforward form, with boundless beauty and inspiration. Take time to indulge in nature, listening to its sounds and voices, and witnessing both its light and darkness. It is in nature from which we came, and from life, we can derive truly humbling lessons that help up practice joyfulness insincerity.

Being a Joyful Person

As you reflect on your practices, remember that at the heart of being joyful is the sincere desire to feel positive. It isn’t someplace you suddenly arrive at years down the line. It’s not some feeling that becomes permanent with the acquisition of some material object. Instead, it’s a mentality – a constant self-reminder – to choose a happy, purposeful life driven by the pursuit of cheerfulness. Practice joyful intent with each action, with each thought, and with each word. Then, you will truly experience the sense of happiness you ultimately seek.

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