August 1 – Joyfulness

Joyfulness can be found all around if only we are present to witness it. When we live in the moment, focused on the task at hand, we allow ourselves to feel pleasure and enjoy that which we are doing. When we take care of ourselves so that we are well-rested and fed, we have the presence of mind to be mindful. We can live in the moment when we are not distracted by hunger, thirst, want of sleep or lack of warmth. There is joy to be found in every task we undertake, in every moment we are alive. Life is a gift we must treasure, and we should feel grateful for each experience it affords us. It is often the simple things in life that bring the greatest joy when we remember to stop and savor them. 

nature flowers garden plant

On the topic of joyfulness, Anne Wilson Schaef writes:

“How long has it been since we let ourselves savor the pure joy of listening to music? I am not talking about the songs on the radio that we crowd in as we speed along the freeway. I am talking about the sheer joy of bathing ourselves in the music we like the most. 

Likewise, how long has it been since we have let ourselves hear the song of the task we are doing? When we do too much, we lose our joy in the doing and see only the labor and the deadlines. Even when we do not see the song in our work, it is still there. We have but to listen.”

There is a certain joy and pride one feels when we set ourselves about accomplishing a task and choose to really focus on it. Intention gives the most rewarding pleasure, because we see our thoughts and visions turned into our reality by hard work. Even the most unpleasant of tasks can be made joyful when we set our minds to it. Joyfulness is something we must look for to find, and as such, it requires us to be present, mindful, and to observe. There is joy to be had in allowing ourselves to become fully absorbed in our work. To get lost in what we are doing. To sink into a task and focus solely on that for awhile. To experience every feeling the task invokes in us fully. Joy comes from the simplest things. The little things. Caring for oneself. Reading a good book. Slipping on a pair of soft, clean cotton socks. Listening to the slow savory notes of a favorite jazz record. If we can find joy in the little things, finding joy in the big things will come even more naturally. Life is about being present to every moment, big or small, and appreciating them all.

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