Personally, as much as I love quotes, I'm not one for generic sayings and vague, encouraging sentiments. They always sound so simple, so empowering and it's deceiving. It's no fault of their own... they are just words.
I knew going into 2014 would be a year of massive change but I never expected to end up where I am. If I'm honest though, I wouldn't be here if I hadn't come to a place where I could allow and accept joy into my life. I'm not perfect (despite my efforts towards such impossible standards) and I "fall off the wagon" from time to time (okay all the time lol) but I don't let it discourage me, forever. I also don't try to avoid feeling the negative things. It's all part of the process.
So I wanted to share a few honest to goodness statements to consider when you think of "choosing joy":
• Choosing joy isn't about being joyful all the time. It's about being vulnerable enough to receive joy as it happens - big or small.
• Choosing joy means grieving your set backs without letting them close you off to future joy.
• Choosing joy should be a reminder that no matter what life throws at you, something small happened worth celebrating.
• Choosing joy is looking back on your past and seeing the good in the bad and how it lead you to your present day.
It took me a long time to reach this way of thinking. I still allow myself to choose irritability, anger and frustration over joy. I fall back into those old patterns under stress, it's really hard not to. Though, it doesn't stop me from starting over after each moment or from trying to learn from the set back. I can move forward with a better understanding of myself, my reactions and my ability to accept the good. It all allows me to better choose joy in any given situation.
Sometimes you just have to learn things through lived lessons in life. You'll get there and you aren't alone along the way.
WHAT DOES THE PHRASE "CHOOSE JOY" MEAN TO YOU?
Author: Hannah Reynolds
Graphics, Lettering & Design by Pommel Lane
*This image can also be seen on the Spark Magazine Photojournal Blog where you can find me posting Monday-Friday with an imagine and short summary of the day. Expressing gratitude, lessons learned and real talk about daily life.