Everyday Solutions to Create a More Joyful Life
Finding joy is something we all want more of in our lives. From day to day it’s easy to find ourselves falling into a routine that no longer excites us. Driving the same route to work day after day gets boring and mundane. We forget to observe the beautiful arching birch trees that line our path or even notice the mountain range that peeks out on a nice sunny day. By taking time to notice these simple pleasures you have the power to turn the mundane into the extraordinary.
Here are 5 ways you can use your ordinary routine to find joy.
- Stop Waiting to be Happy
Sometimes it seems as though we are waiting for something to be happy about. We forget that every moment is an opportunity to be happy.
Negative thoughts breed more negative thoughts, so we begin to replace joy with anger.
We all know that person who can be in a room full of laughter and be pissed off in the corner. You might even try to include this person and they just attempt to bring you down with their negative take on the situation. They have decided that they need a reason to be happy. How can they possibly be happy when…
- They have back pain
- Their marriage fell apart
- They have cancer
- They lost their job
Whatever negative thoughts they focus on quite literally steal their happiness; they’re unaware of all the joy that surrounds them.
We’ve all been guilty of this on some level. We’ve let our ego keep us focused on what we don’t have. But the reality is that you can begin to feel happier, more productive, and successful right now just by focusing on what you do have. Your thinking changes your perspective which is awesome! It means you can start creating joy in your life right now just by deciding to.
- Appreciate the Little Things
My honey-bunny cooks dinner for me almost every night. It’s not something that has ever been discussed or talked about. He’s just the family cook. After 13 years together I’ve gotten used to being spoiled and forget how nice it is that I don’t need to think about dinner night after night. He carries that burden for us. I will note that both he and I enjoy his cooking much more than we like mine, but that doesn’t mean his seamless effort should go without thanks.
Maybe you too are enjoying the efforts of someone lightening your load. Or maybe it’s taking time to appreciate all of the conveniences of modern-day life –Things that are done for us without us even realizing.
- Doors slide open for you as you approach
- Traffic lights keep us running on a smooth schedule
- Your cell phone carries all the information you could ever need
- Your refrigerator that keeps your food from spoiling
- Hot water when you take a shower
Start a list of the little things in your life that deserve appreciation and start thanking people and things for helping support you through this journey.
- Take Care of Yourself
I don’t know what it is about self-care that people are so resistant to. The guilt that comes along with a spa day is sometimes more stressful than worth it. The fact of the matter is that when you take care of yourself you have more to give out to those around you. Motivational speaker Lisa Nichols has a quote I love…
“Your job is to fill your own cup, so it overflows. Then you can serve others, joyfully, from your saucer”
The idea is to fill your own cup first.
If you struggle with self-care I suggest making a list of all the things you have to do and then deciding what on the list is major and what is minor. Then you can clear space in your mind for indulging in an afternoon off instead of spending the whole time thinking about the laundry or cleaning the bathroom.
- Don’t Worry so Much
I know this is a tough one. How can you stop yourself from worrying about all the things? Practice, that’s how. If you’re stuck in traffic and keep looking from the road to the time and with each passing minute you’re worried about how late you will be to work, or dinner, or the kids’ activities, you can’t help but worry. In an era of cell phones, you can let people know you’re running late.
It really is that simple.
What tends to happen though is even after you’ve let everyone know what’s happening you are still fixated on getting there on time.
What if you start training yourself to give over to the moment?
Calls have been made and you will arrive when you arrive. Imagine yourself showing up calm and ready instead of late and frazzled. If you start to train yourself to worry less you will find yourself worrying less. Then when you’re running late you can know this is not a personal reflection on who you are as a person, but a circumstance you are in.
- Practice Breathwork!
A daily practice of functional breathing is simple…not easy. Taking 5 minutes to sit yourself down and focus on nothing but your breath helps pull your mind out of the body. This offers you a break from the daily lists and scenarios that swirl around in your head. For 5 minutes you have the opportunity to just feel your body expand and contract.
In five minutes you can turn your whole day around. By rebalancing your nervous system you are able to remain calm and in the flow of life even when things get hectic. And when you are coming from a calm place it’s easier to notice the joy that surrounds you. It also helps you build a better relationship with your body and intuition.
When life feels mundane, learn to look for joy. True happiness lies here in our everyday experiences.
I’m not suggesting that every moment needs to be happy and joyful, but I am saying that joy surrounds you at any given moment.
Even when life feels like a pressure cooker there are lessons to be learned and reasons to find joy. It’s all a matter of how we choose to view the situation.
I hope this list offers you an opening to joy the next time you find yourself stuck in the endless mundane of your everyday life.