What brings you joy? Is it your family? Friends? Your job? Volunteering for a cause you believe in? A long nap? A bubble bath? Finding the perfect outfit? Taking the perfect photo? Mastering a new skill? Eating some chocolate cake?
For me, everyday joy can be found in any number of things. It's in a great meal, a beautiful sunset, laughing with friends, knowing I really helped someone out, reading a good book, hanging out with adorable kids, cute YouTube videos, listening to the perfect music, driving with the windows down, and achieving a hard-earned accomplishment.
In this crazy world, it's important to fight for joy. If we don't look for it in our daily lives, we just might miss it. It hides in the seemingly mundane, the deceptively simple things.
But it's those very things that have the ability to hold us together. It's those things that can carry us through the hard times.
There are plenty of negative things in this world. We can't change the fact that bad things happen. But we can counter them with good things. We can remind ourselves that although there are struggles, obstacles, and hard things, there are also beautiful, lovely things, too.
There are plenty of positive things around us, too, if we would only take the time to notice them.
I know I have noticed the power of a simple joyful thing after a long, hard day. Sometimes I don't need anything more than a little reminder that not everything is complicated and frustrating. And nothing does that better than an encouraging message from a friend, some good dark chocolate, a gorgeous day, or a good book.
It's things like those that can remind me, that can remind us, of the good in the world.
Without joy, our lives are rather bleak. We get caught up in the business of our everyday routines and rhythms, lost in the patterns, stuck in a rut with our heads bent low, just trying to get through our days and weeks. Our default setting is to focus on what we need to get done, not on what has already been given to us.
But I, for one, know that type of living isn't fulfilling. It's not even really living. It's just surviving. We were made for more.
We were made for joy. It adds color to an otherwise dull world. It attunes our ears to the music all around us. It shows us the beauty hiding right in plain sight.
May we learn to open our eyes to them. Our lives will be all the brighter for it.
What brings you joy? I'd love to hear from you in the comments!