I was talking with my friend Jennifer yesterday about how much we all have going on. We were half laughing/half complaining about the weight of all our responsibilities. . . saying, Why can’t it just be easy, at least some of the time? Then she said, “I guess it’s just the reality of adulting.” I laughed and said, “Yeah, where’s my candy-coated happiness?!?”
Because sometimes I think that’s what we’re all secretly hoping for.
We wish life could just be easy sometimes. We want things to happen, the way we want them to, in the time we want them to. Instead of every. single. thing. feeling like an uphill climb.
But in reality, there’s no joy without work.
There’s no joy without a journey. True happiness comes from the joy we work to cultivate by appreciating where we are and what we have. True joy can only come from gratitude.
Gratitude emerges from our knowledge of the journey.
It comes from spending time with friends, like Jennifer, who can sit with you in empathy, to appreciate the hard work and all the stuck places. Friends who bring you the perspective of the journey. Friends who remind you that life is not a fast train of instant gratification, but a long, slow, beautiful, journey. . .to becoming.
It comes when we focus on what’s good, right in the middle of what’s hard.
It allows us to snort with laughter and tears (like Jennifer and I were doing in this picture after serving together at Kim’s open house) because it’s either that, or cry from the exhaustion. It reminds us to take time-outs when we need them to replenish ourselves and reflect on all we have to be thankful for. It gives us the perspective we need to keep embracing the moments as the little gifts that they are.
No matter how difficult or unexpected they might be.
So if today, you’re feeling thrilled to slam the door on 2016. . . with only the hope that 2017 will be smoother sailing. Give that a little more thought. Take a moment to remember all the good. All the growth.
Remember how much you’ve grown this year.
And be grateful.
It’s the only path to joy.
to more love,
P.S. Community is imperative for the journey of joy.
To cultivate joy, you must be intentional about sharing the whole journey with friends… not just the candy-coated happy parts. You have to put in the effort to get together, face-to-face. You need to see each other’s eyes, to see into each other’s hearts.
We make it easy get together with intention, once a month with our done-for-you GNO. We laugh so hard we tear up and we talk about deeper parts of our journeys too. It’s like a mini-retreat in the middle of your week.