I want to talk a little bit about choosing joy. It seems like a flippant statement, but it has such a huge amount of resonance and need at the moment.
Life feels very challenging, and I am pretty sure it isn’t just me that feels this. It feels like worldwide pandemics are not something we can just turn away from and ‘choose joy’ It almost feels irresponsible to do this. With so much bad stuff occurring shouldn’t we be getting angry, shouldn’t we be feeling fearful, ratting each other out to the Covid marshals and mistrusting each other as if we were all walking biohazards. If you were to only read the papers and socials you would not be blamed for believing this.
The messaging that is coming from the government and media at the moment is really tough reading and is triggering a lot of anger, and rightly so, the notion of ratting out your neighbours and the 'blame shame cycle' on, first the younger generation and now the parents of school children, all of whom are just trying their best to do the ‘right thing’ not really knowing what that is, it is truly terrible. The coming together of society during lockdown has been shattered into tiny fragments, or so it seems anyhow. Covid is now a political weapon, people are shamed for just trying to do what they believe is best, but with constantly changing advice from those in charge it becomes increasingly difficult to know what to do for the best. Opinion is fed by fear and frustration, the ability to sit with another’s feelings even if they differ to our own seems to have been lost.
So, what can we do to feel better, how do we choose joy when all around us is fear and anger?
Well, to start with I highly recommend ditching the media consumption for a few days, even a few weeks, in fact why not go the whole hog and just uninstall your news and social apps. It will feel challenging at first, but the near constant consumption of media is incredibly bad for your mental and spiritual health and closes off your heart, as you have to harden to be able to survive in this information overload.
Once you unplug you will find yourself able to breathe, once you stop worrying what you are missing out on (it will take a few days, and I promise you nothing of importance will be missed) you will start to notice what you were missing out on the whole time you were scrolling the media apps, looking for the answers you are seeking, searching for validation that either you are right, or that ‘they’ are wrong. Everything you need is right here, in front of you, once you look up from the screen.
The time you may have spent scrolling, I encourage you to pick up a pen and notebook and write down how you feel, right now. What are the feelings in your heart, your stomach? What are the thoughts, fears, worries and dreams that are whirring around in your head once you take away the distraction of everyone else’s thoughts, fears, worries and dreams? Write them down and just spend a minute sitting with your own inner state. At first you may find they are difficult to sit with. Try not to judge, simply sit with your current truth.
Now without taking away from your current state of being I want you to think about how you wish to feel, what state do you want to exist in? Be real, be honest, do not limit yourself for fear of failure to achieve just let it flow out of you. Now ask yourself what you can do right now to feel that way. Use your desired feelings to make choices in your day that feed your desires, that serve you best.
Because I have a deep belief that once we get away from the chatter and spend some time with ourselves all the answers are within us, it is just a case of finding the courage to take the steps you need to feel the way you choose to feel.
It may be that you need some help to cultivate those feelings. You need more confidence? Phone a friend who loves you. You need more motivation, sign up to something new that will make you accountable, be it a dance class, a yoga session or maybe a therapy session, reaching out and connecting with others makes you immediately accountable, unable to hide away. Maybe you want more meaning in your life? Delve into what that means to you, do you want to help more, be part of something bigger, maybe there are volunteering opportunities locally, maybe you can become a mentor or a healer. Perhaps you crave creativity, then pick up a paint brush, or a garden spade and go create something real.
The point of this exercise is that life is now, and it is yours for the taking. Spending your time wrapped up in the shitshow that is going on at the moment is not going to help you feel any better. And you will find that once you get back into your own heart energy, choosing a life that brings you joy, you will with a certainty be able to make wider choices in regards to social and personal responsibility that you know are right. Once you are firmly in your own lane and not caught up in the blame shame cycle you will be able to be with others, who perhaps think differently than you without being triggered, and wouldn’t that be a wonderful thing.
Choose joy, reject fear, open your heart and step forwards choosing love every day.
If you would like further help and support in cultivating a daily practice that is rooted in love and joy then email me to find out about my ‘be more’ mentorship. Personalised sessions in person or online to help you ‘be more’ of whatever you desire. email@example.com