You might say joy is my favourite emotion and well, you might be spot on. I have a simple practice that is my shortcut in decisions about next steps, opportunities and relationships at home or at work. I ask myself “will this bring me more joy? I’ve even written about #joymakers in previous blogs.

Joy is an emotion we can feel utterly spontaneously with no forethought as well as one which we can create and grow intentionally. Today, I’m going to look at what is joy, the positive impacts it has on us and how you can create more.

There are many definitions of joy – some relate it to a spiritual connection or a sense of deep satisfaction. For me, it is an internally derived emotion, combining acceptance, surrender, happiness and contentment in alignment with my values and intentions. Joy tends to stem from purpose or progression, making it different for each of us.

Its effects are often longer standing than the moment it is triggered by and can be recalled in both physically and mentally, through our 5 senses like the cold creaminess of ice cream on your tongue, the passion in a singer’s voice or a resonating quote or story in your social media feed, as well as through an intimate sensual connection with another person, a mediation with Source or crossing off a milestone towards a bigger ambition. 

Joy speaks from our needs to being met in the choices we make about our wellbeing, our pursuits and the people we surround ourselves with. Finding cavolo nero and fresh salmon at the supermarket, seeing a dear friend and sound baths bring me joy that derives from my physical, relational, psychological and spiritual needs being able to prioritise and actively meet my needs.

I often ask my clients, “how does this create joy for you?” and it can be hard to answer. If you’ve been hiding a part of your true self away or living or working in fear of judgement or rejection, discovering and feeling joy can be harder.

Being out of alignment with yourself limits the joy you experience and that which you do comes from a place of less self-acceptance, possibly creating a side order of shame or guilt. 

Aligning life, work and love towards values and principles that promote joy impacts your mental and physical wellbeing. From a neurochemistry perspective, joy releases dopamine and serotonin, allowing us to register joy in our brain. They then flow through our bodies, elevating our breathing rate, making us feel flushed or warmer, our mouths might water and our smooth muscles relax (that’s why your tummy gurgles when you feel good).

Our mental wellness improves with sharper thinking and greater use of intuition as we enter our “flow state” of being and doing – when the challenge of what we face and our ability to handle it come together in a wonderful balance. In education, sports or the workplace, joy’s effect is to improve engagement, motivation and performance.

Research has also demonstrated people who feel more joy in their day to day experiences, live longer with improved immune systems, enjoy more satisfying intimate relationships and have more self-belief, -acceptance and -confidence.

So how can we say yes to joy? I think there are three aspects you can leverage to build more joy in your life, work and love.

It starts with you. Deeply connecting into who you are and I mean who you really are – in all the corners, brightly lit and often avoided, in your highs and lows, and in the parts you love and those you have yet to come to terms with – gives you the ability to open yourself up to an abundance of joy. Then learning and leaning into your values and principles whilst respecting your personal needs, helps to transform your approach and decision making to align to your brilliance. Together, these develop your platform for a joy fuelled life – in all aspects.

From your platform for joy, you can actively shift your thinking, doing and being into alignment. By opening to Source (God, Universe, Mother Nature, whatever you call yours), practising self-connection and gratitude, and intentional incorporating your true self in your life, work and love,  you train your joy spotting muscles to recognise what is a #joymaker or a #joytaker.

Leveraging your soft power through the Powertypes provides you with the mindset and mechanism to protect your boundaries and values, ask for what you need and build the community around your hearth and in your realm.

This is what my coaching clients rediscover, reignite and reveal by working with me. This powerfully meaningful work brings me so much joy.

 

If you’re reading this, wondering where you might start, here are some suggestions:

  • – ask yourself “does this create joy for me?” often, when weighing up your options or reflecting on your experiences. What you learn, will help you say yes to more of the #joymakers than #joytakers
  • – practise small daily #joymakers by actively scheduling them into your diary: a favourite food, a moment of mediation, meaningfully connecting with a loved one
  • – note down every time joy pops up for you: big, small, free, expensive, alone or with others. Use it to replenish and top up in the tough times

Curious about other ways to access more ways to say yes to joy? Search in the box above for joy and it pops up a lot 🤗

If you’re curious about what coaching with me could do for you, drop me an email (sarae@saraepratt.com) and let’s talk!