You’ve heard it before. You’ll hear it again. Some good-intentioned soul tells you life is simple.
“Just seek joy!” they tell you with a chipper smile.
But instead of feeling thankful for their help you feel like screaming. Maybe you picture beating them about the head. At the very least you want to tell them what they can do with their joy, thank you very much.
Feel like crying instead of screaming? Feel like just giving up? Perhaps you feel so hopeless, defeated and so very, very far away from joy that just thinking the word seems like an impossible task.
Am I ringing any bells? If so, listen up. This article will change your life.
What Is Up With Joy?
Why is “seeking joy” so hard to do sometimes?
Picture this. You’re on the ground floor of sixteen story building. You want to go to the sixteenth floor because that’s where joy lives.
“Just seek the sixteenth floor,” they tell you. (It sounds suspiciously like “Just seek joy”, doesn’t it?)
But you no matter how hard you look, how hard you seem to want it, or how much energy you put towards it, you cannot get to the sixteenth floor directly from where you are.
Here’s The Reason
Because in-between the ground floor and the sixteenth floor are fifteen other floors.
Unless you know how to teleport yourself to the sixteenth floor you’re going to have to deal with those other floors.
If you walk up the stairs you have to climb fifteen flights.
If you take the elevator you’re going to have to get pulled up fifteen flights.
If you do a Mission Impossible up the outside of the building, take a helicopter or shoot yourself out of a cannon you are still going to have to move, fast or slow, from the ground floor to the height of sixteen stories.
It’s the same with emotions.
If fear or despair is on the ground floor and joy is on the sixteenth floor you have some layers of emotions to navigate before you reach the party.
Now, you have a choice.
You get to decide how you’re going to get up there. Sure, you can crawl on your knees, walk barefoot through the snow and otherwise suffer stoically…
…or you can get on the elevator and make your work as easy as pushing a button.
This is how you do it. Don’t choose joy.
When you can’t reach that feeling of joy – for whatever reason – choose the feeling of relief instead. Choose for things to be easy.
A Big Task
When you’re struggling, looking for joy can seem like another thing on your To Do List. “Oh great, I’m behind at work, I’m behind on my bills, and now I have to seek joy, too!”
But when you look for the feeling of ease or relief you can stop trudging up the stairs and let the elevator come for you instead.
“Oh great, I’m behind at work, I’m behind on my bills… time to look for relief.”
What Would You Do?
Maybe relief is a small stop in the action of your day and a nice cup of tea.
Maybe relief is nap, a massage or something to pamper you.
Maybe relief is…
• a new perspective
• the releasing the need to be right
• a friend asking if you need help
• forgiving someone
It could be many things. Your job is simply to ask for the feeling of relief and then to look for it in your life.
It Gets Better
Now what if, just for today, you imagined what your life would look like if it were easy?
It’s easy to get to work.
It’s easy to work at your job.
It’s easy to get the kids to bed.
It’s easy to communicate with your mate.
It’s all easy.
And once your life felt easy, wouldn’t it also be easy to find joy?
Darn Happy People
“Seek joy!” They say.
“Easy for you to say! You’ve already got your bills paid.. you don’t have the responsibility I do… you… you…”
“Oh, right. It is easy for you to say.
And I want it to be easy for me, too.
So here’s what I’m going to do:
The next time I’m feeling frustrated, or angry or upset or bored or anything not positive I’m going to ask for the feeling of relief. I’m going to ask for things to be easy.”
That’s it. Start there. Seek relief. Seek ease.
And see what happens.