10 Tips For Living A Joyful Life Now
Living a joyful life now can seem impossible when we are pulled in so many directions.
The political climate, the seemingly perfect lives of others on social media, financial worries, demanding jobs, disconnected families and natural disasters from shore to shore make it seem impossible to remain positive, let alone live in joy. Because of this, we all need tips for living a joyful life now.
Some days, it feels like being happy, experiencing joy is a cop out – like somehow we are supposed to remain hardened and pessimistic in order to show the world that we are busy, serious and well-aware of the crumbling state of our world. It’s like we have all resigned ourselves to banish joy from our lives so we can look engaged and angry about the swirling injustices in the world. But we can have both. We can be serious and still be living a joyful life.
No one wins when we reject happiness and joy.
It is possible for us to be serious feminists, serious parents, serious employers or employees, a serious son or daughter or serious human beings and still celebrate joy. We are not required to live with furrowed brows and disgruntled souls. Being joyful won’t lessen our commitment to our tribe, our nation, or our world.
We’ve got to lighten up.
Studies show time and time again, experiencing joy and happiness is good for our health. Living a joyful life now can extend your life. It can reduce your stress. Living a joyful life now can improve your immune system and ease your aches and pains.
Need tips for living a joyful life now? Here are my top 10.
- Stop tolerating so much. Take note of all the things you tolerate during a day, all the little (or big) things that make your shoulders sink ever so slightly: From a filthy car to a burned out light bulb. From a cluttered home to poor customer service at a bank. From not having a decent shovel to forgetting to make a doctor’s appointment. Write down all the things you tolerate in a day or in a week. Notice everything that makes your life a bit less joyful, then act upon rectifying the list. Knock the easy ones off the list first: wash the car, change the light bulb, switch banks, clean the basement, declutter your office. Work up towards the bigger items like improving your tone of voice or getting a new job. Plugging up areas of your life where you leak energy will instantly provide joy. Living a joyful life now means you stop tolerating so many things.
- Unplug more often. We all have busy lives but being plugged in from the moment we wake until the moment we fall asleep isn’t good for our physical health (it makes us stressed) or our mental health (it makes us angry, fearful and lonely) or our relationships (why do we put virtual people in front of real people?). Pick a time each evening to put your phone away. Get an old-fashioned alarm clock. Charge your phone in a room other than your bedroom. Develop a morning routine that doesn’t include checking your phone first thing. Living a joyful life now means being fully present. Unplug.
- Focus on the little things. Seriously. Watch the sunrise. Write a love note. Leave a big tip. Smile. Eat dessert. Pay for someone else’s coffee. Get your windows cleaned. Jump in a puddle. Send an unexpected gift. Surprise someone you love. Welcome, a new neighbor. Give up your seat on public transportation. Roll down the windows. Accept an invitation. Decline an invitation. Paint a room. Sit on a park bench. Go for a walk. Tell someone you love them. Call an old friend. Living a joyful life now means you create small and simple blasts of the unexpected every day.
- Be deliberate. It is so easy to feel overwhelmed and fearful these days. Instead of feeling like you lack control in your life, make deliberate decisions about everything in your life. Give thought to what you say, do and listen to every day. Pay attention to who you spend time with. Take notice of your news sources, your food sources, your entertainment. Do you enjoy these things anymore or are you living life in a routine? Want more joy in your life? Maybe it is time to shake things up a bit. Try a new route to work. Try a new Chinese restaurant. Try a new way of talking to your spouse. Try a new way of engaging with your children. Maybe it is time for a new church or a new line of work. Mindless routine can be the death of joy. Living a joyful life now means taking deliberate action.
- Lighten up. Laugh. Read a funny book or watch a funny program. Hang out with amusing people. Go to a comedy club. Even faking laughter is good for you. So many of us are out of practice. We hold ourselves back. If something is funny, for God’s sake laugh! Our brains release endorphins when we laugh. Laughter eases stress. Considering most of us live our lives in a state of fight or flight, with adrenaline flooding our systems, a good flooding of endorphins is needed. Living a joyful life now includes plenty of laughter.
- Focus on what you have. Comparison is the thief of joy. Do you look at social media or Hollywood films and compare yourself? Are you forever focusing on your lack? Do you wonder why everyone else’s life seems to be so much better? Want more joy in your life? Learn to celebrate all that you do have: family, friends, a kick-ass pair of shoes, a great dog, a great view. Get a piece of paper and start writing down all the good things you have in your life. Living a joyful life now means you stop obsessing about what you don’t have and focus on all that you do.
- Cultivate a great attitude. You can choose your thoughts, your actions, your reactions. People aren’t necessarily born with a sunny disposition. Happy people choose to be happy. You can’t control much in this world, but you can control every thought you have. Having a great attitude doesn’t mean everything is going your way. It means you choose to control your thoughts. You choose happiness. You choose the positive. Living a joyful life now means choosing a great attitude so you can celebrate each day.
- Forgive people who have hurt you. Forgiveness untethers you from their power. Forgive yourself. It allows you the space to be successful and healthy in the future. Isn’t it time to unburden yourself from the anger, resentment, pain, and oppression? Where would you be, who would you be, if you could make amends? Whether it is forgiving you or someone else, the time is now. Move on. Living a joyful life now means breaking up with pain and shame. Forgive.
- Be present. Stop and look around. Life is beautiful. Put down your phone. Think like your dog. Look at every meal, every walk, every treat like it is the best thing ever. Tomorrow can wait. Why rush things? Linger. Savor. Breathe deeply. Connect with someone. Slow down. Living a joyful life now means you stop chasing, you start truly listening, you look people in the eye. You smile. You love like crazy.
- Don’t avoid the dark side. Yep. It is true. Joy comes to those who are willing to get beat up a bit. Work hard. Take chances. Don’t be afraid to fail or get hurt. Joy rewards those who have known sorrow, loneliness, and pain. If you look for it, sweet joy can show up in sadness and grief and depression and fear. Want to know joy then embrace the dark times, the hard knocks and underbelly of life. Living a joyful life now means cultivating beacons of light even in the darkest of times.
Living a joyful life now is as important as water or air.
The serious stuff will always be there. Give yourself a break. Look for joy, cultivate joy. It’s good for you.
I’m T-Ann Pierce, a transformational life, and mindset coach, who helps her clients tweak their perspectives so they can begin loving the lives they are living. If you still have questions about how to ditch the overwhelm and cultivate more joy in your life, contact me at 847.730.7531 or drop me a note at https://t-annpierce.com/contact-me/.