Today I’m inspired by the lovely Dr. Kerry Ann Rockquemore. She inspires me in lots of ways, but today I want to talk about a little concept she’s been sharing that she calls the joy habit. It’s basically leaning into that state of gratitude for things in our lives, good and bad, and cultivating joy. So much so that it ultimately morphs into a way of BEING.
Living joy, if you will.
And it’s more than just happiness. Being happy is a great emotion to have, but it’s fleeting. I think this idea of being in a joy state couples nicely with learning to cultivate greater mindfulness in our daily lives. One of the things mindfulness teaches us is non-attachment and using our senses to simply be in the present moment more often than not.
That heightened level of cognizance can become a wonderful foundation for cultivating a joy habit. Lots of crappy things happen everyday too. So how do we keep our foundation of joy despite what Kerry Ann describes as our world being structurally oriented to separating ourselves from it?
Great question! Again, bringing back this aspect of mindfulness and growing that skill (it is a skill that we can learn + enhance) can help us to sit with all of the stuff less joyful in life. Daily stressors, hardships, serious issues in our local communities and on the other side of the globe.
Becoming more mindful teaches us to be with what is without trying to change it. We can acknowledge any less than ideal reality that might be swirling about in our face at the moment and still ground ourselves in joy.
It’s tricky and seems counterintuitive, right?
I’m no expert, but as I develop my own daily meditation practice and share insights with others doing the same, incorporating this idea of cultivating JOY as a way of being seems really cool. It must since I created this little graphic below a few months ago using a photo from my very first photoshoot!
So as I’m moving forward in my own journey of mindfulness and encouraging others to do the same (#mindfulscholar #356mindfuldays), I’m going to be further experimenting with cultivating JOY as my backdrop, my foundation, my inner compass pointing me toward all that is good, and not so good, in life.