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#31 Cultivating Joy

#31 Cultivating Joy

Many people believe that joy and happiness are one in the same.  In reality, there are profound differences between the two. Happiness can be conditional and externally based, while joy is an internal contentment.  While both are important aspects to cultivate in our lives, we should strive to align with a deeper sense of joy. As we take better care of our mental, emotional, and physical selves, naturally align with taking care of our planet.    

Joy vs. Happiness:

Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary defines joy as the emotion evoked by well-being, success, or contentment, or by the prospect of possessing what one desires.  This definition implies you can obtain this level of joy no matter what you are experiencing.  While happiness is defined as a pleasurable or satisfying experience.  Joy is an innate part of who you are and resonates throughout the ways in which you show up for life, or simply stated, your attitude.  Happiness is mainly emotion based, changing with shifts in external circumstances. Everyone cultivates joy in different ways. Maybe you cultivate joy through fulfilling your purpose, or spending time in nature, or maybe it’s being with friends and family.  Cultivating joy is a practice, trusting yourself and honoring your needs takes time, but putting in a little time everyday adds up. Let’s look at some facts on joy and happiness.   

Joy & Happiness Facts:

  • Globally, consumerism is the biggest suppressor of joy.
  • The two main factors that cultivate joy globally are a sense of community, and celebrations. 
  • People who regularly spend about 25% of their hours each day with family and friends are 12 times as likely to report feeling joyful rather than feeling stressed or anxious. 
  • Scientists have determined that your happiness level is a result of a complex interaction of genes, behaviors, and life circumstances.  While each person has a genetic set point for happiness over 40% of happiness is your choice.  
  • Studies show 20 minutes a day of being outside boosts your levels of serotonin and helps cultivate joy.  
  • Healthy people are 20% more joyful. 
  • A study of more than 7,000 adults found that those with a positive well-being were 47% more likely to consume fresh fruits and vegetables than their less positive counterparts.
  • Cultivating joy boost your immune system.
  • America is ranked as the 19th happiest country.
  • America’s income per capita has doubled since 1972, while happiness has declined.

How can I make an impact:

Tier 1: Global Goodness

  • Take note of positive things each day.  Start a gratitude journal, or just take a moment to focus on the positive things in your day, look for at least three things daily to be thankful for.
  • Cultivate self love by noticing a personal strength each day. 
  • Find ways to be of service.  The most joyful people tend to be those serving others and the planet.  In sharing your gifts you cultivate a greater sense of connection and belonging.   

Tier 2: Planet Protector

  • All of Action 1
  • Live your truth.  Cultivating joy comes from celebrating your authentic self.  It takes courage to stand in your true being, but in doing so you align with your purpose.
  • Manage your circle.  We are our company, so making sure you surround yourself with positive supportive people is imperative.  Choose friends and family that motivate and support you. 
  • Realize who in your life is toxic and adjust their role accordingly.  

Tier 3: Earth Angel

  • All of Action 1 & 2
  • Practice mindfulness.  Take some time each day to sit and focus on your breath in the present moment.  
  • Stop comparing yourself to others.  This is the biggest drain of joy. Live the life you have been blessed with and practice self-compassion.  
  • Be patient with yourself.  Cultivating joy is a process, love each moment of it. 

Facts References: 

https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/happiness
https://www.goodnet.org/articles/7-stats-about-how-happy-people-live-their-lives
https://www.lifehack.org/articles/lifestyle/the-science-happiness.html
https://worldhappiness.report/ed/2018/
https://www.vox.com/2019/3/21/18275796/happiness-report-usa-ranking-2019
https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2019/05/05/719780061/from-gloom-to-gratitude-8-skills-to-cultivate-joy
https://chopra.com/articles/5-ways-to-cultivate-more-joy-in-your-life
https://www.bustle.com/articles/169675-11-scientific-facts-about-happiness-that-youll-want-to-kno

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