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5 ways to “wake up” to Joy

Okay ya’ll my last post talked about waking up the everyday joys in your life. Today I’m going to go through 5 ways to “wake up” to Joy!

1) Live the Moment your in.

What does it mean to live the moment your in? To live fully where you are. Giving your all to the present circumstances you find yourself in.

So in some of those not so great moments this may look like embracing the suck as you tackle a 10 mile distance run. Or it may be dancing around in the rain with your 7 year old niece.

Really its giving yourself permission to fully feel and experience life. But not allowing yourself to get stuck in pining for the past or fantasizing about the future. Now we will all do both pining and fantasizing at times, but it is giving your self permission to FULLY LIVE in your current moment that is wonderfully intoxicating!

CARPE DIEM!

2) Be still.

Basic, right? But this idea of just being quiet is uncommon in our overfilled lives. Not picking up your phone as soon as you have a free minute. Not checking the next thing off your to do list.

Take time to slow down and quiet your mind. Breath deeply and let all the thoughts that intrude slip away.

Frequently in these quiet moments I have thoughts come to the forefront that I didn’t even realize were an issue or a cause for celebration. I can file those thoughts away to be processed more later.

Once I’ve successfully let stillness in I find true joy in whatever moment I’m currently living. A mountaintop view. A cup of coffee enjoyed on the couch. A walk through my neighborhood. A flight to visit friends.

3) Personal technology boundaries.

Yep. I went there. We all need to set personal boundaries when it comes to technology.

Why you may ask? Well, when was the last time you got on social media got sucked into the black hole only to reappear 3 hours later? Or the last time you started a show on Netflix and looked the clock to discover you missed 2 meals?

Yeah. We have all been there and thus prove my point in needing boundaries. If you have not experienced either of those type of situations, good on you, move forward in life like the truly wonderful time-management boss you are.

For the rest of us, lets talk about those personal technology boundaries. This could look like setting a limit on the number of episodes you allow yourself to watch in one sitting. Setting a timer for 20 minutes when you get on social media.Turning on a “Do not disturb” at a certain time at night. Whatever will help you not fall down the internet rabbit hole, so to speak.

4) Get outside.

At least once a day. Guys we need the fresh air, sunlight and honestly just the natural beauty. I’m convinced that just being outside helps make you a happier, healthier person.

In my commute, the walk from the train through downtown to my work helps me start my day off better. Even better is when I get to spend time deep in the backcountry and be fully surrounded by woods. Or ocean time- swimming, sunning.

Again, just a walk around your neighborhood or sitting on a blanket in a park will be beneficial!

5) Make time daily for what you love.

It’s important to enjoy the life your living. So if your not making time for activities and hobbies you enjoy- that is a problem! If you enjoy physical activity, create a schedule to fit it in your life daily. If you enjoy journaling, create a habit of daily journaling.

We all have that “thing” we want more in our life. More exercise. More adventure. More quality time with friends. More time getting lost in reading a good book. In order to actually have that “thing” more we have to actually incorporate it (whatever it is) intentionally into your life.

So if the idea is to exercise more. Intentionally make space in your life, physically and mentally. For me, this look like waking up 3o minutes early to get in yoga, HITT or a run.

Whatever it is that you enjoy- make time daily to enjoy it. It’s YOUR life and it’s up to you to make it a joyful one!

Wake Up to Everyday Joys

I believe we can find joy in our everyday life. To experience this everyday joy we must be present in our lives.

What do I mean by, “present in our lives” you may ask? Well, allow me to explain.

Frequently I find myself asleep to my everyday life. Asleep in the aspect of going through the motions of life without truly being alive in the moment. Letting the colors dull, the conversations slip by without engaging, and seeking the distraction of entertainment. All of this mutes my experience of life.

When I find myself in this place I have to intentionally re-engage. Stop and take in the sights of what’s happing around me, truly allow myself to SEE the colors around me.

Focus on the conversation happening in the moment. Listen for the sake of hearing and understanding. From this place your able to have deeper conversations and relationships.

One thing that needs to be addressed in this awakening. Is the role of entertainment in our lives- specifically electronic media. Electronic books, social media, online streaming, etc.

Ah- my friend and foe – entertainment. I will admit to loving a good book or tv series and don’t get me wrong here.

BUT there needs to be a conversation about falling down the proverbial rabbit hole. You must create boundaries in your own psyche.

I encourage you to think about what is appropriate time spent on these activities and what is overindulgence. Everyone will be different, but this is important for you to figure out.

Additionally, I feel I should add a note about this time of self isolation because of Covid-19. It can be even more difficult to not to seeking out entertainment for undefined hours with no end precisely because you have so many hours stuck at home.

But I would say that makes intentionality that much more important for your mental health. You still need to connect with other people (even virtually); need to enjoy your favorite hobbies or start new ones; and need to maintain some semblance of routine with meals and cleaning the space your spending so much time in.

From creating your own boundaries you can intentionally be present in your own life. Personally I am constantly working towards this goal. And when I am “awake” in my life I find SO much more Joy!

Live Joyfully

Hey guys! Rebekah Joy here. I wanted to start this blog off with my main idea. Living a Joyful life.

Now to be clear this Joy that I speak of is not of my own making. It comes from my relationship with the Lord. I acknowledge that not all who engage with my blog will have this same faith, but it is core to who I am and speaks into all areas of my life. So if you are someone that does not share my faith I hope you may still find value in my content and if you have any questions, I would love to answer them.

My faith in Jesus Christ brings joy into my life. Not just circumstantial joy, but deep abiding joy. Joy that is beyond human understanding and gives life even in difficult seasons.

As I write about life I will keep returning to this idea of Unreserved JOY.

Because it is a HUGE part of who I am. I love finding the good in life, because there is always good. No matter what we have reason to choose joy in life because of just that- we are alive. Life its self is a reason to be joyful.

I hope that as I share my life experiences, struggles, joyful moments and passions with you that this idea of finding Joy because of who we are in Christ resonates with you. Because Joy is a promise of the Lord. It is a fruit of his Holy Spirit that we can cultivate and lean into. [Now don’t get me wrong, I think all of the Fruits of the Spirit found in Galatians 5:22-23 – love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control- are important and necessary for a deeper life with Christ. I just resonate with joy.]

Psalms 20:16 says “You will make known to me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; In Your right hand there are pleasures forever.”

In the NIV Bible translation the word ‘joy’ is used 242 times. The repetition of this word shows me how meaningful it is. Not only is it used in times of happiness, but it is also brought to the forefront in times of distress. In James 1:2-3 it talks about considering our trials a ‘joy’ because the byproduct of our faithful joy produces perseverance. How encouraging this is!?! We may have joy in knowing we are being transformed.

I encourage you to commit to living a Joyful Life.

Growth in Weakness

As many of you may know I am a runner. I enjoy putting all my efforts and energy into running hard towards goals. This sport has served me well in this utilizing my drive, focus, and passion. It has also developed a strengthening of my resolve when going after goals. On the flip side of my strength lies my weakness.

 Impatience.

I find it very difficult to wait on the Lord once He has given me a goal. I want to drop everything and go after the goal. This focus and passion are things I see as my largest strengths. BUT in those strengths my largest weakness hides. Our Lord is so good at knowing us; what we need to grow and develop. I lived out a season of growing into my strengths for many years and now feel I have entered into a season of growing in my weakness. Because the Lord is too good of a father to allow me to live in this weakness. His will is to see me lean into him, rely on his strength. The strength of His timing, His provision, and His plan.

The thing I have realized is that my impatience is quite arrogant. Its like I’m saying “Thanks for the heads up Lord I got it from here.” When in reality I may know the general direction the Lord wants me to go, but I need Him daily to understand His plan. I need to listen for His timing, when to move, when to wait, when rest, and when to recklessly jump in trusting Him. And when those reckless moves happen trust His provision. So often I try to orchestrate all the financial, relational, and logistical pieces to be just right. The problem is when I jump I can not possibly foresee all the possible issues and end up stressing myself out. Listening to the Lord- Waiting on the Lord is so vital to being able to walk in confidence and power.

When we know we are in the Will of God there is a confidence that we walk in because we are getting our authority from the power of the Lord God, the Creator of the Universe! When you are able to see the greater picture of how our role plays into the plan of the Creator of the Universe it makes sense that we get excited about the goals the Lord gives us; but we must be willing to wait on His timing, His provision, and His Plan! Because no matter what part you play in the Plan of the Lord, His greater plan is the most important part. Its The GOAL. The Kingdom of God is what we are all working under and towards bringing here on earth.

“Our Father, who are in heaven. Hallowed be Your Name. Your Kingdom come, Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread, and forgive us of our sins, as we forgive those who have sinned against us. Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For Yours is the kingdom, the power and the glory, forever and ever, amen.” – Matthew 6:9-13