I hope you’ve taken time to think of a word or phrase that represents what you would love to create more of this year.
Our thoughtfulness and intention create our experience of this short and precious life, and that’s a big deal.
After much thought, like three months worth, I’ve decided my word for 2024 is Joy.
I tend to make everything work.
I make self-improvement, self-care, professional development, exercise, eating clean and healthy, organizing and decluttering, decorating, home projects, planning vacations, and even spending time with friends and family work.
These are all things I love to do!
But my brain makes them feel like work, things to do, to accomplish, to check off my list.
And that creates overwhelm and exhaustion for me.
My brain has been trained for years to “get things done,” and that mindset steals my joy.
Instead of focusing on enjoyment, I focus on achieving goals.
I’ve unconsciously withheld happiness from myself until my list is all checked off.
But that never happens.
For someone who has perfectionistic tendencies, lists grow bigger and bigger.
I want to cultivate the ability to delight in all these things and not just check them off.
I long to experience the moments of my life and appreciate all the challenges and celebrations.
I long to be more present.
We tend to think of joy as something that happens to us.
However, joy is a feeling we create in our minds by practicing mindfulness - noticing, acknowledging, appreciating, and savoring moment by moment.
Joy is defined as the feeling of pleasure and delight.
The root word is rejoice.
Marinate in that word.
To me, rejoice is a word that has limitless, transformative power.
That’s how I want to live my life.
Living a life of joy doesn’t mean I expect everything to be daisies and rainbows.
There will still be disappointment, fear, anger, grief, pain and more.
I am fully human and welcome the entire human experience.
And yet, as I learn to be fully present for it all, I expect to find joy in the most unexpected places.
2024 is the year I intentionally open up to giving and receiving more joy.
How about you?
What will 2024 bring for you?
You get to decide.