How can you find more joy when your days are filled with traffic congestion, tense motorists, loud sirens, and the cluttering of our minds with ceaseless e-mails and voice mails, that demand our attention and response?
Not far beneath the surface lie real people who are trying to cope with the demands of life, despite the stress.
We hope to satisfy the demands of our jobs, spouses, friends, children, parents, relatives—and to help others in need.
Even as we struggle to move beyond necessity, we can feel happiness and find more joy—and allow that happiness to emerge into a sense of abiding joy.
Let joy in.
Ultimately, happiness isn’t a goal to be met—happiness finds you, if you let it in. You can’t obtain it like a material possession, or find it in any external object.
It washes over you when you recognize that you are doing the best you can to live an honest life and make wise choices, when you allow yourself to love yourself. In so doing, you belong to something much bigger.
By letting go, you see that there are many things in life to treasure, in your own way you will find more joy.
Give and receive, gracefully.
You may not know where the next job or opportunity will come from, but when you let go of your own control of the situation, when you stop trying to manipulate everything in your power—it somehow arrives just in time. Everything is always just in time.
However, this does take some work on your part. You must be prepared to give and receive, gracefully, Trying to limit your pride and need to control. The simple act of giving is peaceful for the soul. Selfless giving brings peacefulness, and opens the door for you to find more joy.
Gratitude allows you to accept the blessings of life, and then offer them in return. So, a key to allowing happiness and joy into your life is to be grateful for your life, the lives of those you love, to appreciate that you walk this earth a short time, that life at its core is joy, and that this joy is your inheritance, and you are the beneficiary.
Repent, learn, let go of regret and guilt, and move on.
Clearly life is hard; and you must experience the consequences of your actions. Often you do not choose well, and regret the effects of these actions.
Perhaps an affair wreaked havoc on a marriage. And for this all parties are suffering. There is regret and guilt over the action that did the damage.
You now recognize that you should have held yourself to a higher Standard. Now you face the consequences.
If the marriage is worth saving, show the humility to save it. Communicate until the magic takes over, and you find more joy.
Perhaps the time has come for a relationship to end. The transition will be hard, and you will face self-doubt. So, try to heal the wounds, admit the mistakes, live consciously, and recognize that you can’t know everything that will come from your actions.
This is not to say that you shouldn’t regret. Regret is necessary to educate your actions, to realize that you have made mistakes, to acknowledge failures.
However, it can destroy your health, rob you of self-worth, deprive a life of the blessings of happiness and joy if not mitigated.
Find more joy by letting go of regret and guilt, when it is time to do so! In this way you allow a love for one’s self to wash over you, and feel the gift of a higher power.
Do what you love, even in small ways—in any way possible.
Music is magical. People create with voice and instrument sounds that sooth the Gods, as well as themselves. It is easy to take for granted that great music is available to you.
So often you don’t take time to turn on your favorite songs, become transported to the special place in time and space, but ultimately within yourself where this music evokes the sense of who you were, and who you are.
You can’t separate yourself from the sights, sounds, feelings, places you’ve been in your life; and so much of this is associated with music!
Find more joy by enjoying theater, politics, and sports or recreation.
Enjoy that you have a body that magically follows your commands and gets up and does what you want it to do. Enjoy that incredible mystery that action follows intention.
That you get up from your chair and go for a walk. There is joy in being human; and being passionate about what you love brings joy—despite obstacles! So, do what you love.
You are a child when you are young. But you are also a child when you are in your twenties and thirties, seventies and eighties and beyond.
And your inner child wants to laugh. When my mom was alive, her laughter amazed me. In her sixties, she laughed with the infectious, joyful, contagious sound—dimples deepening within her cheeks—of a little kid.
She brought joy wherever she went, and especially when she laughed. The joy I often feel in life is brought into deeper focus when I laugh, and my laughter is an inheritance from my mom.
We all inherit so much from those we love who have passed on— allow yourself to recognize, appreciate, and be joyful over the good that you have inherited—it is who you are.
Find more joy by letting yourself laugh, in spite of the obstacles. You are never more who you are than when you laugh— laughter is the ultimate letting go.
Let go of your cares and worries.
You take your cares and worries seriously, but you also take yourself lightly enough to be kind and gentle enough with yourself to let them go.
To accept that we are human, fallible, ultimately we need to be kind to ourselves. All things must pass, including your life.
You are here a short time. So, find more joy in your journey!
Rosen has written professionally for over three decades and has been featured in such publications as The San Francisco Chronicle, The San Francisco Examiner, Nob Hill Gazette, Asian Week, and on the cover of Personal Excellence which has featured the likes of Deepak Chopra, Oprah Winfrey, and Nelson Mandela.
His radio interviews include In the Spirit, Blog Talk’s Conversation Radio and Unlimited Realities, and Healthylife.net’s Healing Heart and Home and Strategies for Living. In addition to a stint as a journalist in Chinatown, he has crafted essays on sports, politics, economics, and music.
The piece that he wrote on his boyhood idol, Sandy Koufax, appeared in the Baseball Hall of Fame. His slice of life series titled “Diary of a Creative Banker” and a composition on Princess Diana have been featured on the BBC.
He has a Bachelor’s Degree in Philosophy from U.C. Santa Barbara and an M.A. in International Relations from San Francisco State University. The father of two sons, he lives and works in San Francisco, California.