Keeping my Joy

We rise by lifting others.   — Robert Ingersoll

Do you ever find yourself waking up wondering what happened to your joy? You go through your day going through the motions, but you’ve somehow lost heart. Do you struggle to find meaning in what once gave you much purpose? I don’t believe you are alone, else why would there be so many self-help and finding-yourself books on the market? And why are there so many self-marketing gurus out there?

I can’t pretend to be an expert. All I have is my own life experience, but it has been diverse and I have been through some rather harrowing moments. I can only tell you what has helped me climb out of my doldrums and find some of the joy that I now live daily.

And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me;for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.  Ether 12:27

First, I make a practice of reading my scriptures and praying to my Heavenly Father. I feel that all things go better for me each day if I begin my day by turning it over to Him, and meditating on His word.

Second, I read. I remember reading Dr. Seuss The Cat in the Hat and Red Fish, Blue Fish, and how it made me want to read. I think it also helped that I was the youngest of 6, and I was always trying to keep up. We were all encouraged to read and to learn, and my sisters taught me well. I have always maintained my love of a good book.

Third, I try to learn something new. This is tricky, because this is where the proverbial “shiny, new object” can take out an entire afternoon when I spend too much time on social media sites! But I really love to learn, and I am currently learning about all things herbal as well as essential oils, and I love to learn about canning and I follow a lot of food and traditional homestead bloggers.

Fourth, I try to eat well. I want to make sure that I eat as nutrient-dense whole foods as I can to nourish my body. I want to be as healthy as I can possibly be for as long as the Lord allows.

Fifth, I need to get as much sleep as I can. I fail miserably at this one, but I’m still working on it! I do know that if you have sleep issues, see your doctor. S/he can help you to sort things out. I have incredible insomnia, as well as sleep apnea, and I am working with my doc to try and find some equilibrium and put an end to this problem.

Sixth, I write. Of course I write. I’m a writer. But you don’t have to be a writer to write. Keep a journal. Take notes of your mood, your health stats, your running times, your babysitting schedule, whatever. Just write it down. It’s an incredible stress reducer. Try it and see.

Hope is the thing with feathers

That perches in the soul

And sings the tune

Without the words

And never stops at all

Emily Dickinson

These are only a few of my tips on what helps me to keep my joy. What are some things that have helped you?


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