Find Your Joy
“You are speaking to your genes with every thought you have.”
The Best Brain Possible
Your thoughts may be stealing your joy. To protect them you must recognize the thoughts that keep you from your joy.
“Millions of self-critical thoughts circle our minds everyday, leaving us miserable, discouraged and held back from going after what we want. Identifying these thoughts as mean-spirited, external points of view can free us from that destructive critical inner voice.” How to Identify Your Critical Inner Voice offers more in depth about this subject.
Every cell in your body is replaced about every two months. This means that you can reprogram your negative cells to be more optimistic by positive thinking. You can “learn” to think joyfully.
All of us have self-critical thoughts. We may become so accustomed to them that we don’t realize how damaging they are to our joy.
I think joy hatches in your thoughts. And like an egg that must be cracked to open we often have to experience heartbreak before our joy is forced out into the open where we can embrace it. It may begin as a tiny chirp. When you hear it and pay attention every time you will grow the joy.
I saw a friend recently who lost her only child many years ago. She made a comment about how nice the holidays must be when you have children and grandchildren. I gave her a hug and told her what a sweet attitude she always has. She replied, “You have to be thankful for the time you had with them.” Then she told me of some of the kind and considerate things her son did. Instead of letting the loss consume her life, she shifts her thinking to the positive. I wish I could do that more often.
It’s simple. It’s not easy.
How? Once you have identified a thought, or the gremlin that whispers in your ear. You must consciously replace it with a positive one. For example, one of my gremlin’s favorite messages is, “You are so messy! Look at this desk! Why can’t you be neat?”
Step 1. Pay attention for a few days. Identify just one or two thoughts that pull you down.
Step 2. Compose and write a simple statement to counter the thought.
Step 3. When the thought comes, speak the statement aloud, if possible.
If you are so young that you don’t yet talk to yourself, start now.
Stinking Thought – I’m not getting enough done.
Healthy Statement – I am accomplishing a great deal. This week I did X,Y, and Z.
Stinking Thought – I don’t have enough education to do this.
Healthy Statement – Vidal Sassoon left school at the age of 14. OR Rachael Ray never attended college and has no formal training in the culinary arts.
Stinking Thought – It’s been too long since I had a regular job.
Healthy Statement – Many women succeed as mature women. I’m a mature woman.
Give it a try. I continue to use this method. Sometimes I’m more successful than others. The longer my gremlin has been whispering a stinking thought in my ear the more difficult it is to counter.
I urge you to start now and don’t wait until you are my age. It will make a difference in the rest of your life. You will have joy.
Related posts: How to Identify & Replace Negative Thinking Patterns
I hold a degree from Lamar University in Speech and a Master’s from the University of Texas. I was an educator in regular and special education for twenty years, finishing my professional career as a Braille teacher. I am a Certified Professional Coach with Fowler International Academy.
I married Sam after raising three children as a single mother.
In 2007 I founded SMORE for Women. SMORE is a nonprofit whose goal is Single Moms, Overjoyed, Rejuvenated, & Empowered. My stories have been published in several Christian books and magazines. My book, Living Learning Loving, Insights and Encouragement on the Path of Motherhood is available for purchase on Amazon.