How to Find Joy in Everyday Life and Experience Bliss
Often, the idea of just being or relaxing is something that will only be considered once we’ve achieved a challenging goal or maybe completed our life’s work.
But first, busy bees need to tick off all the items on their notoriously overcrowded ‘To Do’ list. Always working late into the precious evening hours and thoroughly exhausted, we may be ‘lucky’ enough to have half an hour to ourselves.
In our fast-paced lives however, true rest or connection with ourselves might not even come. Simply reflecting, feeling our emotions, connecting with our body, staring at the ceiling or letting our minds naturally wander can feel pointless, boring, indulgent, self-obsessed, etc.
It can be easy to default into something more ‘worthwhile’ or a ‘legitimate’ adult pastime such as scrolling social media, binge watching TV, consuming the news, or prepping for work. This can all be wanted and necessary activities, but when we’re choosing simply to fill space, use our time ‘well’ or do what’s expected, we’re not truly rejuvenating or connecting with ourselves; we are only continuing to produce and consume under a different disguise.
To be in a state of enjoyment is to be connected within ourselves and with the world in a conscious way. This sits in conflict to being on autopilot or production mode.
That’s not to say that we can’t get into a beautiful flow with what we’re doing, or create work that we love. It’s all about the energy behind it. Are we engrossed through a sense of ascension when we tap into our skills and creativity, or are we stressed and obsessed with meeting a deadline? Are we unaware of what we’re doing because we’ve tapped into an inner state of flow, or have we signed out due to boredom or detachment?
If you’re not sure where you sit with any of this, the best thing you can do, or any of us can do, is to consciously slow down.
ARE YOU SIMPLY EXISTING, OR ACTUALLY ENJOYING YOUR LIFE?
For a long time, slowing down was only possible for me because it included the promise that, once I had the ‘down time’ I would be more energised to speed up afterwards. I connected inwards, not for the purpose of greater enjoyment in life, but for increased productivity. Though I missed the mark, this motivated me to start this journey of finding inner calm and peace.
By slowing down as you go through your day, you naturally become more conscious of what you are doing; you create more space for your mind and body to open up and engage instead of being distracted and rushed. It can feel kind of rebellious at first. When I first started allowing myself to slow down and enjoy the process of a task, it felt as if I was showing the finger to the entire world.
Our workaholic, productive minds can make us feel like we’re doing wrong when they don’t take center stage. When we choose to slow down, we can access the enjoyment in life that we’ve been putting off. Enjoyment can come in many forms, and might include things such as:
These are all ‘states of being’ as opposed to the final stop we often think is waiting at the end of success. When we see enjoyment as a destination instead of an active choice we can make every single day, we can fall into the trap of always trying to be more and achieve more in order to experience it.
This only supports the belief that many of us carry deep within ourselves: that happiness is awarded to the one that tries the hardest, works the longest hours, and makes the biggest sacrifices.
I can tell you now, it’s wrong.
As bizarre as it sounds, even allowing the good to find us is a skill, and enjoying ourselves just the way we are requires practice. If you’ve spent years trying to push aside, suppress or tame your joy and pleasure, it will take some time to invite it back and make space for it in your life.
Reflecting on the list above, what does enjoyment mean to you? Or what kind of enjoyment do you feel is most missing in your life?
Start with what you already know. What moments are the ones that awaken the deepest sense of enjoyment within you?
You could experiment with the following:
What is calling you? How can you find moments in your day to transcend beyond the mundane or predictable? Remember, you are allowed to experience bliss, grace and joy every moment of the day. It’s a question of mindset, choice, and daily practice.
Let me know what you explore.