This article is for anyone wanting to take control of their life and create a life they love, enjoy and are inspired by. A life that is truly beautiful!!
Action #7: Follow Your Joy
WANT TO DISCOVER YOUR PURPOSE BUT HAVE NO IDEA WHAT IT COULD BE?
HAVE YOU BEEN CHASING PASSION AND CAN'T FIND THE ONE?
FOLLOW YOUR JOY INSTEAD.
The recipe to a great life sounded pretty simple to me. Just find what you are passionate about and good at and voila that is your purpose! And by fulfilling your purpose you will have yourself an inspired, motivated and fulfilled life ahead of you. Great!
With this information in mind, I set out in the final months of my senior year of high school to work out what I was most passionate about and uncover my purpose. But there was one problem…. I could not decide!
I desperately wished that I were one of those unicorns who were passionate and dedicated to that one area they couldn’t get enough of. I wanted THE answer.
But here’s the thing - I was interested in so many things. I wanted to study all the great works in literature, learn about psychology & human behaviour, understand our legal system, advocacy, medicine, journalism, hair dressing, painting, drawing, drama, politics, policy making, teaching, religion, wedding planning, events, activism…. The list went on.
So many equally compelling options that it was impossible to work out what I was most passionate about and what I wanted to dedicate my life to. And at 17 years old, the only thing I knew I was good at was school!
With so many options before me, I felt…. confused (and guilty). And this feeling of confusion stayed with me for the next 10 years until I finally gave up the search for passion and realised maybe I had it all wrong.
Why is finding purpose so difficult?
In the patriarchal world that we live in, we all (men, women, transgender – everyone!) tend to rely mostly on our masculine side. ACTION, ACTION, ACTION, ACHIEVE, ACHIEVE, ACHIEVE.
So the idea of simply choosing a path and then taking the necessary action to achieve it seems pretty simple when purpose, passion & fulfillment are concerned.
You just need to be committed, motivated and do the work. Future sorted. Sometimes life is hard. Just make a decision and take the necessary action to achieve your desired outcome.
What we don’t think about though, is whether the journey we are taking and the action we take today are what bring us JOY now.
Joy is my highest purpose:
The road to fulfillment requires us to grow and evolve as human beings. This means what we want and what will bring us fulfillment will change. This also means what we are passionate about and what our purpose is at any time, will also change.
What we really need to decide is how we want to feel. And this is where joy comes in. Joy being one of the highest emotions we can experience and a lasting sense of happiness & pleasure. Think about it - all these things we are striving for - the money, the job, the happiness, the partner, the home. Why do we want them? We believe these things, once attained, will bring us joy.
The secret is, these things will not bring us joy. They might bring us a fleeting sense of happiness once attained, but true joy is much deeper.
"Joy is a divine quality of our true self, which is inherently lighthearted, playful, and free." - Deepak Chopra.
And that is why: Joy is our highest purpose.
Why do we need to follow our joy?
When we follow our joy we connect with our feminine energy which utilises our intuitive, creative and feeling powers. Yes, power! Your intuition will lead you to joy. Your creativity will lead you to joy. Your feelings, if you let them, will also lead you to joy.
When we are living in a state of joy, we are at peace. And we are better able to contribute meaningfully to the world. Think about it: if everyone were living in a state of joy, would we really want to wage wars against each other? steal? attack? hate? No! This is because joy comes from a place of abundance and love.
And joy leads us to fulfilling our destiny.... our purpose.
How to follow your joy?
If asking yourself, "what would bring me joy?" feels like a foreign concept to you, then ask yourself about pleasure, happiness, ease and curiosity instead.
Think about how you could add more pleasure to your life.
Think about what makes you truly happy.
Think about what brings ease to your life. What flows.
Play with your curiosity. When I was on my search for passion again 2 years ago when I started my journey of rediscovery, again I felt so disconnected from the word. And again, no matter how much thinking I did, I just couldn't figure it out! Then the wonderful Elizabeth Gilbert gave me a BIG hint:
"Passion is a tower of flame, but curiosity is a tiny tap on the shoulder - a little whisper in the ear that says , "Hey, that's kind of interesting..." Passion is rare; curiosity is everyday."
So I started to follow those little taps of curiosity, which led me to connecting with not only joy, but also pleasure, creativity and yes, eventually passion.
So when I feel blocked from joy or passion, I start with following my curiosity again.
Action #7 to Create a Life that is Beautiful
Our exercise for this week has 3 parts:
- Set aside some time today to sit down in quiet space where you won't be interrupted (maybe set it up with some candles, some incense, some calming music, start with a meditation) and start a conversation with your intuition. Ask your intuition: What brings me joy? Listen for the answers and write down what you hear on a piece of paper (if you missed last week's action about how to Listen to Your Intuition + Let it Guide You, you can access the post here). I want you to end up with a list of at least 10 activities that bring you joy. If you have trouble coming up with 10 activities, don't stress - think about activities which brought you joy as a child. If you feel curious about any of these activities, I want you to include them on your list. And if you still are struggling to come up with 10, ask yourself instead these questions: What brings me pleasure? What leaves me feeling happy? What brings ease into my life? Write down your answers.
- Each day this week, begin your day by asking your intuition: What would bring me joy today? Listen for the answer and write it down. Notice whether the answer is something you included on your list above. If you didn't hear anything from your intuition, take a look at the list of activities you wrote above that bring you joy and see if you feel drawn or curious about any of them - if you do then this is your answer (remember your intuition speaks to you through sensations and feelings). Your challenge this week is to make time each day for that activity. If you still can't answer this question - remember to think about pleasure, happiness or ease instead and see what comes up for you. Whatever the answer, make time that day to do it.
- Whenever you feel curious about something - follow it. Research that thing you didn't know the answer to & felt curious about knowing why, if someone mentions an activity they are doing and for some reason you feel curious about that, have a go and try it. Everyone can access curiosity and curiosity will... lead you to joy!
When people follow their joy, it leads them to passion and purpose. And the more people we have living from a place of joy, rather than from a place of fear, lack, struggle or disconnection - the more chance we have of living in a peaceful, loving and connected world. This is because when people are living from a place of a joy, they are living from a place of abundance! A place of love.
Some might think that following our joy all the time would make us all selfish then. But what many people will find instead is that activities which bring us joy often involve helping and serving others! Imagine a world where each of us contributed and served the other through work which brought us joy? There would be enough space for all of us.
The search for purpose and passion has never been easier when we let our joy guide us. By following our joy, we connect to our true purpose in life, our destiny. The path to reconnecting with joy may seem difficult at first, but through following better known feelings such as pleasure, happiness, curiosity and ease you will find your path to joy.
So lovely, this week please complete the 3 parts to our weekly challenge above and see where it takes you! Did your list of what brings you joy bring up anything surprising for you? Where has following your curiosity led you? Share with us in the comments below.
And if you haven't joined us on the Create a Life that is Beautiful journey - sign up for my weekly newsletter below to join the tribe! Every Sunday, I share an action for you to implement into your daily routine to help you create a life you love, enjoy and are inspired by. A life that is truly beautiful in YOUR eyes. By signing up to my free weekly newsletter below you receive an email every Sunday which sets out our next action for the week, suggestions for how to implement the prior week's action going forward and other insider information & support. Sign up below for all the details!
If you know anyone else who you think would resonate with the Create a Life that is Beautiful journey or who might like to know more about how to Follow Your Joy, please feel free to share this post with them.
And if you need any support at any moment along this journey, please: leave me a comment; send me a message; or send me an email, to let me know how you are doing. I care and I appreciate you.
You are worthy and wonderful, with so much to contribute to the world! We all have unique skills, abilities and interests and I wholeheartedly believe that by embracing those, finding your platform and choosing love, joy and inspiration along the way you make the world a better place. :-)
Lots of love,