JOY...Is it a Destination? - Hope and Joy Wellness Trilogy Blog #3

JOY...Is it a Destination? 
Hope and Joy Trilogy Blog #3
by Nate Higgins, Hope and Joy Wellness Coach

You encountered, engaged and slayed your metaphorical "mental monsters" in that space we explored lying between your hope and joy in the previous blog; That Space Between Your Hope and Joy Hope and Joy Trilogy Blog #2. You may recall me describing this space for me as a tunnel, whereby with clearly defined hopes, goals and dreams, as well as enough ambition, I enter a dark place of the unknown.

I proceed knowing that what is waiting for me on the other end of this tunnel is worth any sacrifice, pain, frustration or challenge that may present itself to me. Again...this is upon entering this dark and scary place undoubtedly filled with fear and resistance for me. That's about the only "for sure" thing waiting for me in that tunnel, that space.  

Now...I know all this going in, because I have been here before. I have gotten lost, been detoured and stalled. And yes I have turned back many times as well. However...I have completed this journey. I've been filled with joy. I know it's worth it. It keeps bringing me back even though it's a tough traverse. 

So when we see this light at the end of the tunnel of our journey and we run out as fast as we can with open arms ready to embrace that joy that awaits us! It's the moment that has inspired us through the tough times and kept us taking one challenging step after another.

man rainbow in falls

We arrive into this light but that joy doesn't appear in front of us like we so eagerly anticipated??? WTH?!?!

Don't get dejected.

Your journey is not yet complete! 

But it's the easiest, shortest and most rewarding part of your journey.



Turn around.

There it is!

You made it! 

The JOY is in the journey of course.

In my opinion, and I am not original with this position, but without the journey there is no joy. In other words, without the pain, suffering, challenges, sacrifice, fear and constant resistance and seeing it through or overcoming it, how can we possibly know joy?

Those things are what makes joy, well...JOY.

Think of anything that has brought you great joy. I'm serious, pause... take 30-60 seconds to think of those moments of joy in your life. I'm not referring to the joy of seeing U2 live playing "Beautiful Day," winning a couple thousand dollars at a slot machine or witnessing the Vikings winning the Super Bowl. (Oops, we are not talking about dreams here, sorry)

I am referring to the kind of joy that required a great deal of sacrifice, challenge, heartache, perseverance, etc. What transpired, occurred or presented itself to you leading up to that joy? I ask this question and am flooded with strong emotions of my own experiences and of course the moments of joy, yes, but...I recall so much more of what led to that moment of joy. 

It was my belief for a long time that joy was a destination or something you needed to pursue and hopefully capture if you were lucky or fortunate. But as I believe and state often to myself and others, hope is not a strategy. It's a great feeling, and very much needed in our lives, but alone it does not deliver us to the joy we desire in our lives.

For me, joy...well wholesome and sustainable joy, was allusive in my life for so long. I could not get beyond joy being a "what if" in my life. Like, I will only have joy "if" certain things went my way or happened to work out in my favor, as if I had no choice in the matter. Going through life with your fingers crossed, making excuses or escaping into things that do not serve you, while running from the challenges, fear and resistance is no way to go through your life.

It wasn't until recent years I found the joy in "what is" in my life.

Being grateful for what I have, what I have found inside myself or persevered through and what I envision for my future and that of my family is where I find that sustainable joy in my life...thankfully. 

Knowing where that joy comes from, where I can find it and how I can bring more of it into my life is a tremendous gift that I have given to myself.

Of course it's not as easy as just "knowing" this, but it does provide me with sort of a "treasure map" and enough guidance to step into that dark tunnel, or that space between hope and joy. I know that everything is going to be OK...no, that it's going to be a joyous occasion and one that I cannot wait to pursue again! 

I hope you; decide to plan something "BIG," not settle for just surviving day to day and/or make the decision to bring more joy into your life. 

Hope, Joy and Wellness to you and MAKE it a great day!

Previous Blog: That Space Between Your Hope and Joy Hope and Joy Trilogy Blog #2

Next Blog: Do Something Big!

Thank you in advance for your comments!

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