FINDING JOY in 2022
Joy is an elusive and difficult to define human experience which, according to the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, is key for optimal health and fulfillment in life. Unlike the transitory earthly experience of happiness, joy is more of a state of mind and a way of life which, when one is living in a state of joy, infuses one’s life experiences, relationships, philosophy and even success and productivity. Happiness may be brief and is dependent an external experiences, like an ice cream cone on a warm summer day, a great piece of music or your first kiss. Joy gives one, even in the face of adversity, the capacity to feel and express positivity. Some have said that Joy gives people the ability to deal with hardship without it being “hard” and face setbacks as learning experiences allowing them to move forward even more productively.
The Dalai Lama in his BOOK OF JOY listed eight pillars of Joy: Perspective, Humility, Humor, Acceptance, Forgiveness, Gratitude, Compassion and Generosity. Notice that these are all qualities that speak to our experience of others and our connectivity to something greater than ourselves. Living these pillars takes effort and mindfulness (see last column!)
So let us seek to achieve JOY in 2022, and in so doing make the world a little better, not just for ourselves, but for those around us as well!
Dr John Monaco