Fall is here! Let the pumpkin spice lattes and comfy sweaters commence! Or maybe an apple crisp macchiato is more your speed. Whatever your preference is, we’re here to tell you that these things – although they may bring about temporary feelings of happiness – are not the source of joy. Joy is something you feel deep within yourself, no matter the challenges you may face each day. And we have some simple tips to get you on the path to feeling more joy in your daily life!
When thinking about what makes the feeling of joy different from momentary happiness, we like to reflect on the teaching of Chinese philosopher, Confucius; that is, his encouragement to contemplate this statement:
“We have two lives, and the second begins when we realize we only have one.”
This means, we only have one life to live. There aren’t any do-overs. You can create opportunities for fresh starts, yes, but once time has passed it’s gone forever. Ultimately, what we’re encouraging you to do is to seize the day. Carpe diem! And, we believe, the way to do that is to find your way to a state of joy. These are our simple tips to help you navigate in that direction:
Make your bed. Soldiers start each day by making their beds. And that’s because the military knows a thing or two about the momentum of achievement. It’s the first task you can accomplish at the start of your day which has the power to lead you to more productivity. You completed one task, now on to the next!
Pray or meditate. Beginning your day by setting aside time (even if just a little) to count your blessings or to reflect on what you’re grateful for is the secret to finding joy in each day. However, we recognize that some days are hard. You might be facing an unplanned pregnancy, dealing with the passing of a loved one or suffering from a complicated relationship. Or maybe you’re just super tired, which can make everything feel so hard. By spending a few minutes at the very start of your day to contemplate the reasons to feel grateful can dramatically impact the course of your day. This is a good time to have a journal by your side to list out a few things you feel grateful for. Even if you have written just one thing to be grateful for, reflect on it and keep it in focus throughout the day.
Make a list. After you pray or mediate, make a check list of reachable goals for the day. Don’t forget to add “make bed” and “pray/mediate” to it because you can immediately check those right off your list. Is that silly? Absolutely not! At the end of the day, you’ll be able to look back on what you’ve accomplished. And your list is an accounting of your wins. Claim them!
Once your list is complete, if any goals include health-related tasks like confirming an unplanned pregnancy or knowing the status of your health with an STI screening, call Essential Pregnancy Services’ helpline or go to www.essentialps.org/appointment and make an appointment with us in minutes. We exist to provide women with cost-free services in the Omaha metro. You can have confidence that you’ll receive compassionate, non-judgmental care at EPS. So don’t wait to get answers. Check another thing off your list right now. We’re here to help!