Three Tips for More Joy
Happy Summer! We just reached the Summer Solstice which means that we are already starting to slide towards late summer and autumn. So how can we savor this summer while it lasts?
The emotion associated with summer in Chinese Medicine is JOY. The virtue associated with summer is “Maturity.” This is the time of year where the seeds that sprouted in spring are coming into their fullest expression. During the summer, we can begin to reap what we have sown and to enjoy the fruits of our labor.
Here are a few tips for cultivating enJOYment inspired by the “Cultivating Contentment” talk I gave at Drexel University about a week ago.
1. Be Lazy. (How often do we let ourselves be lazy? It’s ok to rest. Give yourself permission.) Really sink in! Let yourself relax! Lie on the beach or, if you’re me, just lie on your couch and count your blessings and be grateful that the sun is waking you up early to remind you to enjoy the light.
2. Celebrate Often. Sometimes we get tricked into forgetting all of our cares and therefore take this season of beachtime and travel for granted. Avoid falling into that trap by pausing to really celebrate all of the activities we enjoy in summer (barbeques, being barefoot, beach time, family picnics) to their fullest. Appreciate all that you have around you and enjoy it now, in the present moment.
3. Enjoy Your Morning Coffee or Tea. We’re almost back to number one here. Pause and take time to connect with what you’re doing. Even if you just let yourself sit for 10 minutes in the morning with your coffee, that ease and enjoyment can serve as a reminder for how you want to be during the rest of the day. Also, how amazing is it that your coffee or tea likely came from somewhere thousands of miles away? Celebrate those who helped to bring you this treat. (And if you don’t drink coffee or tea, find some special magic to sit with in the mornings before you blast off into your day.)
Joy can bring so much connection and contentment to our hearts. It lets us reach out into the world from a place of feeling happy in our hearts, and from a place of wanting to share that sweetness with others.
From my heart to yours, Happy Summer.