The expression of Joy isn't always someone jumping up and down with excitement. It is more often a smile or warmth in your heart.
I’m pretty fascinated with historical dramas. It all started with Downtown Abbey. Cory and I even won first place in a costume contest at a local PBS Season premiere showing. Perhaps Vikings or Bridgerton is hooking you to the genre too. I love to watch the relationships play out as characters try to discover themselves while navigating responsibility, power, love, and duty. Most recently, I’m watching Reign. Many plots involve maintaining a point of position, the rise and fall of rulers, lines of succession, or heirs claiming their right to the throne. These characters believe that they can lead better than their predecessor or that the position of ruler will bring them all the power and happiness the world can provide. Sometimes you get a humble leader that wins the favor of the people only to fall to ruin or become corrupt. They claim rights of position in search for happiness but never find it. Most are riddled with regret.
I’ve often said I was born in the wrong time period. There are many things I love about the setting of these historical dramas: the clothes, the castles and houses, villages, and European backdrops. I love the fireplaces in every room, big kitchens with butcher block tops, butler pantries, garden walks, celebrations and horseback riding.
Whether part of the upstairs, downstairs, servants or royalty, all the characters are trying to find true happiness amongst their circumstances. My observation is that the “ordinary” characters and those that sacrifice their position for the good of the people or true love are the ones that end up the happiest.
That’s all any of us want, isn’t it... true happiness. At any moment we want to look at our life from the bird’s eye view and be able to honestly say, “yes, I’m happy.“ How do we do this in modern circumstances though? I say we rise up and claim it! Each and every day, be attentive to our joys. Be present in the ordinary experiences that delight us and recognize when we express gladness in something we value and appreciate.
Stop right now and think. When was the last time you smiled? When was the last time your heart was full? The expression of joy isn’t always someone jumping up and down with excitement. It is more often a smile or warmth in your heart. Yesterday, I watched my eldest drive off on her first solo drive with her license. The joy that I claim in that situation is that she wanted her sister to join her. They had been talking about sharing this little bit of freedom with excitement for a couple weeks. Watching them drive away with big smiles warmed my heart, I smiled, and claimed my joy in that movement. Don’t get me wrong I claimed some anxiety too! But mostly, I rejoiced that they wanted to share this milestone and joy together.
How are you at recognizing your joy? Do you go from task to task to task throughout the day not able to take a moment to relish in your own joy? That was me not too long ago. It’s still me if I’m not intentional. I challenge all of us to be intentional, to slow down so that we can rise up with Joy. I challenge us to do this everyday. I challenge us to claim our joy because when we add up our moments of joy we find the blessing of happiness.
Join me in claiming your joy and with it claim your position as a #Joysister. There is no fight for power involved and no regrets. There is enough joy and happiness to go around for all of us everyday women if we will just claim it! If you will claim your position as a #Joysister, use the hashtag and post it to your social media platform. Friend me and and tag me #Joysister. Invite your friends to join our Facebook community at Joy for Everyday Women. We all benefit from a larger uplifting sisterhood.