Friday, September 24, 2010

Feel Good Friday - Question Answered???

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A couple weeks ago I received the following comment on my blog post
Talking to Myself: My question is if you are continuing to chase joy,
will you ever actually catch it? Maybe chasing joy will make you tired,
exhausted, and frustrated, and there is no guarantee that you will catch
it." At first the comment annoyed me a bit. It surprises me that
anyone could find something negative in pursuing joy. A dear friend of
mine who inspired me to start blogging in the first place, left an
amazing comment in response to this question before I even had a chance
to respond. You have to check out what she said.

Today I actually feel good about this question. As a matter of fact a
better description is I feel uplifted by this question. Why? For a few
reasons, for starters, people (not just my mom and close friends) are
reading my blog and commenting. I am still amazed that people want to
take the time to hear what I have to say. Even more amazed that people
can relate to my experiences and thoughts. And triply amazed that some
people actually feel inspired by what I have to say.

I mostly feel good about this question because of my answer. Will I get
tired or exhausted Chasing Joy? Do you get tired of smiling, laughing,
counting blessings, making friends, trying new things, and appreciating
the little things that make everyday more pleasant??? I do not. These
are all the things I'm doing in pursuit of Joy. If they tire you out
and exhaust you maybe you have some sort of health problem leading to
your excessive fatigue. Perhaps a doctors appointment should be in your
future :-)

Will I get frustrated Chasing Joy? Nope!!! I started Chasing Joy
because I was going through a difficult time. Some might even say I was
depressed. If not depressed, I was very down, very blue. As I
mentioned in my post Letter to Dad, I promised my dad that I would be OK
so I had to find a way to keep my promise. I recognized the need to
change my focus and look for reasons not to be depressed, not to be
down, not to be blue. I started looking for happiness. I started
Chasing Joy. So far I have realized Joy is not that hard to catch. It
is all around us. If you really look for it, as I am you, will find it.


Will I ever catch Joy, there is no guarantee? We've already established
that Joy is really all around if your looking forward. So honestly,
though I am Chasing Joy, catching it is not the issue. But holding on
to it that is another thing. Catching Joy is kind of like scoping up
water with your hands. You can gather it and get a little taste but
before you know it it has slipped through your fingers and/or
evaporated. So you have to constantly keep going back scooping up more
and more Joy to sustain you.

All that being said, this Friday I am feeling good because people, like
you, are reading my blog and commenting, I am finding Joy all around me
and scoping up as much of it as I can to sustain me. I hope you are
finding and scooping up tons of Joy too too.

Why are you feeling good on Feel Good Friday????

Monday, September 20, 2010

Joy Book - Chapter 1 Hairstory

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One of the things I’ve always wanted to do that was included on my Devil’s Workshop list was to dye my hair red. I did just that this summer. Earlier this year I accomplished something with my hair that I’d wanted to achieve for some time. I managed to get it healthy, no split ends, no breakage. (Guys this may be an extremely boring post for you, sorry). Considering my healthy hair accomplishment I opted for a less damaging red rinse. Not permanent but Red nonetheless.

So what happened??? Absolutely nothing, LOL!!! I don’t know what I was expecting to happen. But a red rinse was fairly uneventful. It looked great. I was happy with it. A few people complimented me on it but most did not really notice it. I had thought about dying my hair red for years, was even a little afraid to do it, and it ended up not being a big deal at all. So what have I learned from this trivial act of dying my hair? Sometimes the things we wonder about for long time and build up in our heads end up not being a big deal at all. Most people, outside of your circle of friends, barely pay attention to the specifics of your look. It’s just hair; it does not change who you are, make you better or worse in any way or increase your worth as a person. And last but not least crossing something off of your to do list, bucket list, or Devil’s Workshop list, even something as trivial as a hair color definitely gives you a sense of accomplishment that beautifully complements JOY.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Feel Good Friday - Saturday Edition

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Do you want the good news or the bad news first?

OK, the bad news is it is no longer Friday and I'm obviously late with this post.

The Good news is I am late with this post because I was actually too busy capturing a bit of Joy to write about it.

Anyway, I hope you had a great Feel Good Friday and Happy Saturday (Happy Sabbath to my Adventist friends/followers).

So what has you feeling good today? I'm feeling good thinking about unseen blessings (you may call it luck). This past week was 9/11. At work our newsletter had an article about an employee reflecting on her experience that day. Long story short, she was to do routine traveling for work that day. She normally drove herself to the airport but decided to switch it up and use a car service. The day before her flight she got nervous that the car service would be late and cause her to miss her flight. She changed her flight at the last minute to one that left 20 minutes later. The flight she was originally booked on was the one that crashed into the Pentagon. That last minute change saved her life.

I'm sure there are many other stories like this about 9/11 and other tragedies. I'm sure there are people who'd planned to vacation in New Orleans but had to make a change who now feel lucky that they missed Katrina. Or even on a smaller scale I'm sure there are instances of people being upset that something interrupted or delayed their normal routine only later to find out that they were spared being in an accident, fire, or other bad situation.

So yesterday I'm getting stressed because I was running late for an appointment only to then get stuck in traffic for 40 minutes because of an accident. I call my mom to say "do you believe I'm stuck in traffic" and tell her there is an accident. Her response, "I guess it's a good thing you were running late or you could have been in the accident!" Yes that was a good thing, I was lucky, I was being blessed without even knowing it.

So I'm feeling really good this feel good Friday (Saturday) recognizing that there are all sorts of little things happening in the universe behind the scenes protecting us from harm. Unbeknown to us, God is constantly blessing us and setting us up for Joy. Doesn't that make you feel good?

Have you had an experience like this? Have you been annoyingly taken out of your normal routine only to discover you have been spared some sort of negative situation?

Friday, September 10, 2010

Feel Good Friday - The Little Things

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Happy Feel Good Friday!!! Are you Feeling Good today?

I am currently reading a memoir by Valerie Frankel entitled Thin is the New Happy. I selected this book because from the title and cover it looked like a nice, easy, funny and light hearted book making fun of crazy diets and such. The book I read before this one was kind of heavy and Thin is the New Happy seemed like a good follow up. Well I was kind of wrong. The book is kind of funny and basically an easy read but I cannot really say that it is light hearted. The book is about a woman struggling with body image issues. She does put a humorous spin on it where she can but overall it is more thought provoking than anything else.

I have not yet finished the book. So far it has spoke to me about the how outside things that really have nothing to do with how smart, funny, kind, energetic, or Great we are impact how we feel about ourselves, how people view and treat us, and therefore effect our Joy. There are all sorts of little things we do to feel good each day a little makeup, a new perfume, a quick (or not so quick) workout, a favorite snack, or even cleaning the house or car. All of these little things we do to feel good, all these little drops of happiness when combined can give us vast oceans of Joy.

So, this got me thinking, what are the things that are completely outside of myself (my personality, thoughts, feeling) that impact my Joy? Are my clothes an accurate projection of who I am? Is my home a sanctuary for me and reflective of my personality? Does my financial situation provide me with the security and freedom to pursue Joy to its fullest? Does my means of transportation encourage me to really explore my corner of the world looking for Joy? All of these things fashion, home, money, and car are completely outside of myself. They do not define. The do not make me smarter, kinder, funnier, a better friend, or better person in any way. And therefore are not important. WRONG! All this things, while playing no part in making me or you the wonderful person that you are, can play a big part in how we feel about ourselves, treat ourselves, and how we allow others to treat us. So what little things can you do to feel good on a regular bases? What little drops of happiness can you capture?

Here are some of the little feel good things I do/plan to do to:

I'm not big on makeup but nicely arched eye brows go a long way
So does a pedicure (even a do it yourself one)
Continue developing personal style (I imagine this will always be evolving)
Fixing the two small dents and scratches on my car
Ending my indentured servitude with the credit card company (e.g. paying off debt)
Improving those housekeeping skills
Zumba!!!
Continuing to try things from my Devil's Workshop list
Chasing Joy

What's on your list???

PS. I do recommend the book.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Talking to Myself

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The other day I read this amazing article written by The Single Woman. If you are on twitter you should follow her. The article is about if you could go back in time and talk to your younger self would you and if you would, what you’d you say. Needless to say the article really got me thinking.

Now I’m sure we all know from our favorite Sci-Fi time travel movie the 1st and most important rule of time travel is you cannot talk to your past self for fear of influencing them and altering the future. Since time travel is still not a possibility and therefore there is no chance my past self would ever read my blog here is the advice I’d give my past self.

To me earlier this week> Do not worry about telling a friend “NO”. A true friend respects your decisions and your right to change your mind.

To me last week> Do not worry about mixing in with groups of people that you do not have much in common with. If they invited you that means they are willing to find commonality. Oh, and don’t buy the sparkly shirt. You won’t wear it.

To me last month> Try not to be stressed by things at work just do your best. Also remember that everyone is not open to the idea of merging co-worker relationships into friendships. Do not take it personally.

To me six months ago> Do not forget to put on your makeup the night of your birthday party. Relax everyone that is supposed to be there will be there and everyone who should not be there won’t.

To me 1 year ago> Things will feel different now that dad is gone but you will be ok. Do not feel guilty for being happy without him. He would want you to be happy again. You are a lot stronger than you think. And you are strong enough to be alone. Don’t be afraid to let go of people who are not showing you the support that they should.

To me 2 years ago> If someone tells you they are the devil, believe them. Don’t be so quick to take on other people’s problems/responsibilities. Especially when they have not shown that they are able and willing to do the same for you.

To me 5 years ago> don’t make time for people who don’t make time for you. Be careful with your diet and health it is really easy to slip back into old habits. Homeownership is not as easy as you think. Definitely do it, but be prepared for some hurdles. Just because a guy is not lying it does not mean he is telling the full truth.

To me 10 years ago > Relax!!! Have more fun in college. Be serious about your grades but not too serious. Stop doing things because it is what a nice girl, good daughter, smart girl, etc… would do; instead do what you really want. Don’t worry your morals and values will guide you no need for the nice girl litmus test. Continue to follow your instincts and don’t second guess yourself. Trust your gut.

To me 15 years ago >Don't be so hard on yourself. Be kind to yourself. Try harder to maintain contact with people. People change, sometime for better, sometimes not for better. Accept that people will go in and out of your life as they go through changes, just as you will go in and out of their lives. Do not take it personal when people go out of your life and be receptive when they come into your life.

I’d not tell my past self any specifics. I would not say don’t take that job, date that guy, go to that school or move to that neighborhood. I know all of the decisions of have made make me who I am. I’d just offer myself the general advice stated above in hope if allowing myself to experience a little more Joy and surprisingly a lot of the advice I’d give my past self I still need to hear today. What advice would you give you past self to have a more Joyful life?

Friday, September 3, 2010

Feel Good Friday - God is Good to Me.

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Happy Feel Good Friday!!!!


I had an appointment this morning that required me to wake up kind of early. I could not just turn of the alarm and wake up naturlay like I usualy do when I do not have work. I se the alarm for 8:20. When I opened my eyes this morning I did n0t hear the alarm going off. I quickly reached for the cell phone fearing slept through or failed to set the alarm properly. Nope! It was 8:13. I'd woken up right on time just before the alarm. As I ploped my head back to the pillow my first thought was God woke me before the alarm, God Is Good To Me!!!

Normally my frist thoughts in the mornign are "No!!! not yet" as I hit the snooz button. Or on my day off "I'll sleep just a little longer" as I roll over happy I do not have to get up for work. So todays thought was quite a departure. I think this focus on positivity, this Attitude of Gratitude, the Life Lessons, the counting my Blessings, the avoiding Joy Thieves, the focus on loving myself, and trying new things must be paying off. Chasing Joy is changing my mindset. Watch out Joy! I'm closing in on you. I'll have you in my grasp soon enough.


How is God good to you?

How has Chasing Joy changed your mind set?


Happy Feel Good Friday!!!

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