How Can I Find Joy in Everyday Life?
Finding joy in everyday life can feel impossible, especially when faced with mental health issues or addiction. There are a lot of things working against your happiness, but finding even a small bit of joy each day is so beneficial to your overall wellness.
The Importance of Joy
Joy is an integral part of life. This doesn’t mean you should deny yourself sadness or anger. It is healthy to feel your emotions as they come. You should never swallow down bad feelings because they are unpleasant. It is so crucial to express and fully experience all emotions. Having a positive outlook doesn't mean making every negative a positive, but learning how to manage the bad stuff.
Being positive allows you to manage sadness and other less pleasant emotions so that you have a balance. Coping with negative emotions isn’t about fighting them but feeling them and releasing them. Dwelling on negative emotions sends you down a dark path. It can swallow you up and lead you to expect the worst of situations and people. Although it is healthy to feel those emotions, joy balances that out. Too much sadness or negativity can lead to anxiety and depression.
When someone can experience joy more readily, they tend to bounce back from negative experiences and emotions faster, leading to overall wellness. Those with better mental health tend to be in better shape, have lower blood pressure and blood sugar levels, and even live longer. Just as hope and faith play a role in recovering from physical ailments, the same goes for mental illnesses and addiction.
Negative emotions, especially chronically negative ones, lead to fear and anxiety, leading to trouble sleeping, change in appetite, fast heart rate, putting you at risk for health issues or slower recovery times due to lower immunity. Resiliency is a large part of finding joy in everyday life.
How to Find Joy Everyday
Your emotional well-being and ability to find joy every day are not things you are born with. It is a skill you can learn over time and master with practice. Through meditation and therapy, people improve their self-reflection and develop the tools to face negativity head-on. They learn to address a lack of joy and train their brains to prompt positivity.
This is not overnight growth. It takes time and practice to achieve. You may start with something like training your brain from annoyance or frustration because of traffic. Rather than being angry due to something outside your control, you can decide to accept the situation and continue having a good day. Something this small is challenging, but once you can master that, you can move on to bigger hardships.
Another way to find joy every day is to be the one that brings joy to others. Practicing kindness and generosity provides you will good feelings. Small acts like holding the door open for a stranger or donating to charity allow you to view yourself better, therefore, feel more joy. When you can view a better version of yourself and grow who you are, you naturally feel better. Confidence in oneself improves your outlook. Higher self-esteem encourages healthy behaviors like eating well and exercising as well as being kind to others, surrounding yourself with supportive people, and managing your mental health.
Those who can find that joy every day tend to be more motivated to move their bodies and even achieve professional and personal goals. When you feel down about anything and don’t work through those emotions, they can take over and seep into other aspects of life, only making you feel worse. There are small steps you can take each day to improve your level of joy and develop a more positive outlook:
Recognize a positive event each day. You don’t need to win the lottery to be happy. Enjoy the sunshine or eat something tasty. Just taking note of something that makes you smile is enough. You can write these moments down to acknowledge them.
Look for meaning. Find meaning in each day. Sometimes boring work routines can get the better of us. Recognize that something you did helped someone, whether it was letting someone cut in front of you in line or even waving to a neighbor. You are where you are for a reason.
Stop waiting. Don’t wait for something to happen that will make you happy. You are in control.
Start small. You don’t need to define the meaning of life right now. Take it day by day. Do something small you enjoy every day, like cooking, playing with your pet, or even reading.
Set small goals. You don’t need to climb the tallest mountain to feel accomplished. Go for a walk at a new location. Try a new restaurant. Or make small talk with your cashier. Just accomplishing that can add joy.
Live in the moment. Don’t focus too much on the past or present. Both invite worry.
Spend time with positive people. The people in your life impact you so much. You don’t need to cut out people in a bad place, but surrounding yourself with people that add joy to your life is a great place to start.
Life is messy and can suck sometimes. We all have bad days. When the bad days pile up, it can be hard to find even the slightest bit of joy. If you let those bad emotions take over, it can impact your physical and mental health as well as your overall outlook. Taking steps to improve your wellness starts with adding small bits of joy into every day or acknowledging the ones already there. This takes practice and training, but it is more than possible. With each step, you feel better and smile more. Through therapy, meditation, and mindfulness, you can reframe your thinking and find the good in each day. At California Care Detox & Treatment, we use this idea in our methods to ensure our clients feel good about their progress and know there is always more to look forward to. To learn more about what we can offer you, call us at (949) 281-0632 now.