by Skip Cohen
As everyone who follows my Reflections posts knows - I always run amuck from business and marketing on Sundays. It's my way of reminding myself there's a whole world out there, not just my in-a-bubble universe.
The world has become a pretty screwed-up place. We're all frustrated with the challenges humanity continues to create, and then along comes Mother Nature to add her touch to the mix of sadness and pain. And I've noticed our own private worlds are nothing more than mini-versions of the rest of the world.
But here's what seems to help me a lot...It's not always easy, but I try to stay focused on joy - all the good things in my life. When I was a kid learning to drive, my Dad told me to "just watch the left front fender." He only wanted me to focus on where I was on the road. Well, I've taken that and, over the years, tried my best to stay focused on what really matters.
I've written you can't create images that tug at people's hearts if your own heart isn't in it. Well, you can't be there for your friends when they need help if you're not maintaining your own emotional health...and there it is again, learning to cherish joy.
This morning before writing this, I read Melody Beattie's thought for the day, "Cherish Joy."
Joy is not a fleeting emotion based on outward circumstances, a transitory feeling of the moment, a reaction to the scenery around you...Joy is a runoff from the wellspring within you. And sometimes it is a delightful, surprising contrast to the scenery around you.
Embrace joy. Relish it. Even if those around you don't have it right now, you can feel your joy. You don't have to be disrespectful of their feelings, nor do you have to let their lack of joy diminish yours.
Cherish joy. It's your treasure. You've found it. You've earned it. It's yours.
And there's my point - no matter what you're going through, choose joy. Dig deep because your heart deserves a break, and you can't help the people who need you most without an appreciation for simply being here. Joy is about delight, happiness, jubilation, triumph, and glee...pick one!
Wishing everybody a day ahead where you can choose joy over whatever you might usually feel. Put away your frustrations with the world, and beat them at their own game. Cherish the people you love the most and be there for those who need you the most - but hang onto your own joy - it's your most valuable resource. Go for those eleven-second therapeutic hugs I always write about, especially with friends and loved ones who need them the most.
Happy Sunday...or Monday on the other side of the world.
Illegitimi non carborundum
(a mock-Latin aphorism, often translated as "Don't let the bastards grind you down")
Check out "Why?" one of the most popular features on the SCU Blog. It's a very simple concept - one image, one artist and one short sound bite. Each artist shares what makes the image one of their most favorite. We're over 100 artists featured since the project started. Click on the link above and you can scroll through all of the episodes to date.