Wednesday, January 27th, 2021

7 Habits to Create More Joy in Your Life

Step Into Your SpotlightOne of my favorite quotes is from Wayne Dyer “When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change”. When I first heard this I wasn’t really sure what it meant. Over the years I’ve come to experience exactly what it means and after I became acquainted with the idea I found it to be quite transformational.

This is what it means to me:


We all see the world through a personal filter; which means, we filter all the things we believe, from the things we don’t believe based on what we learn from our parents, our friends, our culture and our society. Our set of beliefs is what we believe is true about others and about life. Many times if we take a stance on something that we really haven’t put much thought into (this happens a lot) what we’re defending are not our own ideas but ideas we’ve come to accept as true, given to us from someone else.


When parts of your life aren’t working it might be time to take a look at what you believe about the situation that’s causing you trouble. What I’ve found is that there are many ways to look at a problem. For example, let’s say John can’t find a job. He blames it on the economy, his lack of experience, his personality, his lack of skills, etc. Any of these reasons might be why he isn’t getting a job, but the truth is people get jobs despite the economy, lack of experience, lack of skills, etc. If John changes ‘the way he looks at things’ (his filter) his life would change. If he makes excuses and blames others he won’t have any desire or reason to take action. However, it he decides that he is going to get a job no matter what, the outcome will be different. Action is what makes things happen.


To understand how your filter might be holding you back in life you need to step back with an objective eye or with the help of a mentor and look at the beliefs around your challenges.


It can be difficult to make big changes when you’re used to thinking and behaving a certain way – but not impossible. In John’s case he started taking baby steps. When he realized how his beliefs were holding him back he was able to change them. It’s amazing what can happen when you’re open to change. Are you open to change?


Here are a 7 ways to get started in changing how you look at things:


  1. Get present: Take your life off autopilot, slow down and savor the moments. Joy comes from stopping to enjoy the little (or, not-so-little) things like – spending time with friends. I used to be on a go, go, go treadmill and when I slowed down, I realized that I wasn’t spending as much time with my friends as I liked, so I paid more attention to making time. If you’re on autopilot it’s time to slow down and be present. One way to do this is to spend time with children. If you notice, children have an enthusiasm for life that is worth catching on to. They get excited over the smallest of things, they show their feelings easily and usually they say exactly what they mean. Be more childlike. Do what you love. Don’t put it off. You might want to paint, plant a garden, be a big sister, etc. Whatever it is, do it now, or at least get started.


  1. Stop judgment: There’s nothing worse than judgment to get your back up and put you in a bad mood and create negativity. Pay attention to when you feel justified to make someone wrong. Are they wrong? Is there a right or wrong? Or, is it your belief system or your experiences kicking in?


  1. See other’s points-of-view: When you feel that you’ve been triggered step back and take a look at the other’s persons point-of- view. Life is much calmer when we take time to understand.


  1. Lose the need to be right: Do you really need to be right? If it makes you feel better to be right take a few steps back and ask yourself why. Why can’t you be wrong? What will happen if you’re wrong? Is that really true?


  1. Understand it’s not about you: When you feel insulted, ask yourself why you feel insulted. Is it a reason to create drama? Does it make you feel better to be in drama? What’s the real reason?


  1. Examine your beliefs: The next time you get a bad feeling because of something that has happened or because of something someone said, ask yourself why you might be feeling this way and what beliefs are being triggered.


  1. Stop to smell the roses: Before you get out of bed every morning give thanks for a new day and expect good things to happen. Slow down and take time to see the gifts that day brings. My ex-husband always told me I saw the world through rose-coloured glasses (maybe he wished he had them) and maybe I do. If I feel good seeing the positive side of life and the best in people, great – bring on the glasses. Maybe you’ve been told that seeing the positive side of a situation is not seeing reality. Why is seeing the negative side of a situation any more real? It isn’t. Your reality depends on your filter.


Remember there is more than one way to look at any situation. When you can see ‘the other side’ your resistance is lowered and life is a whole lot more fun.