Joy is the Holy Grail of feelings. We all strive to be joyful, yearn to find joy in our lives.
But, if you are honest, when did you last feel really joyful? When did you last “jump for joy”? When was the last time your heart was bursting with love, happiness and the sheer joy of being alive?
For most of us it’s so long ago, we can’t even remember. Maybe in early childhood, when life was less complicated and serious. Before our struggles and responsibilities beat all the joy out of us. Before too much suffering, rejection, abuse, neglect sucked it from our injured hearts.
And yet, we never stop searching for it. We sense that it should be a natural part of our Being. Its complete absence from our life bothers us, causes us pain, distress and anxiety.
What are we doing wrong?!
We listen to celebrities and gurus tell us about what joy feels like. Describe how they rediscovered it and how “you can do it too”. Every day our minds are flooded with TV commercials implying that we can find joy if we buy a trendy perfume, a fast car or certain brand of dish soap.
And we try. We buy. But still, joy eludes us. A new exercise regime, meditation practice or purchase may give us pleasure for a while, but it never lasts.
And we start to think: “Maybe I’m not good enough? Maybe I just don’t deserve joy in my life? Maybe joy is only for people who are better than me, more spiritually inclined. Who cope better with the trials and tribulations of life?”
But it has nothing to do with your deservedness, your societal status, scent or level of enlightenment (or lack thereof).
In fact, there are only 3 simple (yet tragic) reasons why joy is absent from your life.Read more