I took a yoga class this past winter which required a great deal more than holding warrior II until my legs burned, or standing tall during sun salutations. We were forced, or encouraged rather, to examine our lives and decide what activities brought us joy.

I know that the word joy may be foreign to many. I am very confident my twin brother, a very happy guy, has never once wondered to himself, what brought him joy.

Notwithstanding, I think it is an important question.

What activities, people, places make you feel whole? Give you well-being or peace? Bring you joy?

I started thinking and it was easy to answer the question. 

My dogs bring me joy. 

Reading brings me joy.

My husband’s happiness gives me joy.

Cool Spring mornings and Fall afternoons make my heart feel full.

The way my body feels when I dive into a swimming pool brings me joy. 

Listening to a friend share her joy gives me joy. The list goes on.

This morning I was sitting on my deck, trying to read, write in my journal and focus on the day ahead. I had hoped my dog Gracie would sit quietly nearby, enjoying the stillness of the morning. HA. What a joke.

Gracie had an alternative plan and immediately ran toward the edge of the deck spitting and snarling. Her goal, well, a picture is worth a thousand words. Her goal was to chew.

                              

Chewing one of her many nylabones gives her unabashed joy. As she chomped and smacked her lips, noisily moving the bone between her paws and teeth, I realized that chewing gives her joy. Furthermore, I realized that we humans need to go after our joy with the same enthusiasm.

Laundry can wait – take a hike. That appointment can be rescheduled, read a great book. I doubt many of you can honestly say that working late on Friday gives you joy, but perhaps a late night dinner with friends does.

My challenge is that we all reflect on what brings us joy, and do it. No excuses.

Gracie and I can’t wait to hear what you come up with.