“Hardiness gives you the COURAGE AND MOTIVATION to do the hard work of

 GROWING AND DEVELOPING

 rather than

 DENYING and AVOIDING”

(S. Maddi-Psychology Today)

What makes us hardy?  Life.  How we engage in life.   Challenging ourselves.  Taking risks.  Learning new ways to deal with stress.  Getting back up after life kicks us down.  Facing your fears.  Participating in your life, good or bad, instead of just showing up.

Courage + Motivation= Growing and Developing

Get up of the couch, shut OFF the bad reality television that broadcasts negativity, put the pint of ice cream away and go out for a walk.  Start reading a new book.  Learn a new skill.  Seek out a quiet spot in nature.  Challenge yourself today, tomorrow and the next day.  What have you been meaning to do but haven’t found the time? It’s time to grow and develop.  This is a constant process for us, your age doesn’t matter; strive to be better than you used to be.  More hardy.  More joy.

You have to work at being resilient.  Hardy people have higher levels of committment to themselves, their faith, their work and their families.  They believe they control their destiny; they don’t fall victim to what is going on externally around them.  “Hardy people see the changes in life as challenges to master, not obstacles to overcome.” (Stress management; B. Brehm)

I encourage you to keep growing, take risks, seek out quality friendships, face your fears. Be better than you used to be.

Denying and Avoiding will get you nowhere fast  (and annoy everyone around you).  Hardiness is a quality that will serve you well in life.  How hardy are you?

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Any idiot can face a crisis- it’s this day-to-day living that wears you out,” said the Russian Playwright Anton Chekhov. Day to day living can wear you out, for many it is filled with the same old routine- the bills, the kids and their homework, the laundry, and the list goes on and on.  How to make those days feel less ordinary and more joyful you ask? Well for starters try some of these suggestions:

1.  Laugh every day.  Call a friend and be silly.  Laugh at how awful your day is going.  Laughing is a known stress reducer!

2.  Play hookie.  Call in sick and go out and do something soul nourishing.  Go climb a mountain.  Spend the day with your lover.  Go for a walk on the beach.

3.  Let it go.  All that is bothering you, work through it and release it.  Negative thoughts, angry feelings and harbored resentments will not serve you in your quest to be joyful.

4.  When things don’t go your way or go as planned, change your plans.  Be flexible.

5.  Surround yourself with people who want to see you succeed.

6.  Break routine and have cake for breakfast.

“Intentionally expose yourself to things that you’re afraid of.  Start telling yourself that the smooth, comfortable life is not something to strive for, but rather a recipe for boredom and stagnation,” suggests West Point Psychologist Michael Matthews.

Passion.  Love.  Joy.  Contentment.  Excitement. Fun.  Strive for those feelings in your ordinary days.

C’mon join the joy ride. Be a Joy Rider.

Are you an optimist?  Or do you see the darker view of your world? Do you believe it will all work out?  If it doesn’t go in your favor, is your glass still half full?  Or are you running on empty always?

  I have been doing a lot of reading lately about positive vs. negative emotions.  The importance of feeling good, being joyful and content as a way to live your life.  I am fascinated with all the books out there and what I am learning.  Indulge me, if you will in some thoughts that could be life changing for you.  In his book Authentic Happiness, M. Seligman gives us details on Barbara Fredrickson’s theory on positive emotions, and it goes like this,

“Positive emotions broaden our abiding intellectual, physical, and social resources, building up reserves we can draw upon when a threat or opportunity presents itself.  When we are in a positive mood, people like us better, and friendship, love, and coalitions are more likely to cement.  In contrast to the constrictions of negative emotion, our mental set is expansive, tolerant, and creative.  We are open to new ideas and new experience.” 

WOW! YES!  Be positive.  It makes sense.  Do you want to be around someone who is crabby, negative, and angry?  Those who talk hurtful gossip…UGH..just walk away.  Don’t surround yourself with negative people; it can deplete you of joy and happiness.  Create your own social circles with those who encourage, love and uplift.  Find the part of you who is grateful, blessed and content.  Live your life through this lens.  The world suddenly seems brighter.

Seek Joy.

Joy. Stillness. Laughter.  Relaxation.  Rest.  Come join me at The Joy Source’s Women’s Retreat  on March 12th and 13th.  The Spa is delightful, the Inn is wonderful, and the company will restore your spirit.  Space is limited.  Sign up today.

Tell me about your joys.  Moments of happiness, living in the present time, being truly present in today, not tomorrow or next month; today only.  You are elated.  Excited.  You feel it through your entire body, you are glowing.  These moments, these so very important and wonderful moments can be referred to as “Flow” moments.  According to M. Csikszentmihalyi in his book Flow, he uses the term flow to mean

“joy, creativity, the process of total involvement with life.”

 

What are your flow moments?  When did they occur today?  At work when you were giving a truly prepared, intelligent, words coming out perfectly presentation?  Inside your mind you were shouting YES!!! Or was Flow happening at  home with your family as you  laughed loudly and hugged those little ones tightly?  Maybe you experienced flow while working on your hobbies; feeling energized with creativity.  Or in quiet moments with your lover, sharing a joy of intimacy that nourishes your soul.

 Maybe you have you not felt flow moments in a long time. You are depleted, empty, tired, stressed….not in a joyful or creative mood.  It is easy to get disconnected from your life; there are errands to run, kids to bathe, work to complete, bills to pay.

Moments of flow are necessary to a joyful life.

Spend some time with your friends.  I was out with my Boot Camp ladies for dinner in Boston last night, 5 women who come from different backgrounds and experiences,  meeting at the gym at 5:30am weekly for years, over time becoming friends, companions, confidants.  We gather for dinner to laugh, share stories, details of our lives, totally immersed in this circle of friendship.  Flow moments.  Laughing.  Enjoying.  Smiling.  Intently listening and learning.  And eating delicious food.  There are no kids to demand our attention, no pans of food to cook nor to wash.  We sit for hours dining, smiling and relaxing.  There is nowhere to be but right here… together.  In this moment we are not thinking about the kids lunches to be made tonight nor the clothes to wash nor the tiring work schedule this week.  We are just here.  Now.  In the present moment.  Flow moments.

 I wish you flow moments today.  Everyday.  Flow.  Find that joy, the creativity, the process of total involvement with life.

Join me all you wonderful women! Come celebrate joy and creativity at my March Retreat of Rest and Renewal.  It will be a weekend of relaxation, inspiration and fun.  Space is limited and starting to fill up.  Send your deposit to hold your spot today.  Email me with any questions at Julie @thejoysource.com