The Joymaker: Article Three
Author Christine Denny
I trust that by now you have started playing around with the suggestions in the first two Joymaker columns and are seeing some real change in your sense of joy and happiness. So today I want to bring your attention to the art of creating spaces around you that foster a joyful life. And these spaces exist in so many different ways, that you may not have thought about.
So let’s dive in.
Firstly you need to remember and be aware that you are taking in information and influences all the time throughout your day. And these influences come in a variety of forms that you may, or may not be aware of as they impact your mood and sense of well -being. Thousands of times each day, in a huge variety of ways, you are being impacted by external forces. So, here is the low down of a few influences to be wary of:
- As Oprah Winfrey once said: “Does your home rise up to meet you?” I was really impacted by this question when I first read it many years ago and I extend it to my place of work too. Do you feel like your home and/or workplace are like an old friend, rising up to bring you comfort and joy when you arrive for work in the morning or return home at the end of each day? If not – you may want to change that. You need to fill your physical space with things that nurture and inspire you. This may be motivational quotes, a bookshelf full of inspiring literature, beautiful art, cuddly toys, plants or lots of windows that let in the sunlight and garden views from outside. Only you will know what works for you. There is no right or wrong here.
- Music, music, music! What you are listening to and the sounds around you can have a huge impact upon your day. So again – work to optimize the sounds about you as you work or enjoy time at home. Some people may find it surprising, but for me, the sounds of nature outside, or total silence, is what brings me the greatest sense of peace and joy. Maybe my background as a tap dancer and drummer mean that music is too much of a stimulus for me and creates too much of a distraction. I literally can’t think with music of any type playing in the background. So, for me – nature and/or silence is key to my sense of equilibrium. But I know for many other people the exact opposite is true, and silence or tweeting birds drives them crazy. So the key here is to know yourself and create the environment that serves you.
- What is that smell? That’s right – it is important what smells surround you too. So have a think about what aromas make you feel cheery. It might be that you like a really neutral smell in your spaces. Or maybe you love a vanilla candle or some lovely Do Terra essential oils. Whatever it is – make sure that your spaces invite the feeling you are desiring, whether that be a peaceful, restful state or an energetic, productive vibe. All these little touches may really make a difference. And in fact ,I have noticed that many of my clients now use essential oils in their spaces for exams, workshops and presentations, to bring in a pleasing, uplifting smell. And it certainly does create a good vibe.
- Who are the people around you? Yes – that is right. You need to get away from anyone who is negative around you. You do not want people constantly “raining on your parade “so to speak. This doesn’t mean you stay away from other opinions and constructive feedback, but it is not helpful to be around destructive people or those who spend their time complaining at the water cooler in the office. You want to be around people who genuinely love to be around you and your business, for together you can make things happen. Always remember the saying “ birds of a feather flock together”. As with many old sayings they really bring a good home truth to the fore. The people around you can lift you up or tear you down, so be prudent in your choices here.
- Television / books and music! Yes – that is right. Be very careful where you invest your time and attention, as it can very much impact upon your sense of self and mood. For many years I watched a lot of criminal / murder shows on TV and then one day I thought to myself “why am I sitting around watching the very many ways in which a human being can be murdered etc”? It is gruesome stuff and can’t be good for me.” This realization had me seeking out different televisual pleasures. Shows that fortified my own values, beliefs and hopes for humanity. Things that reinforced and reminded me of the inherent beauty of the life around us. And this principle applies to the music you listen to and the books you read as well – so choose wisely and celebrate your interests and values through everything you take in.
- Speaking of what we take in – let’s also talk about food! As with all things we consume they can really affect our mood and energy levels and food is no different. So again – be careful what you feed your physical body. If you nurture it with healthy foods and drink ,you will be sure to benefit with increased energy levels and a more positive attitude as well.
- And equally, what we feed our minds is incredibly important and we shall talk about that in greater depth in another upcoming column. Awareness is key here, as we all have mental patterns and thoughts that tend to be on what I call a “repeat cycle”. And if these are negative or self -sabotaging thoughts ,they are not going to be helpful to you establishing and maintaining a joyful life. Once you notice these patterns you need to actively engage in rerouting them and giving yourself a mental boost, as opposed to a push over the proverbial cliff.
Awareness and Action = Change! So, make sure you are only entertaining supportive and constructive thought patterns.
- Social Media. It goes without saying that social media can have either a productive or destructive effect on your life. Again, this is very personal to each individual and it is for each person to take stock of the effect social media has on them and act accordingly. It is also important to remember that our world now contains a lot of AI [ artificial intelligence ] and “bots” as they are called, as well as a lot of paid for endorsement etc. So you need to realize that anything you consume in this realm may or may not be a true representation of the facts and/or reality. If you are armed with this knowledge, you have a better chance of being able to navigate your way through with less emotional turmoil.
So now that you have eight great tips to get you started on your road to an improved sense of self and a supportive nourishing environment, I wish you well in designing and cultivating these spaces for you to enjoy in all areas of your life.
Have fun and Create Your Joyful Place
NOTE: All Christine’s Joymaker columns are general in nature and written from the perspective of personal experience, research and study. They are offered here as advice and support only. Should you be experiencing serious mental health issues, financial concerns or medical issues of any kind, we highly recommend you seek assistance from a trained professional.