Journey of Joy: 4 Ways to Create More Joy

Our world is in a constant state of change, and we are constantly in motion with all our daily work, activities and commitments. With everything in flux, we tend to neglect the way we feel. We either find ourselves being dragged down by this constantly changing landscape and the challenges around us, or we ignore it and neglect our being in the process. This feeling of chaos manifests in physical tiredness, discouragement, loneliness and even feeling like the future we desire is impossible.  In this space, finding our center can be difficult.  The best thing we can do for ourselves at this time in our world, is reconnect to our joy.

When we are in joy, we don’t lack anything and we are most connected in every way. Multicolor background with the words " journey of joy" and "today I choose joy We always take ourselves into every new adventure – we get to choose the version we move forward with.  When we can cultivate a joy-first mindset by finding the joy in every experience, the world looks very different.

Joy-first mindset: When we are going through tough times, finding joy feels like work.  If we can teach ourselves to seek out joy in the little moments, we tune ourselves towards joy and it becomes a habit.  Only you get to define what bring you joy, and it might not ever be the same things twice.  Get up and set the intention to find one thing that makes you smile or brings you joy today.  Doing this has a ripple effect on every part of your world.

Micro-steps:   Taking small steps every day to do just one thing that makes you smile and stills the chaos, is one the most powerful and healing gifts you can give yourself.  It can be a different activity every day, as long as those moments you spend on it bring you joy.  When you don’t feel the joy, stop and choose something else instead.

Journaling:  Journaling is a great way to release things that hold us back from fully living the life we desire. Through journaling we can access those things we may not be aware we are carrying with us.  Ask yourself one question every day to get in touch with what you are feeling, the beliefs you hold about yourself, and limitations or blocks you may not be aware of.   This is your free space to play and explore – there is no “right way” to journal.  Use art, maps, images or the traditional writing option, depending on what resonates most with you.  Spend time getting to know yourself and reconnecting to yourself through your journal.

Give yourself some soul-love:  Now is the time to let go of the past you may still be carrying with you.  We get to start with a blank slate each day and decide what we will allow in each new day.  Just as we care for those we love by giving them our time and energy, we need to do this for ourselves – we cannot give what we don’t have.  Give your soul some love and care by spending 5 to 15 minutes a day doing something that grounds you. Meditate, pray, spend time in nature or with animals, or just be in the silence.  Quiet the noise around you and let your soul breathe and be.  Doing this releases those things you are carrying with you, for at least a few moments each day.  The more you do this, the lighter the load, and soon joy becomes the default.

What lights you up today?  Come explore more here.

Many Blessings,
Santa

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RUNNING THROUGH DARKNESS
MEMOIR OF A SPIRITUAL WARRIOR

BY SANTA MOLINA-MARSHALL ‧ RELEASE DATE: MAY 3, 2022

This debut memoir chronicles a woman’s spiritual exploration and growth as she overcame a disturbing childhood and helped others heal.

Brought to America from the Dominican Republic as a youngster, Molina-Marshall should have led a happy life. Her father was a diligent worker, and his large family wanted for nothing. But the author recounts that her dad had a drinking problem and was a serial philanderer. Molina-Marshall’s long-suffering mother left him for a woman. Then it was all downhill for the bright, 12-year-old girl, who was shuttled between foster care and relatives. According to the author, she was sexually abused by the husband of one of her siblings. This resulted in Molina-Marshall becoming alienated and moody. By 15, she simply tried to survive. In her favor were grit and a restless intelligence. She quit school, rented a room, and found a factory job. Time went by, and for a while she was happily married. Yet when her husband left her, her life truly began. She turned to religion for answers but decided that blaming God for her woes was a cop-out. 

In this absorbing and moving memoir, Molina-Marshall’s vivid storytelling is fearless. She frankly discusses the truths she discovered and the indignities she suffered. These admissions are disclosed with a touch of resignation and plenty of bite. However painful, everything she experienced was a lesson, and she bravely realized that she was part of the problem: “The fear of being hurt, rejected, or abused often led to me feeling lonely and misunderstood. No one knew the agonizing pain I felt being trapped in my thoughts and anger. I was becoming my biggest threat.” 

The author skillfully recounts her intricate spiritual journey. To deal with her psychic wounds, she searched for an inspirational system. Her open-mindedness led her to the interfaith concept—cherry-picking from various religions and spiritual movements, yoga, and Indigenous beliefs as a way of finding peace. Along with her female partner, she built a therapy practice, making use of every spiritual element that aided her and others. The road was bumpy, and she found that women of color in same-sex relationships were not welcomed everywhere. To do good works—and finally live on her own terms—she effectively overcame bigotry.

An engrossing, cathartic account of empathy and success through determination and confidence.

Pub Date: May 3, 2022   |    ISBN: 978-0-578-38315-6  |   Page Count: 264    | Publisher: From Trauma to Triumph  |   Review Posted Online: June 13, 2022