I had an email this morning from a dear friend. He said I seemed like a joyful person and asked me how I felt about that.

Joy, the name of the hummingbird that is the official bird of Mountain Vally Retreat. I am not always joyful. I am often consumed by the thoughts in my mind which are busy at best and stressed at worst. My joy usually comes out when I am with other people, animals, or walking or sitting outside without an agenda.

If I am alone in the house, I can become depressed feeling. It is an unregulated feeling that rises out of nowhere and creates a lethargy in my body…a feeling of laziness, lack of ambition, and lack of desire…sometimes even worry!

My joy feeling may return if I play the piano, listen to music, dance, go to the mat and stretch or meditate, read, paint, draw…anything creative or self-restorative.

I have come to believe that my joy never leaves me. It is always running as a background undercurrent which gets over-laid by stress, worry, anxiety thoughts and feelings. As soon as I clear my field of negative thought forms, ah, there it is, rising to the surface again. The trick is to clear my field of negative thought-forms and I feel as though I am getting better and better at that.

The surest way to bring myself to a feeling of joy is to practice gratitude.  When I start thinking about all of the positive experiences and people in my life I cannot help but smile and feel fortunate which leads me straight into joy.

I am alive.  I am healthy.  I want for nothing.  I am loved.  Remembering these important facts leave me helplessly in joy.


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