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Happiness Versus Joy

Photo by Zac Durant on Unsplash

Which are you experiencing in your life?  Do you know the difference between happiness and joy?  Many of the patients I meet with fixate on happiness, but experience little joy.  Happiness tends to be fleeting and is often associated with events, experiences, and objects.  Joy on the other hand is an internal experience generated from the inside out instead of the outside in.  We tend to believe that money, material possessions, status, and physical appearance will make us happy, then struggle to understand why joy is missing.  Happiness comes from doing while joy comes from being.  Our being relates to our character, relationships, values, and integrity.  This aspect of life yields more opportunity for joy, peace, and love which carries a greater level of permanence and stability.  I’m not suggesting that happiness is a bad thing, but rather that joy provides greater depth of emotion and enriches our life experiences.  So how do we experience more joy in life?  For starters, step out of yourself by helping others for no obvious reward or motive.  Reach out to others that have a difficult time reaching out to you.  Lastly, decide to express your love not only in words, but in actions at least once everyday.

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