Feeling stuck? Make yourself a joy list

One of my favorite writers, Jeannette Encinias, has a wonderful email newsletter where she shares poems and stories.

In a recent newsletter, she shared her current joy list.

She didn’t provide any preface at all. It was simply titled “Joy, a list.”

I found it so delightful to read. At the end of her list, she invited her readers to create joy lists of our own, and to share them with her if we so choose.

I sent the email to one of my dearest friends and asked her if she wanted to create and share joy lists. She said yes; I can’t wait to receive hers!

Here is my current joy list. I decided to share it with you all as well.

  • Meditating and holding some of my favorite healing crystals
  • Going out driving with my hubby on a Saturday or Sunday morning while the kiddo sleeps in
  • Watching the snow-white squirrel who lives in our backyard
  • The way our puppy Lamborghini, who is growing into such a beautiful dog, takes utter delight in her toys
  • Finding beauty and magic in everyday life – like the tiny little tunes our new dishwasher plays to me, or the gorgeous ice balls our new refrigerator doles out
  • My dog Dani’s pure, incessant love and need for my company
  • When Z invites me down to her room to hang out and have girl time
  • Seeing our cat Galaxy luxuriate and roll around on our front porch in the sunshine
  • Walking with my bestie at sunrise along Alum Creek dam
  • Cooking with E (or better yet, having him cook for me!)
  • Having beautiful parks right near our house – like Shale Hollow and other favorites
  • Spending time in the shady “tree cave” under our willow tree
  • De-cluttering closets and entire rooms
  • Finding new international Haribo varieties I haven’t tried yet
  • Having true freedom and flexibility in my job – something I’ve never had but always wanted
  • Getting dressed up and going out to dinner with Z. I love going with hubby or with all of us too, of course, but for some reason, there’s a special pleasure when Z asks if we can go out for a special “girls’ dinner” and we always dress up a little fancier when it’s just us two
  • The exquisite shade of blue Rose of Sharon flowering bushes down one side of our house
  • Taking quiet time to journal while sitting in a swing chair on our screened-in porch, aka the Lemon Room
  • The excitement of planning a trip, packing bags and embarking on a new travel adventure

Jeanette also shared a wonderful quote with her Joy List email:

How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our life.

Annie Dillard

This was such a good reminder for me that, even when things seem utterly bleak in this country and in the world, we still need to find moments of joy in our days.

Won’t you let me know how and where you are finding sparks of joy these days, either in the comments below or over on Instagram or Facebook?

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About the author

Proud and loving midlife mama. Lucky and devoted wife. Dog, cat and snake mom. Travel nut. Natural born writer. PR and social media pro by day - tattoo doula by night.
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