Practical Tips To Protect Your Joy
Joy is not an emotion that you just randomly stumble upon when things seem to be going your way. Instead, having joy is a conscious decision that you must make every day, if not every minute. You constantly have to decide on whether you will walk around consumed in misery and despair, or choose to find contentment and beauty in your current season.
Life is the biggest contender of our joy, unfortunately. If it’s not one thing, it’s another: a financial problem, struggle in your class or at your job, family troubles, friction in your relationships, the list goes on. And just when you thought you were free from all problems, you suddenly face a decline in health!
At any given moment, I’m sure you can find a dozen issues in your life that would make you feel stressed, depressed, and hopeless.
But those feelings are just temporary and far from the truth. It is times like this where we must remember the truth, which is God’s Word, and cleave to it.
“So if we have enough food and clothing, let us be content.” [1 Timothy 6:8]
If you had a meal today and clothing to wear, you already have more than enough reasons to be content and joyful. Don’t let life, or the enemy steal your joy. Fight for it and protect it with all you have! Here are some practical tips to help you do just that:
Practice Gratitude and Optimism
What if you could take every hardship happening in your life and shift it to a perspective of gratitude and optimism. Yes, you failed your exam, but what a blessing it is that you have the opportunity of a higher education. Yes, you don’t have a car, but thank God you have friends and family around you who are willing and able to give you a ride! Yes, your kids are driving you crazy, but be grateful that you have them to call your own. Gratitude is such a small yet powerful habit to make. We are not called to ignore the bad things in life and pretend they don’t exist. When we consciously choose to shift our perspective, we realize how blessed we truly are. Start today: What are you down about? How can you change that into a perspective of gratitude?
Avoid Negative People
You’ve heard the saying ‘‘If you lay with dogs then you will catch fleas.” Well if your lay with negative people, you’ll get infected with misery. Negative people are those who tear down your dreams and make you feel stupid or insecure. They can also be those who complain too much, gossip, are filled with anger, or have something bad to say about everything and every one. Be mindful of how people make you feel after you’ve hung out with them. Do you now feel drained, insecure, or bummed out? The people in your life should uplift you and boost your confidence, not tear it down.
It gets tricky when the negative people are your family members or those whom are close to you. Try to limit the time that you spend with them when possible. You can even try calling them out in a polite, loving way. Most negative people don’t always realize they are coming off as negative.
Limit Your time on Social Media
While scrolling through social media, we are often bombarded with images and videos of everyone’s ‘best life.’ We are hardly ever exposed to all the trials and struggles. Unfortunately, we begin to compare our messy but real lives with other people’s perfect but curated life that we see on social media.
Never be reluctant to delete any one off your feed that makes you feel just outright crappy about your life. If it’s someone who you don’t want to disrespect by unfollowing them, there is a neat function on most social media channels where you can simply mute people. This just means that you are still following them but nothing they post will pop up on your feed or stories. Do this for every one that evokes jealousy, insecurity, anger, or any other types of negative emotion within you.
Limit your News intake
I know what you’re thinking, ‘The news informs us what’s going on in this world.’ But let’s be honest, how many times do you finish consuming the news and you actually pray and leave it at that? Probably rarely. Most likely the news will just incite anger, depression, fear, and hopelessness inside of you. Yes, we should be informed, but not consumed. Most of the time, you can not do much to change the horrible things that already happened.
We have dozens of reasons to be grateful, positive, and joyful. It’s all a matter of your mindset, what you choose to see and focus on. Don’t allow yourself to become so consumed with the world that you lose yourself. Take it to God in prayer, embrace the season, and continue living to the fullest.
Editor at Christian En Vogue
Kesha Dorisma is the visionary behind Christian En Vogue. She is deeply and utterly in love with Jesus Christ and she is passionate about sharing his love to the masses of this world and making his name famous! Outside of writing she is also a photographer and she loves fashion, singing and dancing, and working out before eating sushi and pizza!