Monday, September 7, 2015

5 Steps Toward Reclaiming Your Joy Filled Day + Giveaway

There are times in life when the overwhelming pressure of it all comes crashing down on top of your head like a fifty pound sledge hammer. That kind of stress can really hurt and exhaust your inner core. I've absolutely had days and months such as that, where each day I have the opportunity to make a decision. Am I going to allow the stress to rise victorious or am I going to choose joy? (I'll let you in on a little first choice is to always run full force after joy.)

So joy it is then! Now what? How can we consciously choose to live our lives in a state of joy when there is so much around us fighting for our attention and trying to kick joy's butt straight out the door? I've put a simple list together of five easy steps that will direct our path toward reclaiming our joy over stress each day.

You Need to Choose Joy First

I know that this seems like an obvious first step because I already mentioned it above, but it really is the very most important step. If you do not consciously choose to live your day out filled with joy, the enemy will creep up on you fast and before you know it you will be angry, frustrated, and horribly stressed out. Take time to keep joy in the forefront on your mind every time something stressful or irritating comes your way throughout your day and make the decision to allow joy to dictate that circumstance first.

Make a Gratitude List

It's really nice to write down (or type in your phone) a list of all of the incredible blessings God has placed into your life. Then when the enemy comes in to rile you up, you have the ability to glance over that list and remember all of the things in your life that bring you joy. It's easy to stress out and go through life thinking things are so incredibly bad, but when we have a constant reminder of why life in beautiful, we're able to sit back and reflect on everything we are so grateful for. 

Take a Step Back

I am a very passionate person, and that means even in an argument. So what I've had to learn over the years is to take a step back from the situation and recoup my thoughts and emotions to tackle a conversation differently. So many times my passions, which God created for good, can be stolen by the enemy and turned around to be used for evil. Which can lead to more anger and frustration. When I stop, however, and take a step back, I have the ability of reexamining the situation from a new viewpoint which allows me to see when I am overreacting. Once I've come to that conclusion I can approach the situation again from a calmer place, leading the conversation into one seeking joy and not anger.

Get into God's Word

There are some days when my brain wants to focus only on insecurity and doubt (ok, alot more than just some), but those are the days I've been learning to combat with the Word of God. When there has been an exhausting day in my midst I can simply repeat to myself, "Weeping may endure for a night, But JOY comes in the morning" Psalm 30:5, and I am instantly reminded that I am promised joy in my new day. Or that I'm promised joy in general as a fruit of the spirit ("But the fruit of the Spirit is love, JOY, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control." Galatians 5:22-23) His promises refresh my spirit and help me to tackle the day with a new strength.

Dance it Out

Any Grey's Anatomy fans here? It is so completely true that dancing, no matter how good or how awful you may be at it, can bring some incredible joy to your day. When you are dancing around all carefree and whimsical like, your body is releasing endorphins and we all know that endorphins make us happy. When you've had a crazy overwhelming day, there is nothing like a good dance party in the living room to bring the joy right back into your life. 

I truly hope some of these steps helped you in reclaiming the joy in your day. Life is messy. It's stressful. And sometimes it can really try to get the better of us. But that is when we need to fight back and cry out, "Not today enemy! You ain't stealing my joy!" 

Are there any things that you partake in that help bring the joy back into your day? I would love to hear about them!

And now, to keep your day filled with joy, a little giveaway to the best place on earth....TARGET! This giveaway is starting right now! And will run all the way until next Monday, September 14th, with the winner being announced no later than Thursday the 17th! In order to be fully entered, you need to follow everyone's amazing Twitter account on the list for your chance at $60 to Target (and who couldn't use that in this back to school season we're in?!) Good luck ya'll!!

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