Finding Joy in the Journey

I have found that it is far too easy to take something that you love and make it complicated. Take this blog for instance. I love writing. It’s probably my favorite thing to do…but I hardly ever do it. I’m working on changing that, but it’s a sad truth. I love it, so I struggle with it.

Since graduating, I have been waiting for something big to happen that would be worth writing about and posting to the open world, or at least to the few that read my blog. I have found that doesn’t happen much though. I have had jobs, but nothing too exciting. I have gone on small adventures, but fretted over whether anyone even cared enough to read about them.

There is always a way to overcomplicate things to the point that it is no longer fun.

Yesterday while I was still in bed, I got to thinking about this and have been trying to figure out a way to shake it.

Today as I was considering this, I got to reading an LDS talk from the previous General Conference on joy by Pres. Nelson. In his address he stated, “the joy we feel has little to do with the circumstances of our lives and everything to do with the focus of our lives.”

When I think about writing, I tend to focus on the negative instead of focusing on the joy that it brings me. Instead of considering the good that could come of it, I fear the rejection that could come. Rather than hope for the positive, I choose to focus in on the possibility of failure.

So, I have determined to work on my focus and reverse the pattern. It probably isn’t going to make writing (or anything else in life) perfect, but I think that it will make it easier.

Later on in Nelson’s talk, he shared something a colleague had told him recently. “I have learned to suffer with joy.” An interesting concept. At first, it seemed paradoxical. How can one suffer and be joyful at the same time? As I continued to think about it though, it started to make sense. After all, some of the happiest people are those that suffer most.

Just because we have a positive outlook does not mean that we won’t suffer some and just because we are suffering some does not mean that we can’t be happy and find joy in the journey. It is through the suffering that we learn more and grow stronger. But suffering does not mean that we must be miserable. That is the hard part to get down. When we figure that out though, we are then able to go from just being alive to truly living our lives.