Joy is my word for the year for 2018. Here are 18 quotes about joy, spirit and soulful work sparking my year. I hope they inspire you too.
Choosing a word for the year is like deciding on a destination for how you want to feel but not knowing how it will play out. It’s like setting an intention for feeling the tone of the year with no plan for the details. Inviting the energy of a word into your life, you wait to see how it unfolds and manifests.
PASSION was my word for the year for 2017. It was such an inspiring way to get back to what I love as a guiding force in my life. I shared 17 quotes about passion about the driving energy of doing what you love. Last year was a challenging journey which took me back to the heart of what I love as the map and soul of its next steps.
I discovered passion was about feeling your authentic heart, in my case writing, and getting it into its rightful place in your life. It was about following my intuition more deeply and finding a vision that went beyond the everyday. Moreover, it was a guide for transition in a year of crossing over to a new place, sensing potential, seeing opportunity and knowing how to combine my skills in new ways. It was about learning to play bigger and weave all that has happened to me into a book, a new way of living, a new career, a creative life. In there also was an understanding of my uniqueness, the elements that combine as passions within me. As Meryl Streep reminds us:
What makes you different and weird, that’s your strength.
So in turning the corner into 2018 after a challenging time, joy was beckoning me. Sometimes you can take a while to work through your word for the year; other times it arrives, more obviously and insistently. And then there are synchronicities also, like the card my daughter gave me for Christmas. It was a beautifully crafted message of JOY made from handpainted Egyptian papyrus. This sealed the deal perfectly.
As often happens with your word of the year, you have a sense of its meaning but a deeper dive yields surprises and connections. And there is serendipity and further synchronicity too.
This week via an inspiring webinar on Energy Matters in Coaching with Meg Mann I was introduced to the work of David R Hawkins. In particular, we were shown his map of the scale of consciousness as we progress through achieving greater levels of consciousness. And my eye zeroed in on JOY sitting right up near the top described by way of self-view as “complete” and emotion as “serenity”.
David R Hawkins says of the energy of this phase:
As we move up towards this level, inner joy, quiet, and inner knowingness begin to take place. Within this energy field, we connect with something that is rocklike and ever present.
So this year’s focus is no lightweight endeavour but one that has enormous potential to calm and ground me. I knew choosing joy this year was always going to be a challenging task and this scale just helped highlight this.
Being unapologetically joyful
As part of a Goddess Roadtrip Sydney workshop recently on ‘being seen’, we were asked by Jade McKenzie to stand up and say to the group what we were unapologetically going to be this year. Given my focus for the year, I chose “joyful”, but when I stood up to say the words “This year I will be unapologetically joyful…”, I couldn’t get the words out of my mouth. I was so mired in grief after the very recent loss of my mother. Eventually, I did say the words with the support of a room of beautiful women who held space for me, quietly, as I got there. But in this moment, I realised the intensity and depth of exploration in this journey of learning about joy this year. In part, it’s about allowing the juxtaposition of grief and joy in my life, something that can seem an uncomfortable fit just now.
Quotes about joy
I love quotes. The distilled wisdom of others in the form of words we can hold, repeat, learn from and reflect on is a balm and portal for me.
I found the 17 quotes on PASSION last year were a place to start from, a way to begin to explore the terrain of what it meant. Frequently, I returned to those words as I did to the Pinterest page I created on PASSION. Both are great ways to unravel the multiple meanings and nuances of words as we seek to explore them in our lives.
So to commence my exploration of JOY in 2018, here are 18 quotes about JOY to begin to tease out its contours and character for this year’s journey. I hope you find some inspiration for your journey this year.
“We cannot cure the world of sorrows but we can choose to live in joy.” – Joseph Campbell
“If all you did was just look for things to appreciate, you would live a joyous, spectacular life.” – Abraham-Hicks
“Be content with what you have, rejoice in the way things are. When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you.” – Lao Tzu
“The body heals with play, the mind heals with laughter and the spirit heals with joy.” – Proverb
“Feelings are just visitors. Let them come and go.” – Mooji
“Joy comes to us in ordinary moments. We risk missing out when we get too busy chasing down the extraordinary.” – Brene Brown
“Joy is the best makeup. But a little lipstick is a close runner-up.” – Anne Lamott
“Strive not to get more done, but to have less to do.” – Francine Jay
“Comparison is the thief of joy.” – Theodore Roosevelt
“Be a rainbow in someone else’s cloud.” – Maya Angelou
“When you do things from your soul, you feel a river moving in you, a joy.” – Rumi
“Your joy is where you locate your white hot Truth – your pure-burning is-ness, from where you have the creative power to turn thought into matter.” – Danielle LaPorte
“Joy is what happens to us when we allow ourselves to recognize how good things really are.” – Marianne Williamson
“You don’t have a soul. You are a Soul. You have a body.” – C. S. Lewis
“You should write because you love the shape of stories and sentences and the creation of different words on a page.” – Annie Proulx
“Don’t wait for everything to be perfect before you decide to enjoy your life.” – Joyce Meyer
“Ordinary riches can be stolen, real riches cannot. In your soul are infinitely precious things that cannot be taken from you.” – Oscar Wilde
“JOY is a meeting place, of deep intentionality and self forgetting, the bodily alchemy of what lies inside us in communion with what formally seemed outside, but is now neither, but become a living frontier, a voice speaking between us and the world: dance, laughter, affection, skin touching skin, singing in the car, music in the street, the quiet irreplaceable and companionable presence of a daughter: the sheer intoxicating beauty of the world inhabited as an edge between what we previously thought was us and what we thought was other than us.” – David Whyte
Do read the whole David Whyte’s beautiful meditation on JOY from which these words come. It is pure magic. They are such a balm for the soul. It seems like much of this work on joy is about spirit, inner stillness and soul, quiet writing perhaps. I welcome joy in as we venture forward together getting to know each other in a deeper way this year.
Share your thoughts
Which is your favourite quote from these ones? Or do you have another quote or thought on joy that inspires you? What does joy mean to you? Would love to hear – share your thoughts in the comments!
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Image of me above by David Kennedy photography with thanks.