In today’s rush, we all think too much, seek too much, want too much and forget about the joy of just being” – Eckhart Tolle
Living intentionally is an art. We can learn to create a life we love; a life that is full of peace and true joy.
Joyful living takes commitment. It asks us to be awake and aware in the moments of our lives.
It is so easy to move away from being aware. If you find yourself often moving mindlessly through life, then you have to master the art of joyful and peaceful living.
Mastering the art of living with peace and joy
Evaluate your life
Evaluate your priorities. Identify the people that you would like to surround yourself with, and the activities you love to get involved in. Be aware of how you feel when you think about these people and tasks, then work on increasing the amount of time you spend doing what you love with your loved ones. As time goes on, you will find that you are able to take control of your life and live in a way that fulfills you.
Be mindful of your thoughts
Paying attention to your thoughts will help improve the way you feel. Learn to pay attention to the thoughts that often occupy your mind.
Your thoughts can never come into reality without your permission. Having negative thoughts about yourself can make you resentful. But when you are able to dismiss them, and give less importance to them, they will have no control over your life.
Be true to yourself
Have you been handed a “script” on how to live your life? Most people are trying to please their parents, friends, and society. Some are trying so hard to fit in. They go about hating the life they are living.
You don’t have to give in to the “this-is-how-it-is-done” way of life. Trying to live up to people’s expectations will certainly not bring you joy. Do what makes you happy; start living your own life.
Learn from life experiences
If you want to master joyful living, be open to learning from the challenges that life brings you. Learn from life experiences, so you can do better next time. Don’t dwell on past mistakes, misunderstandings or moments of anger.
If there is a self-defeating pattern in your life, then you have to be able to recognize it, and start making better choices.
Live in forgiveness
When someone you care about hurts you, it is understandable to be angry, resentful and have thoughts of revenge. But holding onto a grudge can have a negative impact on your mental and physical health. Living in a ‘victim mentality‘ can lead to a poor quality of life. Allow yourself to feel the pain, then let it go. Forgiveness is ‘freedom’. Embrace forgiveness and move on.
Focus on your blessings
Always remember to count your blessings. Most times, we focus on what is wrong in our lives, and fail to acknowledge our blessings.
People who are grateful are well aware of the challenges in their life. But they choose not to focus on them.
Dwelling on your bad situation or experiences will only make you feel worse. When you focus more on your blessings, and less on the things that are not working in your life, you will become happier and fulfilled.
Be honest about your feelings/emotions
Often, we keep a lot of emotions inside of us, most especially the negative ones. Learn to express your emotions. Be honest about how you feel. If you have a loved one, talk with them, or you can simply write everything that is on your mind in a notebook. It will help you a lot.
Accept that you can’t control everything
One of the biggest things that can help you find peace in life is accepting the fact that certain things are beyond your control. You have to stop worrying about things that you can’t control because it won’t help change the situation. We can’t always control the future, but how we adjust to the “unexpected” can help shape our happiness.
Comparison is the thief of joy, so, learn to love yourself
Embrace your uniqueness, because nobody is perfect. We all cope differently. What you see on the surface could be hiding a lot of problems.
Be grateful for what you have and only compare yourself to how you used to be. Always work on ways to improve yourself, and appreciate the effort you are putting.
Don’t make a decision when you are too emotional
Never make a decision when you are too angry or happy, because when you are overwhelmed with emotions, it clouds your judgement, and this may bring about regret in the future. Learn to make a conscious decision of what you are going to do.
Add positive habits into your life
Your habits/routines shape most of your life. It is important that we make an effort to establish positive habits that outweigh the negative ones.
Creating healthy and intentional habits will lead to a good quality of life. Make room in your life for what is positive, such as performing an act of kindness, telling your loved ones how much you appreciate them, having a good laugh and meditation/exercising.
Practice being present
The present is always the moment we should give our full attention. You can only live in the “here” and “now”. I think that wishing for the pieces of our life to fall a particular way – like worrying about being successful or finding love – this is exactly what takes us away from the present moment – where true peace is to be found. It is important to know that pain, like everything else will pass. But equally important to know that we can deal with it in the present.
Every moment offers a choice. We can commit to presence of mind by being conscious of what we are doing. This is the secret to intentional living.