How do you feel when you wake up? A friend and I were talking the other day about waking up with joy. Do you know what I’m talking about? When you wake up you’re happy to jump out of bed and do whatever it is you do.
For years I didn’t wake up with joy. I didn’t like what I did for a living, and then when I came home I was so tired I didn’t write or paint like I wanted to. I did sometimes. Weekends usually. And when I did I was amazed at how fulfilled I felt.
My aunt, as I’ve mentioned many times, calls this “using your creative gifts.” When you create, you’re using the talents God gave you and as a result you feel something positive in your heart and soul. It’s not fluff. Try it sometime.
Now that I write full-time, I wake up with joy every day. Sometimes I go to bed at night thinking about all the things I’m going to do the next day. When I wake up, I’m happy for another day to do what I love.
Don’t get me wrong, running a freelance business has just as many hassles as any other business. There are clients to obtain, bills to pay, and really the same hassles that you have in the corporate world. But that’s the difference when you do what you love, you have all those hassles and still wake up with joy. What’s more, your job gives you energy rather than saps it dry.
How to get more joy out of your day? I think reading a book like StrengthsFinder 2.0 can really help. We just read this for our business book group and I really got a lot out of it. But I think if I had read it while I was still in the corporate world it would have given me the courage to leave for something that fulfilled me. One thing I found from reading the book was how important it was for me to give something back to the world and make my contribution meaningful. This is why I used to get so frustrated when people would focus on the whether the trinket we were giving away should be green or blue, and I was focusing on the purpose of the event. I’ll admit, my approach wasn’t a good fit for my jobs then. I needed to know that what I was doing helped someone somewhere. The jobs I chose didn’t show that to me. It doesn’t mean that they didn’t help someone (I believe you can find that in any job) but it wasn’t the right fit for me.
Reading Strengths Finder reinforced why I felt like I did. It was a form of validation, and we all need that sometimes.
Do you wake up with joy to accomplish the things you’ve meant to do?