If it brings you joy, it’s not “wasted time”

“At any time, you can choose to bring you closer to or away from your spirit.” ~ Thich Nhat Hanh

When I was a kid, I wanted to be an Olympic figure skater. Or a Disney artist. Or maybe a musician.

I wanted to be a songwriter and choreographer.

I made a roller skating routine on the driveway to Tiffany and Paula Abdul. (It was the best.)

I packed the illustrations in my notebook.

And if you asked me to explain myself, I might have said “happy.” Or maybe you talked about your dreams and all your favorite interesting things.

Ask me today, and like any other adult, my autoresponder is probably what I’m doing and how hard I’m working, as I’m interviewing for a job It will be along with the adult.

I am a psychologist. I am a hard worker. I am devoted.

(Adults are not always good at this.)

Around junior high school, my identity shifted from being satisfied and interested in everything to being enthusiastic and serious about everything.

Until very recently, I wasn’t thinking of describing myself as fun, creative, or curious.

I used to think about nourishing my spirit, but I started thinking about gaining potential and fame. Rather than doing things because they brought me joy, I did them because they were good at it. And what I didn’t do wasn’t cut.

This was the time to start getting serious. Win an award. Get a scholarship. Be recognized.

And stop wasting your time.

Things have also become competitive. A friend started talking about test scores and then about college, graduate school, publications and careers.

It was then that I also discovered anxiety. I was pensive and always felt like a scammer.

You probably didn’t realize that you forgot your joy. I laughed as if I said “when …”, but I noticed that another “when” was always lurking around the corner.

I forgot what we all know as children. That joy is part of us. It’s not where you will arrive when you finally finish all of this serious business. It’s part of you that you need to grow.

But I didn’t cultivate joy. I thought I could live without it, so I gave it up. Even what I did in the name of self-care lost their joy.

Running, which once felt free like the wind, has become faster and farther away.

Yoga was intended to be a basic and compassionate practice for me, but it ended up doing a handstand a little longer.

Goal setting is not an issue here.The result is not the same as prosperity..

Looking back, I was so small that I completely forgot that I was there.

Oh, my success was more than talking about itself, but is it a joy? Are you interested in? excitement? I shut them down one by one because I wasn’t good enough or they weren’t serious enough.

I stopped drawing.

I stopped making jewelry.

I stopped just because it was fun.

why? I thought I could live without them.

I did everything you were supposed to do, and I did everything with my power to get it right. I enrolled in that luxurious private school on a full ride, got a PhD, got a license and got a stable job.And I started sticking to this serious and hard-working identity and forgot myself..

I am really grateful for the opportunities and privileges and people of my life, but as a human being To be I felt like something was missing. Maybe I needed something I didn’t have more than I expected.

Small pieces of the happy girl sometimes appeared, but I pushed them away or turned them into something that was too perfect.

And one of those pieces yelled at me, so I couldn’t ignore it anymore.I was sitting on the blue mat in my son’s room and reading Cat Pete When that happened.

You should do this.Write a book for children..

I could almost see myself getting out of my body and looking at myself incredibly.

Really? You are?? Would you like to write a book for children?

I tried to peel it off, but I was so excited that I couldn’t breathe. I thought this would go away naturally and tried to get into my business. But it wasn’t.

After going back and forth over and over again, I finally tweeted to my husband, “I want to write a book for children.”

I gave myself to the same distrustful expression I gave myself, but no one came.

“You should do that,” he said, apparently not at all surprised.

I would like to say that this was a kind of magical transformation, but it wasn’t. I didn’t quit my job and created a world-famous award-winning children’s book. But that’s not the point of this story anyway.

The point is that I felt joy again.

It took a while. I thought about it and analyzed it in an attempt to erase it. I didn’t know what I was doing and told myself I didn’t have time.

However, the idea grew bigger and bigger until I hid in the darkness of the early morning, pulled a piece of paper from the printer, sharpened a pencil and sat down.

Like a movie scene where a person with memory loss suddenly remembered his life, memories of everything I thought I could live in overflowed.

Did I really live without this?

I filled the page with illustrations.

I made rhymes and stories.

And do you know what happened? I wasn’t just happy.I felt freedom..

I could probably stay alive without this, but now I find that I don’t have to.

I didn’t have to quit my job.

I didn’t ignore the children.

The house didn’t collapse at my feet.

Pursuing this didn’t have to make me a penny. I didn’t even have to be very good at it.

It was always about joy, because I don’t want to live without it anymore.

Living with joy does not hurt anything. It does not undermine your motivation or ambition. It does not reduce your intellect. And that certainly doesn’t diminish your importance.

Living with joy frees you, and that freedom reminds you of everything possible. Even serious things.

From that night on my son’s blue mat, he looks almost the same, but on the inside, everything is different.

Since then, I’ve noticed that a girl I didn’t even know was missing.

I remembered rolling roller skating routines, designing T-shirts, setting up photography in the living room, sitting on the edge of a seat and watching a decorative show.

I remembered what it was like to be happy, excited and curious.

And now I got it. Just because you can live without something does not mean that you have to.

What is the joy of telling yourself that you can live without it?

What do you think would happen if one day you said, “I can’t live without this?”

You are can Find that little joy, even if it has been buried for a long time.

Start by saying “yes” to yourself a little more. Yes, to that little spark of curiosity, yes, to that little smile you shrug, and definitely to that fiery sensation that screams in your chest, yes, “Listen to this. This is a joy.”

Even if you feel ridiculous, it doesn’t matter if you’re wasting your time or if you’re good at it. What matters is the feeling you get when you do it. It feels like laughing, crying, sitting quietly, singing all at once and running through the hall, which makes me happy. (And you don’t have to live without it.)

Remember to pursue more than success or achievement. They are important, but so are the ones that bring meaning, connection, and involvement to your life.

Feel the moment of spontaneous joy that seems to be bubbling out of nowhere, look forward to it and make some plans. Fill those moments with activities that will fill you.Just unplug No Enough when you are looking for joy. And best of all, don’t cancel yourself.

When doing this, be aware of the voice that you can live without it. You may be able to, but you may not need to do it anymore.

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About Leslie Ralph

Leslie is a psychologist, writer and artist whose mission is to make the world a brighter place. She brings light back to her life and makes things for those who want to love herself unconditionally.She is the author of How to turn your back: Simple instructions to love yourself through the ups and downs of life.. Download and release her free rituals, let go and create a space that makes your life clearer, courageous and compassionate.

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