Looking for a little joy?

Peggy Palmiter

We would like to invite you to our summer program and ask you to have some fun and spread a little joy. We are living in a time of great upheaval, often resulting in feelings of anxiety, anger or withdrawal. For some of us it makes the personal challenges we might be facing even more daunting. I was reading an article recently about positive psychology – which basically means the study of conditions that contribute to the optimal functioning of people. The growth of this movement in psychology has been, in part, because it fills a need. 

The article went on to talk about how research suggests that we experience three times more positive experiences than negative, and yet we tend to focus on the negative.  “The research found that people who habitually tend to talk to people they are close with about the good things that are happening to them also tend to feel happier and more satisfied with life. Also, the more these people shared their happiness with someone on a given day, the happier and more satisfied they were on that particular day.”

So this summer our session is going with joy. I started looking around and found a couple of articles that give us some very specific suggestions about how we can spread joy.

SMILE AT PEOPLE AND HUG THEM – This is my go-to position at Lifespan, so you all know I have great confidence in the ability of this behavior to spread joy. I know it does that for me.

GIVE GENUINE COMPLIMENTS – It’s amazing what a difference it can make when you compliment someone. Don’t try to fake it, because that doesn’t measure up, but the real thing can make a HUGE difference to someone else, and then you in return.

PRACTICE KINDNESS– Enough said here. There is nothing quite like a little kindness.

BE IMPECCABLE WITH YOUR WORDS – Once you speak you can’t take it back. Filter the harsh and release the positive.

EXPRESS YOUR GRATITUDE – There is so much we take for granted. Gratefulness is discussed much more as well, and that is definitely to fill a need.

REPLACE THE JUDGEMENT and PUT YOURSELF IN THE OTHER PERSONS SHOES– Things always look a little different from this position and you may find yourself finding solutions rather than problems.

JOIN THE SUMMER SESSION OF LIFESPAN ACADEMY: This session we have several ways for you to experience joy and share it. Check out our Atlanta Theatre to Go performance on page 4. And the Atlanta History Tours as well (tickets are limited, so sign up soon). And fun summer reading is also an option, as well as joining the ukulele group and dulcimer band members. You can even bring your devices to our clinic and feel joy with technology. OK, that may be going a little far, but pick one and join us.