It’s Fun to Watch Joy!
I am inspired today by a couple who, while walking on Pismo Beach, stopped at length to share in Dolce’s bliss as she romped in the ocean. Randomly sharing with me, the woman exclaimed: “It’s fun to watch joy!” I am blessed to be in the near constant companionship of Dolce, my golden retriever dog, who teaches me some of life’s greatest lessons.
A morning session at Pismo Beach with Dolce looks something like this: While still at the RV, I prompt her asking: “do you want to go to the beach?” I begin putting on my running shoes and she immediately gets excited. She doesn’t wonder if I really mean it or question if I love her enough to take her or project into the future asking herself if it will really be fun. She just goes with the moment and begins wagging and excitedly pressing me to hurry up! First lesson right here for us over-thinking humans: when there’s an opportunity for fun, just go with it! The more excited and enthusiastic energy we exude, the more likely it is that it will be incredible!
We next suit her up in her halter and leash and instead of viewing this as restricting; she grabs her leash in her mouth and begins to prance around. This prancing is contagious. The silly fun it generates is not exclusive to dogs. During the Christmas holiday, I was with my cousins children: four girls between the ages of 4 and 12. We had taken the pups to the dog park and the girls were laughing and commenting on how Dolce was prancing on our walk back. We all began emulating her prance; wagging our tails and smiling. The result was vibrant laughter. Lesson #2: movement naturally opens our physical pathway to increased joy. If you are feeling sad, bored, lethargic, or any other dimmed state – try prancing. Dance around your house. Walk down the street with a little extra swing in your step. Your energy will naturally shift. Since moving into an RV, I have spent many evenings alone and without friends and family nearby who I can visit when I feel a bit lonely. I have learned to put on some music and dance! I am by no stretch of my own or anyone’s imagination a good dancer – forget choreography. It’s all I can do to count the beats when I am sitting on a stationary bike teaching a spin class! Nonetheless, I dance and my body, mind and spirit take me to places where I feel bliss.
Finally reaching the ocean and out of the Park Ranger ticket zone, I let Dolce off leash to chase her beloved tennis ball into the pounding waves. She crashes into them with abandon, waits when they seem too big, body surfs letting them carry her back with ease and returns the ball to me to do it again…over and over and over. Such simple lessons in watching this dog. Go for what you want! Sitting on the sideline waiting for life to give it to you won’t make it happen. Pause when things seem too much. A life truth is that change is constantly occurring. We sometimes spend so much time and emotion worrying about what may happen when perhaps simply pausing and letting the storm pass will help us see the sunlight on the horizon. When we go with the flow of life, everything is easier. As a whitewater kayaker, I have learned (sometimes by being spanked upside down with my face planted on a rock) that when I go with the flow and let go of just a bit of the illusion that I am in control, life is easy! Finally, if it works for you, if it makes your heart sing, keep doing it…over and over!!!
I wish everyone an abundant 2015, filled with blessings and limitless joy!