Anneli’s book on the personal, societal, biological and historical factors that coalesced to spark the secret epidemic of unworthiness is simply revelatory.
Her research found that for those of us who are programmed to undermine our own joy, a moderate amount of fun is okay, but as soon as it rises above a certain threshold, boom, the irony bomb goes off and happiness is dead.
We strive to keep delight at bay, under control, lest our joy trigger a bomb blast of fear and dread. As if to say to ourselves, see, this is what happens when you try to enjoy life.
Despair sneaks up like a scalpel the very second you start to have fun and threatens to steal the light right out of your eyes.
This is no way to live. Traumatizing ourselves for our own joy benefits nobody. It’s just false virtue. Like the fitness guru with a severe case of body dysmorphic disorder who clutches a donut in his hand and administers an electric shock the moment it touches his lips.
I’m sorry, but that’s not discipline, that’s delusion.
If we have any intention of pursuing happiness in this life, we must light the path with the lamp of compassion. We must trust that joy is not an indulgence we don’t deserve in this moment. We must believe that we don’t have to punish ourselves to ensure we don’t become lazy and arrogant in the future.
And we must believe that whatever looks like joy, is joy, not something wicked resembling joy that shouldn’t last.
I’ve spent the last few years of my life transforming my understanding of, relationship to and practice of experiencing joy. And the one thing I know for sure is, we don’t need permission.
It’s ours for the taking. It’s the validation of our existence.
Joy the single greatest bulwark against the specter of death.
Grounding your daily life in whatever version of it available to you.
LET ME ASK YA THIS…
Are you undermining your own inklings of joy, blunting the deserved pain you think awaits?
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That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Inventor. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.
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