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Joy happens.

It happens every day, often when you’re not expecting it.

Joy happens because you seek it.

I began this personal project five weeks ago, because I knew one of life’s big stressors was coming my way.

As a professional counselor already dealing with unemployment (sigh … there are many out-of-work counselors across the U.S.), I devised a five-week countdown for three reasons.

1.  By focusing on joy, I hoped to soften the bad stuff.

2.  I like to avoid bad stuff (OK, at least minimize it!).

3.  Since I live by a two-word motto — no regrets! — I prefer to live in joy.

Some call this an intentional life.

If you live with intention, i.e. I intend to live every day with lovingkindness, the thing you seek will happen.

Some suggest this is a big secret.  It’s actually as old as womankind.

Living with intention, in joy, is as simple as breathing.

Yet some days, when the monkey brain is dancing, it can seem as tough as a marathon.

I’ve spent five weeks learning, and re-learning, that joy from within is a gift you can give yourself every day, and then give it freely to others.

There’s even more joy in that.

Final grade on finding the joy in everyday: A.