Joy Diet

Jamie Ridler is doing the Joy Diet by Martha Beck as a book club and I am joining in the reading. I really enjoyed reading about other’s experience with the book. I’ve been continuing with my nothing from between 5 and 20 minutes and asking myself about the truth.

The chapter on desire was an important one for me. I always say that you need to know what you want in order to simplify your life. Otherwise you are getting rid of things and activities that you truly like and adding more time for things you don’t really want.

I thought I had pretty much what I wanted. We have the house, the simpler life, I work from home with work I love, spend time with family. But, lately I’ve been thinking – o.k. what’s next. I have two high schoolers – one who is a senior and I think the next part of my life is peeking out at me.

So this week I have been asking myself every day, "What do I want most right now?" So far I have not gotten any huge revelations – one new client, time in a good book relaxing, to live a life I enjoy. I also have a volunteer prospect to mull over.

But, I think continuing to ask this question will bring me closer and closer to a life I enjoy and that is fulfilling. It takes time to cultivate a life you love especially when your wants change throughout the years.

I know asking that question can be difficult, especially for those of us in the church. We are taught to only want what God wants, thinking He doesn’t care what we want. But, I think He does – otherwise why create beauty, community and love? I think He loves the times we are happy just as much as the times we are learning and growing. And I think often the desires of our heart are desires He put there.

Martha Beck also warns against false desires – you know the ego ones that feel anxious, grasping and withholding wanting to impress or control. True desires are freeing and joyful and generous.

Along with asking what I want, I am redoing my goals list. I looked at it and it felt draining, full of shoulds.I am now creating a list that energizes me and brings joy to me and others.

What do you want most right now?
 

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