Inspired by a fellow creative at the first Bedlam Farm Creativity Conference, I started making junk journals. These are a compilation of left over pieces of paper and boxes, cuttings from magazines, calendars, and catalogs, unused photographs, art prints, my own artwork, and random pictures and illustrations.
While making these journals, I allow synchronicity and spontaneity to take over. I quickly chose phrases and pictures to glue onto individual pages. Some were humorous, and some were philosophical. And yet, some were downright warped in perspective. After making two for myself I got the idea to make some for friends as Christmas gifts. It was a JOY to make each journal, with love, for the friend who would receive it, keeping in mind the things that meant a lot to each friend and reflections of who each one was as an individual. And that’s when I came up with the idea of calling them JOY JOURNALS. I invited each friend to note things that brought them joy throughout the days and weeks, hoping that we could have a JOY FEST at the end of 2016.
Here we are in mid February, and I am now on page twelve of my own joy journal. I keep it on my kitchen table where it serves as a daily reminder to look for the joy in my day. It is not a true journal or diary in the sense that I write long entries – some are phrases of just four to six words. It’s enough to capture the joy I see or feel and validate that I recognized it.
Joy is not always about being happy or having fun. It has a way of sneaking in between the cracks. Joy is more often internal than external and sometimes takes some serious probing to feel.
It’s too easy to get bogged down by negativity, allowing it to play over and over in our minds, like a broken record. It’s my thinking that if we permit ourselves to “listen” to the repetition of negativity that we empower it and allow it to permeate our very essence of being.
We take responsibility for choosing joy in our lives and affirming its power. By encouraging joy to become our natural mind set, it manifests in a myriad of ways in our lives.