Articles for January 2016

Are you ready to Injoy?

What I love about Makers Academy is that while you learn to code, you also have a great opportunity to become more of who you want to be as a person. Inevitably, the intensity of the bootcamp causes most to look deeper into themselves and begin to seek answers in order to help them do their best on the course.

Most of the time when people hear that I’m the Chief Joy Officer, it brings a big smile to their face and they say something like “wow, you have a great job”. That makes me smile too and usually I reply with “thank you, yes I do!”. People’s first reactions to my job title are a wonderful reminder that we all know intrinsically how important making Joy a priority is.

Every now and then when people hear my job title, they say “oh okay, make me happy!” To these people, I say – I don’t make people happy. I do however, facilitate people tapping into their inner joy – if they’re asking.

The asking part is key – you can’t answer a question that isn’t being asked, so you’ll never find me asserting happiness onto anyone. As lovely and liberating as it is to know joy and the path to it, we have to want it. . We all get to where we want to go eventually – Joy officer or not – I’m in it for the fun :)

Some of the badges our students at Makers Academy can earn for successfully participating or completing challenges

The argument can be made: everyone wants to be happy. This is true, but everyone’s on their unique life path and not everyone finds happiness in the same things. It’s not a one size fits all deal. There are many things that can make you happy in life: friends, family, achievements, travel, entertainment… But in my opinion, there’s only one thing that can make you Joyful – you and your connection to your truth.

Knowing who you are is an unwavering joy. It starts with committing to discovering yourself with all the love, hope, trust and fun you can muster. The greatest journey you will ever know is cultivating your closest relationship – the one with yourself. This, to me, is Joy.

You’ll notice the truly joyful people in this world are the ones who beam a smile from their hearts regardless of where they are in life, what they have or who they know. We can spot them – it can’t be faked. The world tends to reflect what you have in your heart, so often these people are the ones we label as “living the dream”. They seem to have figured out how to enjoy the ride by being present and not too attached to goals. They don’t have time to worry because feeling good feels so good!

Joy, to me, is more than an emotion, it’s an overarching state. Joy can still be experienced while feeling frustrated or sad or happy, or at anytime for that matter! It’s like a golden thread of love woven throughout the core of your being. It’s the natural state of the broader part of you – your soul, if you will. This is empowering to the highest degree.

It’s important to know that all our emotional states serve us. There is no right or wrong way to feel. We prefer good feeling emotions because they’re in alignment with our natural state. But ‘negative emotions’ are your friends too; they help you define what isn’t serving you, so you can focus more what does.

We intuitively know which way is north on our emotional compass. We’re hardwired to feel really good, not just to survive, but to thrive! Our positive emotions lead us to the success we seek if we learn to trust them. So enjoy, en-joy and injoy:

Enjoy – Appreciate, elate and delight in all that life has to offer

En-joy – We are lovers to the core, deliberately uplifting others who will allow it

Injoy – Loving and appreciating ourselves first and foremost allows all of the above 😉

Injoy? We don’t get a manual when we’re born on how to maintain our natural joyful state. We’re born joyful and loving ourselves – but often, we forget this along the way.

My job as Chief Joy Officer is to remind you of you, should you ever need a nudge back to your bliss. This comes through various forms of wellbeing practices like Yoga, meditation and Joy101 workshops. Remembering is fun! And when we’re in tune with our joy, we know how to create the life we want. There’s nothing like a good “aha moment” and having tools to get in sync with your genius, creative, fun-having self!

Love, Dana
Chief Joy Officer