Joy is a Job.

10 Jun

Gratuitous photo of the sangria I made tonight, because it brings me joy.

You disparaged people (people like me) for their cussedly nonspecific dissatisfactions, because to fail to embrace the simple fineness of being alive betrayed a weakness of character.  You always hated finicky eaters, hypochondriacs, and snobs who turn up their noses at Terms of Endearment just because it was popular.  Nice eats, nice place, nice folks– what more could I possibly want? Besides, the good life doesn’t knock on the door.  Joy is a job.

-Lionel Shriver, from We Need to Talk About Kevin.

I characterize myself as a “glass half empty” person, but that is more of a reflection on my tendency to worry and dwell on things.  I go through great pains to not be negative.  For me, it’s a matter of self preservation.  My money, and even more so my time, are precious to me.  It pains me to think I’ve wasted either.  So with each experience, I seek out the positive, even if that means to acknowledge that an experience was so disastrous as to be an adventure.

If an experience is going to be a negative one, it’s not worth doing.  I’d rather spend an afternoon hanging out at home with my family, than go out and have a bad time.  I recognize that some things are beyond your control, but I go through great pains to put a positive spin on things, so I don’t feel like I’ve been wasting my time.  I make joy my job.

How do you approach your experiences? Do you make joy your job?


3 Responses to “Joy is a Job.”

  1. Cassie June 11, 2012 at 9:40 pm #

    I feel like I just read a note in my diary from myself. I am the EXACT same way. I’m glass half-empty and I do a lot of times stay home and watch tv with my family, or sit around the kitchen table talking instead of going out for a not-so-great time. Thank you, thank you for sharing this.

    • BeezusKiddo June 12, 2012 at 2:55 pm #

      I’m glad you enjoyed it! When I read that passage it just RESONATED with me, and I sort of tossed it around in my brain for a while, until I knew exactly what I wanted to say about it 🙂 I’m glad it did the same for you as well 🙂

  2. soniabgill June 13, 2012 at 8:44 am #

    My time is incredibly valuable and I’m very strategic about how I use, from the activities I will participate in to the people I spend it with. This definitely resonates with me, too!

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