The Power of Joy

There was a wooded lot two houses down from my home in the neighborhood where I grew up. We called it “the woods.” At times, the lot became an enchanted forest.  This was especially true when I invited a friend to play in the woods with me.  One of my friends shared my enthusiasm for 1950’s horror films.  We transformed into monsters and created our own scripts using the enchanted forest as our stage.

One afternoon, I remember playing Frankenstein to my friend’s Wolf Man. The scene remains fixed in my memory in crystal clarity forty years later. When our time together had almost expired, an invisible alarm clock sounded inside me. We had to return to my house. My friend’s mother would be calling any minute to arrange a pickup. I stood at the border of the woods, one foot in the wilds and the other on the neatly mown grass of an adjacent estate home. This is the thought that ran through my head:

Next year we’ll be in seventh grade and we won’t be able to do this anymore.

Another alarm clock had sounded, only the chimes of this one struck an infinitely more somber note. It said the time had arrived to put this chapter of my life behind me. I was not in the least bit happy at the news.

Growing up is often associated with pain, and I am certainly no stranger to this experience. Growing up is scary. We have to separate from the umbilicus of parents, stand on our own two feet, compete for a niche in society, establish loving relationships, become parents, and face death at the end of our journey. I’ve never really wanted to grow up. To this day I am not a big fan of “putting away childish things.” But it seems growing up is something a human being cannot avoid if he or she desires to lead a constructive, creative life.

Here’s a trick I’ve learned that makes the medicine of growing up a lot easier to take—ladle in generous doses of joy every day.

I get stuck creatively and psychologically if I’m not experiencing joy on something that approaches a regular basis.

Obviously, joy is a precious and elusive commodity. It takes effort and a multi-faceted strategy to experience it. Joy is the elixir of life in my universe. It is the oil that allows this machine called me to run smoothly. When I’m feeling joy, I’m more creative. My work reaches a higher level. I am more motivated. I want to expand my heart and mind. I want to do what it takes to reach my goals. I am more equipped to help others. When I’m feeling joy work becomes play. I’m back in the enchanted forest with my sixth grade friend. Resistance evaporates in the presence of joy.

If you’ve followed this blog, you know that I practice meditation and recommend it to my readers to feel peace and joy from within. The meditation I do feeds my heart. Thinking the right thoughts is another essential element in the pursuit of joy. We attract what we think about. Currently, I’m reading “Ask And It Is Given” by Esther and Jerry Hicks. This fascinating book offers a unique strategy for manifesting your heart’s desires.

I wish you joy.


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  1. #1 by dgittlin1 on September 20, 2013 - 4:31 am

    Such a good post!


  2. #3 by Alix Moore on November 24, 2012 - 6:46 pm

    Lovely post. I love the image of you suspended, one foot in the land of magic and one in the land of so-called reality. So much of our journeying as aware, six-sensory adults is a journey back to what we knew was true before we stepped out of the wild woods. As a fellow writer, and a teacher, and a psychic, I look forward to the day when children will know that there is never a time when they have to choose to grow up.
    All my love,


    • #4 by David Gittlin on November 25, 2012 - 3:34 pm

      Thanks for your comment, Alix, and for your light and inspiration.


  3. #5 by reporterwhb on November 6, 2012 - 3:46 pm

    Excellent post! I hope to hear your insightful words again soon. 🙂


    • #6 by David Gittlin on November 6, 2012 - 6:50 pm

      Thanks for the kind words and for the follow. Since your blog primarily concentrates on Entertainment, I’m curious to know if you saw the movies “Duets” and “The Family Man” which I have written about here.


      • #7 by reporterwhb on November 6, 2012 - 6:51 pm

        Actually, I haven’t. What are they about?


      • #8 by David Gittlin on November 6, 2012 - 7:07 pm

        You can check out the two articles I wrote about them titled “Nominated to the Under Apreciated Hall of Fame” and “The Case of the Missing Box Office.”


  4. #9 by Joe Canzano on September 20, 2012 - 1:26 am

    Thanks. Good post.


  1. A new experience. « My Blog

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