Day 11: Happiness is a Practice, Not a Destination

Courage

Early this year I made a commitment to myself to be brave. The courageous goal I set for myself isn't to climb a mountain, jump out of a plane or walk on hot coals. It is simply to be me; authentically me. 

To some this may sound simple, but for me it is something I have been "working" on for years. I decided to quit working on it or analyzing all the reasons for not being brave; which comes from a learned lack of worthiness and shame, and just do it!


I have wholeheartedly devoted this year to daily small actions of bravery; to simply be me. And I think letting people see who we are is courageous! Especially in a world which so often imposes and defines success and values for us; and encourages us to go with the crowd.

In her book, "The Gifts of Imperfection" Brene Brown writes: "Shame keeps worthiness away by convincing us that owning our stories will lead to people thinking less of us. Shame is all about fear."


There is a popular term or concept "fake it until you make it" that translates to "act better than you feel." Last year I learned it is actually backed by science!

Self Perception Theory was developed in 1967 by psychologist, Daryl Bem. It asserts that people can form their attitudes and attributes by observing their own behavior. Very much the same way we assume attitudes about others. If I see someone giving an eloquent speech to a large group of people I might conclude they are wise and confident; no matter what is actually going on inside of them.

The wisdom traditions teach us that our very nature is sat-cit-ananda or confidence, wisdom and joy. So it isn't actually faking after all; it is bringing forth what is truly inside us but can get veiled by fear, old ideas or misperceptions.


Writing this blog is one brave action I have committed to each day. Although that frightened voice inside me is still whispering "who is going to read this"; or "who will care what you have to say"; and "who is she to teach such things" it is fading further and further into the background. I barely hear it.

At any time I can choose to listen to that voice or I can stay committed to developing courage.  Today is day 11 of the 21 day blog series challenge and I haven't missed one posting! It feels really good!

What I am most passionate about-and the biggest leap of courage I have taken is in developing a 50 hour Deeper Studies Program merging my studies in positive psychology and the wisdom traditions. We will meet one weekend a month from June-October. These teachings have been so transformative in my life and I cant wait to share them in depth with some of you. There are still 5 spaces life. For more information you can visit my website at www.joystoneyoga.com or email me at joy@joystoneyoga.com