It probably goes without saying that coming up with big, grand gestures to make people feel good and inspire a ton of Joy is not always the easiest thing to do. Actually, it's seldom easy to do. Especially when you're bogged down with work, school, family, or any other number of daily responsibilities.
And if you're putting a lot of pressure on yourself on top of all that... well... you can forget about it!
Trust me – as a ridiculously-ambitious rock star / author / actor / producer / editor / web designer / marketer / pet owner / wannabe storm chaser / philosophical musinger / hardcore Netflix binger who also moonlights as a husband and father (or is it the other way around?) I completely understand how that feels.
In fact, I often have to take a step back and remind myself how unrealistic and unreasonable that kind of thinking is.
Sometimes I find myself so focused on the “grand gesture” that I forget about the little things I could be doing to inspire Joy. I end up ignoring the simpler acts.
Which is a shame, because those simpler acts have the power to go viral! Even the smallest kindness has the potential to change someone's day – or even just their next five minutes – and you never know what that person might be inspired to do as a result.
Yet, just because we're thinking smaller scale, that doesn't mean that coming up with ways to inspire Joy is really any easier. In fact, it might even be a bit harder. Now you've got a plethora of available options. And on top of that you have to be mindful of every potential opportunity within which to apply them.
And this, again, is all while trying to navigate your own existence.
(Including that whole thing about what to binge on Netflix).
The possibilities are so staggeringly infinite that it's virtually impossible to get your head around any of it.
Kind of like watching a Christopher Nolan movie!
(Oh! Just figured out what I'm adding to my Netflix queue!)
How can any one person know what to do to inspire Joy at any given moment all the time?! How can any human being have the kind of awareness that not only enables them to spot an opportunity for Joy but also know – from that plethora of available options – what to do?
With all the things going on in my life, how would I even make the time?
Pretty intimidating when you really think about it, isn't it?
I get that. I've been there. I'm still there. But it doesn't have to be so immobilizing. And it doesn't have to be an all or nothing prospect.
The good news is that if trying to come up with ways (and the time) to inspire Joy is driving you this crazy, it's obvious that doing so is very important to you!
As I'm sure you're aware, it's important to me too!
Based on everything I've said thus far, it seems to me the problem isn't at all about where your heart is – it's that you've got way too many options, seemingly too little time, and a serious inability to recognize any number of potential opportunities at any moment.
So... What if we removed the “too many options” issue by choosing one, and focusing on only that?
And what if we narrowed the scope of possible opportunities? What if we either took control of that or nullified it altogether?
And what if we took the “seemingly too little time” problem and focused it; gave it a realistic and definable goal? Like an assignment.
Or a mission, if you will.
See what I did there?
Suddenly what was once so large and overwhelming is a lot smaller, easily attainable, and nowhere near so open-ended.
Now you may not be so immobilized by just the mere thought of inspiring Joy – now you have something you can actually do! It's actionable.
When I first started putting this strategy together, I simply posted each mission once a day on my social media channels. After a couple months and a lot of great responses, I decided to create a website, write blog articles, and design a whole bunch of images with little Joy mission quotes.
I even wrote a book!
I more or less just let the idea have complete run of me.
OperationJoy.com is filled to the brim with this content, which is always being updated, added to and commented on.
As you'll notice while working through each mission, they aren't always crafted just for you. Sure, you're the one performing them, but in doing so your actions will have a profound effect on the people you touch daily. That is what inspiring Joy is all about.
You're not just lifting yourself up - you're lifting up others and taking them with you.
Each time you achieve your goal, you'll be adding to your arsenal, gaining new experience, and building your confidence. Over time you'll start to notice that not only is the act of inspiring Joy becoming more easy for you, but you'll begin coming up with whole new ideas on your own!
It's like you'll be turning the act of inspiring Joy into a pure habit!
And what was once small will, in very short order, become something very big!
So... what are you waiting for? Let's get started!