Thank you for getting curious about the Capturing Joy Project. This project is near and dear to my heart as it comes from my heart. The Capturing Joy Project was created to help me get out of a dark place. After my dad passed away of cancer last January, I disconnected from joy. For those who know me, know that this is a biggie. When you are an optimistic, happy-go-lucky, kinda gal, losing joy is crushing. Crushing not only for me, but also those I love and care about.
Photography and creativity are powerful for me and have also helped me in the past overcome difficult times as both bring me joy. I have been a photographer for most of my life and I love being able to freeze moments and have it printed as a reminder. In my 30's, I combined entrepreneurship and creativity to form a pretty awesome business, which allowed me to leave a not so awesome career. Ten years later, I am here to share with all of you, how creativity and photography have improved how I see joy in my life.
The Capturing Joy Project goes beyond being creative and taking pretty pictures. I wanted to share that in order for us to connect with joy, that we needed to be more aware of it. This means that we need to be present and mindful of the world around us. We need to be present and mindful of how we are truly feeling. We also need to be aware of what we are focusing on.
'WHAT WE FOCUS ON, WE FIND MORE OF'
After losing my dad, I grieved, and it was so important that I did. I acknowledged that I missed him like crazy, and that I had wanted more time with him. And our phone calls... boy, did I miss our chats. I sat on the couch eating and watching entire series of Netflix shows... I was avoiding and numbing my grief with all these distractions that were not helping me move through my grief. I could feel my joy slipping further away each day as I did this.
Two months in, I knew I had to shift my focus. My dad was no longer here physically, which meant that he was no longer in physical pain. Despite my dad's illness, he and I grew super close and I was able to be there holding his hand as he left this world...a true gift. I knew that I was not alone, as so many of us have lost a parent(s) or loved one. I also knew in my heart and with all my faith, that my dad was okay and still a part of my life (just in a more subtle way). By shifting my focus...I began to see my grief differently. To be clear, I am still grieving and that is okay...it just means that I miss my dad. I choose to focus on the beauty that I am surrounded by and to see the joy in my life. I also choose to surround myself with really awesome people who love me so very much.
I love that I can now share this with others. Whether you are grieving the death of a loved one, have been through a difficult break-up, going through financial difficulties, not loving your job...or maybe even your life. The Capturing Joy Project will help you seek the beauty and joy in your life, capture it with your camera phone, reflect on it and share it with others.
My challenge for you today...
Take a piece of paper and write out 5 things that bring you joy.
Now CAPTURE one of those with your phone, share it on Facebook or Instagram using #capturingjoyproject
If you would like to learn how to take better images with your phone, join me and other joy seekers in the next Capturing Joy Project Workshop taking place on September 12th. Click the link below to join us.