Let’s connect

Why We Struggle With Joy

{ 0 COMMENTS… add one }

Another #truthbombtuesday coming at ya this morning.  Is satisfaction your idea of joy?  Let’s dig deeper…

High-Achievers love to do, progress, perform, achieve, and succeed. So much so that we are experts at convincing ourselves that productivity actually brings us joy. In fact, those of us who have done a lot of purpose work in our lives have also convinced ourselves that being able to do work we love (and are meant to do) brings us IMMENSE joy. Our work, in and of itself is meaningful and so we often tell ourselves, “my work brings me so much joy by helping others”, but here’s where we get it wrong.

Progressing, doing a good job, creating magic in our lives through our work, hitting big milestones, etc. don’t bring us joy. They bring us satisfaction and there is a BIG difference!!

Satisfaction makes us feel good about ourselves. We pat ourselves on the back. It’s the grown up version of being a “good girl”, a message we’ve likely carried for a long time. We pride ourselves for making progress and doing well. We feel good when we do it. But the feeling we experience is not joy. It is feeling satisfied that there has been a positive pay off from our effort (finding our purpose included).

Joy is not associated with control, achievement, progress, performance, or success.

Joy is associated with freedom, wildness, fun, effortlessness, childlike wonder, imagination, creativity, and love.Click To Tweet

In order to feel joy, we have to be connected to the part of ourselves that is FREE from the expectation and/or drive for control and the desires for achievement, progress, performance, and success. But the kicker?

Most high-achievers have little to no connection with their ability to experience unwarranted joy.Click To Tweet

And unwarranted is a big piece here too!


So why do we struggle experiencing joy? For most high-achievers, they grew up in environments where performance and achievement were praised. Where being the “good girl” and the “responsible one” won them attention and approval. And being as smart as she was, this little girl learned that the way to get her needs met for love and belonging was to color between the lines, do what was asked of her, be there for others, be dependable, etc. This left little room for being a wild and free child, the part of us necessary for joy.

What resulted was a hyper-responsibility to do, achieve, and become. Over time, because we became disconnected from our joy, we started to rely on satisfaction to fill the void. We told ourselves that if we can’t feel good from joy, we can feel good from doing a good job, from achieving, from becoming. And so this is what we did and of course we did it well.

So when it comes to getting back in touch with joy, we have a tendency to seek out things that bring us satisfaction because this is what we know.   But little do we know that satisfaction and joy are two different things.

And when we first start being asked “what brings us joy?” or “what makes us feel joyful?”, we tend to think of the things that make us feel good, make us feel proud, make us feel satisfied because this is what we know.

So, how do we fix it? We have to build connection with that little piece of ourselves that knows joy and for some of us, this takes some time (3 months or so of diligent work, hence my coaching program is 90 days) in order to find that free little spirit again.

But I promise you she’s there and can’t wait to help you experience joy, sometimes for the first time in almost your whole life!

So I challenge you to do some compartmentalizing of joy vs. satisfaction. Joy is wild, free, reckless abandon that has no limits, no boundaries, and surely no expectations. There is no end goal in mind, hence why #joygoals cannot be associated with any measureable nor desirable result!

Challenge yourself by questioning yourself. “Am I feeling joy or am I feeling satisfaction?

Oh and P.S. ---> If you want to get to enoughness, you must get to joy. This is how it works!Click To Tweet

Leave a Comment