Can Joy and Sadness co-exist?...
A La Carte Coaching


By Caroline

One of my friends told me that I looked sad. We were talking about our aging parents, and yes, I was sad. It’s difficult to see the people you love decline—whether physically or mentally—with age and to worry about how the future will affect them … and how soon.
But being sad wasn’t what was odd. What surprised me was that
I hadn’t realized I was sad outside of that conversation. After all, I’m known as “Joy.” It’s one of my strongest core values, I exude it, I am contagious with it.
I had been wondering why I was not “on my game,” why things weren’t happening as quickly and smoothly as they usually did. Well, no wonder… if my value “Joy” isn’t turned on then things are off kilter, and then I’m not as effective as I know myself to be. I’m paddling against the current. Now, what do I always say about that?
Find small ways to express your values daily and stop fighting the current. Be powerfully self-expressed and it will feel like you’re now flowing down stream, with effortless ease.
That seems simple enough, right? But what if the value is outweighed? Is “Sad” going to trump “Joy”? How do I express one of my core values while respecting and honoring the sadness?
How can I exude joy authentically?

I think it’s about choice … again! It is said that “pain is inevitable, but suffering is optional.” (Institute of Professional Excellence in Coaching) In other words, yes, I can be sad, but I can also feel joy about other things and not let the sadness overshadow everything else.
This new chapter in my family life will bring pain, true, but it will also be an
opportunity for growth. Additionally, nothing drastic has happened yet, so it’s the worry that started all this, it’s the projection into the future, the “what if” that got the best of me. There is no real pain, and yet I allowed “suffering” to step in. My choice… so, it’s up to me!
I can also choose to find small ways to express joy as often as possible. From all the wonders in life—big and small—watching my beautiful child growing up, being surrounded by friends, cuddling with my wonderful husband, having the best job in the world, and making sure I notice all kinds of little details that bring me joy. That I can do, and do it authentically. And “Joy” and “Sadness” can co-exist.
So thank you, Amy, for paying attention and for making me realize what was going on. I am very glad I have such wonderful people in my life! “Joy” is back tonight! :-)

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