Through Joy’s story, you will be inspired to lead an extraordinary life, not inhibited by confines and limits. Joy shares her initial struggles in life, and how she overcame them to pursue a life based on meaning, authenticity and magic.

My journey of awakening and personal expansion

I’ve lived an extraordinary life. A life rich with stories. A perfectly woven tapestry custom to me, and where God and the Universe would like me to be at each given moment.

I had a rather painful beginning to life, a rather painful childhood, and an adult life sprinkled with many painful experiences… many of which most people do not experience in their life. At the earliest age, I made the decision to live in joy — was it because of the name my parents chose to give me, was it because from early on I felt a connectedness to the actual elements of this Earth, and in another realm, was it because I was born with a heart overflowing with Faith, Peace, Love? I do not know.

I do know that from my first memory of age six on, I’ve chosen to find the good and/or lesson in each and every experience, and to release the bad — leave it in the moment as the new moment comes. Stand in Faith, grow the Good, release the bad. That is the foundation of my life.

I’ve always had a bright Light. I’ve always felt connected to God and the Universe Energy. I’ve always been a healer of hurts… physical, spiritual, emotional. I’ve always chosen to live in peace and joy. I’ve always been the one to connect people. While this may sound pretty good now, while growing up these pieces of my essence often meant that I was socially accepted but rarely understood. My immediate family could not understand me and would often ask me to dim my Light to fit in. My friends were the same… as in, sure be yourself here but please just “be regular” there. So, I learned early on how to dim my Light or custom it to the situation I was in. Doing so meant that there were times I hid vital pieces of myself to fit in, and I hid them so long that I soon forgot they existed.

When you hide pieces of yourself out of hurt or shame or even love, those pieces manifest in different ways physically and take a toll on your Spirit. In those moments I was merely * existing*. So, I had to learn to embrace myself and my Light fully. To stand in Faith and Love even if it meant I was alone in the moment. Alone as in physically alone. I knew God and the Universe were with me, which is quite expansive :) — however, in those early moments of learning to embrace myself, God and the Universe often seemed far away; I wanted someone in *this* realm to understand me. I learned that person has to be me. I have to give myself unconditional love and acceptance, grace, so that when I look in the mirror I love my reflection exactly as it is, for all that it represents.

Now when I reflect, it is pureness; it is my pleasure to reflect it; it is your choice to receive it. I had to learn if you deflect it back, it is not against me personally, it is just too much Light for the space you are in. In these moments, I am “living” fully.

My Inspirations and Influences

As I’ve just shared, my life philosophy is to embrace each moment as it is, not as I wish it would be, or as it was in the past, but *as it is*. And to focus on, and grow the good in each moment. It sounds simple, but I had to re-structure my entire life to allow for this to happen.

I will tell you that I am not a gardener. However, I use gardening principles in my life. I choose to live a life built on faith, exuding joy. So, my soil then has to be rich of faith and joy. I honor both in my life. My faith is in God and my faith is in the Universe and I remain open to Energy. For Energy to flow though, I may have no barriers, so it is my job then to remove the barriers…tilling the soil if you will. Who among us really enjoys the chore of pulling weeds? Perhaps this is why I do not garden, it can be physical labor intensive work — I can take the easier route and go to the store and purchase whatever I wish.

However, with my life, I want a beautiful, fragrant, bounty filled garden…so I actually need to be the one to till the soil; you may point out a patch of weeds, but I need to be the one to eradicate them. You may give me refreshment, but I actually need to accept refreshment. You may stand next to me and encourage me, give me pointers, but I actually need to be the one in the dirt doing the physical work of it all. Lots of work!

I don’t want to cut corners with my soil, because the abundance of my garden is dependent upon rich, fertile soil. So, after a lifetime of haphazardly tending my garden, I spent two very focused years (focused as possible while working full time and raising my children), tilling my soil. I want to tell you it was easy, but it is actually hard work. I moved onto my boat with my children. I released everything from my life that no longer fit. I realize my foundation needs to be simple, clean, healthy, whole so that my life may be simple, clean, healthy, whole. This is important to me because I want Energy to move freely and to have necessary room to expand. So, I clean. On the days I do not want to clean, I do it anyway because I realize if I leave a mess, the mess only grows.

When I get to a wounded spot, I sometimes want to gloss over it, but I stop and take the time to address, heal, and release it. I spend lots of time in nature, lots of time by myself to replenish my radiant supply of Energy. I spend many days in silence, no cell phone, no music, no TV, no distraction. When I am silent, I give praise, every moment I find something to give praise for. Whole days of silence and praise. Sometimes the best I have is whole minutes, so I incorporate whole minutes of silence and praise. I listen to my heart whispers and I find ways to allow them freedom to be realized.

I spend quality time with my children, with my friends. I surround myself with only positive, I control my immediate environment so that when a weed does show it is easy to spot and rather quick to remove. The space on my boat is minimal, so what I physically surround myself with are those items that truly speak to my heart, or provide life, comfort, peace. The possessions on my boat are various art pieces by the children or myself, our musical instruments, books, plants, photos, candles. I try to allow the rest of my life to mirror that of the environment on and around my boat. Each and every person is placed into my life for a reason. People inspire me. Each story that is shared inspires me, so I take the time to connect, to truly listen so that I may learn.

Creativity inspires me. I believe that you may only create when your heart is overflowing…it may be overflowing with joy or angst but it is overflowing. I want to feel those emotions, I want to know your heart, so I take the time to explore many different creative outlets…through books, paintings, sculpture, music, theater….all of it is heart expressions.

I am also inspired by nature…the magnificence of the ocean, the beauty in the sky, the glory in the hills…it all unfolds exactly as it is meant to, not by insisting or forcing, just by allowing…and that is the life lesson I carry with me as I move forward on this leg of my journey.

My Positive Life Changes

I am having a love affair with the world. I wake up in the morning happy to be in this day, I enjoy the moments as they are given. I am surrounded by splendor and beauty living on the boat so it is easy to be peaceful and delighted by all around me.

My children are amazing children, and I love spending time with them, just hanging out or exploring life together. The people in my close circle of friends fill my heart with so much joy, inspiration, love. I love who I am, where I am, and all that is around me.

It has taken a lifetime to get to this point, and I relish every single moment of it. I think about and am full of gratitude for all that I do have, and when thoughts of what I don’t have start to trickle in, I sit in my “garden” and enjoy the bounty there. Are there still weeds? Occasionally, but I have the resources to deal with them. Are there sometimes foreign weeds, yep, but I have the know how to research and deal with them. Do I make mistakes? Yep, but I am mindful to address them in the moment to not let them build. Is there pain? Yep, and I feel it exactly as it is, let it rip through my heart…then I let it go and fill the moment with peace, joy, love.

My Next Steps as an Evolving Being

The next steps are awesome because I am in them.

During May 2010, I’ve been involved in such a huge shift in my life. Energy is fluid, and there is an amazing influx of high Energy just pouring in. I have just set up a new blog. In the one month that it has existed, the opportunities with and through it have been overwhelmingly good. I have a life coaching business and am in the finishing stages of writing a book and am hosting seminars guiding you to your own life of joy.

I genuinely believe that life is precious, and if we focus on growing the good sixty seconds at a time, if we allow for natural unfolding, we may have the peace, joy, love we all strive for.

In the current state of affairs in this world…natural disasters, the economy, wars, famine…we can make a difference, but to project the best energy possible, our own life needs to be full of the best energy possible. I can enjoy the beauty around me for free, and learn the lessons offered within it for free; I choose where to direct my energy, so I’m directing my energy back to the basics…to tilling my soil, tending my garden, relishing the bounty. If we do this together, taking care of our own little space, soon the world would be a huge vastly abundant garden…. I look forward to sharing more on my site Facets of Joy.

My Advice to Others

Whatever life force you believe in, meets you exactly where you step. So, just step. A tentative, fear-filled baby step, or a joy-filled huge leap….

I am responsible for my choices, so I choose not to be drawn into conflict or to allow my energy to be redirected or misused.

I also choose to lead with my heart, and to connect with you through your heart, regardless of external.

I choose to align my external life with my internal life.

I choose to celebrate each and every moment as it is given.

I choose to look in the mirror and love my reflection, and I choose to reflect to you the best possible because I love you and I want you to soar.

The answer is always within. You just need to be quiet enough to listen. You may not like the answer because it may require work, or you may love the answer because it is exactly what you want to hear, but it is always there.

If you skip a life lesson, life will eventually stop you and regress you back to learn it. So you may as well learn it when it is first presented.

I allow natural unfolding to guide me. I may love the direction, I may not like the direction, I may have absolutely no idea where it is going to lead…but I allow myself to be brought there, and I may look back and see it was all perfectly planned. I allow life’s currents to take me to places I could never have imagined…

Happy Sailing…