"Evolving Magazine is a catalyst to assist humanity in awareness."
Search the site here or check out our updated Archives page.
It wasn’t until recently that I started to realize the subtle differences between joy and happiness. For many years I focused on happiness — those transitory feelings based on external circumstances.
Happiness frequently coincides with quick-fix addictive habits like drugs, alcohol, and eating disorders, or a dopamine “hit” from social media, sex, accomplishments, and binge-watching television. These activities may bring feelings of happiness, but this isn’t the same as joy.
Whereas happiness comes from external events, joy brews from within. It’s a gentle presence, one that touches your heart more than your head.
There are many more ways to cultivate joy, but some practices that have worked for me:
Meditation. While I’ll never be a monk and able to sit for hours at a time in formal meditation, I have found ways to quiet my mind. Gardening, Tai Chi and QiGong, spending time in nature, long walks, or other repetitive physical acts all are moving meditations that allow me to find the gap between thinking and being.
Another form of meditation I utilize is listening to visualizations and binaural beats for different purposes. Each night before sleeping I choose either music or visualization, depending on my needs, from the Insight Timer App. A few of my favorites are Yoga Nidra for Sleep, Floating to Sleep, and various Tibetan singing bowl recordings. The App is free to download and listen to on your phone. Or search YouTube for “binaural beats for ___” to find one that fits your needs.
Consciousness or Presence. Becoming aware of my inner workings is also a tool for finding joy. When I feel unease, I remember that anxiety is caused by a dis-association from self. An indication that I am not being authentic and living with my purpose. By changing the focus and asking myself, “What am I feeling?” I can usually stop the anxiety and put myself back into alignment with what I value.
A tool for consciousness that I’ve practiced for many years is journaling. Using stream of consciousness writing enables me to break past my thinking mind to discover my inner workings. Discovering what is going on inside leads to authentic living, which is so important for feeling joy.
With attention to our inner workings, I believe joy can be cultivated from the inside-out – becoming not just a momentary state of mind like happiness, but a daily part of who we are. This month, Evolving Magazine focuses on the art of Joy.
Pay It Forward
Do you have a favorite massage therapist or other small holistically-oriented business you’d like to support? Or perhaps you don’t have a particular business in mind, but would still like to Pay It Forward (we’ll pick a business for you)? We'll run an advertisement for a business of your choice, or we can pick a small business to receive the ad. Then we'll credit you as a Pay It Forward sponsor in the advertisement (please note if you prefer to remain anonymous). No amount is too small to make a difference in supporting your local community. Click here to donate.
JOURNEY TO WHOLENESS - NOVEMBER 2019
To Change or Not to Change
By Jude LaClaire, Ph.D.
As the days become shorter and holidays appear on the horizon we may be looking at our lives, reviewing things and thinking of change. It may remain in the ‘intention’ stage for much longer than you think. Dr. James Prochaska, co-author of Changing For Good, tells us that up to 80 percent of people wanting to change are not ready to go into action. Uh oh, does that spell trouble for your desire to change? Not necessarily as he also reminds us that, “Change is a process, not an event.”
As I revisited the stages of change I was thinking about a recent change that happened in my life. As my spouse and I were contemplating re-doing the flooring in our home and found out we had to pack as if we were moving, we were triggered into thinking about down-sizing and purging. .… Read More
SPIRITUAL HOROSCOPE - NOVEMBER 2019
Spiritual Horoscope for November 2019
By Aluna Michaels
Scorpio (Oct. 23 – Nov. 21)
Happy birthday, Scorpio! Mercury is retrograde in your sign, which is better than it sounds! You can free yourself from negative patterns of self-talk. Meditate to see yourself with compassion. Practice thinking kindly toward yourself. You can also release resentments from the past two years. Now your heart is healed toward others, and you can draw new friends as well as new business or love partnerships! Also, ...Read more
Click to read the 2019 Wellness Directory
Click to Read the Current Issue!
HOLISTIC HEALTH - NOVEMBER 2019
By Emily Day
As we transition into late fall, we look forward to holiday celebrations with family and friends. However, illness may also be an unwelcome guest into our lives during these times.
Although illness may be related to close, indoor contact with others, it could also be related to changes in our lifestyle and nutrition that lower our immunity.
I’m reminded of a quote by Louis Pasteur, the French microbiologist known for his work on the germ theory of disease and pasteurization. At the end of his life in 1895, he said, "I have been wrong. The germ is nothing. The 'terrain' is everything.” This quote suggests that illness depends on whom the germ affects, not just the germ itself. ...Read More
EATING WELL - NOVEMBER 2019
By Sandra Silva, J.D.
This month’s Evolving theme is “Joy” and while there is no recipe to “cook-up a pot of joy,” there are concepts to consider and foods that can support happiness and joy.
For many of us the experience of “joy” is infrequent and usually fleeting. I do not have an expectation of living periods of extended joy. However, as I observe my life as a whole, I want to see a preference for positivity occasionally punctuated by the appearance of “joy.” This is my preference, in part, because I suspect “joy” is an infrequent visitor to naysayers and curmudgeons. There are four concepts that help support a positive outlook that invites “joy” to visit more often: choice, presence, happiness and optimism. ...Read More
BOOKS - NOVEMBER 2019
Being Thankful Out Loud
An Excerpt from Loving Out Loud
By Robyn Spizman
Since I haven’t thanked you yet today, let me do so now. I realize you could be doing any number of things at this very second, but you chose to read this article. For that I am truly grateful.
Having a mindful, kind attitude can change our view of life. I like to think of it as being a kindness “influencer,” as with social media. Imagine together starting a Loving Out Loud (LOL) campaign of caring about each other. Watch what happens when you share an attitude of gratitude in your world and show appreciation to others out loud — it’s electric and kinetic!
Albert Schweitzer summed up gratitude when he said, “Often...our own light goes out, and is rekindled by some experience we go through with a fellow-man. Thus we have each of us cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us.” ...Read More
FEATURE - NOVEMBER 2019
Shift Happens: Writing as Therapy
By Angela Yuriko Smith
What if you could find a way to transform negative energy into positive, joyful energy?
Meditation, medication, mediation… there are multi-million-dollar mega industries dedicated to profiting from of our need for positivity. We often avoid consciously processing what we perceive as negative emotions. Culturally, we are taught to ‘keep a stiff upper lip,’ and that we are most attractive when we smile. This is a wonderful sentiment, but not very practical—or healthy.
It’s an unavoidable that bad things happen to good people. Despite building a safe space and acting with love, the world is not always a participant in our positivity mindset. Negative bosses can make life miserable. Toxic family can taint our peace. Just brushing against a random stranger’s bitterness can color an entire day. ...Read More