Wonderful Soul Friends,
A few weeks ago I wrote about the deeper meaning behind my recent experience of getting sick (stomach flu and bronchitis). I shared that sometimes my body says “NO”, and it’s my job to listen, to put my ego aside and involve my body in the planning process. That blog definitely struck a chord, and I loved the conversation that took place in the comments. Thank you!
Today I want to share how I’ve been making happier, healthier decisions for myself and making the most of the present. While I don’t always pull this strategy off, when I do I notice how my life gets richer. The more I align my inner and outer worlds, the more joy I consistently experience. Pretty basic stuff, but for many reasons I need constant reminders. If you do too, read on…
Let delight be your compass
What would happen if you put your ideas, to-do’s, and opportunities through the filter of delight? If you closed your eyes, tuned into your body, and asked this simple question: Would this delight me? Try it. You might be surprised by the answer. Sometimes it’s a full-body “yes”, other times it’s a “hell no”. However, most of the time we have no idea. We just keep on keeping on without taking a step back to check in. Life moves fast, remember delight in the process and you’ll be surprised by the subtle changes that add up and create expansion.
And using delight as our barometer goes far beyond saying yes or no to certain commitments. It helps us choose uplifting conversations rather than bitching, gossiping or putting ourselves and others down. Delight reminds us to devote ourselves to people and projects that inspire rather than tire. It asks us to sit in the sunshine and eat a healthy meal on our lunch break, rather than wolfing down crap at our desks. Or, and this is sooo me, delight reminds us to get up to pee when we need to—rather than holding it for a more convenient moment. Peeing is liberating! And yet, why do I blow off my bladder in favor of just one more email? It’s cray cray.
Let delight help you stay present
The other day a friend asked what’s next for me, what’s the big vision? I paused. Got really tired. Then tapped into my delight practice. My truthful response went something like this…
“I used to answer questions like that with soaring goals and missions for the planet. Worthy stuff—vision is necessary and I have plenty of it. But in truth, I felt pressure to create escalating greatness year after year. If I accomplished my goal I’d praise myself for 30 seconds and then set another one. If I didn’t, I felt like I was a failure. Oy. Vey. I’m so done with that drama. For me, the next thing is doing my best in the present moment, it’s being with you, having fun, and following my delight.”
I explained to my pal that this approach still leaves room for exciting projects like my book launch in October or a petition I want to support in a big way, but it also means that I’m not getting myself into a lather about the future and missing the present magic.
Let delight simmer like a slow-cooked stew
Focusing on delight has shifted my business in a big way too—which can be scary at times. Will I miss a deadline or screw up a budget? Or worse, will I lose my ambition and stop caring? I mean, let’s face it, there’s a lot we have to do that isn’t frickin’ delightful. Unless we win the lottery, we’re probably gonna have to make some compromises. But when I look at the two ways delight informs my life—making conscious choices and being present—I realize that if I trust this beautiful compass it will help me and my team become even more successful, while also prioritizing happiness.
At our recent company retreat I really wanted to drive this idea home, so I introduced this motto: Slow Cooking vs The Machine. Here’s what it means…
When I spend all day on a sauce or stew—chopping, stirring, tasting, stirring—dinner is gonna be really good that night, so good that I’ll probably invite friends over to enjoy the meal. I love feeding people home cooked food, and that energy creates a ripple effect. Well, our readers and customers are the friends we host at Kriscarr.com and on social media.
So I asked my team: Do we want to take the time we need to create a satisfying, well-marinated meal that we’ll both enjoy? Or do we want to just crank out content? Feed the beast? Stuff the machine? We could approach this as a job or a joy—it depends on how we show up. Sure, sometimes there’s no way around a not-so-fun task, but we can still try to get clever and create more delight along the way. This whole process helps us set doable goals and create an environment where we can all rise to the occasion and succeed.
I like the word delight! I use the phrase joy bubbles. Is what I’m doing bringing me joy? Do I feel effervescent? Like you stated in your blog-sometimes we just have things we need to do, so I look at all aspects and try to find one thing that gives me joy bubbles. I spent 4 -1/2 hrs cleaning and re-arranging a friends home to make some extra income. It’s not that I just love to vacuum or wash floors-it’s the transformation in the area that I worked in. It felt so good to bring peace and tranquility to chaos. That’s what delight felt like to me. Hugs
Ooh… I love joy bubbles. Thanks for that Lynette! x
Thank you, thank you, thank you for your inspiration, for your wisdom and for your love.
Big love to you..Victoria Lily (England)
Lovely! And very timely. I completely agree.
Kris – I feel like you continue to tap into what ails so many of us. Your journey also provides a burst of breath, a beam of sunshine, a beacon of inner truth that grabs my shoulders and shakes me into consciousness. We are conditioned to trudge through our days to and our to-do lists without ever asking ourselves the simple questions that will yield the seeds of joy. Thank you, for being you, and for being vulnerable enough to share yourself with the rest of us.
Linda, thank you for your sweet thoughts and encouragement. Big love.
Wow, did HP lead me to this one!! Thank you for your delight insight. I find it difficult to discern the delight from the not so delightful(the icky work part). Thanks for your thoughts.
Wow! I want to read this over and over again. Joy and love in the present moment. I must remember this and not lose focus.
I LOVE these posts when you dive deep into how our approach to life impacts our overall sense of well-being. It’s these kinds of questions that can truly change our quality of life at another level.
It’s amazing how bringing more presence, more consciousness into everything that we do has a tendency to amplify our effectiveness.
I know that I get afraid that if I take the time to enjoy life that I might miss out on (insert big project here, opportunity for success, not living up to my purpose, etc). But the opposite happens, we become more effective, more productive, and more in love with life which ALWAYS opens doors — usually unexpected and delightful ones.
Thanks for another inspiring slow-cooked article.
Matt, I always love your comments. And thanks–you just gave me another idea for a blog! xo
Thank you for your beautiful wisdom. I’ve spent the last 4 years in a place of fear, anxiety, and depression. I felt like I was a victim- to my workplace, my childhood, my negative thoughts- the list went on and on. I felt trapped. Over the last few weeks, I’ve gotten super-seriously committed to seeking love first. I’m in the midst of a 30-day yoga and meditation challenge and I’m AMAZED at how these simple acts have refocused my mind. I really appreciate your insight into delight. Sadly, “feeding the machine” has become my autopilot. However, starting these daily practices helps me to start and end the work day with a little delight. The more delight I see in my life, the more I seek!
Chelsea – I’m currently in stuck in a fear/anxiety/depression muck and think I needed to see your comment this morning. Reading your comment reminds me that there are so many of us who get stuck in this muck – so I don’t feel alone. Your comment and Kris’s post are reminding me that it is a simple thing to seek love, to seek delight and to feel the joy that is right here and right now. Happy to have been drawn here this morning. thanks! Erin
Erin and Chelsea,
Thank you both so much for sharing about your respective periods of muck and fear – I too, have felt that way, particularly in recent months. Despite my best intentions to move forward with my life, both personally and professionally, I have allowed myself to be in a place of avoidance and being reclusive. I know that a big part of this stem from having been dealing with a chronic illness for over a decade now but I see how I retreat inward when I become fearful and unsure of myself. Not a great place to be, for sure!
Meditation and quiet reflection are a big reason why I’m turning things around and regaining my mojo. When I observe my daily meditation practice, I find that I am in a place of stability and feel so grounded. I notice that if I stray from this, that is when the fear, self-doubt and hesitation comes creeping back in.
Thanks again for sharing – a great gift for us all 🙂
Once AGAIN, I am reading a Kris Carr post that directly speaks to my own current challenges. And, once again, the Kris wisdom is SPOT ON. Bless you for sharing your heart in service to us all, dear Kris (and team!).
Thanks for that! It made look at what I do and see what delighted me the most. I like variety in life, so I am a catering chef, a kitchen designer, a health coach and a writer. All of them can be delightful at times so I asked myself, which one was always delightful? As my goal is to bring happiness to others in whatever I do, all of my avocations give me that opportunity, but your blog made realize it is the writing that always makes ME happy. My present book concerns the life and times of a supernatural hero who wants to save the world (really its inhabitants) from themselves. As I love the Earth and people, I want the book to be a vehicle to help both to be healthy and whole. Bottom line, you made me focus on the fact that I need to put in a bit more time on the book and less on the other things that aren’t always a delight. My goal is to finish by the end of the summer, so I better get on with it!! If the book does well, it could be a great movie! That is my opinion, for now, and I am sticking to it. Delightful!!
Dang, Kris! Just LOVE this. You really “speak” to me, sister! Rock on. You DELIGHT me!
This is such an important reminder for me as I am always being a busy bee as I start my own business. Thank you for bringing my focus back to delight and making sure that I don’t miss the present by being too focused on the future.
The word delight is a new one for me! It’s more user friendly and tangible than the big word Joy.
I thinker now I am going to do this delight exercise and get used to the energy. I have a sneaky suspicion that I have some pockets of guilt around a “delightful life”
Thank you Kris and company for the love you give !
Hrm. Instead of focusing only on achieving results, it may help to enjoy the process and have fun along the way. One thing I can do is to carve out some time each day for nonsensical fun for no purpose other than fun. I can also think of fun new ways to do the things I normally do and also think up fun new things to do. Perhaps I can also give myself permission to be spontaneous–no plans, just go with the flow and whatever hits me at the moment.
Kris, thank you for this. I always choose to tea your blog on JUST the right day when I need it the most. Perhaps the universe is guiding me to do so. I am going to think of leaning towards the joy AND delighting in joy of my tasks and go from here. Thank you for your thoughtful approach and inspiring light. I have been feeling wrapped up in non-joyful tasks lately, and I appreciate the sentiment. You ROCK and thanks for the bonus of inspiration on this Tuesday!
Bravo Kris. You inspire so many of us to get out of our box to embrace the precious moments in life that so many of us can miss. Thank you for sharing how you live.
ahhh, I love this. The next big thing is right now! And I love the slow cooker analogy. It’s true sometimes you feel like you just need to “get stuff out there” so I like the idea of creating and sharing more “savored” content 🙂 Thanks!
Thank you for sending and email with the word delight in it! It’s already reset my day!
Kris!!!!! You are the best.
A wise friend of mine suggests changing “I have to” to “I get to”. It changes your whole perspective.Another thing to watch is complaining. Try going a day without complaining and you will be shocked.
Amen and so true. I am currently playing the part of “unemployed”. I had convinced myself that I could play the part of a cashier, but that little voice started to express its opinion. My body started screaming a Big ” Hell No”. Such a simple little word with life changing impact! You are such a gift… Big hug to you and your team:-)