Girl looking through the lens of joyEvery day, every moment, we make a choice of the lenses we see through. After we read the news or the daily tweetfest we can come away looking through a lens of negativity or even hopelessness. But when we spend time with people who are fired up and changing the world, our lens can be lighter, brighter, and full of potential.  The secret of people who want to make a positive impact? They are looking through the lens of joy*.

Which Lens Are You Looking Through?

I used to think that how I felt was just “the way it was.” As if my moods were some immutable force I had no control over. I was buffeted by my up-and-down emotional state, wondering if tomorrow might be a better day. It dawned on me that all the personal development books I had read might be right. Maybe I could change the way I perceived life and how I felt and reacted. My experiments with those ideas changed my life almost immediately. I suddenly had a choice about how I felt! About how I showed up and how I treated other people. My perspective had shifted. With a shock, I realized I was living in the same world but seeing it through a different, much happier lens.

How to Change Your Lens to Joy

The beginning for me was a twice-daily gratitude practice. At first, it felt like practice, just like practicing guitar as a kid when I didn’t want to. It felt forced, inauthentic, and just a little silly. But then, just like learning chords, it got easier and felt more like the flow of real music. I looked forward to it. I was listening for more music, looking for more joy in my day. Pretty soon it became second nature, and other people could sense the difference.

What To Do With Your Lens of Joy Once You’ve Found It

Being a writer, I wrote. I had gone from feeling like a depressed failure to living in the much higher frequencies of gratitude and joy. Initially, I wrote just for me, to figure out what I was feeling and how to keep that feeling going. Eventually, my writing became a burning desire to share the practices that had brought me back from darkness. I felt driven to get that message into the hands of people who were looking for a change, a new perspective, a new way to experience life.

That desire turned into The Gratitude Connection: Embrace the positive power of thanks. Other authors I work with write about their journey of healing from trauma or illness, discovering positive coping skills, developing new ways to navigate life and business, and even changing their lens through adventure.

If you feel like you need a dose of joy, visit the Author Spotlight to learn about their inspirational stories and how they make a positive impact.

I invite you to find happiness, to shift your perspective so you feel gratitude on a regular basis. And if you feel compelled to impact others in a powerful way with your story, consider unleashing your inner authorlet’s talk!

May you live today in joy and happiness, and find a way to spread that joy every day.

* I first heard the term “Lens of Joy” from motivational speaker and new author Lauren Danielle, who learned it from her fabulous coach, Lisa Foster. I’m full of gratitude for both of these powerhouse women who do such good work in the world!