Today I am sharing with you JoyInciter #4. (Actually I briefly mentioned this strategy when I guest blogged on David’s terrific London-based 5thingstodotoday site recently.)
In my first post about JoyInciters, I defined them as a collection of simple practices or strategies which I use regularly to increase the level of happiness and joy in my life. The first JoyInciter–the Thanksgiving Book (or Gratitude Journal), the second one–the Walking Into strategy, and the third–the Happiness Box, are all techniques to make us more joyful in our day-to-day lives.
I love JoyInciter #4 — The Three Candles, because of its sensory simplicity yet powerful lesson. Find three candles (any size or type will do). Choose a quiet place where you can be comfortable and preferably alone. Light your three candles. Stare at them for a few seconds. See the first candle as representing your past, the second your present, and the third your future.
Now move your awareness to the first candle. The past. Admit that you cannot really live in the past, it’s over, and regret is both painful and a useless waste of mental energy. Living in the past keeps us out of healthy BALANCE mentally and even physically. Bless the past with love as best you can … and let it go, as you blow the first candle out. Release.
Now look at that third candle. The future. Realize you cannot reside in the future; it’s not here yet. Worry about the future (like past-oriented regret) costs us our joyful mental health because we are trying to BE in a place where we never CAN be–the future. Try saying this, “All will be well. I will be well” and blow out candle #3.
Look at the second candle glowing in its oneness, its all-there-isness, its currentness, its presentness. It’s your Now. Think about this truth for a moment: the ONLY time any one of us ever really has is RIGHT NOW. Everything is NOW. When all is said and done, NOW is all there is. Keep this candle glowing for a few moments as you contemplate on a handful of positive aspects of your Now.
EnJoy JoyInciter #4 — The Three Candles.