Have you ever had one of those conversations on the trail that stays with you long after the run is over? One that makes you circle back in quiet moments?
A few weeks ago I was out on the trail with my dear friend, Kelley. We were chatting away and got on the subject of happiness. Like so many running conversations, I am not quite sure how we arrived there, but as the miles melted away that’s where our conversation lingered.
Essentially, we were talking about the difference between living a joyful life and the pursuit of a happy one. We both felt that joy had a much deeper, stronger resonance for us – it was more of a daily practice vs. a momentary feeling.
Even prior to my conversation with Kelley, this is a topic I have come back to often – this subtle difference between happiness and joy. One that one of my favorite authors, Kristin Armstrong, captures beautifully.
Topics like these – those about self actualization and not about basic needs – are ones we can only truly contemplate as we move out of crisis. At least for me. And as my world has stabilized with my wonderful new job, I have been able to take a few steps back to ask myself what I need and want as a human being.
I want to be a present mother and wife and sister and friend.
So I am taking care to practice yoga and meditation with intention. To push through when I want to quit. To allow myself to truly be on the mat when I am on the mat. In the room when I am in the room. And in the moment as it comes.
I want to run forever.
So I have chosen to allow my body to BE this year. No big goals. No pushing my pace. No marathon in 2015. Just me, my friends and my running shoes. My Saturday long run was one of my best in well over a year. I loved the run.
I want to be the change I wish to see.
So I am making some small changes to my social media presence – from happiness to joy. A small word difference that represents so much. I am choosing the long path – the joyful path. If I encounter happiness along the road – I will treat it as the passing blessing it is.