You may have noticed we’ve done a little rebranding here in this corner of the internet. After a year of disliking the name of this blog, I brainstormed with some internet friends and finally found a new name that fits. So, without further ado, cue the confetti canons as I re-introduce you to:
Running into Joy
This blog will continue to be about self-care, finding happiness, and fitness. The name change, I feel, better reflects the outlook I’ve grown into in this past year of writing and reflecting. Much brainstorming centered around things like “Chasing Happiness” or some variant, but ultimately I didn’t like the implications of that phrasing.
To “chase” something implies we’re forever trying to reach it, but that it’s difficult to catch. That it’s a state to be gained and kept, that the chase will at some point end, be finished, concluded. I don’t think happiness works that way. In fact, I think it’s a harmful misconception to think that it does. That to do, to become, to find x, y, or z, means we will have attained and rest forever more in the mythological kingdom of Happy.
For me, the nuance of running into joy (rather than that all illusive “happiness”) is a better fit. It implies that joy and happiness exist more as moments to be encountered along the ever-changing roller-coaster that is life. It accepts that we will encounter joy in the same way we will also encounter loss, and sadness, and frustration.
Sometimes, I literally have to run to find joy, because I have this fun thing called depression and occasionally the only way to combat it is to smack it repeatedly over the head with endorphins. But even so, joy can be sparked in the smallest of moments–we can seek it, or run across it, or stumble upon it, in our day-to-day.
As self-care becomes commercialized as Instagram-perfect bath bombs, elaborate bathtub rituals with crystals and the plants arranged just so, face masks, etc, I’ve done a lot of thinking about what it really means to find joy. It definitely, for sure, can be a bath bomb or a face mask.
But sometimes it’s not. Joy and happiness are so individual. We all have our own baselines, our own moods and understandings of what it is to be happy. Some of us have depression, or anxiety, or other health issues that necessarily change our definition of how to care for ourselves, our baseline level of what happy means. My happy doesn’t look like your happy, and what brings me joy won’t necessarily bring you any.
But all of us, I think, are trying to come across joyful moments and that feeling of happiness however often and whenever we can.
At least, that’s how I’ve come to see “self-care” over this past year. As I’ve written about previously, 2019 was a year that kicked my butt. Injury and an eventual chronic pain diagnosis caused me to re-evaluate what it means to feel well, to feel happy, and how I wanted to continue to pursue those areas in life. I’ve done some thinking about what I want to focus on and write about, and realized I want to continue writing about the things I’ve written about here. I just wanted to call it something I could take a little bit more seriously than the throwaway name I slapped on last year’s resolution to write more.
And so, here we are. Running into joy.
All this to say, I’m still writing about running, yoga, travel, self-care, and about trying to find and capture and keep on running into the things that bring me joy.
I hope you will continue to join me for the ride. If you’re new here, I hope you will stay and find something to bring you a little bit of happy, too.
(P.S. speaking of things that bring us joy, an essay of mine about the experience of cooking for one was recently published in audio format over at Golden Walkman Review. Check it out here!)