My business is called "Diligent Joy" for a reason. It is not always easy for me to focus on the joy in my life, but I am determined to do so--hence the diligence part. I believe this is actually a spiritual practice for me. Right now, I'm focussing on laughing at myself when I take things too seriously or when I get overwhelmed, which is still way more often than I'd like.
For instance, one year when my family was getting ready to go on vacation, I decided the week before would be a great time to paint my son's room since he was away at camp. Of course, a project like that always entails more time, energy, and tasks than planned for. Meanwhile, a relative was going to be in town for a medical procedure while we were gone--I offered for them to stay at our house, since we would be away. This meant I put pressure on myself to have the house in "company shape" before we left for vacation. Overwhelm alert!
In the midst of all this, I had the presence of mind to keep up with a) yoga; and b) daily meditation time. Here's what I read in the middle of it all: "God does not desire to overwhelm your circuits--so any overload is your own responsibility! It is also your responsiblity to keep the circuits open through rest, recreation, time in nature, and activities that are fun and therefore increase the flow of the lifeforce through you." [Joan Borysenko, A Pocketful of Miracles] So, paint a little, sing a little, work a little, play a little, clean a little, pray a little, and repeat. All in all, a good way to go through life, I think. Much better than succombing to frustration, crankiness, stress, and overwhelm.
I keep getting this message in different ways. I believe that what God wants for me is good; most of the time, it's me that has to get out of the way. Sometimes, yucky stuff happens that's out of my control. Still, there is an awful lot that is my choice. How I act, react, decide to think about things, etc. It takes practice, and practice makes better, not perfect. Still, it allows for peace in the overwhelm (of which I am at least the co-creator). And peaceful moments in chaos remind me of the saying that my dear friend, Leanne, has painted on her office wall: Peace is Joy resting. Joy is Peace laughing.
Diligent. Joy. Ahhhhhh.