What lights your internal fire? What brings you the most joy? What is your personal prescription for internal happiness?

As a Licensed Professional Counselor who works with people from all walks of life, the common theme is professional burnout, giving to others and not giving back to self, and lack of joy. So how do you ignite that internal fire that has lost it’s flames? It begins with acknowledging that you have put other’s needs above your own and that everyone else’s needs comes first. Sometimes this will involve work related situations in which you feel you have to continually prove your worth to your employer or business associates. Other times it may involve friends or family in which their needs come first. This is not a new concept, but isn’t it time to change the dynamics to include yourself and to bring some internal joy into your life?

So what is your personal prescription for joy? Would it involve more time alone, more space or more involvement with others? Do you need to give back to yourself in ways of more relaxation, more free time, more creativity or connection to spirit? Maybe you need to share or experience more travel adventures, more shared interests with others or simply enjoy reading a good book in the sunshine.

There are so many ways to fill and refill your own personal cup of joy, but if you don’t recognize that your cup is empty, then you won’t know how or when to refill. The first step is to pay attention to how your body feels. Does it feel low energy or depleted? Next, write a list of joyful activities, people, events or situations that you would like to be involved in or spend time with. Then pick one or two of the items you listed and do them! Taking action is what changes lives, not thinking about them or overthinking them. Taking one step to personal happiness will reduce stress, ignite that inner flame and make an impact on the others in your life too.

Lastly, remember that if your cup is half empty, it’s up to you to refill, and this will have to be done day after day in order to fill your own prescription. Life is meant to be joyful. If you find yourself lacking joy, create and implement your own personal prescription for happiness. You don’t need a doctor to do this for you, but if you don’t take care of yourself, then you may end up having a doctor to tell you what you already know.

So what are you waiting for? Write that personal prescription today and find joy in the process!