Life is full of stress.

We all know that. We all experience that.

We also all know the benefits—physically, emotionally and spiritually—of reducing stress and feeling more joy.

Yet, many of us have plenty of good reasons to feel anxiety, despondency and unhappiness. So, the real question is, can joy be packaged? Can we have joy on demand? Can we make ourselves happy? Or is joy something that is genetic, or a product of our circumstances?

The holiday of Sukkot is called “the Festival of Happiness.” So, now is a good time to explore the topic of joy and how to bring more of it into our lives.

Taking a quick survey of our authors this week, here’s their advice for creating more joy:

  1. Do exercises to increase joy: find your sense of purpose and accomplishment, experience gratefulness, help another person, and focus on doing enjoyable things. (Nomi Freeman)
  2. Meditate on the etrog. See it as the heart within the Tree of Life, pulsating with G‑d’s infinite love. Feel the love within your own heart. (Shimona Tzukernick)
  3. The Sukkah reminds us of how temporary stuff is. The best things in life aren’t things. Prioritize your life to create a more simplified existence. (Rivka Caroline)
  4. Feel happiness and wholeness through your relationships, in connecting with the other half of your soul. (Women of Distinction)
  5. We are merely a passerby on the journey of life. Feel the protection of G‑d surrounding you. (Elana Mizrahi)
  6. The Sukkah invites us to abandon the illusion that physical things can protect or limit us. Step out of your limiting boundaries and embrace your uninhibited potential and unique destiny. (Shifra Hendrie)

What are your thoughts? What do you do when stress threatens to overwhelm you? How do you increase joy in your life?

Wishing you a most joyous Sukkot,

Chana Weisberg,

Editor, TJW