Joy versus Happiness

There are many words we use interchangeably, when in fact they are not exactly synonymous. For example, happiness and joy. I make a joy necklace, but not one that says happy. It isn’t as if happiness is the opposite of joy. Rather, happiness is more fleeting. You might say that joy is long-term happiness. You, or the Dalai Lama. And Desmund Tutu. I have not read The Book of Joy: Finding Lasting Happiness in a Changing World yet, but from what I’ve heard, it is high on my list.

joy quote

We are fragile creatures and it is from this weakness, not despite it, that we discover the possibility of true joy.

Mostly, when we describe things that are outside of ourselves, we say “that makes me happy.” It is less common to hear someone say, “the sunshine makes me joyful.” I think that is because joyful is something we are. It is innate. Sometimes it looks and feels like happiness, but sometimes, it doesn’t. When you are grieving, you often don’t feel happy – but you can be aware of your inner joy, still burning like a little flame inside you. Sometimes, it looks as though people have let their joy die – but it can always be revived. It just has to be given the fuel of attention so it can grow.

Joy Necklace

This is a very long-winded way of explaining why I make a joy necklace but not a happy necklace. Joy is intrinsic, but we should not take it for granted, and we should not go chasing after happiness when joy is what really brings meaning to our lives.

joy necklace

handmade bronze joy necklace with green crystal

Making things with my hands makes me happy. Making little charms from magical metal clay, firing them in my kiln, hand-polishing them, turning them into wearable jewelry with my customer’s choice of crystal color, and sending them into the world as little reminders or mantras or affirmations for people looking to amplify the joy in the world – that brings me joy. My creations are available to purchase on Etsy in my ThreeNatures shop.

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