This holiday season, like last year’s, may look different for many of us. And for a lot of us, the last nearly two years have been filled with too much uncertainty, loss, anxiety, and loneliness.

What I have found is that by focusing on what I do have, and the light that is deep within my soul, I’ve been able to make it through even the toughest days with more peace and acceptance. I believe that by cultivating joy and gratitude within ourselves, while outwardly expressing generosity and kindness toward others, we can generate more hope for our future and each other. And we can open ourselves up for joy in even the most uncertain of times. 

This song keeps ringing in my ears …

Joy to the world! Joy to the world! All the boys and girls now. Joy to the fishes in the deep blue sea. Joy to you and me.

Let this be our prayer …

May there be peace in our hearts. May there be peace in our minds. May there be peace in our words. May there be peace in our world. 


The JOY Meditation

  • Sit with your spine upright in a comfortable seat and place your hands over your heart.
  • Breathe in and out through your nose.
  • Soften your eyes, relax your jaw, and create a slight smile on your face.
  • Breathe in the feeling of gratitude. Rather than listing the things you appreciate, try to embody a sense of gratitude. Let your heart expand as you simply appreciate what is good in your life.
  • Then, after a few minutes of gratitude and appreciation, place your hands on your lap, and relax.
  • Next, focus your attention on the joy within your being. When your mind wanders, simply guide it back to your breath and the joy within you.
  • Let the feelings of gratitude and joy increase and expand throughout your entire body.
  • Turn your mouth upwards to a slight smile and keep your eyes soft.
  • Imagine your whole body smiling.


Happy Holidays!


This post is adapted from Joy’s blog at

Joy Stone

Joy Stone

Joy Stone is a Positive Psychology Life Coach and a yoga teacher. She combines the yoga tradition with modern positive psychology to help people move beyond anxiety, fear, and overwhelm, without medication or traditional talk therapy, so they can move forward in life and thrive. Joy works with individuals and groups from all over the country via phone and Skype, and locally in the Nashville area. Find out more at