What is joy?

September 3 2015

I have just returned from a long weekend in Santorini.  I have been telling anyone who will listen how much I enjoyed the weekend.  I have been reflecting on what made it so special.


I was really looking forward to this weekend.  When I was in my 20s I spent many holidays in the Greek Islands but I never made it as far as Santorini – it was a very long ferry ride from Athens in those days.  I had of course read the guide books and seen the photographs of the magnificent caldera.  It became one of those places on my dream list that never quite made it to the top.   Then this year the world conspired to make my dream come true – I noticed in an airline magazine that BA now have direct flights to Santorini from City Airport.  I received a notification from a credit card company that I had 173,000 points that could be spent as air miles – and when I checked that was just enough for flights to Santorini!  So a couple of months ago I booked the flights for me and my daughter.

Enjoyment in the moment.

I was determined to enjoy my break and I planned that I would not work – I put on my out of office and almost unheard of for me I read a novel on the plane rather than catch up on my emails.  My first view of the caldera from the taxi was breathtaking – everything I imagined.  The hotel was perfect in the beautiful town of Oia overlooking the caldera. We ate perfect simple Greek food – Greek Salad, Tzatziki  and fresh fish or Kleftico cooked in the parchment.   We enjoyed early morning walks along the cliff tops or down the 200+ steps to the sea.   One day we went sailing on the caldera – other days we lay in the sun reading and chatting.  In the evenings we strolled around the small shops and watched the sunset.

Joyful reflection.

When I think about that weekend now I smile.  It was perfect.  The most amazing scenery that nature has to offer.  Precious time with my daughter.  Time for real rest and re-creation.  I returned happy and healthy and ready to go again.

And that I think is the recipe for joy

  • Joyful anticipation
  • Being in the moment at the time – really enjoying every moment
  • And joyful reflection afterwards

Plan some joy in your life today!