We need a bank who takes joy as collateral

Fromm writes:

As long as anyone believes that his ideal and purpose is outside him, that it is above the clouds, in the past or in the future, he will go outside himself and seek fulfillment where it cannot be found. He will look for solutions and answers at every point except where they can be found, in himself. 

Proving, that meaning is made and not found. Joy is our responsibility, nobody is going to give it to us. We are the source of it, it’s not something that’s out there for us to acquire. 

Ask yourself this. How do you approach mundane and meaningless work? Do you avoid it completely, do it begrudgingly, or layer joy on top intentionally?

Motivation assessments suggest that people who approach it from the latter have a strong platform of emotional autonomy from which to develop their leadership capacity. Guided by their own set of rules and not affected by external forces, their internal local of control becomes the emotional anchorage that helps them remain firm, stable and focused in adverse or empty situations.

The good news is, this doesn’t require labor, merely bravery.

Joy, according the existentialists, is the emotional expression of the courageous yes to one’s own true being. It is the affirmation of that essential being in spite of desires and anxieties creates it.

Which means we can always do things that remind us who we are, that make us feel like ourselves, no matter what situation we are in. We can always take agency when doing uninteresting work and produce our own motivation. And all the tensions and worries that stop us noticing how sweet the world can be float away.

Barnum, the greatest showman and founder of the circus was once asked by a journalist, does it bother you that everything you’re selling is fake? To which he replied:

Do these smiles seem fake? It doesn’t matter where they come from. The joy is real.

We all do what we have to do to survive.


Do you give yourself permission to immerse in personal pleasures and private interests whenever you like?


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Author. Speaker. Strategist. Songwriter. Filmmaker. Inventor. Gameshow Host. World Record Holder. I also wear a nametag 24-7. Even to bed.
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