Finding joy in simplicity

Jun 27, 2022 | Blog, Fire, Five Elements, Joy, Summer, Uncategorized | 3 comments

How are you experiencing joy?

This week, those of us living in the Northern Hemisphere officially entered into summer. There has been lots of humidity over here at Sunset Beach, AB, Canada (=plenty of rain!), but it’s summer none-the-less!

As we enter into summer, the element in the Chinese system that is associated with summer is Fire. We have transitioned from the Wood element of spring and now energy shifts from the liver and gallbladder to the heart and small intestine.

Yang is the predominant energy of summer; meaning heat, light, fire, activity, sweating, barbecues, holidays, gardening and yard work, and being outdoors are great things to be doing at this time. Gatherings with friends are even more appreciated and joyful after the past two years of restrictions.

We need in-person connections!

The challenging emotions that are related to the fire element are extreme anger, hatred, or even extreme elation. The heart, like all the other organs, seeks peace and balance. Staying in any of these challenging emotions for too long can damage the heart energy system. The positive emotion that can help to heal the heart and small intestine is joy. There is also a powerful Spring Forest Qigong exercise that can help further heal the heart and cultivate joy. You can follow along over here. 

My daily practice involves looking for examples of joy. Birds raising fledglings, wood lilies and wild roses blooming, beautiful sunsets, and the ripening of garden peas and wild berries. We have a robin’s nest situated low in a birch tree at our cabin. This is her second clutch but the first in this newly constructed near-perfect nest that is so perfectly lined with mud overlaid with grass. Watching her build it was joyful. Every day we check the nest and there is a new egg added. She is up to three at the time of this writing. It’s amazing (hopefully my dog doesn’t spot the babies)!

Finding joy in simple things can help with feelings of sadness, grief, and frustration.

One of the biggest lessons my practice has taught me is the significance of finding pleasure in everyday things. By shifting my outlook to notice and appreciate the simple gifts that are present all around us, I am happier and feel lighter. And some days, observing a flower opening or the cloud pattern in the sky can be joyous! I have found that finding the good in any situation helps the situation (and my healing) immensely.

What simple things bring you joy? Take a moment to focus on your heart as you breathe in these feelings of joy, and know this feeling is helping you heal your internal organs, your cells, and your emotions. How amazing is that? I’d love to hear about your joys. Please share in the comments.

If you’d like to learn more about the Five Elements, join the waitlist for my masterclass on

Thanks for reading and have a joyous day!
Much love and light,

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  1. Margot

    I need to remind myself when in a funk how sublime the simple joys of a cat nestled in my lap, a view of deer and crane in the field across the street bring joy!

  2. Sara Smith

    Great information Sue! I too have been finding joy in sunsets, laying in the sun and watching cloud formations (like we did as children and tried to guess what they looked like). Just being with water is so helpful for me. So much peace and joy in the waters. I noticed just yesterday that when my mom holds my hand she twirls my ring around and around with just a simple, soft movement of her finger, and in that moment I felt such joy and calmness.

    • Sue Crites

      This is beautiful Sara. So much beauty in the simple moments. Thanks for sharing!


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