Listen to the podcast here:
A Children’s Author’s Journey with Joy Resor
The Unusual Path of Joy
I am excited. I have a children’s author by the name of Joy Resor. She got a great book out and it’s called Designed to Shine!: Read Aloud Rhymes for Any Size Heart. It is awesome. I read it probably six or seven times. It’s great and I am going to encourage everybody to go out and purchase it for their children and themselves because it is for all audiences. Joy is the Founder of Joy On Your Shoulders. She is a spiritual counselor and does many other things and we’re going to learn about it. I’m excited to have her on the show. Thank you, Joy. Welcome to the show.
Thank you so much, Art. I’m grateful to be here with you and the audience.
It’s my pleasure. Let’s start this out by learning a little bit about you, where you grew up when you were a kid and take us through the whole gamut of how you’ve got to this journey of writing a book like this.
I was born in Brooklyn, New York where I lived for three whole weeks because my mom was staying with her parents while my dad was in Air Force training in Georgia. My family moved a lot. I was a toddler on the Air Force base North of Caribou, Maine, Loring Air Force Base. They moved to Racine, Wisconsin where dad was from and to Youngstown, Ohio and to Toledo, Ohio. All this moving was before I was six. I grew up in Youngstown, Ohio with this name Joy. I do have memories of having some fun when I was a child but in the bigger picture of my trajectory, they did squash my joy. My older sister repeatedly says a litany at me, “Mom and dad put you back in the hospital because you cried too much then they got the wrong baby back. You don’t belong in our family.”
This gave me a 50-year wound inside me of not belonging. I felt that I didn’t belong in the family. I didn’t belong walking down the street. I was self-conscious. It created in me a lot of judgment. It probably grew my ego. I didn’t feel at ease anywhere. My older sister would slam the door against me if I tried to talk with her. In our family, my dad was a rage-a-holic, door-slamming person. We needed to watch the news while we ate dinner. I don’t think I need to go on and on about all the things that were hard for me in life. When I was little, I tucked inside myself and I went on a rock and communed with God. When I was in my 30s, I journaled every day a prayer to become the Joy I am created to be. I watched God’s hand in my life did synchronicities of being led to the right book, the right person, the right healer and the right class. I’m getting goosebumps talking about it because I have been changed.
I resonate with your story. My audience knows mine, but I’m not sure how much you know about me. At nine years old, when I was abandoned, I went to a hilltop and had a conversation with God and I listened to it. That’s the important thing. You’ve been on a journey and that journey is taking you to this place and time right now. All those past experiences are what makes Joy who she is. With that said, you can go ahead. You can keep going, anything’s open. You can talk about whatever you want.
That’s probably enough of an answer for that question. I had decades of not being this version of who I am now. When my husband wanted to move to the mountains of Western North Carolina in 1995, he said, “We’re buying land so that we could move there when our sons are grown.” When our two sons grew up we moved here in 2007, but before we did, I needed to clean out a house of seventeen years that we had lived raising our sons. I cried and I cleaned. What happened in the Spring is because I have lived in such synchronicity, every Spring I took a journaling class. One year friendship would be the topic. One year it would be wisdom. The year we were moving away, the topic was letters to the future. Have you had some perfect synchronicities that arise for you, Art?
I’m in perfect synchronicity all the time. That’s how I live, but I don’t look to the future as much as I live in the moment. I take moment by moment and enjoy and savor every one of it. That comes out of my background of being in Vietnam and learning early on that death can come at any second. You have to live for now. That’s my synchronicity of living in the moment and it affects everything.
I’m with you and I have become such a present moment person. I’ve been able to quiet the inner critics and I have a quiet mind. Writing the letters to my future in 2007 was an important thing for me to do because that was how I crossed that bridge from being in fear of being in love. Instead of being afraid to move to the mountains of Western North Carolina, after writing to my future, I was able to realize I’m going to live into an amazing life in these mountains. One year after we moved here, my husband wanted a divorce. That was interesting. When he brought that up, it hit me in the gut like a black cloud. I heard a voice that said, “Take in this darkness. You need it. You are going to transmute it.” I believe we are all so guided if we pay attention to the messages.Time is a blessing, a reason to cheer! - Joy Resor Click To Tweet
This conversation is in tune with what I’ve been discussing on my shows in the past. People need to listen to their gut instincts and that voice inside of us. It will never fail us when you listen to it, understand it, and don’t try to back it. It does amazing things in your life. One of the things I’ve noticed in our conversation that I love and resonate with is you’ve learned how to manage your expectations. What you’re talking about is in line with what I have researched and discussed with managing your expectations and see all of our fear lies in unmet expectations. When God planted the seed of expectation in us, he planted the seed of fear and faith. He lets us through free will decide where we want to travel. When you take the positivity side of it and go with it, everything falls in place. Your life falls in place.
You don’t know how much that resonated with me too. Here’s my example. I was getting on the highway on May 1st, 1996 and I heard, “Don’t go.” Now, if I were getting on a highway and heard that, I would exit and come back home because I do now trust those voices in me implicitly. That day, Joy was going to interview a woman named Faith at our sister church, she was at a church in downtown Cleveland. I wasn’t grounded in my body then, I was living from the neck up and I figured, “This is fear in my mind talking.” I was such a completely different individual than I am now. I said a prayer and drove down because I also was in my perfection. I was a perfectionist and I had a deadline to do, the church newsletter, and I was going to interview this woman.
A couple of blocks from my destination, as I approached a green light, my mind registered that the people waiting at the red light perpendicular to me had a look of horror on their face. As I registered, why do they look horrified, my car got slammed and sent through the green light in front of them. I’m going to believe it’s because I prayed for protection but I was sent through a green light on a one-way street as the lead car when this man in a van behind me was having a seizure with his foot stuck on the gas. When I went to downtown Cleveland to look at the police report and see all the people that had died that day, I got this second chance of living. I had neck and back chronic injuries that I held in my body for several years. Not on purpose, but because I was clueless. I was a physician’s daughter. Chiropractic was not anywhere in my being, other than it’s wrong and it’s quackery.
I’m married to a nurse anesthetist. I know that it still exists. It’s taboo to totally DC.
After several years, I was at a course in miracles meeting and a friend of mine stood up and she said, “Look how much taller I’m standing.” I recommend my chiropractor. I recommend my massage therapist. I call this crossing a bridge of belief. I have crossed a number of them and beliefs are simply something we believe but we don’t have to have that belief forever. We can change our beliefs.
It can change in a moment’s time.
I found my way to chiropractic and massage. The thing is I’ve released so much because I was tight and was in fear for years. I’m a perfectionist, but once I crossed over to love. I started doing bodywork and I’ve been releasing everything that’s not serving me. I allow life to be alive. I am in the flow of so much goodness that it’s beautiful.
This is what led you to write this beautiful book. There’s so much emotion in it and so much wisdom that it’s beautiful. I hope people buy it because it’s not a hard read. It’s something you could read every day to your children and be proud that you’re teaching them these tidbits of wisdom that Joy is bringing to us. Bring us through the transition of writing the book and how you moved into that and the story behind the book.
Designed to Shine!: Read Aloud Rhymes for Any Size Heart is my third book in the world. A lot of the challenges in my growing up years were all divinely perfect. Now it’s like a fuzzy dream of that other life that I had. I’ve forgiven all of whatever I needed to forgive. I’m in service to God and I had that prayer to become the Joy I am created to be. I had been given writing gifts so I have been writing my whole life. I have big bins filled with my journals. The first book that came, God woke me up and said, “Joy, use the lessons of your life to inspire readers.” It came out and it’s called Go In Joy! An Alphabetical Adventure, which is questions, essays and poems. Part of my healing journey was to be in poetry therapy. I write poems that are therapeutic. When I went to a therapist to heal part of my past, I couldn’t speak, I only cried. It wasn’t helpful and I had so much pent up pain.
Writing is such a therapeutic tool and it’s incredibly therapeutic. I’m thrilled that you’re writing journals because journals are daily records of our thoughts and actions, and all the good things and bad things that happened that we soon forget sometimes. They’re great to look back on and reflect. You don’t have to share them with anybody. They are totally yours. They are special. Journals are neat.
My second book is called Venture to Your Center: Journaling Prompts to Enliven Your Joy. That book wrote itself through me in two weeks with power and play. It’s filled with valuable questions for the individual that would like to read them and write to understand themselves, then Designed to Shine! came. I’m in awe that I am an author of three inspiring books. I’m sure that my soul came here to have my joy squashed so that I could find my way back to this place where I am now.
Do you think that the result of it is you inspire others to change? Through your writing, they can believe in themselves and have the expectation that they can change. You create that change. You’re the change agent. What’s so powerful about the written and the spoken word is when it creates people to change for the better, it’s great.Use the lessons of your life to inspire others. Click To Tweet
I haven’t thought of myself that way but I have used the term that I inspire people to live differently. In my first book, there’s a poem that inspired the man who’s currently in my life to be in my life. I inspire him every day and he is now cleaning out his home. He lived there for several years. I’m grateful and happy to be this version of who I am because I do affect people in positive ways.
Why do you think people are resistant to change? What is it about change that puts the fear in people? I write a lot about expectations. Look at them through two lenses of either faith or fear. We know that fear stops and faith builds and creates. It can vacillate all the time on different issues. I always tell people I’m fearless but that’s not true because if you put a tight rope across the Grand Canyon, you’re not getting me on it, so it changes.
I can speak to that of that I was. When I lived in fear, I was highly resistant to change. Even that term “change agent,” I used that about my ex because when I was in the marriage, he is the one that said, “We need to get you a different desk. I want to fit behind that desk. We need to have a different kitchen.” I called him my change agent. I can’t speak for other people, but my belief if I was going to guess why do people resist change? I would say they might be very controlling. They like how their world is and they don’t want it to change. They might be concerned about the unknown that they have a fear of the unknown. I love the mystery. I know people who are this way that their life is not that great. They do not love their situation or the people that they hang out with but they’d rather have that situation than maybe they are unable to believe that the unknown could be so much better. The fact that I embraced change has made me so much more adventuresome. I was living and years ago, I was hiding and observing life. I was doing a lot of observing life.
I believe that when we don’t listen to our own core expectations and we listen to the expectations of others, we lose our sense of self. We start living their life or what they want our life to be through their eyes. It causes extreme unhappiness when you start living to the expectations of others. It happens a lot in relationships. When it goes away and all else is gone and somebody has complete control of you, what do you do? You lose it totally. You’ve given up everything that is near and dear to you.
I grew up in a co-dependent household. I even commented I have a spiritual practice with my boyfriend on the phone. He lives 30 minutes from me and we talk every morning and every night. We share this practice where I read to him. He loves my voice. A lot of people love my voice. I don’t know why exactly but I think it’s because I am who I am. I am filled with joy and love.
You’re authentic. I can sense it the minute that we started talking. I knew you were authentic and that’s my kind of people. That’s what most people want. They want you to be authentic because who wants to deal with somebody who is phony and not authentic? It doesn’t make sense.
When I was driven by my ego and I was trying to be somebody, I was in this inauthentic version of joy. As I have become more who I am and the ego has quieted. I can now be me. That is authenticity. My throat chakra opened when I was 53 so I could finally speak for myself. I don’t know how many of us are going through life not speaking for ourselves. Where I am is the freedom, love, peace and miracles that happen. I recommend to anybody to listen with them and then follow your heart. Follow where you can and release what you can to become more of who you are beyond all those expectations.
Watch your creativity flow. When you do that, your creativity blossoms. It creates this whole scenario where your life takes on the path that was meant to be and your journey will change. It happened to me at 63, many years ago.
I’m with you on that. When I surrendered my will and my ego and got down on the ground, I gave myself over to divinity to God. I have watched my life completely changed. Creativity, I have more ideas than I can live probably in this lifetime of things to do. This book that you love, Designed to Shine!: Read Aloud Rhymes for Any Size Heart, maybe you would allow me to read a rhyme from it. This book has a sequel coming. Book two will come out with a whole new alphabet of enlivening meaningful-wise rhymes, where this one is about attention, balance, change, dance, energy and forgive. The new book is about amaze, believe, create, dream and extra frosting.
I think you need to write a section on expectations on how to manage expectations. It’s important for people but we’ll talk about that later. I want to hear you read.
I will read the rhyme on change. “Change, we all feel it. It’s how the world rocks. Tight tulips that open, clock hands which tick tock. A seal on the corner who likes your green hat. The one who is waving before sliding course flat. Change is forever, it’s how the world turns. You fliggle or wiggle and flow as you learn. Sulking and screaming, ‘Don’t change,’ change a bit, but breathing through change lets smiles gently fit.”Be grateful and happy to affect people in positive ways. Click To Tweet
This book is chock-full of those beautiful prose that inspires and has a lot of wisdom. It’s a pleasure to have read it. I encourage it to everybody.
A little bit on the back says, “You’ll receive ideas to pay attention in new ways, reminders about kindness, and so much more in this alphabetical treasure. This is a book, a guide, and a gentle teacher all at once. It’s a book for you, your child or your inner child about loving who we are to shine in the world.”
When I read that, I love it because it’s such a powerful truth. You let it shine in and it will glow out of you. You couldn’t have put it in a better way. I know that this came from your heart. I don’t say I find writing difficult, but I think differently. When I start to put it down, sometimes it becomes difficult putting it into words because I’m a different thinker. If you read in my work on expectations, you will realize that I think about and see things differently. Do you think you see things differently?
I do and each person sees things differently. The writing process has been effortless as if I am a channel for something that divinity wants me to be. What I would do is all my books are alphabetical. If I was on a letter for this rhyming book and I would lean into writing that rhyme, if it felt sticky or hard like it wasn’t flowing, I would try it from a different angle. Maybe start it over and try. If it was sticking again, I would sit quietly and receive another concept to write about, another C word to write about. For example, this change flowed completely that I had been so resistant to change. Now I understand it is the way of the world.
I’ve read that you do spiritual counseling. Tell us about that and how it all works for you.
On the part of my healing journey, a friend led me to her spiritual director. I ended up going to that woman for a while to help me move beyond where I was. I remember she only asked me ever two questions, “What are you afraid of? Where is God in this?” Years later, I felt a call to become that. Lo and behold synchronicity, when we moved to the mountains, a friend of mine in Ohio wrote to me and she said, “Look at this program. I think it’s near you.” It was a spiritual direction training program that I ended up graduating from. I serve clients and being with them, listening beneath their words so that then I receive questions and wisdom to offer them on their journey. Sometimes they simply want to be connected to God again. They had shut God out of their lives. I support them in renewing that relationship with divinity. Sometimes they are simply saying yes to everybody else but themselves. Through my support, they learn to honor who they are. There are all different ways that people can find me and what they desire to gain from me walking next to them to bring them to a new place.
You’re in a perfect place to do that. My passion for the mountains is because my connection to God began as I was a nine-year-old going to the top of that hill and have that conversation. For me, the first step in expectation therapy is to identify. I like to take people out to the mountains above the lake and we look out over the lake. It can ground you into yourself to where you feel more in tune to your environment and what’s around you. It becomes much easier to listen to your inner self and start to gain the trust and faith in believing in yourself and in God, that there’s a plan and He can lead you that way. Where you’re at is probably the epitome of it. Go up into the Smokies and be on top of a mountain somewhere. Have the universe surrounding you. God’s glory shining all over you is a blessing.
I’m grateful that my husband moved me to the mountains. I’m grateful that he divorced me because that enabled me to live into who I am so that I could bring blessings to other people.
Joy said she was thankful that her husband divorced her. That is the epitome of looking at things through a different perspective that shifts the way her life is going to change. Instead of the woe is me and wallowing in the hurt and the pain, she rose above it and has fulfilled her journey. She looked at it from the perspective of it was meant to be, it happened, and did it without bitterness, hopefully.
When that divorce happened, at that moment, I knew many people who were divorced several years earlier but they were still in it. I knew that that would have been me. I desire to heal the pain and anger of that, whatever that was in me so that I could move beyond that journey. Every day I have a gratitude practice that’s part of my morning and I’m so grateful. I understand that abundance is not about money. Abundance is about how we feel when we walk onto our property or walk outside and breathe into the air and we’re healthy.
I like to look at abundance as freedom and happiness. That to me, is the epitome of abundance. You’re totally free to think and do as you please, have joy in your heart, and be happy in every moment. It’s a blessing to be that way. That’s what we live for. We all live to be happy.You need not be resistant to change as it is the way of the world. Click To Tweet
Do you have a belief that the purpose of living is to be free and happy? The purpose of having a life on earth isn’t to be covered over with expectations of other people, wounds, hurts or have blocks in us about this or that. We are meant to have a happy life if we can.
I made that decision at nine years old. I decided after all the pain I had from nine to probably sixteen. I’ve changed my expectation that I was in control of my destiny. I was the one who mattered the most. I know some people are going to say that’s egotistical. I don’t mean it in an egotistical way. It was almost a shield of protection for me when I was younger. I learned that my expectations are what’s going to propel me to do the things that I had and wanted to do for myself and I did not want to live in it. People would say in my teenage years, I was probably defiant but I live to my expectations and not the expectations of others. It’s an important lesson to learn for people.
For some of us and I know for me, I can name it. I was in my 50s when my little sister wanted me to drive our ill father from North Carolina to Pittsburgh for Thanksgiving. She was talking me into it and telling me all about it. The next morning, I woke up with this clarity that was crazy and unbelievably great. The clarity was, “She wants me to do this, her son wants to see grandpa, but what do I believe about this?” I realized, “No, I don’t want to drive a very sick father to Pittsburgh.” I got on the phone, I called her and I said, “I’m sorry, this is not mine to do.” She was like, “We’re going to be so upset.” I was like, “You’re going to be upset.” I finally got what you got at age nine. I got it at age 50 something. I don’t have to please everybody. I need to honor my understandings inside me. This makes a huge difference.
It’s where your freedom and happiness comes from because you have a self-satisfaction about being able to not only stand up but you’re following your beliefs and your inner core strengths. You did the right thing. Once we learned that, it doesn’t matter what anyone else calls or says about us. Those words are only words and if you don’t let them penetrate you, then they can’t hurt you. It’s when you let them penetrate your belief system, your core values, and all that that they do. In expectation therapy, one of the things I talk about is the term collective diminished expectations. One of the things about expectations is when we surrender them to other people, we’re surrendering control of our life to them. That is a recipe for disaster because your own happiness is not going to be fulfilled, neither is the happiness of the people around you. The one person that’s controlling you may feel great about it and super. Sometimes people don’t even know they’re doing it but when they do it, they’ve got control of you. I wanted to make sure that we know how and where people can connect with you and where they can get your books.
People can reach me through my website which is JoyOnYourShoulders.com. You could google Joy Resor and you will find all the other podcasts I’ve been on. If you want to hear more from me, some of the stories will be the same because my life is my life. Facebook, there’s a Joy on Your Shoulders page that you can join in on. My books are available through my website. Those would be signed copies or unsigned copies. You could go into any independent bookstore and say, “Can you get me these books?” They’re also on Amazon and Barnes & Noble online.
Joy, I want to give you the opportunity to leave us with some words of wisdom. Take your time and tell us what you want to leave us with.
I encourage you to lean into healing something in your life that’s asking to be healed. Lean into something that you can release or tweak one little thing. Anything that you can start with is a starting place to improve the version of you that is in the world. I also encourage you to believe that you can be a brighter light in the world and it starts by taking steps.
Those are wise words from Joy. It’s beautiful. Joy, it’s been a pleasure having you on. We’re going to have to do this again. I would love to chat more and learn more about you. I encourage everybody to get her books and find out more about Joy and support her. Shower Epiphanies world, it’s been a great show. We’ve laid out some great nuggets and Joy has given us a lot of stuff to chew on and digest. I encourage you all to do so. Thank you.
- Designed to Shine!: Read Aloud Rhymes for Any Size Heart
- Joy On Your Shoulders
- Go In Joy! An Alphabetical Adventure
- Venture to Your Center: Journaling Prompts to Enliven Your Joy
- Joy on Your Shoulders – Facebook
About Joy Resor
Joy is a joy-bringer, who inspires love, peace, and joy on the path of those she encounters every day. Joy lives in North Carolina, where she hula hoops in sunbeams, writes books that inspire folks to a deeper life of love and shares adventures with her partner, Michael. Joy’s inner child will share laughter with you at any moment!
Love the show? Subscribe, rate, review, and share!
Join the Shower Epiphanies Community today: