The World Cafe Community

Hosting Conversations about Questions that Matter

Feedback from Jan '10 Seattle Conversation Salon on 'Joy'

Another interesting conversation cafe this month in Seattle. Our little conversation cafe community is gaining recognition and numbers, with interest from local radio and a steady stream of people joining the Meetup group. Coffee and tea houses are now asking to become permanent hosts - yay! A second facilitator has joined me, so we will be able to host two conversations each month - both on the same topic, but in different parts of town. Would love to hear from local World Cafe Community bods who might be interested in facilitating...

The Jan 2010 topic was: How do we bring joy into our lives?

Questions for reflection circulated previously and at the event:

1.   Is there anything you can identify in the joyful people that you know (yourself included!) - an attitude, activities, family or social life - that you think is a key contributor to their joy? What is the key to joy
and happiness - money, love, a social life, a roof over our head and food on
the table?  

2.     How do we attract joy? Do we wait for it to happen to us, or do we seek it out? 

3.   Once we have joy, do we have a moral obligation to pass it on to others; if so, how? Is it possible to move through conflict and get to joy?       

Full group feedback


Differences in the way individuals experience joy:

color:black"">·       Joy is everywhere – you
just have to see it

color:black"">·       Being in the zone of joy;
everyone has their own zone, some have higher levels of joy, some lower

color:black"">·       People’s expectations of
joy differ – some have higher expectations, some lower

color:black"">·       We are the average of the
10 people we spend most of our time with, therefore it makes sense to spend
time around those people that fulfill us the most or give us the most joy

color:black"">·       You need to know yourself
in order to know what makes you feel joy


Characteristics of joyful people:

color:black"">·       Seem to have a sense of

color:black"">·       Young children – do what
they love, exploring, learning

color:black"">·       Money and security
contribute to feeling joy

color:black"">·       Love to give

color:black"">·       We want to feel good –
having the feeling of doing good makes us feel good is intrinsically selfish
(enlightened self-interest)

color:black"">·       Have a balance in all areas
of their life, and in their emotions; you can have different emotions happening
at the same time, e.g. joy and sadness


What to do to ‘get joy’:

color:black"">·       Connect with yourself –
e.g. through conscious breathing

color:black"">·       Be true to yourself

color:black"">·       No regrets

color:black"">·       Give more than you take

color:black"">·       Teach yourself how to
“re-see” (glass half-full rather than half-empty, attitude, appreciation)

color:black"">·       Being mindful, being in the
moment, is the key to joy


Joy = comes from being

Happiness = comes from having


Is there an opposite to joy? Despair.


Re moral obligation – how much should you share? If we have an abundance, then we have a moral obligation to share joy; exchange societies were mentioned.

(A hard copy of this report is attached)

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Great initiative and great topic!!! Worthwile following!
Thanks Ria!



I live near Seattle and was wondering how often you host these conversations and whether or not i could attend one??


Thanks :)

Hi Maurice,

Thanks for your interest! Unfortunately, I 'retired' from running these convo's over a year ago.

All the best,


Oh, bummer, okay well thanks anyways! lets hope for some PNW sunshine!!






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