What fills your joy bucket?

A couple weeks ago I attended a retreat that was focused on helping us be more aligned in our life and business. It was life changing in so many ways! One of the concepts they shared was thinking of each of our priorities with a joy bucket attached. What would fill the joy bucket?

joy-bucketLet me explain. This is my daughter Sophie and she’s one of my big priorities, so I’ve been making a list of the things that bring her joy.

  • 1:1 time with my husband or me
  • Playing school
  • Doing art
  • Play dates with friends
  • Family pizza/movie night
  • Monkey bars at the park

I’ve been intentional about making sure that everyday I’m doing something with her (or as a family) that would fill her joy bucket. Recently I picked her up after school and we had a Mommy/Sophie afternoon. For 45 minutes, I was fully present with her. My phone was put away and I wasn’t thinking about all the things on my to do list. Instead, we painted these sun-catchers, talked about her day, and I got celebrate the amazing gifts I see in her. About 45 minutes in, this sweet girl who normally CRAVES all the 1:1 time with Momma had her joy bucket filled and asked to do something on her own.

It’s not about the quantity of time, but rather the quality of time!


Then, I did the same thing with my son Ben. Here are a few things that bring him joy:

  • 1:1 time with my husband or me
  • Wii bowling or basketball together as a family
  • Playing with Star Wars characters
  • Puzzles
  • Going to Monkey Joes or Malibu Jacks
  • Family pizza/movie night

So, just like with Sophie, I’m being intentional about filling Ben’s joy bucket each day. Just 15-20 minutes of focused, intentional time with me or as a family is usually all he needs until his joy bucket is filled and he’s off to the next thing.


What fills YOUR joy bucket?

I’m finding that doing things that bring ME joy is equally important. If you’ve forgotten what brings you joy, take a moment to create your own list. To get you thinking, here are a few things that fill my joy-bucket.

  • Snuggling + meaningful conversation with my husband and/or kids
  • Walking + listening to a book on audible or a podcast
  • Time with God reading my Bible and praying (especially when it’s outside on my deck)
  • Playing games as a family
  • Sitting by the lake
  • Relaxing at the Salt Room
  • Massage
  • Journaling
  • Bath with epsom salts
  • Connecting with an inspiring person
  • Dreaming & Planning

If it’s been a while since you’ve been intentional about doing things that bring you joy – it might take a bit to create your list. So, make it an ongoing list where you’re adding things to it regularly. Then, make a commitment to do something everyday that brings you joy.

Try it for yourself this week. See what happens when you look at your priorities with a joy bucket attached and then get intentional everyday about filling the bucket.

I’d love to hear from you in the comments below! What fills YOUR joy bucket?


  • Maria

    September 30, 2019 at 6:27 pm

    I’m in so far spending time with my family and spending 15 minutes a day cleaning a section of each area of the room. Starting slow focusing also on my health and family health.

  • Bridget

    September 30, 2019 at 8:19 pm

    Reading and watching tv or a movie with my husband

  • Pearl

    October 1, 2019 at 6:24 am

    I loved your idea of making a joy bucket list and to commit to do something everyday that brings me joy.For so long I’ve never bothered to search my heart to find out what really gives me joy. I’ve never had a vision for my life. There were always others that I felt I had to put before me. Now just a month from turning 65 i’m Learning to put me first. So now I need to figure out my joy bucket list. Thank you so much for this article.

    • Cheryl Pierce Paul

      October 22, 2019 at 5:04 pm

      Me, too, Pearl.

  • Helene

    October 1, 2019 at 11:00 am

    I need quality time to figure out my bucket list too. Wife and homeschool Mom to 5 daughters, 1 in college, 1 finished with school. Hmmm…

  • Liz

    October 10, 2019 at 8:26 am

    I’ve been finding joy in a morning walk just in time to catch the sunrise. I love my walks when I can listen to my Bible in a Year plan along the way.

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