Transcript 360: Expanding Your Capacity for Joy (Hitting Max Happiness)

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00:00:00 – Jen
You're listening to the Vibrant Happy Women podcast. I'm Doctor Jen Riday, and on this episode, I'm going to be talking about expanding our personal capacities for joy. Stay tuned. 

00:00:19 – Intro
Are you ready to expand your soul's capacity for joy? Then this podcast is for you. I'm Doctor Jen Riday, and welcome to Vibrant Happy Women. 

00:00:36 – Jen
All right, welcome back to Vibrant Happy Women. I just got back from the most amazing retreat yet, where we experienced the deepest connection and the greatest emotional safety. And for me, personally, where I hit max capacity for the joy I have ever been able to receive so far in my life. So I feel like that's saying a lot.

Let me describe it. I was sitting on a beach one night. Some of the retreat attendees were there right in front of the water, taking pictures. The sun was setting in the west, and I could see their silhouettes. And I felt just such amazing joy at the emotional safety we had created together.

The friendships. The love, the vulnerability. It's a level of friendship I never expected, I never even knew was possible.

And it just gets better with every retreat. So, for me personally, this was by far, hands down, the best retreat I've ever hosted. I think it was my 6th. I adored it. So I'm sitting on the beach, the women are taking pictures, jumping, profiling with their, their iPhones, and I felt something that was almost like, “Whoa, what is this?”

I don't think I've ever felt this happy before. It was just almost more than I could contain. So much so that it felt like it was pressing on the tear ducts of my eyes. My eyes were just tearing up. I could barely handle that much happiness.

And suddenly it reminded me of a question a friend had asked me once. My friend Natalie, long ago, she asked, “Jen, how much happiness are you willing to receive?” What an interesting question. And I want to pose it to you now, listening. What would be your answer to this question?

How much happiness are you willing to receive? Okay, so we each grow up with a baseline level of happiness, a baseline level of conflict, drama, happiness. And that feels like our emotional home. Our nervous system is used to that. We will often try to find that in the partners we choose in our lives.

We will often recreate that, whether we want to, with our thinking mind or not. We will often recreate that and try to seek that out because it feels like home to our nervous systems. Well, as we do our work, as we learn tools of healing, as we uplevel how we think, we start to process and understand how we feel, we understand what it means to be truly seen, heard, and valued. We understand what it means to experience and create emotional safety. When we start to feel those moments when, ooh, that feels good, that feels really good.

This is not like I felt when I grew up. This is not how I feel with my partner or my ex-partner. This is not how I feel when I act that way with the kids. We start to differentiate, and we slowly, if we do our work and we put ourselves in spaces and with people that give that feeling to us, we slowly uplevel or raise the bar on what our energetic baseline feels like, we start to literally practice expanding our capacity for happiness. And so at this year's retreat, which was, for me, the best retreat yet, I personally hit the max of the happiness I have ever received in my life so far.

And it was wild. I just couldn't get enough. It was so healing. It's like every cell was vibrating with joy. I don't know what enlightenment feels like, but if it approaches anything like what I felt at the retreat, I want it someday.

And it wasn't just me. We, retreat attendees, all the retreat attendees and myself, we were creating that together. And our energies of love and safety and really seeing each other in a heartfelt and compassionate way was all kind of bouncing around and raising that emotional capacity together. You can tell I'm struggling to talk about this, but I hit my Max threshold, and it felt like I wanted to cry. So I'm committed between now and the next retreat in 2025 to keep doing my work of putting myself around people and in places where I am seen and heard and valued, so much so that my nervous system can be calm and grounded and completely emotionally safe.

I'm not in fight or flight. I'm not on guard for that next thing that's going to come out of my spouse's mouth. I'm not worried for what's going to happen with one of my kids. Completely emotionally safe spaces are sometimes somewhat rare in this world, and I believe at the vibrant, happy women's retreat, we created that together. By the way, I'm super stoked to do it again in 2025 in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic.

They have a new conference center there with huge wall of windows that overlooks the ocean, and that's where we get to meet. And I can't wait. I know we're going to create that beautiful, sacred, calm, and safe space together, to heal, to once again expand our personal capacities for joy, to be able to answer the question, oh, this, this year, this is how much happiness I'm able to receive, and every year to expand that a little more. The cool thing is you go back and you have, you know, even when you go home, and it's not that perfect, emotionally safe environment, you have a light in your eyes that your family can see and feel. I believe their nervous systems respond to that and regulate, co- regulate to it.

We literally train our kids to have a higher happiness threshold than we perhaps grew up with as children. We literally tolerate less drama, less noise, less contention, less fighting, all of the things that feel icky to our nervous systems because we've experienced, oh, this is how good I could feel. I'm going to recreate that. So, if you haven't guessed, I'm a huge proponent of attending, creating, finding spaces where you are totally emotionally safe, where you are seen, heard, and valued, where your nervous system is completely calm. I felt that way at church many, many, many times.

I feel that way when I'm with girlfriends. Once in a while, I can even create it in my home. So it's possible. But I want to challenge you with this episode to think about the spaces, the places, the people that help you to expand your personal capacity for joy, that help you to decrease what you'll tolerate in terms of drama and contention and problems. Now, I don't want to paint a picture as if we live in a happy bubble.

We still live on the planet Earth, which has a human condition. We experience light and dark, good and bad, easy and hard, all the dichotomies that allow us to grow. But I think within the easy and hard times, the good times and the bad, we can still raise our emotional happiness baseline. We can still feel very happy when things are hard. I've experienced it myself.

My fifth child, my daughter is homeschooling now, and that's no big deal in and of itself, but there are a lot of mental health challenges she's facing with that, and a lot of people are reaching out with concern about her, people from church and others. It could be really, really heavy. But I have done my emotional work, and I can carry that weight a little easier because I'm raising my happiness baseline, my capacity to handle my life, my capacity for joy, and I'm doing my best to help her. So that is my thought today. Where are the spaces, the places, the people who are the people that help you to feel deeply, emotionally safe, where you can hit the max level of joy and then contemplate expanding that capacity even more?

So think about that. Think about it all week. How do you feel at work? How do you feel when you talk to your spouse, your mom, your mother in law, father in law, how do you feel when you're talking to your kids? What can you control in terms of how you feel?

Are there people that it's probably just not safe to be around anymore because they're lowering that emotional baseline? Are the people that always leave you feeling really good and they're raising that capacity. Put yourself in proximity with people who are also higher vibe expanding that capacity. And of course, the retreat is one of those places you are heartily, heartfelt, fully, if that's a word, invited to join us at the 2025 Vibrant Happy Women’s Retreat. It's in Punta Cana.

I would love for you to experience the feelings I'm trying to convey, a point where you could say, whoa, that's more happiness than I've ever felt. Especially when you think about what our planet has been through over the past few years with the pandemic and the election cycle will have happened. Things happen. But to be able to say, I just last week hit the happiest moment of my entire life, that is saying something.

And I want you to be able to say that. So learn more about the retreat at we'd love to have you there to feel that feeling and to experience that big, big growth. I want to end today not with my thoughts about the retreat, but seven ladies who were willing to share their thoughts about the retreat. Enjoy.

00:10:44 – Jenny
Hi, I'm Jenny and what I love about the retreat is all the inner tools and exercises and the connection with all these amazing women. It was really above and beyond what I expected and I've learned so much already. And really getting a chance to step away from your regular life has been invigorating. 

00:11:31 – Mary S.
Hi, I'm Mary, and I just want to share that it has been such an energizing and phenomenal experience to feel the other energy from the other women and to be able to share your energy, your ideas, your wisdom and so much to take back. I feel like I'm already a very different person than when I came. And since I was at the last retreat two years ago, I am such a different person. With Jen Riday's methods and her coaching along, it's phenomenal. 

00:11:49 – Karen
Hi, my name is Karen, and my favorite part of the Vibrant Happy Women Retreat is the release of negative energy gave me the ability to have the most amazing sleep I've ever had. And the friendships that I've built here are lifelong. I look forward to just nurturing those friendships and being around positive women that have the same goal as I do.

00:12:10 – Angela
Hi, my name is Angela. Every year I continue to grow and every year I feel the love and acceptance of all of the other ladies who come to the retreat. 

00:12:30 – Maria
Hey, I'm Maria and I just want to say that this retreat was just the culmination of other retreats that I have been to and it's a celebration of me coming on the other side and finally healing some of the things that I needed to heal within me. And I just love it. I love every single time I come here because I discover new things about myself. 

00:12:43 – Mary H.
Hi, my name is Mary and I love Jen Riday's retreats. They are really a great way to relax and get rid of the stress process things and that I'm so much better when I go back home. 

00:13:11 – Jessy
Hi, I’m Jessy and I love DJ Jazzy Jen Riday. She picks the best music. Her guided meditations are life changing. I was able to release a lot of emotion that I'd been holding onto and getting away from the family and the day to day stressors allows me to see things from a different perspective and really get down to some solving of problems and making some good positive changes. I'm really happy to be here. 

00:13:40 – Jen
My friends, thank you so much for listening. You deserve to feel amazing and I think really that's the primary thing we're here to learn: to be happy. It's a big giant plan of happiness and I love it and we can do it. You can do it. I'll see you again next week. Until then, make it a vibrant and happy week. Take care.