Joy is a step towards happiness.
Happiness is a sort of atmosphere you can live in, sometimes, when you are lucky.
Joy is a light that fills you with hope and faith and love.
Happiness and joy are different experiences. Some people say, "Being grateful and joyful doesn't mean that I am happy all of the time."
On many occasions I would delve deeper into those types of statement s by asking, "What does it look like when you are joyful and grateful but not happy?" The answers are all similar, "Happiness is tied to circumstance and joyfulness is tied to spirit and gratitude."
I also learned that neither joy nor happiness is constant; no one feels happiness all of the time or joyful all of the time. Both experiences come and go. Happiness is attached to external situations and events and seems to ebb and flow as those circumstances come and go.
Joy seems to be constantly tethered to our hearts by spirit and gratitude. But our actual experiences of joy--these intense feelings of deep spiritual connection and pleasure--seize us in a very vulnerable way.
We need to experience both happiness and joy. I think it is important to create and recognize the experiences that make us happy. In addition to creating happiness in our lives, I have learned that we need to cultivate the spiritual practices that lead to joyfulness, especially gratitude.
In my own life I would like to experience more happiness, but I want to live from a place of gratitude and joy. To do this, I think we have to take a hard look at the things the get in the way of gratitude and joy, and to some degree, even happiness.
Brene Brown -The Gifts of Imperfection