After the wonderment of childhood - the innocence of youth has passed, we've added filters that, albeit necessary for survival, cloud our vision. We may appreciate the beauty of nature but have become too busy to enjoy it as we race around to "beat the clock," and avoid another scolding for dilly-dallying or lecture on how being late is disrespectful.
We mature and fall into line with whatever cultural belief system is relevant in our society that provides a venue for food and shelter. But, we can become so enmeshed in this concept that we mistake it for who we are - it becomes us and our life purpose shifts from honoring our instincts, to measuring ourselves by the standards we've been exposed to.
It's after we've seen through the facade of fleeting happiness and success that we can truly experience joy.
We learn that we can survive more than we ever thought we could and to find joy in this, we must abandon any self-imposed rules that said things had to be done or must go a certain way. For if we continue to judge ourselves according to old belief systems that we adopted, or have outgrown, we develop guilt and shame.
Learning to love ourselves is the greatest gift of all. By learning to forgive ourselves for our perceived faults or shortcomings, we become incapable of judging others. We become grateful to the people who have uplifted us and realize that this love and encouragement may not have been part of others' lives. We begin to see through anger, hurt, resentment or revenge when we can attach meaning to whatever has affected us in a way that we interpret as negative or threatening. Every day we have the opportunity to become what we desire our world to be.