A to Z Guide to Thriving in Life Over 50s Lifestyle

‘J’ is for the Joy of the Journey

April 11, 2018


I wasn’t going to select ‘Joy’ or ‘Journey’ for my ‘J’ word in the AtoZ Guide to Thriving in Life, then I saw this quote and it made me think.

Sometimes in life, we become so focused on the finish line that we fail to find the joy in the journey” – President Dieter F Uchtdorf

I am a goal-oriented person and I like to have my plans and goals set down so I can start working towards achieving them.  Having goals or dreams in life gives us a purpose and meaning to our life and helps us to grow as individuals.  It is important to have something to look forward to in life.

However, the downside of setting goals and dreams is that sometimes we focus so much on reaching the end result that we don’t take the time to enjoy each moment leading up to our achievement.

Focusing on the ‘finish line’ can become stressful and we can become impatient if it is taking longer to achieve our end point.  The ‘journey’ becomes a chore and you just want to get it over and done with. Having this mindset takes the enjoyment out of each step towards your goal.

In reality, it is the journey we need to take on our path to achieving, where we gain the most benefit and learn the lessons to improve  and enjoy our life.

Why we need to find the Joy in the Journey

1. Build Self-Belief

When I set a goal I always break it down into steps that I need to take to achieve it.  By taking ‘baby steps’ and progressing forward you build self-esteem, self-confidence and gain motivation to continue.  At each step that we tick off, take a moment to enjoy the feeling of achieving that step.  Take a moment to ‘high-five’ yourself and feel good about yourself and your ability.

2. Enjoy the moment

When I was running my first marathon, I was training hard and yes, sometimes I felt like giving up. If I took the focus off the fact that I needed to run 42.2kms and concentrated on the moment I would have enjoyed training more.  Each extra kilometer that I added would have been an achievement to celebrate.  Each small celebration would have made me feel happy with my determination and commitment and motivated to keep going.

3. Each Step is an opportunity to learn

Running a marathon is not just about running the distance.  Through my training experience:

  • I learned about eating nuritious food to keep me ‘fueled’ and energised to run further and for longer periods.
  • I learned the importance of mixing up my training to include yoga or strength training apart from my scheduled runs.
  • I learned the importance of keeping hydrated and drinking more water.
  • I learned that my mental strength was much stronger than I had realised.
  • I learned to feel the ‘buzz’ after a good workout and to feed off my improvements.
  • I also learned that you need to be flexible with your plans because sometimes life and responsibilites can get in the way.
  • I learned that support from my husband was important
  • I learned that training with others is much easier and I was grateful for my Saturday Sisters so I run with.

I’m using my marathon experience as an example, however, you can relate it to any goal you are working towards.

By taking the time to explore and enjoy your journey you develop life skills and experiences.  Sometimes we don’t actually achieve our goal or it might take several attempts.  By focusing on finding joy and happiness in our journey we build a solid foundation to be able to take on future goals with a more positive mindset.

I did achieve my goal and yes the feeling as I crossed the finish line was one of elation as well as exhaustion!  I learned that I could do anything I set my mind to!

Do you have a dream or goal? Can you add anything to three points I’ve raised to find the joy in the journey?



Remember to enjoy each moment along the way to make the final destination even more fulfilling.

In my next post in the A to Z Guide to Thriving, I’m discussing ‘K’ is for Key – You are hold the key to thriving in life. I do hope you will join me.

If you have missed previous posts in the AtoZ Challenge 2018 just click here to find them all.

You might also like to check out my Over 50 & Thriving series.  In this series, published every Thursday, guest writers give insight into what ‘Over 50 & Thriving’ means to them.

Want practical and motivational ways to learn to Thrive rather than just Survive in life?  Click here and Subscribe to receive my daily posts as they publish plus a FREE COPY of my E-Book ’10 Ways you can start Thriving Today’.

A to Z Challenge 2018

Let’s Keep Sizzling!


Women Living Well After 50

Living Life Your Way

You Might Also Like


  • Reply Arlee Bird April 11, 2018 at 03:15

    Excellent suggestions. I love a journey even when I pressed to get somewhere. I’ve certainly squandered much of my time on my life journey, but I do try to enjoy as much as I can. Life is great when it slows down so I can enjoy a world that is going far too fast.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out

  • Reply Trisha Faye April 11, 2018 at 06:18

    Great thoughts about enjoying the journey, even as we strive to reach our goals and milestones. Great ‘J’ word for the A to Z!
    Trisha Faye

    • Reply Sue Loncaric April 11, 2018 at 09:33

      Thanks Trisha Faye and I’ve visited your post as well. Great to connect with you through AtoZ and look forward to your next post. x

  • Reply Karen Hume April 11, 2018 at 06:57

    I like the word ‘journey’ as my blog name attests. While it may seem overused to some, I believe that if we are pursuing an authentic life, we are each engaged in hero’s journey with all of the attendant challenges, obstacles, assistance, and successes.

    It was interesting to read what you learned through your training for marathons.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric April 11, 2018 at 09:28

      Yes sometimes I worry that good words do get overused these days and can lose their impact. I would love you to link up with us at our Midlife Share the Love Party each Wednesday. If you are interested it is open Wednesday to Friday and is specifically for bloggers who don’t write about craft, recipes etc but rather in the type of writing you do.

      • Reply Karen Hume April 11, 2018 at 10:28

        I’d be delighted, Sue, but I’ll need to ask you to teach me. I have no idea at all how link-ups work. I see them all over the place, and would like to learn. I’ll ask you about it when I email you about the guest posting. Thank you for thinking of me 🙂

        • Reply Sue Loncaric April 11, 2018 at 12:43

          Oh excellent and it is so easy so I can certainly show you!

  • Reply Jo Tracey April 11, 2018 at 07:54

    I’m not a fan of the word journey – possibly because I’m an astrologer & I suspect it gets over-used a tad. Having said that, it is appropriate for, well, journeys. I like to set milestones to stop & take stock. Unless you do stop you can’t see how far you’ve come – even if it feels as though you haven’t gone very far at all!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric April 11, 2018 at 09:19

      Yes I’m still on the fence about the word ‘journey’ Jo. You do need to set milestones that is why I use sub-goals or steps along the way so I can celebrate each achievement towards the end result. Thanks for stopping and have a great day! xx

  • Reply Leanne | www.crestingthehill.com.au April 11, 2018 at 12:56

    Loved this post Sue (and pinned the last quote about strong women). I was thinking as I read that it was really about being in the “moment” and mindfulness and I was glad to see that you developed that whole idea. The journey is what life is all about – finishing well is fantastic, but we want to enjoy getting there don’t we?

    Leanne | http://www.crestingthehill.com.au
    J for Just Do It!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric April 11, 2018 at 13:50

      Yes I just stumbled upon the quote and it really made me think. My M is Magic in the Moment – if I get to write it in time!!!

  • Reply Gail April 11, 2018 at 13:04

    So are you a “marathoner” now?? I ran a marathon as well, in 2013, and haven’t done another since…but I am still amazed that I accomplished that! The training was almost as much of a high of accomplishment as the marathon itself… When I got up to running 15, 18, 20 miles, I was, “whoa! I’ve run two half marathons this week! Awesome!” It gave me a greater appreciation for what it takes to accomplish something big like that, and for me it was dedication to the schedule–I was still working at the time, so I’d have to get up at 5:00 a.m. to get in two hours of running before work because there was no way I could have energy to do that after work! The more I read your blog posts, the more I feel like we are “kindred spirits” haha!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric April 11, 2018 at 13:49

      We certainly are kindred spirits Gail! My friend turns 50 in April and would like to run a full marathon this year. I turned 60 last year and have told her I will train with her and see how I go. It is a lot of work and I can still manage a half pretty well. We did a 34km run just before my birthday last year but I had to stop at 25kms as I had plurisy and really should have been in bed. I had trained so hard for it I wanted to give it a go but knew at 25km I didn’t have anything left. I don’t work so I can’t use that as an excuse!! Thanks for stopping by and have a beautiful day. xx

  • Reply Jennifer Jones April 11, 2018 at 14:04

    Thanks for this reminder to enjoy the journeys I’m also very goal focussed and sometimes do forget to celebrate the milestones and successes along the way,

    • Reply Sue Loncaric April 11, 2018 at 14:22

      Yes that is my problem too Jen so I need to take my own advice!

      • Reply Jennifer Jones April 11, 2018 at 15:24

        Sometimes taking our own advice is not easy Sue. Joy comes up for me also but in my T post.

        • Reply Sue Loncaric April 11, 2018 at 15:36

          Oh okay I’ll be looking out for it! Have a great day! xx

  • Reply Debbie April 11, 2018 at 15:32

    A good journey is a joy Sue and your postvtoday sums up that joy. I enjoyed hearing of the steps you needed to put into place to run the marathon and how you felt like giving up at times. I am envious of your running group (still) and find being on my own for my walks and runs can be quite isolating. The joy comes at different parts of the journey as you point out so well. Thanks again for inspiring your readers.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric April 11, 2018 at 15:36

      Hi Debbie it really does help to have others around you especially if you are training for a big event. In saying that sometimes I enjoy my quiet time running alone. Thanks for your lovely comment and have a beautiful day xx

  • Reply Shirley Corder April 11, 2018 at 15:36

    I love this post, Sue. Like you, I am goal-driven, and I think the danger in that is we become so focused on the end result we don’t see the beauty of the journey! Journal to improve your Life!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric April 12, 2018 at 06:55

      Yes I’m guilty of that too Shirley so I need to take my own advice on this subject. xx

  • Reply Donna April 12, 2018 at 13:51

    Hi, Sue – I too am naturally goal-oriented. I appreciate your tips here.
    I also love the Uchtdorf quote. Thank you for sharing this!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric April 12, 2018 at 17:03

      We are so alike Donna! Have a great break and enjoy the Boston Marathon xx

  • Reply Pat April 13, 2018 at 08:27

    I’ve been playing with life metaphors this week (blog post just not coming together) and keep coming back to journey. It is overused and it can feel cliche to think that this is my life metaphor! But I LOVE how you’ve added the Joy. Find Joy in the Journey. As another goal-oriented person, it is learning to find the joy along the way, finding the support and connections along the way, keeping yourself motivated and energized, physically and emotionally, and celebrating the milestones along the way. I recall hiking years back where we had to see the next cairn to find the path and celebrating each time we spotted it before moving on. That’s how I want my life to be now…happy at each next mini-milestone.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric April 13, 2018 at 12:44

      Yes I felt that way about the word ‘journey’ Pat it can be overused. I had a problem with K as well and finally came up with the Key idea. Finding joy and inspiration along the way towards our goal is more important than the goal itself because we are enjoying each moment. xx

  • Reply Heather Erickson April 14, 2018 at 01:01

    Hi Sue, This concept has made such a difference in my life. Sometimes people wonder how I can keep going with a good attitude. The truth is I don’t always have a great attitude, but usually, I continue to enjoy life thanks to having a joy. We still laugh and look for opportunities to relish life.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric April 14, 2018 at 11:47

      What a fabulous attitude you have Heather and so inspiring to others. I’m very pleased we have connected. Take care xx

  • Reply Grammy Dee | Grammy's Grid May 2, 2018 at 11:02

    I’m still catching up Sue but wanted to say I just adore the word joy. It just makes me feel good. Shared your post x 4 ♥

    • Reply Sue Loncaric May 2, 2018 at 11:05

      Oh thanks Dee and yes you can’t help but feel good with that word. My grandson brings me great Joy!

    I love hearing from you and your comments are important to me

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

    %d bloggers like this: