Joy Cho: Turning Joy into a Full-time Career

July 19 - On The Dot
It’s a great day to be a woman! Melinda Garvey here as your voice, with the mission to give women everywhere a place to be heard and tell their stories. We’d love to hear from you!

FIRST THOUGHT: Creating Joyful Moments in Everyday Life

Today, we’re talking about joy. I heard once that the most common wish from people is that they want to be happy. There are almost 8,000 books about the subject on Barnes and Noble’s website, ranging from changing your diet to building new habits.

But I think joy is too much of an individual feeling to create a one-size-fits-all model. For some women, working 60-plus hours a week brings them joy, and for others, having time to pursue hobbies or spend time with friends is more important. The hardest part about finding joy is determining what makes you happy. Once you figure that out, all you have to do is go for it.


Ladies, consider this: Are you one part of a happy couple? When Gallup poll researchers took a close look at couples who stay together, they found that couples that say they’re happy have five positive exchanges for every negative one.

That means there are five feel-good, “I-love-you-so-much” interactions for every case of “You never put the toilet seat down.” Couples that divorced typically had less than one happy encounter for every bad interaction.

So, the next time you have an urge to complain about all those items not completed on your partner’s honey-do list, make sure you say at least few sweet things beforehand.

WOMAN TO WATCH: Joy Cho, Founder and Creative Director of Oh Joy

Joy Cho went to school for graphic design and began her career as an intern at a record label, design firm and magazine. Later, she continued to hone her skills while working at a boutique advertising agency in New York City before making a move to Philadelphia.

During this transition, Cho was looking for work and a way to catalogue things that inspired her, so she started a blog called Oh Joy! It was 2005, and blogging was hardly the popular industry it is today, but Cho was resilient, and what began as a side project grew quite popular with her design clients, and has now become a full-blown career.

If you’re on Pinterest, you’ve probably repinned something from her site. She’s the most followed pinner on the content-sharing site, with about 13 million followers. Time Magazine featured Oh Joy! in its Design 100 issue, and Cho has written three books on how to run a successful freelance business, how to blog for profit and my favorite: 60 Ways to Create & Give Joy.

Cho has also collaborated with Target to produce party supplies, home décor and even baby clothes. And she’s teamed up with other big names like Anthropologie and Urban Outfitters.

The goal of Oh Joy! is to provide lifestyle articles full of tips, tricks and ideas, all wrapped up in pretty, rainbow-colored design. One of her best tricks is mixing up patterns—a scary thing for us non-designers! The key to successfully mixing patterns, she says, is size. Mix a big polka-dotted pattern with a small floral pattern, or vice versa, and—voila!—you’ve got a designer-inspired pattern for clothing or home décor.

Cho is all about staying true to herself, and encourages others to take in all the inspiration they can, but not copycat. Rely on your unique point of view to create your own joyful style.


The next time you’re feeling down, think about these wise words from the Buddha, and it might just brighten your day. He said:

“We are shaped by our thoughts; we become what we think. When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves."That’s all for now. Be sure to share this so more women can have a voice! Thanks for getting ready with us.

To learn more about our conversation, check us out at and talk to us @OnTheDotWoman on Twitter and Instagram. We’d love to hear your voice.

Get On The Dot in your inbox each day.
Copyright 2018 © On The Dot Woman - All Rights Reserved Privacy Policy