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Posts by Sam Russell

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Sam Russell is a young writer from the southeastern corner of the UK. He’s a cynic by nature trying to prove that cynics can be happy and positive, too. Visit his blog at http://cackhanded.wordpress.com/.

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jumping

3 Small Steps Toward Rebuilding Your Confidence

 “Trust yourself. You know more than you think you do.” ~Benjamin Spock

My confidence is a delicate thing. I’ve had more disturbances in my life than I’ve had reassurances, a handful of betrayals, and enough playground cruelty to last me until the day I die.

I am still living with some difficult health conditions that I wake up and go to bed with every day, with no respite.… Read More

Beach

The Beauty of Nothing: Reflections on Impermanence

“Everything flows and nothing abides, everything gives way and nothing stays fixed.” ~Heraclitus 

I’m reclining on a pebble beach, my bag tucked under my head, a can of Fanta to the right of me, above me, the sky and before me, the sea. It’s a few miles out.

I came here alone.… Read More

Deep Thought

How to Stop Beating Yourself Up Over Mistakes

“You, yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.” ~Buddha

I have just eaten enough pizza to satisfy three people and I’m feeling awful for having done it. Awful because my stomach can only hold so much, awful because I know I’m going to pay for eating it (dairy and I have a difficult relationship), and awful because I know I shouldn’t have done it.… Read More

Healing

9 Lessons on Loss, Forgiveness, and Healing

“Forgiveness does not change the past, but it does enlarge the future.” ~Paul Boese

I’m trying to meditate but I find myself overcome by sadness; I’m still grieving after all this time.

I’ve gone through phases of forgiveness recently that have shown me how to acknowledge the painful relationship I had with my mother, the anger and resentment we shared, and the loss of each other that we both went through the older we grew.… Read More

Peaceful and Confident

Overcoming the Power of Suggestion: Make Your Own Choices

“People who urge you to be realistic generally want you to accept their version of reality.” ~Unknown

I’m often open to suggestion. I like to gather opinions and feedback about my writing so that I can use it to improve the impact and make it a better read.

The thing I’ve learned about listening to other people’s thoughts on my writing is that sometimes what seems like good advice is little more than personal preference; changing an image or an entire scene to suit one person isn’t always the right path, especially if my gut is saying, “You know you don’t want to do that.”

Now that I am working on a novel, I realize how easy it’s been to sway me, not just in my decisions but also in my thoughts.Read More

Mind Body Connection

Integrating Mind and Body: Be Present, Reduce Stress


“Don’t let your mind bully your body into believing it must carry the burden of its worries.” ~Astrid Alauda

I don’t believe in the mind/body divide. I can see the gap between them, the one that we put there, but I have little faith in it. In the past month, I’ve learned that in order to live fully, I need to overcome that self-imposed gap.… Read More

Wide Open Road

The Right Direction: Releasing the Past and Getting Unstuck

“If we are facing in the right direction, all we have to do is keep on walking.” ~Proverb

It’s been a year since I stumbled upon Tiny Buddha. At the time I was in a difficult place emotionally, mentally, and physically.

I felt as if life were pointless and that there was nothing for me in the world: no room, no hope, no opportunity, no relief from the chronic tiredness and pain, and no love.… Read More

Watching the Sunset

Identifying Real Problems & Letting Go of Imagined Ones

“We all have problems. The way we solve them is what makes us different.” ~Unknown

We all have problems, don’t we? There isn’t a single person on this planet who doesn’t have one, even if they’re the Buddhist monk living their life peacefully. Everyone has something to overcome.

There’s nothing wrong with having a problem.… Read More

SONY DSC

On Making Positive Choices for a Happy, Empowered Life

“Life is a choice.” ~Unknown

I’ve recently realized that life is a never-ending stream of choices, even when you think you don’t have many options.

Some look insignificant on their own but somehow manage to contribute to a massive whole. Others can feel overwhelming, and you don’t always realize when you make them what the consequences will be—how they’ll shape your life story.… Read More

Stretching

5 Simple Yet Powerful Ways to Take Care of Your Body


“Your body is precious. It is our vehicle for awakening. Treat it with care.” ~Buddha

Our bodies are not indestructible, and there is only so far we can push them before they start to fail. I should know.

Roughly three years have passed since my body became unwell, for whatever reasons.… Read More

Childhood Dreams

Childhood Dreams That Are Attainable Now

“A man is not old until regrets take the place of his dreams.” ~Proverb

Something beautiful just occurred to me.

I spend so much time stressing over my future adult achievements—a good career, a home for life, getting published, an adult relationship, possibly a kid and a large dog—that I don’t often revel in the things that seven-year-old me would have been stoked about.… Read More

Angry Mob

Punished By Anger

“You will not be punished for your anger; you will be punished by your anger.” ~Buddha

I went camping recently, something that I was really looking forward to, but I didn’t last long. Due to health conditions, my friend and I had to abandon camp at three in the morning because the cold got to me in a big way.… Read More

The Scream

4 Tips to Get in Touch with Your Feelings Instead of Burying Them

“Hope is the feeling that the feeling you have isn’t permanent.” ~Jean Kerr

I’ve just given up smoking. Again. It’s a bad habit that I can’t seem to shake because I’m likely to relapse when I’m stressed.

I try to rationalize my destructive behavior—I don’t smoke heavily, I don’t smoke that much since I stick to rolling tobacco which makes thinner cigarettes, it’s fifteen minutes to myself where nobody will question why I’m taking time to do and think about nothing.… Read More

Spider

On Dealing with Fear: Stop Judging Yourself and Be

“Fear is a natural reaction to moving closer to the truth.” ~Pema Chodron

I’m arachnophobic. Last night, a large spider took up residence on the wall in my room. The shock of seeing its dark mass seated comfortably against the stark white of the paint made the blood drain from my head.… Read More

Happy Earth

5 Simple Ways to Show Compassion to Animals and the Planet

“Compassion and happiness are not a sign of weakness but a sign of strength.” ~Dalai Lama

Showing compassion is one of the best ways to make the world a better place.

It isn’t always easy to have compassion for people, if they’ve hurt you, don’t see things the way you do, or seem to cause many of their own problems.… Read More

Feet in grass

How to Connect with Your Body to Feel Balanced: 10 Grounding Techniques

“Get yourself grounded and you can navigate even the stormiest roads in peace.” ~Steve Goodier

Sometimes my head is in the clouds on a massive scale.

This isn’t always a bad thing for me. When I am blissfully ignorant of reality, it can feel beautiful and exhilarating—shiny, I call it. It can be a welcome respite from the days when life feels dark and painfully uncertain.… Read More

Alive

4 Self-Defeating Attitudes That Stand in the Way of Happiness

 

“Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional.” ~Unknown

I grew up believing that nothing I did was ever good enough, and this is something that I still carry with me.

It affects every aspect of my life: my hobbies, skills, my relationships, and even the understanding I have of my body, physical appearance, and my mental health.… Read More

Inner Peace

On Learning to Cope with Conflict

“Peace of mind is not the absence of conflict from life, but the ability to cope with it.” ~Unknown

I fell apart a couple of years ago, unable to cope with the strain I was under—a change in my lifestyle, loss of job security, a less-than-perfect relationship with a parent, bereavement, a painful physical injury, and slowly, through all of that, the blossoming of serious mental illness.… Read More