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Clapping

The Antidote to Criticism: Turn Others’ Doubt Into a Standing Ovation

“Criticism is something you can easily avoid by saying nothing, doing nothing, and being nothing.” ~Aristotle

Gangly and skinny, I never attracted much attention from the opposite sex during high school. I was the friendly and funny sidekick to the popular girls—fun to hang out with but not to date.

When an older guy approached me during my last year of high school, I thought it would be a normal high school romance.… Read More

Man on a Path

You’re Not Behind; You’re Just on Your Own Path

“To wish you were someone else is to waste the person you are.” ~Sven Goran Eriksson

Endlessly comparing ourselves to others, idealizing their best qualities while underestimating our own are self defeating thought patterns, and they hurt our self-esteem. Yet in the competitive nature of our world, many of us do this.… Read More

Looking into the Horizon

The Labels We Take On: How They Limit Our Potential

“Waking up to who you are requires letting go of who you imagine yourself to be.” ~Alan Watts

We live in a society of labels. Everyone will try to label you, including yourself. It’s been happening since the beginning. It takes some honesty and objective reflection to see it, but take a moment or two and really think about it.… Read More

Jogging

How Simple Mini Habits Can Change Your Life

“The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.” ~Alan Watts

It was late 2012, just after Christmas, and like many others I was reflecting on the year.

I realized that I had ample room for improvement in too many areas of my life, but knowing that New Year’s Resolutions have a poor 8% success rate (University of Scranton research), I wanted to explore some other options.… Read More

Woman in a Field

4 Ways to Know if You’re Ready for a Simpler Life

“Be who you want to be, not what others want to see.” ~Unknown

Growing up in a consumer society has its obvious advantages—technology is abundant, restaurants are everywhere your eyes can see, and grocery store shelves are always full. All of this leads to the illusion that everything is available, in quantity, all of the time, and for the most part it is.… Read More

Kissing

Finding a Good Match: Know What You Want and Need in a Relationship

“I now see how owning our story and loving ourselves through that process is the bravest thing that we will ever do.” ~Brené Brown

I recently left a relationship that I was not happy in. Although my ex was definitely an unconditional lover, it painfully bothered me that the man I loved was not taking care of his responsibilities.… Read More

Heart

A Lasting Romance Is Built on Flaws: 6 Tips for a Strong Relationship

“Let our scars fall in love.” ~Galway Kinnell

We all bring our own baggage to any relationship. I know that my past relationships have shaped my approach to love and romance. When we seek out that special someone to share our life, the disappointments of our past relationships tends to get in the way of new discoveries.… Read More

See the Light

We Have the Strength to Move Through Pain and Uncertainty

“Suffering is not caused by pain but by resisting pain.” ~Unknown

Earlier this year our beloved puppy got sick. Not just a poorly tummy kind of sick, but proper, life-threatening, blood transfusion-requiring sick. Suddenly. Unexpectedly. She was at death’s door.

The vet was talking to us in quiet and kindly tones.… Read More

Filled with Doubt

4 Tips to Help You Keep Going When You’re Filled with Doubt

“Begin doing what you want to do now. We are not living in eternity. We have only this moment, sparkling like a star in our hand-and melting like a snowflake.” ~Francis Bacon Sr.

“Just research, research, research. That’s what grad school is.”

It seemed as though that was all I was hearing from my professors, and it wasn’t helpful.… Read More

Arms Wide Open

Why Acceptance Isn’t Passive and How It Leads to Positive Change

“Of course there is no formula for success except, perhaps, an unconditional acceptance of life and what it brings.” ~Arthur Rubinstein

Through my online radio show interviews, I have the opportunity to meet fantastic people. One of those people is an Australian author whose life circumstances led her to work alongside Mother Teresa.… Read More

Meditating

Stop Trying So Hard and 4 Other Lessons from a Year of Silence

“Freedom is instantaneous the moment we accept things as they are.” ~Karen Maezen Miller

Four years ago I spent the better part of a year being silent.

A friend had told me that in silence, the bits of you that need healing heal themselves. He was talking about the bits of me that had pushed me until I was sick and depressed, too anxious to answer the door.… Read More

Arms Up

Create Something Beautiful with Your Disappointment

“We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose finite hope.” ~Martin Luther King Jr.

“You have to get out the whining,” my writing teacher told me, peering over a section of manuscript that dripped with self-loathing and pity. I swear I watched the words “Barren, empty, hollow shell…” fall flat to the floor and make the saddest plopping noise.… Read More

Deep Thought

When Things Don’t Go As Planned: Transform Disappointment into Action

“A man’s errors are his portals of discovery.” ~James Joyce

I’ve had a bit of experience with disappointment. I got very motivated to change my relationship with it when I was in my twenties and starting my acupuncture practice.

I knew it would take time to build my client base; what I didn’t realize, or more likely was in denial about, was that a very effective way of doing that was by arranging public speaking gigs.… Read More

Sitting in the sun

When You’re Hard on Yourself: Replace Guilt with Self-Compassion

“Be gentle with yourself if you wish to be gentle with others.” ~Lama Yeshe

“Guilty,” admits an offender. “Guilty,” proclaims a jury. Things are pretty black and white in trial verdicts and courtroom pleas (although there are still plea bargains and hung juries, mitigating circumstances and appeals).

Life is rarely as cut-and-dried as the criminal justice system.… Read More

sad face

Developing Self-Compassion When You Don’t Think You’re Enough

“He who knows that enough is enough will always have enough.” ~Lao Tzu

I’m at war with enoughness.

My stomach isn’t flat enough; I’m not extroverted enough; I don’t have enough money in my wallet; I’m not creative enough; I’m not getting enough work done.

There are times when the Jaws of Life cannot free me from my expectations and negative self-talk.Read More

Lonely Girl

The Greatest Lesson We Learn When Someone Is Unkind

“I have learned silence from the talkative, toleration from the intolerant, and kindness from the unkind.” ~Khalil Gibran

I recently travelled to Malaysia for a friend’s wedding where I spent four delicious days communing with wild monkeys and feasting on sticky rice. The people were kind and warm, the culture rich, the trip magical.… Read More

Sitting Together

How to Help Others Without Compromising Yourself

“The greatest good you can do for another is not just to share your riches but to reveal to him his own.” ~Benjamin Disraeli

When I entered into a relationship with my ex-boyfriend four years ago, I felt I had found a kindred spirit. We met at a meditation retreat where we both volunteered in the kitchen.… Read More

At Ease

A Simple but Powerful Way to Kick the Worry Habit

“Worry often gives a small thing a big shadow.” ~Swedish proverb

I’m a worrier by nature, and I come by it honestly.

My mother was afraid to cross bridges, and ride in elevators, boats, and airplanes. Her mother died of cancer at the age of 40, and my mother spent many years—including those of my childhood—thinking every sniffle, fever, or headache might be the start of something fatal.… Read More

Rainy Day

9 Insights on Dealing with Change, Challenges, and Pain

“The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.” ~Alan Watts

This year has been one of unprecedented change for me. From January to March, I traveled to Mozambique, Africa to do volunteer work. I did not speak the language; I did not understand the culture.… Read More

friends

Letting Go of Stubbornness: Appreciate Your Loved Ones While You Can

“Before someone’s tomorrow has been taken away, cherish those you love, appreciate them today. “ ~Michelle C. Ustaszeski

My brother Greg and I were the closest of friends growing up, even if you weigh in the occasional tiff or disagreement we sometimes had.

We discovered our favorite toys together as kids, rode bikes side by side, and conquered video games as a two-man team.… Read More

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