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Category “change & challenges”


Forgiving and Letting Go When You Feel Resentful

“The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.” ~Mahatma Ghandi

My childhood was in many ways a nice childhood. I feel like a complete twit to complain about it.  I know other people have gone through so much worse. I’ve read really difficult childhood stories and my heart literally bleeds for these people.… Read More


Building Confidence to Face a Fear Instead of Hiding from It

“Whatever you fight, you strengthen, and what you resist, persists.” ~Eckhart Tolle

I was very shy growing up, especially in lower and middle school. I moved from the US to London when I was five. Although I don’t remember a lot of my experience in lower school in London, I do know that when I first started I refused to speak or read aloud.… Read More


3 Choices for Dealing with Pain or Abuse: Strength Is in the Healing

“When something bad happens you have three choices. You can let it define you, let it destroy you, or you can let it strengthen you.” ~Unknown

When I was twenty-four, leaving my ex was my “something bad.” It was about as bad as it could get.

After four years of dating, I was certain marriage was right around the corner.… Read More


Dealing with Loss: 3 Uplifting Truths About Death and Grief

“Don’t be afraid of death; be afraid of an unlived life. You don’t have to live forever; you just have to live.” ~Natalie Babbitt

I stared at my reflection in the mirror as my face contorted into a painful grimace, tears streaming down my cheeks. My throat constricted to keep the sobbing at bay.… Read More

Plant in dried cracked mud

When Life Feels Crazy: 6 Questions for Cracking Up & Breaking Through

“Every really new idea looks crazy at first.” ~Abraham H. Maslow

Once, when I was in a painting workshop, I hit a wall of resistance, totally stumped by what to paint next.

My painting teacher came over to explore some questions that could help unblock me. But my “wall” was concrete, or industrial metal, or super-duper spy-movie-like with some computer-code contraption locking all security systems down.… Read More


Your Reality Is a Reflection of What You Believe You Deserve

“You are very powerful, provided you know how powerful you are.” ~Yogi Bhajan

Over the last ten years I have learned time and time again that our reality is a reflection of what we believe we deserve, often on an unconscious level.

I discovered this about a decade ago while living in Belize—a diving vacation hotspot on one end and gang-infested, poverty-ridden land on the other.… Read More


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


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

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 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

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


4 Ways to Embrace Slow Change When You’re Feeling Impatient

“Change is not a process for the impatient.” ~Barbara Reinhold

I love it when change happens quickly. Sometimes things just click, and everything shifts all at once.

When I met the man who’d become my husband, we were married only thirteen months later, and in those thirteen months we both transformed to our very cores.… Read More

Mind Body Spirit

The 3 Pieces of Recovery from Addiction or Depression

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

When I started graduate school, it was safe to say that I was running away from things. I’d recently ended a nine-year relationship and I wasn’t planning on dealing with it.… Read More

Looking at the Sun

It’s Not Over: Failure Is Success in the Making

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

Everyone has a story of failure and disadvantage—those things we wish were done differently, better, or not at all. Take these stories for instance:

A speaker intending to be unifying and encouraging onstage leaves the audience disappointed and bored instead.

A lone manuscript is rejected by publishing houses over 27 times, dismissed as too fanciful, fake, and “never gonna sell.”

A poor 11-year-old boy, deprived of toys his entire childhood, trudges through sleet and snow on his newspaper route in order to help support his family.… Read More

Im Free

Free Yourself from Regret and Transform Your Life

“The practice of forgiveness is our most important contribution to the healing of the world.” ~Marianne Williamson

I always had a hard time accepting all of me. As early as I can remember others defined me by saying “You are so weird.” Not in a malicious way but more in a “you don’t fit into our familiar box” sort of way.… Read More

Dark Day

There’s a Gift in Every Problem: Finding the Good in the Bad

“Every problem has a gift for you in its hands.” ~Richard Bach

I bought the magazine because it had pizza on the cover and the headline read: “Yes, you can eat pizza.”

At that point, the idea that I could eat pizza was as absurd to me as the thought of finding a tiny dinosaur living in my flowerbeds.… Read More

Hands in the Air

When You Fear Things Might Not Work Out: 3 Helpful Tips

“Your belief determines your action and your action determines your results, but first you have to believe.” ~Mark Victor Hansen

This summer, after three years of dreaming, my daughter and I moved from the city I’ve lived in all my life to my dream city six hours north.

The season of summer is known as a time when plants fruit, grow, and bloom.… Read More

People Jumping

Why You Deserve to Applaud Yourself

“I have done my best. That is all the philosophy of living one needs” ~Lin-yutang

Take a break and take a look in the mirror. Look at yourself and smile while you congratulate yourself for everything you have been through, good or bad, ups and downs.

It doesn’t matter whether you climbed the Mount Everest, learned French in Paris, completed medical school, worked at the local grocery store, or “simply” lay on the sofa for far longer than you had planned in order to figure out your life’s purpose and goals.… Read More

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