“Never confuse a single defeat with a final defeat.” ~F. Scott Fitzgerald
I spent years training as a psychologist, waiting for the day I would graduate and finally have time to explore my second passion—writing.
When I opened a private practice I left my mornings free, and over the next fourteen years I wrote six screenplays, two novels, and a children’s book.… Read More
“In the midst of winter I discovered that there was in me an invincible summer.” ~Albert Camus
These words may ring true for anyone who has been through difficult times, then found themselves stronger as a person, or doing things they would have never thought possible.
In May 2011 my brother was kidnapped from his home while working in Nigeria.… Read More
“Letting go gives us freedom and freedom is the only condition for happiness.” ~Thich Nhat Hanh
First, let’s be clear about something…
Surrender is not about giving up, handing power over, or failing. It is not waving the white flag of defeat.
We are so used to striving and trying so hard for an outcome that anything outside of that formula seems like self-sabotage.… Read More
“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
“Why compare yourself with others? No one in the entire world can do a better job of being you than you.” ~Unknown
For fifteen years I gave up on art.
I’d been an “artistic” kid, always drawing and painting, but by first or second grade I was already comparing my work to that of other kids and judging it as inferior.… Read More
“Accept what is, let go of what was, and have faith in what will be.” ~Sonia Ricotti
I was brought up in a family and culture that was riddled with fear.
My elders were terrified of the world and always on the defensive for something bad to happen. They believed that love meant closely protecting others from the dangers of the world and the pain of life.… Read More
“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
“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
“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
“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
“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
“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
“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
“Courage is the power to let go of the familiar.” ~Raymond Lindquist
I’ve been processing my beliefs on courage since I turned 31.
When I was in my 20s and teens, my idea of courage was that you fight until the death, never give up, be the one to say the last word, and always, always prove your point.… Read More
“It is in the character of very few men to honor without envy a friend who has prospered.” ~Aeschylus
It’s crazy, isn’t it?
Your best friend enthusiastically shares some big news. You say all the right things and display the right emotions. But inside you’re burning up. Instead for feeling truly happy, you’re filled with uncontrollable envy.… Read More
“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
“Life always waits for some crisis to occur before revealing itself at its most brilliant.” ~Paul Coelho
I spent my 25th birthday crying alone at the foot of a mountain. While I had always found solace in spending time by myself, in that moment, I did not recognize my “self.” Without my self, I had nothing.… Read More
“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
There I was: numb from a conclusion of a dismissal based on a finding that there was “no reasonable prospect of success.”
Harassed, bullied, victimized, stalked both in-person and online, the Human Rights Tribunal tossed me into another discarded pile of victims to be ignored by the courts because a group of goons were cleaver enough to hide the body of proof.… Read More
“Your mind will answer most questions if you learn to relax and wait for the answer.” ~William S. Burroughs
Patience can be a struggle.
I know this firsthand. My experience with impatience used to be confined to overusing the microwave or skipping to the end of a long novel.
Back then, when waiting at a traffic light for more than two minutes seemed like an eternity, I didn’t know that life would teach me several advanced lessons in patience.… Read More
“True happiness means forging a strong spirit that is undefeated, no matter how trying our circumstances.” -Daisaku Ikeda
Let’s face it, whether big or small, stressful or simple, we all face challenges every day, some easier to deal with than others. Unfortunately, life doesn’t come equipped with an instruction manual to handle these challenges.… Read More