“Don’t wait for people to be friendly. Show them how.” ~Unknown
When I was a teenager, right around the time I knew everything, my mother used to tell me I only remembered the bad things.
When I told stories about my family, they didn’t revolve around family beach trips, barbecues, and vacations; they focused on painful memories and all the ways I felt my mother had “ruined my life.”
The same applied to friends and milestones in my life.… Read More
“Doing nothing is better than being busy doing nothing.” ~Lao Tzu
How many times in a day do you tell yourself you are busy and have too much to do? In a week? In a month?
How many of those times are you actually busy doing “nothing”? You know the “nothing” that I am talking about—the nothing that means you are watching hours of mindless TV, roaming the internet, or playing a game that you can’t seem to tear yourself away from on your smartphone.… Read More
“The way you treat yourself sets the standard for others.” ~Sonya Friedman
The longer I stayed on the phone, the more agitated I became. My mother was on the other end, as usual, dumping her emotions on me. I had moved to Los Angeles for graduate school in part to escape all of this—my mother’s unhappiness, my sense of responsibility, the pressure to be perfect.… Read More
“Happiness is the absence of striving for happiness.” ~Chuang Tzu
At an early age I learned that nothing in life is guaranteed. When I was eleven years old, a close friend and classmate lost his battle with cancer. After that, I had several more instances of losing loved ones, some expected, others not so much.… Read More
“I follow four dictates: face it, accept it, deal with it, then let it go.” ~Sheng Yen
Growing up different isn’t easy for anyone.
I was born normal, happy, and healthy. I had five fingers and five toes. I reached all my developmental milestones and showed promise as a vivacious, energetic child.… Read More
“Wherever you go, there you are.” ~Confucius
Everything I do is about living and sharing freedom. But what is freedom anyway?
To understand freedom, it’s helpful to understand its opposite. The opposite of freedom is feeling caged, constricted, and ruled by guidelines you don’t believe in.
For many people, their job feels like jail.… Read More
“The place to be happy is here. The time to be happy is now.” ~Robert G. Ingersoll
Dear Past Me,
Remember that day when you thought all was lost? When you thought there was barely any point in carrying on?
The bank account was dangerously low.
You were arguing with everyone close to you.… Read More
“One word frees us of all the weight and pain of life: that word is love.” ~Sophocles
I can’t believe it was almost four years ago that I met *Holly. Her story is still deeply embedded into my heart. Who would have thought that one can learn so much from a ten-year-old child?… Read More
“Sometimes the past should be abandoned, yes. Life is a journey and you can’t carry everything with you. Only the usable baggage.” ~Ha Jin
You’ve probably heard of the fear of missing out but what about the fear of letting go?
My father was volatile and mentally unstable. Criticism was his preferred method of communication.… Read More
“If we look at the world with a love of life, the world will reveal its beauty to us.” ~Daisaku Ikeda
Ever found yourself in a rut, just waiting for some force of the Universe to pull you out?
When ennui sets in, it can be hard to find a way back into the light, but it typically takes a series of events and choices for us to be living a life out of sync with our personal goals, values, and passions.… Read More
“I wish I could show you, when you are lonely or in darkness, the astonishing light of your own being.” ~Hafiz
I keep a prism hanging near the entrance to my home. Its beauty, made possible only by the broken nature of the glass from which it is constructed, serves as a constant reminder that even the broken pieces within each and every one of us can serve as a source of light.… Read More
“The grass is always greener where you water it.” ~Unknown
I have suffered from depression since I was a teenager. My experiences have also caused severe post-traumatic stress disorder.
My father has been abandoning me for my whole life. As a teenager, I went to live with him because my relationship with my mother was so difficult.… Read More
“Knowledge is learning something new every day. Wisdom is letting go of something every day” ~Zen Saying
Simplicity, at its heart, comes down to eliminating the excess in our lives.
Excess needs, wants, possessions. The list goes on.
Society tries to sell us that having more in our lives should be the goal and is the answer.… Read More
“Tell me to what you pay attention and I will tell you who you are.” ~Jose Ortega y Gasset
Something magical and wonderful happened to me over Christmas. For the first time in my life I was able to make sense out of a string of seemingly random events that made no sense at all, that is, until I bothered to stop, listen, and check in with my heart.… Read More
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“Nobody can give you wiser advice than yourself.” ~Cicero
You know that state of confusion where you feel really unsure about what to do—you’re talking about it with all of your friends, making lists, weighing options, lying awake all night?… Read More
“What you do today can improve all your tomorrows.” ~Ralph Marston
For as long as I can remember, I’ve been an anxious person. My grandfather died when I was four years old and some of my earliest memories consist of panic attacks whenever I was left alone. In my mind, I had to keep my loved ones in sight at all times, so there would be no chance of them disappearing, just as my grandpa did. … Read More
“Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.” ~Lao Tzu
Five years ago, I was feeling really stressed (like millions of other people in the world). I was working full time in a job that was draining me of every single ounce of energy I had.
I had nothing left to give to myself or those I loved at the end of each working day; life had turned into an incessant cycle of getting up, going to work, coming home, working, and going to bed.… Read More
“We can’t hate ourselves into a version of ourselves we can love.” ~Lori Deschene
Sometimes I am really terrible to myself and relentlessly compare myself to other people, no matter how many times I read or hear about how good enough or lovable I am.
On an almost daily basis, I meticulously look for evidence that I am a nobody, that I don’t deserve to be loved, or that I’m not living up to my full potential.… Read More
“Beware the barrenness of a busy life.” ~Socrates
Did you ever wish you could just take off from work and get away from it all?
This past summer I had the opportunity to do just that.
I was wrapping up a twenty-four-year career in the Air Force and had saved up two months of vacation time.… Read More