Posts by Lori Deschene

Lori Deschene is the founder of Tiny Buddha. She started the site after struggling with depression, bulimia, c-PTSD, and toxic shame so she could recycle her former pain into something useful and inspire others do the same. She recently created the Breaking Barriers to Self-Care eCourse to help people overcome internal blocks to meeting their needs—so they can feel their best, be their best, and live their best possible life. If you’re ready to start thriving instead of merely surviving, you can learn more and get instant access here.

Lori Deschene's Website

Tiny Wisdom: On Risks and Rewards

“Don’t be afraid to go out on a limb. That’s where the fruit is.” -H. Jackson Browne

It’s safe. Familiar. Comfortable. Effortless. It doesn’t make waves. It’s what other people think you should do. You’re less likely to fail. Less likely to feel vulnerable. Less likely to question if it was worth the risk.

Whether you realize it now or not, it is. We tend to regret the things we didn’t do more than the things we did.

On my first date with my boyfriend, I told him over dinner that I’d always wanted to go skydiving, even though …

Tiny Wisdom: On Realizing You’re Complete

“On a deeper level you are already complete. When you realize that, there is a playful, joyous energy behind what you do.” -Eckhart Tolle

In The Power of Now, Eckhart Tolle explores how people attach their happiness to achievements in the future. A perfect relationship. A promotion. A salary increase.

Since all of these things exist somewhere other than now–and they’re all impermanent, even if you do achieve them–this thinking creates pain on multiple levels.

First, in the present, when you’ve yet to achieve what you think you need. Next in the acquisition, when you realize even though you’ve …

Tiny Wisdom: On Helping Yourself

“The best place to find a helping hand is at the end of your own arm.” ~Swedish Proverb

Helping yourself is telling people what you need, even though you’re afraid to acknowledge it.

It’s forgiving yourself for your mistakes, even though you feel like dwelling.

It’s taking responsibility for your problems, even though someone else may have played a large part in them.

It’s breaking a problem into tiny, manageable pieces, even though you feel overwhelmed.

It’s living in accordance with your values, even when they stand in the way of something you think you want.

It’s allowing yourself to …

Tiny Wisdom: On How Much You’re Worth

“The real measure of your wealth is how much you’d be worth if you lost all your money.” -Unknown

Before I started this site, I found myself in a horrible financial situation. I lost two well-paying jobs within the same week, and I quickly realized my unemployment benefits would just barely cover my rent. At 28 years old, I felt like I should have been a lot more established and financially secure.

But something kind of beautiful happened. I began forming close relationships with people who also got laid off due to the economic meltdown. Since we were in the …

Tiny Wisdom: On When to Hold and When to Fold

“All the art of living lies in a fine mingling of letting go and holding on.” -Havelock Ellis

Sometimes it’s difficult to know when to keep plowing ahead and when to accept that it’s time to move on.

You don’t want to give up on someone you love if you can make a positive difference in their life; but sometimes you need to let go and let them learn their own lessons.

You don’t want to give up on a dream when you’ve put your heart and soul into it; but sometimes you need to let go of the …

Tiny Wisdom: On Beautiful Things

“The most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched. They must be felt with the heart.” -Helen Keller

Gratitude. Kindness. Joy. Vulnerability. Passion. Hope. Inspiration. Motivation. Loyalty. Awe. Authenticity. Selflessness. Thoughtfulness. Patience. Understanding. Trust. Simplicity. Serenity. Relaxation. Purpose. Peace. Generosity. Honesty. Integrity. Balance. Bravery. Love.

Look around. It’s a beautiful day, and because of all the good you do and create, you’re a beautiful part of it.

Photo by AlicePopkorn

Tiny Wisdom: On the Power of Trusting

“You may be deceived if you trust too much, but you will live in torment if you don’t trust enough.” -Frank Crane

I had one of the most disheartening experiences of my life when I was 24. Some people I trusted conned me out of a huge chunk of my savings and then dropped off the face of the earth.

Later, I  questioned if I was being naive whenever an incident looked slightly similar. I instinctively mistrusted a lot of people, projecting past hurts onto them before they even had a chance to show their good intentions.

It was like …

Tiny Wisdom: On Being Seen

“Enthusiasm is the greatest asset in the world. It beats money, power, and influence.” ~Henry Chester

Influence has become a huge buzz word, particularly now that social media has taken the world by storm. There are sites to measure it. Blog posts that dissect it. Books that analyze the psychology of it. Collectively, we’re obsessed with the ability to persuade other people.

It’s not just about driving consumer behavior, although clearly that’s a big part of it–everyone needs to earn a living. It’s also not all about the ego–having the most followers, the most retweets, or the most influential friends. …

Tiny Wisdom: On Loving Life

“If we look at the world with a love of life, the world will reveal its beauty to us.” -Daisaku Ikeda

Whenever I visit my family in Massachusetts, I notice changes all around me. Sometimes it’s something major, like a Rite Aid where a Mom and Pop shop used to be. Sometimes it’s something less noticeable, like a new door on my parents’ neighbor’s house.

Other times, these changes take place in my family. My mother’s changed her hair color, or my sister looks completely different after weeks on a new diet, or my father’s decided to embrace bright-colored clothes–despite …

How to Enjoy Food More: 7 Tips to Savor Meals

“We are indeed much more than what we eat, but what we eat can nevertheless help us to be much more than what we are.” –Adelle Davis

As I mentioned before in my blog post about needing less money, I recently decided to offer barter advertising through Tiny Buddha—meaning I plan to promote products and services I support in exchange for things I need.

This week I started my first barter arrangement with L.O.V.E. Delivery, a company here in Los Angeles that delivers organic produce right to your door.

Before my first shipment arrived two days ago, …

Tiny Wisdom: On Being Hard on Yourself

“When there is no enemy within, the enemies outside cannot hurt you.” -African Proverb

Sometimes we judge ourselves pretty harshly. We blame ourselves for things we have absolutely no control over. We criticize, berate, and even disparage ourselves, treating ourselves far worse than we’d ever treat other people.

It’s just all too easy to hold ourselves to high standards, and then get frustrated if we fail to meet them. I know I have done this before, and, at the risk of sounding defeatist, I know I will do it at some point again.

I believe that in much the same …

Tiny Wisdom: On Playing

“We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” -George Bernard Shaw

Playfulness becomes difficult when we get bogged in worries. Worrying sucks the joy out of everything. I know, because I’ve been there many times before.

You start a new project focused on your passions, and shortly after starting, you stress about where it’s going. Or you set aside some time to do something you enjoy, and before you know it you’re fixating on everything you have to complete on your to-do list.

We don’t stop playing because we no longer enjoy it. …

Tiny Wisdom: On Discovering the Best in People

“When we seek to discover the best in others, we somehow bring out the best in ourselves.” -William Arthur Ward

I read somewhere once that we tend to judge ourselves by our intentions and other people by their actions. In other words, we give ourselves the benefit of the doubt, whereas we’re more apt to assume other people mean to be cruel, inconsiderate, or hurtful when they make poor choices.

I suspect this is a survival strategy: We need to believe that we are good people in order to live with ourselves, and we want to quickly assess which other …

Tiny Wisdom: On Dropping Excuses

“We are all faced with a series of great opportunities brilliantly disguised as impossible situations.” -Charles R. Swindoll

Joshua Denney, who designed this site and does a ton behind the scenes, found this video and posted it on Facebook yesterday with the heading, “No excuses.”

What could you accomplish if you stopped making excuses and started focusing on making a difference?

Tiny Wisdom: On Everyday Teachers

“If we learn to open our hearts, anyone, including the people who drive us crazy, can be our teacher.” -Pema Chodron

Many people go through their days collecting moments that annoyed them. How another driver turns without signaling. How your coffee barista moves at a glacial pace—so slow she has to ask twice what you ordered. The way a coworker talks loudly on her cell phone, even though you practically share the same cubicle.

Things like this happen all the time. We live, work, and play on top of each other—people we know, don’t know, want to know, and don’t

Tiny Wisdom: On Connecting

“Don’t wait for people to be friendly. Show them how.” -Unknown

From what I can tell, my next door neighbor doesn’t make eye contact with anyone. For a while I thought she was just avoiding me, but I’ve observed that she’s like this with all of our neighbors. By keeping her eyes fixed on her feet, she never has to exchange pleasantries or smiles, let alone get into full-fledged conversations.

She always seems withdrawn and lethargic, and this makes me feel sad for her. I’ve been in that place before–and if she’s feeling anything like I did then, I know …

Tiny Wisdom: On Being Openly You

“What I am is good enough if I would only be it openly.” -Carl Rogers

When I was in high school, it was trendy to be “alternative.” It was a time of Green Day, grunge, and wallet chains, and everyone and their brother did their best to blend in by pledging nonconformity.

It was an ironic time for self-expression–we were unified by our mutual declaration of individuality, underscored by an unspoken need to belong.

Though it’s been a long time since I wore a thermal shirt with self-cut thumb holes, I still feel tempted on occasion to shapeshift to please …

Tiny Wisdom: On Forgiveness

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

Someone wronged you. Maybe they treated you thoughtlessly without your feelings or best interests in mind. Or maybe they hurt you with full awareness in a moment of anger orfrustration.

Your pride’s bruised, and your expectations destroyed. Why should you extend compassion to them when they didn’t offer you the same? Why should you reach out to them when you’re not the one who was wrong?

You could easily come up with a laundry list of excuses to stay righteous and unyielding. Unfortunately, no one benefits …

Tiny Wisdom: On What We Envision

“We are limited, not by our abilities, but by our vision.” -Unknown

Have you ever cut yourself off right in the middle of imagining a possibility? I did it to myself earlier today. As I wrote in my recent blog post about needing less money, I am happiest when I have enough, but don’t devote countless hours to the pursuit of abundance.

Today I was thinking about a world where I could take care of all of my needs through barter, when suddenly I stopped short and thought, “All is a little unrealistic.” I then started making a …

Tiny Wisdom: On the Power of Dreams

“The poor man is not he who is without a cent, but he who is without a dream.” -Harry Kemp

A while back, I found a research study that revealed a lot of trust fund babies end up struggling with depression. Since they don’t need to work to earn a living, many of them feel a sense of emptiness and purposelessness.

Even with all the money they could ever need, they often feel that their lives are lacking.

I’m sure most of us wouldn’t mind a little extra money to play with, but there is no wealth like the joy …