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

Why Some Dreams Don’t Lead to Happiness

When I was 24 years old, I learned that some dreams are actually avoidance tactics, and some discouragement is a very good thing.

I was relatively new in New York City, and I felt overwhelmed by the prospect of failing if I tried to pursue my passions. I’d learned a lot about failure in the six years prior, and the only thing I knew for certain anymore was that I had to become someone important.

When I arrived at my interview for marketing job—as it was so descriptively advertised on Craigslist—I was surprised to find a room full of …

Tiny Wisdom: On Who You Were Meant to Be

“Success means having the courage, the determination, and the will to become the person you believe you were meant to be.” -George Sheehan

I don’t know that I believe we were “meant to be” anything specifically, but I know that we all have greater intentions that often get suffocated under the weight of our daily responsibilities.

We all want to make the world a better place. We all want to mean something to other people. What that looks like differs for all of us, and sometimes it changes from one day, one month, and one year to the next.

But …

10 Steps to Simplify Your Work Life

“Life is actually really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.” ~Confucius

While I have always piled a lot on my plate professionally, I’ve recently introduced more varied elements. Formerly, I may have devoted a long workweek to freelance writing, but I’m now juggling writing, consulting, editing my upcoming book, and promoting my recent eBook.

I’ve noticed that the biggest complication to my life isn’t necessarily the full, varied schedule; it’s how I think about that busy schedule.

Sometimes I let my to-do list overwhelm me, carrying the weight of the whole through all of the parts.

So, …

Tiny Wisdom: On Being Able

“He who has health has hope, and he who has hope has everything.” –Proverb

We all go through phases when we feel hopeless. When everything gets overwhelming. Your bills, your responsibilities, your relationships, the dreams you put on hold—sometimes it all seems like too much.

In those moments the last thing you want to hear is that you’re lucky you can still walk or use all your senses. Those are things we all take for granted. Things that just are.

Except none of them are a given. The legs that allow you to practice yoga may one day be …

Tiny Wisdom: On Giving Peace Away

“If you wish to experience peace, provide peace for another.” -Dalai Lama

Most of the time when I feel overwhelmed, stressed, frustrated, or angry, it’s because I’m obsessing about my circumstances–everything that feels unfair or insurmountable and all the ways I feel powerless to change them.

In this state of mind, I inevitably stress other people out, whether I talk about my challenges or not.

It’s there, spoken or unsaid. It gets in the way of my ability to really be present with the people I love, and it affects their state of mind.

I’ve realized that the surest path …

Tiny Wisdom: On Imperfect People

“We come to love not by finding a perfect person, but by learning to see an imperfect person perfectly.” ~Sam Keen

There’s a popular musical that explores a common approach to love, titled I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change.

It happens all the time: We meet someone, we fall for all their strengths and quirks, and then soon start identifying ways they could change to better meet our needs.

I suspect we do this partly because we tend to blame the person we’re with when we’re feeling something we don’t want to fix on our own. But also, we …

Tiny Wisdom: On Everyday Kindness

“No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.” -Aesop

Recently I read about a research study that suggested kindness is literally contagious. According to Science Daily:

“When people benefit from kindness they ‘pay it forward’ by helping others who were not originally involved, and this creates a cascade of cooperation that influences dozens more in a social network.”

One simple act of generosity, consideration, or thoughtfulness can literally have a domino affect, eventually touching people you may never meet. In a very real way, a simple act of kindness can expand your positive impact on the world …

Tiny Wisdom: On Not Knowing

“I would rather have a mind opened by wonder than one closed by belief.” -Gerry Spence

Many of the beliefs we consider facts are really just things we wish were true–comforting ideas that we’re scared to release.

The world and people feel a lot safer when you think you have them pegged, but the truth is that there’s far more we don’t know than do know, and that will likely always be the case.

If we can let go of our need to know and be right, we can be amazed, inspired, motivated, challenged, and filled with wonder every day.…

Tiny Wisdom: On Freeing Your Mind

“I know but one freedom and that is the freedom of the mind.” ~Antoine de Saint-Exupery

In his book Wisdom 2.0, Soren Gordhamer explores a concept he calls cup mind.

The mind, he explains, can be like a cup or the ocean. When you place a drop of blue dye in a cup, the entire contents may change color, whereas when you place that same drop in the ocean, it barely has an impact.

Our thoughts and feelings can affect our minds similarly. They can completely consume us and alter our entire experience of a given day; or, if …

Tiny Wisdom: On Being Who You Want to Be

“It is never too late to be what you might have been.” -George Eliot

I’ve talked to a lot of people who say that this is a lot easier to believe when you’re young–that it’s near impossible to believe anything is possible when there appears to be a lot less time left.

But do we ever really know how much time we have? When we’re young, we’re not as conscious of our mortality and the unpredictability of life, but that doesn’t mean we’re immune from unexpected hardships. It just means that we don’t yet know to focus on them.

The …

Tiny Wisdom: On Creating

“Creativity is inventing, experimenting, growing, taking risks, breaking rules, making mistakes, and having fun.” -Mary Lou Cook

To be fully alive is to always be creating, whether it’s love, joy, connection, purpose, passion, or possibilities. What are you creating today?

Photo by gfpeck

Available Today: Ebook, Tiny Buddha’s Handbook for Peace & Happiness

Tiny Buddha’s Handbook for Peace and Happiness is the ultimate guide of Tiny Buddha wisdom, based on some of the most popular posts and quotes from the site. You’ll also find 4 posts not previously published on tinybuddha.com.

Through this eBook, I’ve shared myself authentically and vulnerably, and have also offered countless action-oriented suggestions to improve your state of mind, enhance your relationships, identify what makes you feel passionate and purposeful, and find the courage to overcome obstacles and seize your dreams.

These are my most popular, value-packed posts, as viewed by over 1.2 million readers in the last year

Tiny Wisdom: On Why We Change

“You change for two reasons: Either you learn enough that you want to, or you’ve been hurt enough that you have to.” -Unknown

What are you waiting for?

Photo by Mary Sherman

Tiny Wisdom: On Life’s Beauty

“It takes both sunshine and rain to make a rainbow.” -Proverb

There are some things in life that just don’t make any sense. There are things we can’t explain or understand, no matter how hard we try.

There are events that seem to have no reason and mistakes that appear to bring no lesson. There’s darkness that can feel completely unbearable and light that can seem far too fleeting to trust. One day’s happiness gives way to tomorrow’s sadness. One day’s loss is tomorrow’s gain.

The only guarantee in life is that everything will transform, whether we’re ready for it …

Tiny Wisdom: On What We Imagine

“Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere.” ~Albert Einstein

For the past four weeks, I’ve been spending my off days at Disneyland. My boyfriend said that Walt Disney created something brilliant primarily because it gives the illusion of diverse experiences contained under one umbrella brand.

In addition to exploring a variety of fantasy lands, a Disney guest can also experience the western frontier, New Orleans Square, Hollywood, and the remote jungles of Africa and Asia. He can ride a steam-powered locomotive, a monorail, a double-decker bus, and a horse-drawn streetcar.

One day and $94 …

6 Tips: Work/Life Balance for People with Big Dreams

“Happiness is not a matter of intensity but of balance, order, rhythm and harmony.” ~Thomas Merton

The vast majority of people I know have two different types of work: the kind that pays the bills and the kind they wrap their heart around.

For some people, those are one and the same, but often that takes time, dedication, and a willingness to blur the traditional boundaries that separate work and social life.

Because let’s face it: It’s not always easy to make a living doing something you love.

The first challenge is to figure out what that is, and it’s …

Introducing: The Tiny Buddha Quote Widget

The first Tiny Buddha quote appeared on Twitter in 2008. Since then, the archives have grown to include over 1000 wisdom quotes, with new quotes added every weekday.

You can now embed a daily wisdom quote right on your site with the Tiny Buddha Quote Widget for WordPress.

This plugin will display the quote of the day from Monday through Friday. On Saturday and Sunday, the plugin will deliver a random quote from the Tiny Buddha archives.

12/21/11 UPDATE: The quote widget has been changed so that it now delivers a random quote from the Tiny Buddha archives …

Tiny Wisdom: On Adapting

“The art of life is constant readjusting to your surroundings.” ~Kazuko Okokaura

Oftentimes, when we don’t adapt to our surroundings, it’s because we refuse to see ourselves in new ways.

Maybe you think that you’re a shy person, so you let that justify sitting alone when an intimate gathering suddenly turns into a party.

Or you believe that you’re unmotivated, so you don’t make the effort to promote yourself when a potential new partner walks into your life.

Or you feel certain that you’re not tech-savvy, so you refuse to learn a new software that could make you far more …

Tiny Wisdom: On What We Believe

“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” ~Eleanor Roosevelt

Today I used the Twitter search functionality, looking for the phrase, “I believe in.” Here’s what I found:

“I believe in love.”

“I believe in magic.”

“There must be another way because I believe in taking chances.”

“I believe in people like me.”

“I believe in life itself.”

“I believe in dreams and that we control our destiny through our actions.”

“I believe in the sun even if it isn’t shining.”

“I believe in the words ‘never say never.'”

There’s something kind of beautiful about …

Giveaway: Tiny Buddha’s Handbook for Peace and Happiness

Update: The winners have already been chosen for this giveaway. Subscribe to The Tiny Buddha List to learn about future contests, and click below to purchase this eBook for $10.97!

Since I launched tinybuddha.com in September of 2009, I’ve hosted quite a few giveaways for books that moved me.

Today is a very exciting day for me—one that’s a year in a half in the making: Today I am giving away five free copies of my book.

If you’ve been reading for a while, you may think I’m referring to my book about life’s hardest questions, which Conari Press …