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

How to Love Your Authentic Self

“You, yourself, as much as anybody else in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.” ~Buddha

In our personal development-focused, life coach-dependent world, it’s all too easy to think you need to change. Not just the things you do, but who you are.

It’s one thing to invite transformation for the sake of growth, improvement, and new possibilities. It’s another thing to feel so dissatisfied with yourself that no amount of change could possibly convince you that you’re worthy and lovable.

This type of intrinsic self-loathing formed the basis of my adolescence and some of my …

Mindfulness Giveaway: Win Awake at the Wheel Mindful Driving CDs

Update: This winners for this giveaway have already been chosen.Subscribe to the Tiny Buddha List to learn about future contests!

When I was twenty-one years old, I got into a series of car accidents just after getting my license.

The first time, I drove the wrong way down a one-way street. The second time I side-swiped a double-parked car trying to get around it. And the third time, I hit a Channel 7 news van while looking at printed directions in the middle of Big Dig construction madness (not my proudest moment).

In all of those instances, I was …

Tiny Wisdom: On Wasted Time

“Nothing is a waste of time if you use the experience wisely.” ~Rodin

John Lennon said time you enjoyed wasting was not wasted. The same can be said for time you didn’t enjoy if you decide to find value in the experience of the moment.

It’s easy to do this retroactively—to look back and ascertain that a frustrating moment taught you patience, or a disappointing moment taught you humility. It’s a lot more difficult to ground yourself within a less than ideal moment and decide then to use it wisely; not to remember it wisely later, but actually do something …

Tiny Wisdom: On Resisting Emotions

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

No amount of strength will change the fact that we are human, and to be human means to hurt. We won’t hurt always, and we don’t have to suffer endlessly, but we will feel emotions all through our lives.

Even if we become really adept at dealing with uncomfortable emotions, we will never completely transcend them. And would we even want to? The ability to feel the darkest of moments gives us the capacity to enjoy the lightest.

So I say lets stop fighting our natural duality. …

Productivity and Happiness: Why Are We So Busy?

“Life is what happens when you are making other plans.” ~John Lennon

There have been times in my life when I believed all my happiness revolved around how busy I was. If I was busy, I was using time wisely. If I was busy, I was proving to myself that I was valuable. If I was busy, I was creating the possibility of a better life in the future. Any threat to my productivity was a threat to my sense of hope.

Being busy didn’t make me feel happy, but it created the illusion that I was somehow …

Tiny Wisdom: On Giving a Gift

“Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it. ” -William A. Ward

Everyone likes to be appreciated, yet research shows we are collectively quicker to place blame than offer praise. Perhaps it’s because we’re wired to seek solutions to problems, which means we need to recognize things that aren’t working.

But relationships aren’t problems to be solved. They might come with their challenges, but inherently they don’t need fixing. They need nurturing, and it’s our job to do that.

Today make it a point to express all the gratitude you feel, even for …

8 Ideas for Stress-Free, Meaningful Holiday Gift Giving

“You make a living by what you get; you make a life by what you give.” ~Unknown

There’s something magical about this time of year, and it has nothing to do with the Santas posted like soldiers at various points throughout the globe or the million volts of electricity that light up Main Streets the world over.

I’ve always loved Christmastime because the season inspires people to focus on everything that’s important in life.

The usually harried slow down just a little to stop and smell the mistletoe, while humming along to redundant Christmas songs they secretly enjoy. Fighting relatives …

Tiny Wisdom: On Imperfect Days

“Being happy doesn’t mean that everything is perfect. It means you’ve decided to look beyond the imperfections.” -Unknown

There are far more reasons to be happy right now than there are valid excuses to wait for a better day. For starters, things will never be perfect. Just as everything lines up right with work, your relationship may get complicated. Just as you settle into a healthy relationship, your family might feel neglected.

Life is a constant balancing act, and on most days, some things will work in our favor and other things will appear to be lacking. Perhaps true happiness …

Tiny Wisdom: On Honoring You

“Above all, be true to yourself, and if you cannot put your heart in it, take yourself out of it.” ~Hardy D. Jackson

There is a big difference between being there for people and being inauthentic to please people. The irony is that we often do this for people we love thinking it’s what they want. It isn’t. They want our needs to be met, but they can’t know them unless we acknowledge and honor them ourselves.

We are the ones who need to decide who we are and what it means to be true to ourselves; and we’re the …

8 Ways to Turn Disappointment into Meaningful Success

“Don’t let today’s disappointment cast a shadow on tomorrow’s dream.” ~Unknown

Have you ever looked back on your life, exactly a year ago, and felt amazed by how much has changed?

Last year at this time, I’d only just started this site and I was competing in a blogging contest. Ignite Social Media, the marketing company behind the mood supplement SAM-e, had come up with a clever crowdsourcing campaign to generate awareness for the product.

In the beginning of the fall, they advertised a contest to win a dream blogging job. The winner would get a six-month contract to write …

30 Things to Appreciate About You

“You, yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe deserve your love and affection.” ~Buddha

Depending on where you’re from, you may celebrate Thanksgiving today. You might get together with your family over a massive gravy-drenched feast. You might celebrate with a chosen family of friends, with traditional food, vegan fare, or a nontraditional fast food spread.

Regardless of who surrounds you today or what meal you all share together, you’ll likely reflect upon your blessings, as we tend to do at this time of year.

You might announce them elocution style as you all take turns at the …

Tiny Wisdom: On What We Create

“Life will bring you pain all by itself. Your responsibility is to create joy.” ~Milton Erickson

It’s inevitable we’ll hurt in life, and in it’s inevitable we’ll want more of the good times, less of the bad, and more control over the distribution.

We can’t change that pain is a part of life, but we can choose to  be responsible for joy instead of sitting around waiting for it, wondering when someone will change or something will change and happiness will seem less elusive.

We can do the things we love a little every day. And tell the people we …

Tiny Wisdom: On Being Aware

“Let us not look back in anger, nor forward in fear, but around in awareness.” ~James Thurber

When you focus your attention on what’s in front of you, yesterday’s problems feel a lot less catastrophic and tomorrow’s uncertainty seems a lot less scary.

It’s not easy to live in the now because obsessing over yesterday and stressing about tomorrow can seem like gaining control. If only you can analyze yesterday enough, maybe you can make sense of it. If only you can plan for tomorrow enough, maybe you can decide what will happen.

Except neither of those things are universally …

Tiny Wisdom: On Choosing

“There are two primary choices in life: to accept conditions as they exist, or accept responsibility for changing them.” ~Denis Waitley

Sometimes complaining, stressing, analyzing, and fantasizing can seem proactive, but they don’t actually change anything. Visualizing or planning may help you take action, but nothing changes unless you actually do.

Today if you feel aggravated with your circumstances ask yourself these questions: Am I willing to do something to change them? And if not, what can I do to enjoy today instead of dwelling and letting it slip away?

Photo by joiseyshowaa

Tiny Wisdom: On Envy

“You can’t be envious and happy at the same time.” ~Frank Tyger

When you’re fixated on everything someone else has that you lack, it’s near impossible to notice and appreciate everything that’s working in your favor. There’s always something, even if you’re not where you’d like to be professionally, romantically, socially, or personally.

You’ll get there–that doesn’t change that now is a perfect time to be happy.

Envy is a disease of resentful dissatisfaction. Gratitude is not only the antidote–it’s also a choice to accept and enjoy your world as it is.

Photo by D Sharon Pruitt

Tiny Wisdom: On Being You

“It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are.” -E.E. Cummings

It can be difficult to be true to yourself if you have no idea who you are.

So often we identify with who we’ve been in the past, holding onto bad memories and assuming they have to define us. Or we think about who we should be—things we want to have, how to we want to be perceived, and how we want to be remembered.

We attach to things and people, as if they are a part of us, and then feel disjointed when someone leaves …

Tiny Wisdom: On Ends & Beginnings

“Letting go isn’t the end of the world; it’s the beginning of a new life.” -Unknown

When you’ve loved every moment of an experience, it can feel like a death to watch it fade into yesterday.

When a relationship ends, it might feel like you’ll never love or smile again. When a job ends, you might think you’ll never feel fulfilled in your work again.

You will. Just like every experience is impermanent, every feeling eventually fades and morphs into something else. Happiness becomes sadness becomes happiness again.

If you’re willing to let go of yesterday and stay open to

10 Happiness Tips for Busy People: How to Reclaim Your Joy

“Life is what happens while you are making other plans.” ~John Lennon

I am someone who enjoys doing a lot of different things, and yet I don’t always enjoy being busy. Sometimes when my schedule gets full, I feel almost as if I’ve lost a part of me.

Just like some people become codependent in relationships, I can be codependent with work. When it has my attention, everything else can easily fall to the wayside—my social life, my hobbies, you name it.

It’s all too easy to get caught up in a riptide of doing without ever evaluating what you’re …

Tiny Wisdom: On Forgiving

“To forgive is to set a prisoner free and realize that prisoner was you.” -Lewis B. Smedes

Nothing hurts more than resentment. When you sit around reliving painful stories, feeling angry and justified, it doesn’t right past wrongs. It doesn’t teach people how to treat you. It doesn’t in any way heal you.

All anger does is force you to relive a moment that’s come and gone. And all that dwelling can actually cause you emotional and physical disease—stress, anxiety, depression, high blood pressure, stomach ulcers, and even heart attack.

Every day we have a choice as to what we …

How to Forgive Someone When It’s Hard: 30 Tips to Let Go of Anger

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

Up until my early twenties, I carried around a lot of anger toward someone in my life. I’d been hurt by a person I trusted, and for a long time in my adolescence I wanted to hurt them back.

I lived in painful stories and in visions of what could have been if I hadn’t been wronged. I blamed someone else for the life I didn’t have, and felt vindicated in the soul-sucking resentment I carried around from day to day.

I realize it makes less …