“The great use of life is to spend it for something that will outlast it.” ~William James
I’ll never forget the call.
It was 1989 and, like most college students, I spent winter break in Florida looking for some sun. Stepping off the airplane and being greeted by a burst of warm air was the best. As I entered the terminal, I had the added benefit of being greeted by my maternal grandparents, who lived in North Miami Beach.
Lounging at the pool, going on walks with them, or eating out, the experience was a wonderful way to decompress after …
TRIGGER WARNING: This post mentions sexual abuse and may be triggering to some people.
“Along the way I stopped into a coffee shop. All around me normal, everyday city types were going about their normal, everyday affairs…In spite of which—or, rather, all the more because— here I was, sitting in this coffee shop, drinking my coffee, feeling a desperate loneliness. I alone was the outsider. I had no place here… Here I had no ties to anyone. Fact is, I’d come to reclaim myself.” ~Haruki Murakami
“You don’t have any goals.”
“I wondered why someone your age and …
“Progress is impossible without change.” ~Walt Disney
I want you to look in the mirror and tell me what you see.
Do you look older? Does your skin have more wrinkles? Do you notice dark circles around your eyes or white hair on your head?
You are looking at massive changes from a decade ago. A lot of it you probably don’t like—changes due to your body growing older. Changes that you cannot resist.
Now look in the mirror again. Do you notice a more confident person? Someone who is self-assured, optimistic, and happy in life?
It happened to me …
“And still, after all this time, the Sun has never said to the Earth, ‘You owe me.’ Look what happens with a love like that. It lights up the sky.” ~Rumi
I grew up believing love was conditional. My grandmother, as much as I adored her, was extremely controlling, and unless I met her high standards of behavior and gave her a certain level of attention, she treated me with coldness.
Whenever she disapproved of my behavior, she would tell me, “I love you, but I don’t like you.” As if she had a switch she could turn on and …
“Happiness is like a butterfly, the more you chase it, the more it will evade you, but if you notice the other things around you, it will gently come and sit on your shoulder.” ~Henry David Thoreau
Most of us are always on the lookout for a big breakthrough—a point in our life where the beam balance tips to maximal happiness so we can enjoy everlasting bliss. What can we do to get there?
Our pursuit of happiness is like a coyote chasing a roadrunner. But what happens? Just like the roadrunner, happiness slips out of our hands every …
“I wish I could show you, when you are lonely or in darkness, the astonishing light of your own being.” ~ Hafiz of Shiraz
When we think of illness, we don’t usually equate it with loneliness; however, there seems to be a huge connection between the two conditions.
The fact is, when dealing with health challenges, we are most connected to our bodies: we are one with ourselves. Even when we have thoughtful and caring loved ones in our inner circles, these individuals can never truly understand what we’re experiencing on a physical, psychological, and spiritual level.
Illness is …
“What I’m looking for is not out there, it is in me.” ~Helen Keller
I used to think that life should be easy, and if it wasn’t easy, then I was doing it wrong.
I’m older and wiser now, and I’ve learned that if it is hard, that means I am probably doing something right.
I had a good childhood. I had a loving family, plenty of opportunity, and I excelled at whatever I put my mind to. But I was a high-anxiety kid, and a relentless perfectionist. As I grew older, that need to have everything flawless impeded my …
“It’s not the events of our lives that shape us, but our beliefs as to what those events mean.” ~Tony Robbins
BEEP! BEEP! BEEP!
The sound of my fiancé’s alarm went off at 5:00 in the morning. I had fallen asleep around 2am after scrolling for hours on Instagram and Pinterest.
Frustrated, I rolled into my pillow as he leaned over to give me a kiss on the forehead.
Why does he always have to kiss me every morning when I’m tired.
Resentment is an odd feeling.
“Here we go again,” I thought to myself, “another boring Monday …
“You can’t stop negative thoughts from popping into your head, but you can choose to stop letting them control you and your life.” ~Lori Deschene
Some of us are more prone to negative thoughts. They start out subtle and quiet, a small voice in the background of your life, until suddenly they’re shouting at you that you’re not good enough. They shout so loud and so often you think it’s your own voice and you start to agree.
There was one day in particular, a few years ago, where this problem became clear to me.
That day (and week …
“When solving problems, dig at the root instead of just hacking at the leaves.” ~Anthony J. D’Angelo
This is an account of my experience using marijuana as a device to help my anxiety, why I’m glad I had it, and why I no longer need it.
This story isn’t an advocation for or against smoking pot. It’s a story to shed some insight into how and why it helped certain ailments and my journey to lasting change without it.
How Smoking Pot Helped My Anxiety
For most of my life I was a closet anxiety sufferer.
That’s mostly because …
“Today be thankful and think how rich you are. Your family is priceless. Your health is wealth. Your time is gold.” ~Unknown
The other day I read a science fiction story called “The Pedestrian” by Ray Bradbury. It’s about Leopard Mead, a citizen of TV-centered society, who enjoys walking at night.
The routine eventually lands him a cell in a psychiatric center because nobody understands why he does that. In the television-dominated city, people don’t walk. They’re too busy sticking their eyeballs to their screens.
I wonder if there will be a day when technology takes over us all, when …
“Recovering from PTSD is being fragile and strong at the same time. It’s a beautiful medley of constantly being broken down and pieced together. I am a painting almost done to completion, beautiful but not quite complete.” ~Kate J. Tate
I never considered myself as a trauma survivor.
I didn’t think I had something as severe as PTSD. I reserved that diagnosis to those who suffered from things far worse than me.
It felt dramatic and attention-seeking to label myself as a “trauma survivor.”
First of all, what is trauma? The term tends to be loosely thrown around, and …
“When we get too caught up in the busyness of the world, we lose connection with one another—and ourselves.” ~Jack Kornfield
The quality of our relationships has a massive impact on our levels of happiness and well-being.
Nurturing our relationships requires time, attention, and effort. But it’s all too easy to become sidetracked and complacent, and to stop appreciating and truly connecting with those closest to us. Often, we feel we are simply too busy to focus on how we can improve the situation. Life seems to get in the way.
Like everyone else I’ve experienced plenty of ups …
“We can say what we need to say. We can gently, but assertively, speak our mind. We do not need to be judgmental, tactless, blaming, or cruel when we speak our thoughts.” ~Melody Beattie
When I first learned about the concept of boundaries, I imagined how freeing it would feel to finally be able to say an empowered “no” at every turn. I imagined myself turning down drinks from leering strangers at bars, denying eager clipboard-carriers’ requests for money, and rejecting requests to do more than my fair share of work projects.
“‘No’ is a complete sentence” would be …
Since you’re a Tiny Buddha reader, I know you’re someone who understands the importance of fostering wisdom and compassion. And I imagine you’re also interested in learning how you can help create a more peaceful world, with less suffering for all.
The Dalai Lama has dedicated his life to guiding others, like a beacon of hope, along the path to a more peaceful world. His teachings and example have inspired and warmed the hearts of millions.
Over six days, Lion’s Roar and Tibet House US are bringing together 22 presenters, including Buddhist teachers, spiritual leaders, scientists, best-selling authors, scholars, and …
“Talk to yourself like someone you love.” ~Brené Brown
It has been over six months of this strange way of living. A lot is hard, uncomfortable, and painful—inside my home and outside in the world.
I find myself tired, exhausted, and overwhelmed a lot. I have two young kids; my husband and I work full time, and my home can often feel like sheer chaos.
I have mediated fights that involve blood between two young humans, and sometimes I say means words that I can’t believe I could have said to a six-year-old child. I know I could simplify …
“If one by one we counted people out for the least sin, it wouldn’t take us long to get so we had no one left to live with. For to be social is to be forgiving.” ~Robert Frost
There are two things that may come to mind when you think about forgiveness.
The many spiritual healers and gurus that talk about its importance, including but not limited to Buddha quotes.
And the person you think you will never forgive.
Forgiveness has a largely religious or spiritual connotation.
In Buddhist teachings, grudges are likened to holding onto hot coal, …
“Success is how high you bounce when you hit bottom.” ~George S. Patton
Much of the difficulty and struggle that we go through in life comes from our resistance to change. At some point, we get stuck in painful circumstances, yet we fear facing our reality and doing the work required to ignite a positive change. After all, the enemy we know is better than the enemy we don’t know. It’s not that bad, we tell ourselves.
So we settle, give up on our desires, try to make the best of what we got—and that works for a while. …
“There is nothing outside of yourself that can ever enable you to get better, stronger, richer, quicker, or smarter. Everything is within. Everything exists. Seek nothing outside of yourself.” ~Miyamoto Musashi
This post is about a code of life. There isn’t a single code, and everyone must choose their own truth. I’ve been searching for my truth in the face of many books and since I haven’t founnd it anywhere I decided to write it myself.
What is the Limitless Life?
When I was young, my father told me, “Son, all limits exist only in your head.”
These words stuck …
“Connection gives purpose and meaning to our lives.” ~Brené Brown
R U OK Day is a crucial campaign to address mental health problems in our community. Even prior to the pandemic, isolation, loneliness, and disconnection from each other meant that the simple act of asking “Are you OK?” needed to be prompted.
We may go days, weeks without seeing each other in person, instead relying on sporadic whatsapp messages, emojis, or comments on each other’s social media posts. We may spend all our time at our work places, but not make time to see our friends and family.