The Top 10 Tiny Buddha Insights from 2012


Happy almost 2013!

It seems like just yesterday I wrote “Happy almost 2012!” before summarizing the top lessons from 2011.

I’m not one for New Year’s resolutions, as I like to think that any moment is an ideal time to make a change, but I always appreciate looking back and recognizing progress and growth.

The site grew by leaps and bounds this year, surpassing two million monthly page views. However, what I’ve found most exciting is the increased interest in contributing to the blog.

Each month, I’ve received more submissions than the month before, but what inspires me isn’t the number of posts that people have submitted; it’s the honesty and passion that people have put into them.

Ultimately, I think we all want more than knowledge; we want to know that we’re not alone, and we want not just to be helped, but also to help others.

I’m proud and grateful that this is a space where we can all do both—where we can connect with each other based on our shared experiences and feelings, and can both learn from each other and share what we’ve learned.

The top ten insights from posts written this year (based on page views and comments) include:

1. We can decide on any day to feel more alive.

To feel more alive, you don’t need to achieve anything specific. You simply need to choose to do something today that makes you feel exhilarated and excited, whether that means reaching out to someone you admire or facing a fear.

From my post, 40 Ways to Feel More Alive: “That’s what it means to really feel alive—to be so immersed in the passionate bliss of this moment that you don’t think about yesterday or tomorrow. You just enjoy what you’re doing and love every piece of it.”

2. If you’re dealing with a break-up, the best thing you can do is to focus on your thoughts, your attitude, and your reaction.

As Ana S. wrote, “Dealing with a break up requires immense strength from us. We need to be strong to control our thoughts, to stop the crying, to find happiness in the present moment, and to let go of that person we love so much.”

Some of her suggestions to move on: Stop dwelling on what you could have done differently, stop dwelling on what the other person’s thinking and doing, and allow yourself to feel and grieve.

3. There are a number of reasons to be okay with being disliked.

We all want to feel accepted, respected, and appreciated, but there’s nothing more stressful than trying to be liked by everyone. There are lots of reasons to become comfortable with being disliked, and I listed 10 of them earlier this.

Some of them include: It allows you to be your true self, it gives you the power to say no (since you’re less worried about people pleasing), and it allows you the freedom to explore your feelings (since you stress less about people’s opinions).

4. You can change your life by identifying what’s important to you.

In his post 6 Questions That Will Change Your Life Forever, James McWhinney shared how he formerly felt lost and stuck in a dead-end job and offered 6 questions to help us get unstuck.

Some of them include: What do I absolutely love in life? What are my greatest accomplishments in life so far? What would I stand for if I knew no one would judge me?

5. There’s a lot to appreciate about being single.

As C. De Lima wrote in her post The Art of Being Happily Single, when you’re not in a relationship you have an opportunity to spend time with yourself and focus on your own needs. It’s a call not just to be open to a new love, but also to be open to life.

6. Your instincts will tell you if you’re in a toxic relationship—if you stay open to the signs.

At one point or another, most of us have stayed in an unhealthy relationship after our instincts told us it might be time to leave. When emotions are involved, it can be hard to hear the small voice within that says, “Something’s not right.”

In her post 5 Signs You’re in a Toxic Relationship, Yvette Bowlin presented a few signals it’s time to move on, including: It seems like you can’t do anything right, and everything is about them and never about you.

7. We can feel more loved by opening our hearts, our minds, and our eyes.

We all want to feel loved and connected to other people, but sometimes we struggle with opening up and letting others in.

In my post How to Feel More Loved: 9 Tips for Deep Connection, I offered a collection of tips to do just that, including: initiate meaningful conversations, consider that love might look different than you visualized it, and value the people who are already in your life.

8. If you’re being nice automatically, without reflecting on your own thoughts and values, you’re not being good to yourself. 

Do you find yourself being overly agreeable and avoiding confrontation? Do you pride yourself of never being mad? Nisha Balaram shared how she used to resent her accommodating nature and explained how we can be kind and good to ourselves.

Some of her suggestions include: Avoid victimizing yourself and blaming others; and recognize your feelings are valid instead of making excuses for them.

9. We can change our feelings by changing our thoughts.

In his post 20 Thoughts to Relieve Anxiety and Depression, Dorian Innes shared a variety of thoughts that can change our perspective and help us feel more positive.

Some empowering thoughts include: You can’t control everyone and everything; you are where you are right now because that’s where you need to be; and, success has no standard definition.

10. Love often looks different than we expect it will.

On Valentine’s Day, I wrote a short post describing what love isn’t, at least from my perspective. My intention was to break down our idealistic expectations to open us up to a more compassionate kind of love—the kind that’s not based on perfection, but mutual understanding, forgiveness, and growth.

For 2013

I have some exciting plans for 2013! Some time in either January or February, the site will have a new design, and I hope to launch forums at the same time.

In the fall, I plan to launch my second print book, Tiny Buddha’s Guide to Self-Love, which will include 40 posts from the Tiny Buddha community.

Most importantly, the site will continue facilitating conversations about the universal challenges we all face.

Thank you for being part of those conversations. You make a difference, and you’re appreciated.

Wishing you a peaceful, healthy, happy 2013 friends!

*Just a note: I’m running another Tiny Wisdom eBook Buy-One-Give-One sale to celebrate the New Year. If you haven’t seen that post already, you can read more about that here.

Photo by AlicePopkorn

About Lori Deschene

Lori Deschene is the founder of Tiny Buddha and Recreate Your Life Story, an online course that helps you let go of the past and live a life you love. Her latest bookTiny Buddha's Gratitude Journal, which includes 15 coloring pages, is now available for purchase. For daily wisdom, follow Tiny Buddha on Twitter, Facebook & Instagram..

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  • Dení

    Brilliant, absolutely inspiring. Thanks

  • You and your readers have created something special here, Lori. And I’m grateful for having found it! It’s been a wonderful addition to “the year.”

    Deciding to feel alive is probably the most valuable emotion (or decision) for me. Sometimes I wonder which comes first, the emotion (feeling) or the thought. Does my thinking change the way I feel or does a simple choice to feel better conjure up better thoughts? Perhaps it’s different for each of us.

    Love … your number 10, is what everything boils down to, doesn’t it? When I feel that I AM love, there’s no end to how much I can give and never a feeling of a lack of it. I’m now reading your book and I’m loving it!

    Thanks again for your work here, Lori and I wish you all the best on your upcoming changes. They’re going to be great! And have fun with your work on the new book coming out later in the year!

  • allison

    Beautiful. Impeccable writing. Thank you for providing a direction on how to” feel alive”. I look foward to your emails daily from your many other talented writers. Happy New Year to you and your family.

  • Thank you so much for a great year. There are many times I need to read exactly what you post, even if I don’t necessarily want to read it at that moment in time. It helps to keep things on track. Here’s to health and happiness in 2013!

  • sashabla

    Thank you Lori for sharing you’re oh so very insightful pearls of wisdom with us throughout the year. I

    Wishing you all the best in 2013 – peace, love and good health to you and yours!

  • Love this site…always hits my inbox with advice relevant to the day’s feelings. Keep up the good work. I try and share this site with anyone I can..

  • Veronica

    Thank you Lori and all of those who contribute to Tiny Buddha!

  • You’re most welcome Deni. Thank you for being here. =)

  • You’re most welcome Veronica. Thank you for being part of the Tiny Buddha community!

  • Thanks so much John. I’m glad you’ve found the site helpful!

  • On behalf of all the writers, you are most welcome. Thank you for being a part of the community!

  • You’re most welcome Abby! Happy 2013 =)

  • Thanks Allison! Happy New Year to you and yours as well. =)

  • Thanks so much Carmelo! It’s been exciting to see the community of readers and writers grow. I’m glad you’re a part of it. =)

    That’s a great question, about what comes first, with feeling alive. I think for me it can work both ways. When I change my thoughts, it changes my feelings. When I do something that changes my feelings, that inevitably changes my thoughts.

    I also think that is what it all boils down to, regarding love; I believe everything we receive stems from what and how we give.

    Thanks for the well wishes for the New Year. Wishing you peace, love, and happiness in the year ahead!

  • David

    This site has helped me and others through a tough 2012. I just wanted to thank you Lori and contributers for your efforts. I’m looking forward to a brighter 2013….and who knows, maybe I’ll have something to contribute in the New Year too! Here’s to bigger and brighter things for tiny buddha in 2013! Happy New Year everyone!

  • cary

    Hey Lori, I can’t think of a better way to start the new year than to say thank you. Thanks not just for the words you write, and the words you read, but for the way you gather those words and transform them into an experience that you give freely. Anyone may choose to participate.

    Those lucky enough to find TinyBuddha in this world burdened by far too much input will find warm thoughts that speak to their situation in life. I’ve lost count how many times I’ve read, “This is just what I needed today”.

    Though our own best life coach is always and forever within ourselves, at times a nudge here or encouragement there can make the difference. Ultimately every decision is our own, but it’s nice to know that there are those such as yourself that find true purpose and joy in helping others.

    Thank you for the opportunity to take this moment and make it an ideal time for resolute growth.

    And a happy new year as well.

  • Irving Podolsky

    Lori, you are making a positive difference in this world. If this is your life’s mission, you are 100% successful. I can’t see any downsides to what this site is about and the comments below prove that.

    Stay the course, Lori, and we will follow.

    And of course best wishes to you and your family for 2013.


  • Thanks so much Irving. It’s my honor and privilege to run this site. =)

    Happy 2013!

  • Thank you Cary! I have never before felt as purposeful and connected as I have since I started this site, and I’m just thrilled to know that Tiny Buddha makes a positive difference for other people. Thank you for being here. =)

  • Please read Proverbs 4:7 -Wisdom is supreme; therefore get wisdom.
    Though it cost all you have, get understanding. – Without understanding you will never see the truth. You need both wisdom and understanding. The mystery of yesterday is technology today. Eranic statement

  • P

    Lori, thank you … this is one of the best Tiny Buddha …. so glad I’m a subscriber

  • You’re most welcome, and thanks so much. I’m glad you enjoy the site!

  • Andy

    Thank you, Lori. I was attracted to tinybuddha immediately when I found it although it’s only a month’s time. As I wrote in that email, reading the words and comments of ordinary people that have the same situation, I feel relaxed and inspired. It helps me more or less in varied situations such as relationships. You became a friend of mine in a sense. We need more positive energy ever. I will introduce tinnybuddha to my friends here in China. It’s not easy to change, but it’s important you do it. Good job and happy new year to all !

  • On behalf of all the writers, you are most welcome! I would love to read a post from you at some point. Happy 2013! =)

  • Rajiv Sahay

    Hi Lori….Although I am late to read your wonderful “Happy almost
    2013!”, I must say its a wonderful attempt to make people’s lives more
    meaningful. Keep up with this effort of sharing the enlightenment of the
    Buddha in bits and pieces, I am there with you, Happy 2013……Rajiv Sahay

  • Thanks so much Rajiv! I’m a little late with myself–I just saw this comment now. Happy 2013! =)

  • Thanks so much Andy! I find the same comfort and inspiration in reading other people’s stories, which is a big part of why I do what I do. It means the world to me to know the site helps others as well. =)

  • I love all your posts, thanks so much! xx

  • You’re most welcome, and thank you! 🙂

  • Buddha has clearly spread the message of love,care and affection…but the scenario of the whole world got changed drastically as everyone is getting to much materialistic ..lives are getting lost,faith on relationship are loosing,Money is having too much of importance….how to deal with it