“Learn to appreciate what you have before time makes you appreciate what you had.” ~Unknown
I was standing there crying harder than I had ever cried before in my life. I was so emotionally moved that I totally lost control and was even drooling. It’s a good thing I was wearing a surgical mask.
I was witnessing my wife giving birth to our first-born child.
A nurse had to remind me to take pictures when she saw me standing there with a camera in my hand, crying more than a…well, a baby. It was the happiest moment of my life. …
“Remember that sometimes not getting what you want is a wonderful stroke of luck.” ~Dalai Lama
While every adoption story is different, they all start with a loss. Our loss turned out to be the best thing that ever happened to us.
I’ve had two migraines in my life. Both were when I was battling infertility and in a war with my body. My brain had had enough apparently.
The first migraine was on my way to work one day (different story), and the second was before a dinner party. My friend was inviting her close friends over to make …
“Life is a process of becoming. A combination of states we have to go through. Where people fail is that they wish to elect a state and remain in it. This is a kind of death.” ~Anais Nin
I bought an ice cream cake for my family to thank them for giving me the time and space to write the first draft of my novel. My husband took photos. I selected my favorite shot as the wallpaper on my computer to remind me of this milestone.
I was happy and joyous for a week. The second week I fell into …
“Happiness is really a deep harmonious inner satisfaction and approval.” ~Francis Wilshire
It is only in the last few years of my life that I have felt genuinely happy and comfortable in my own skin.
Until my early thirties the dominant feeling I carried around with me was one of extreme social awkwardness. Which is strange, because most people who knew me prior to that time would have described me as a confident guy who got on with just about everybody.
I’m aware that outwardly I was very skilful at presenting a positive and socially pleasing demeanor, while on …
“You can only grow if you’re willing to feel awkward and uncomfortable when you try something new.” ~Brian Tracy
With apologies to everyone who is from somewhere else or lived before 1776, we Americans want everyone to believe that we live in the greatest country in the history of humanity and that makes us the greatest humans beings ever.
We even have data to back up our bravado: our GDP, the quantity of our millionaires and even billionaires, and our weapons power. We have more movie stars, more rock stars, and more celebrities who are celebrated for being celebrities than …
“To get something you never had, you have to do something you’ve never done.” ~Unknown
Maybe you feel stuck. Or bored. Or frustrated. It’s not that you don’t like the life you live, it’s just that you suspect there’s something more. Some greater sense of meaning or excitement. New connections. New adventures. New possibilities.
The truth is those possibilities are always within your reach. You may not be able to quit your job or develop new skills by osmosis, but every day contains within it countless opportunities, all dictated by the choices you make.
Some of those choices may seem …
“Instead of complaining that the rose bush is full of thorns, be happy the thorn bush has roses.” ~Proverb
As a child, I was obsessed with other worlds—reading about alien planets, writing fantasy stories, or just playing video games. As a teenager, I longed to know as much as possible— who we were, why we are here, the meaning of life.
Later on, I started traveling. There was so much to see, so much to do, so many ways to look at the world. I wanted to see it all, touch it all, experience it all.
This need for …
“Don’t let your happiness depend on something you may lose.” ~C.S. Lewis
For as long as I can remember, “more” has always been better, but the word “more” is no longer what it used to be.
Five years ago, I started exercising for the first time in my life. At first, I counted down the minutes until my workout was over. As I got stronger, though, I started staying at the gym longer and longer.
For a while, I burned more calories than I consumed during meals. It didn’t matter. I worked out as much as I could because I …
“It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are.” ~E.E.Cummings
Have you ever had a clear sign of who you really are and then totally ignored it?
Maybe it required too much change or taking a big risk. Maybe you were scared to have to convince a loved one how much you needed this. And so you rationalized that “it wasn’t the right time.” Convinced yourself to “be sensible and put it off for a while.” I know how this feels, because I did it too.
I was twenty-one then, and in my third year of medical …
“Trust yourself. You know more than you think you do.” ~Benjamin Spock
My confidence is a delicate thing. I’ve had more disturbances in my life than I’ve had reassurances, a handful of betrayals, and enough playground cruelty to last me until the day I die.
I am still living with some difficult health conditions that I wake up and go to bed with every day, with no respite. I’m an introvert to the core, no matter how eloquent I am with the written word, or articulate with the spoken word.
Some of us are more fragile than others, but that’s …
“Our sorrows and wounds are only healed when we touch them with compassion.” ~Buddha
I have always struggled with self-compassion. In fact, I’m not even sure I have been aware of it all that much throughout my life.
I’ve always thought the only way to truly grow was to push myself, both physically and mentally, so without even realizing it, I set myself up for that.
I would not study for my university exams until the night before. I would take it easy and not make enough money until it got to the stage that I had to almost …
“I have just three things to teach: simplicity, patience, compassion. These three are your greatest treasures.” ~Lao Tzu
I recently took seven weeks off of work and rented a place in Laguna Beach.
The trip was meant to be a relaxing vacation and possibly a change of residence; it turned out to be a wakeup call.
I started the trip out by going on my first date since 2010. The pollen count was high, and my sinuses were none too happy. I’m still not sure if it was being on a date or the medication that triggered so much anxiety…
“Letting go give us freedom, and freedom is the only condition for happiness.” ~Thich Nhat Hanh
I stood alone in what had been my childhood bedroom, staring at the dresser with a familiar discomfort. My fingers clutched at the handle of the second drawer from the top and pulled hard, straining from the weight of its contents.
I reached in with both hands, the drawer with its quarter inch plywood base teetering dangerously on the edge of the frame, and lifted them out, one by one.
Unicorns, fairies, rainbows, mystical maidens, all disappeared as I placed the journals into the …
“When you blame others, you give up your power to change.” ~Anthony Robins
I used to be an angry person. And I was happy about that. In fact, I prided myself on that identity during high school.
So devoted to the young and vapid demographic, I would stand in front of the bathroom mirror and practice the eighties version of the mad dog stare. In the eleventh grade, I decided smiling wasn’t hip, so I stopped.
I wore surly like the Goth kids take to all-black attire. My friends thought I was cool because I said what I felt and …
“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” ~Eleanor Roosevelt
It’s a voice we’re all familiar with, and one that we all find challenging. Yes, the inner critic is the part of our internal dialogue that can make or break our day.
At its best, our inner critic helps us live in a way that’s true to our values, questioning decisions that we might regret later and keeping us on the straight and narrow. At it’s worst, however, an inner critic rampage can bring down our mood, self-esteem, and sense of self-worth.
Much of my own self-work has …
“Though no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start from now and make a brand new ending.” ~Carl Bard
My life has been a long string of failures.
The earliest I can remember is having my teeth knocked out when my grandpa braked too hard at a stoplight on our way to a church Easter pageant. I was supposed to be singing a solo, the part of the “little gray lamb,” and I did it—performing while clutching a bloodstained washcloth wrapped around ice cubes to hold to my front gums in between verses.
“Pain is not a sign of weakness, but bearing it alone is a choice to grow weak.” ~Lori Deschene
I, like many of you I’m guessing, am a wanderer. A student of the soul. At times it can be a bewildering path. Most days I give thanks for the adventure. Many others I wish for clarity and certainty.
But though I am a wanderer, I am not aimless: I have a path as deep and true as any other. I simply have no map to guide me, only my intuition, and the myriad teachers that cross my …
After much time and planning with Joshua Denney of Think Web Strategy, I’m thrilled to announce that Tiny Buddha now has a new responsive design and community forums!
The new design enables for a better reading experience on mobile devices, and also gives you access to forum-related information right on the homepage.
Why Join The Tiny Buddha Community Forums?
The forums are a place to connect with the community, to share ideas, and to give and receive support. You’ll find topics related to:
- Emotional Mastery
- Health & Fitness
- Tough Times
“Each day is a journey, and the journey itself is home.” ~Basho
What does family mean? Is it the people whose genes you share? Is it the people that you grew up with? Is it the people who love you unconditionally in spite of your faults and flaws?
Family for me has been an evolving idea. I was adopted from Seoul, Korea when I was four months old. After a few months in an orphanage, family started off simply as the people I grew up with.
Raised in South Central Pennsylvania with a Caucasian family in an area …
“Hope is the feeling that the feeling you have isn’t permanent.” ~Jean Kerr
For most of my life, I was a fugitive from my feelings.
Psychologists suggest that we are driven by two connected motivations: to feel pleasure and avoid pain. Most of us devote more energy to the latter than the former.
Instead of being proactive and making choices for our happiness, we react to things that happen in our lives and fight or flee to minimize our pain.
Instead of deciding to end an unhealthy relationship and open up to a better one, we may stay and either …