“Never waste any amount of time doing anything important when there is a sunset outside that you should be sitting under!” ~C. JoyBell C.
“You need to just be.”
At the time I didn’t understand my teacher’s words. My identity entwined itself with my ambition.
I fought inner emptiness by overloading my calendar.
I fought loneliness by never leaving time to be with myself.
I fought depression by trying to do more.
None of it worked.
And the answer repeated itself, quiet and strong, “You need to just be.”
Fortunately, my teacher was too wise to only …
“Sometimes doing less is more than enough.” ~Kris Carr
Two years ago I made a radical lifestyle shift.
Prior to this change, I was constantly striving to do more, to achieve more, to be more. I was squeezing as much as I could into any given day. I was in conflict between building a business, working, studying, and having time for pleasure and fun. I was taking on way too much and losing myself in the process.
Building a business is a lot of work, far more than I had imagined, and it takes time to generate consistent revenue that …
“Seeing is not believing; believing is seeing! You see things, not as they are, but as you are.” ~Eric Butterworth
I didn’t always understand this, but I now know that my beliefs shape my experience of the world.
As I learned from Tony Robbins, our beliefs guide our choices, which ultimately create our results.
Our beliefs can either be a prison, keeping us trapped in negative thinking and behaviors, or they can be empowering and lead to courageous action and new possibilities.
For example, if you believe people are fundamentally bad, you may live life guarded, close yourself off to …
“Clear your mind. Your heart is trying to tell you something.” ~Unknown
I recently lost thirty-plus pounds without trying or intending to. I remember excitedly sharing this news on social media one day, after stepping on a scale in my hotel room and being shocked. I don’t own a scale, so between the time when I had last weighed myself and this day, I’d lost over thirty pounds without being conscious of it.
After my public announcement, people from all directions contacted me asking me questions. Everyone wanted to know how I did it and what could they do to …
“This oak tree and me, we’re made of the same stuff.” ~Carl Sagan
I was hugging trees long before it was cool.
Recent research suggests that spending time in nature can reduce your blood pressure, heart rate, and stress level, not to mention cut down your risk of type II diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and premature death.
But when I began hugging trees, it was an undeniably weird thing to do.
I risked the odd looks of strangers, however, because trees felt so calm and welcoming to me. When I wrapped my arms around their broad trunks, it felt like I …
“The world always seems brighter when you’ve just made something that wasn’t there before.” ~Neil Gaiman
A few years ago I wrote an article about my personal experience with bulimia. The piece was published by several different media channels, and some time afterward I was interviewed by CNN.
It was the first time I had publicly, and explicitly, spoken about that particular part of my journey. But the desire to acknowledge and address the emotional effects of my experience had been present for some time.
Prior to writing the article, I hadn’t felt ready to lay myself bare in …
“In case no one told you today:
You’re beautiful. You’re loved. You’re needed. You’re alive for a reason.
You’re stronger than you think. You’re going to get through this.
I’m glad you’re alive. Don’t give up.” ~Unknown
I was fourteen years old and it was a holiday of firsts: my first holiday away from my family with my school and my first holiday abroad, where I had my first real crush.
For the two weeks I was away, I was caught up in a flirtation with a boy from one of the other schools. I had to pinch myself when …
“Let us fill our hearts with our own compassion.” ~Thich Nhat Hanh
“Mom’s concentrating,” I tell my kids as I clean up after dinner. I suggest a game to keep them occupied. “How many words start with A?”
As I inspect the crumbs under the kickboard, I pay just enough attention to hear them play along.
“Mom. L!” (I must have drifted off.)
“Right. L is for?” And they’re off again. Be more present, be more present, be more present, I think.
M…N…O…I laugh to myself when we reach P. P is for pressure, that’s what, …
“Travel light, live light, spread the light, be the light.” ~Yogi Bhajan
For years, I avoided travel. Just the thought of leaving home made me anxious. I dreaded the crowds, the confusion, and the sense of disconnection from both my daily routine and my spiritual practice.
Over time, I came up with some great reasons not to travel, but I always knew those excuses were keeping me from exploring new places, meeting new people, and living my life to the fullest.
I continued to avoid traveling until family members moved across the country, and then I had no choice. …
Every year, I share a little about Mindful in May, a month-long online meditation program that can dramatically improve your state of your mind and your life, while also transforming the lives of others living in poverty.
This year, I was grateful to connect with Mindful in May founder Elise Bialylew to learn more about the program; how mindfulness can help with depression, anxiety, and chronic stress; and how you can you can get a free taste of the already dramatically discounted program from April 8th through 12th.
Here’s what Elise had to say…
1. Can you tell us
“Do not fight against pain; do not fight against irritation or jealousy. Embrace them with great tenderness, as though you were embracing a little baby. Your anger is yourself, and you should not be violent toward it. The same thing goes for all your emotions.” ~Thich Nhat Hanh
For a long time, heaviness and dark feelings were very familiar to me. In a strange way they were comforting; I felt safe in darkness. The light felt more painful to me, but I also wanted to change because I wanted to free myself from the limitations of staying in the dark.…
“The dark night of the soul comes just before revelation.” ~Joseph Campbell
If you frequent Instagram or any other social media platform these days, you may notice countless posts about positivity, self-help, yoga, and green juice. And gluten-free everything.
Most of us equate these messages with spirituality and good vibes. I won’t disagree. These messages do promote good vibes. But, the problem is these posts don’t tell the whole story, and once we log off, many of us still feel incomplete, fearful, and insecure because all of these “influencers” and gurus seem to have it all figured out.
“The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.” ~William Arthur Ward
Ahh, my heart skips a beat at just the sound of his name.
In 2018, a tiny human being arrived on the planet, one who would change my life. In the short nine months my nephew Oliver has been in my life, I’ve learned a lot. I’m not talking about changing nappies and bottle-feeding, although I’m getting to grips with these essentials too. No, Oliver has taught me valuable lessons about life itself. Here are nine of the biggest.
“Life will only change when you become more committed to your dreams than you are to your comfort zone.” ~Billy Cox
It might sound like a senseless paradox to say that the “bad” or “dark” things about you are actually your “light” or “positive” qualities. However, this isn’t just a feel-good platitude; it’s literally true. The things we struggle with the most are our greatest sources of empowerment.
Because this process is not exactly front and center of modern mental health and wellness movements, committing to your own healing can seem daunting and hopeless. Few people have truly learned how …
“You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.” ~Buddha
In 1990, in an early encounter between the Dalai Lama, the foremost Tibetan teacher of Buddhism, and Western students, the Dalia Lama was asked a question about how to deal with self-hatred. He was confused and didn’t understand the question. The translator translated the question again and still the Dalai Lama was confused.
Finally, the Dalai Lama understood that the question was about how to manage negative feelings about the self. This was a new concept to him: he knew that people had negative …
“The next message you need is always right where you are.” ~Ram Dass
I want you to go back to New Year’s Day 2009 with me for a second. I’d recently left a job and was embarking upon a new career, one in which I was self-employed.
I pulled out all the stops and created a vision board that contained all of the things: how much money I wanted to earn, how I wanted to dress, where I wanted to vacation, how I wanted to eat, and everything else I could think of. I thought if I created this …
“Our practice rather than being about killing the ego is about simply discovering our true nature.” ~Sharon Salzberg
One of the symptoms of living in today’s fast-paced world is the underlying feeling of loneliness, overwhelm, and disconnection. Chronically stressed and under financial and familial pressures, we often feel alone in the world, out of touch with others, overwhelmed by our emotions, and disconnected from our own bodies and ourselves.
Our world is ego-driven. We constantly compare ourselves to others, judge our performance (usually harshly), define our worth by our financial and career achievements, and criticize ourselves for failure.
This ego-based …
Whether you’re a regular reader here or you just found your way to Tiny Buddha recently, odds are you’re familiar with the practice of mindfulness, but you may not be aware of the many benefits.
A regular mindfulness practice can not only boost your mood, reduce your stress level, and help you be less reactive, it can also enhance your creativity, improve your sleep, and increase your resilience so you’re better able to handle life’s varied disappointments and challenges.
And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Studies have shown that a regular mindfulness practice can also give you a …