Tag Archives: Susannah Conway

Something Good

littleganesh1. The Wild Call of Selfishness from Mara Glatzel, which says,

All of the good that you will do on this planet – all of the relationships you will build, work you will create, and lives that you will impact – relies squarely on how well you take care of yourself and how much space you allow yourself in your own life.

Also from Mara, In Service to Your Big Dream.

2. Weekend Treats are back on Visible and Real.

3. Note from the Universe, “Hey, Jill, what if, instead of waiting for everything to be perfect, we start living your dreams this week, to any degree we can?”

4. Thailand’s White Temple Looks Like It Came Down From Heaven from Bored Panda.

5. Wisdom from Geneen Roth,

The purpose of healing is not to be forever happy; that is impossible. The purpose of healing is to be awake. And to live while you are alive instead of dying while you are alive. Healing is about being broken and whole at the same time. Healing is about opening our hearts, not closing them. It is about softening the places in us that won’t let love in. Healing is a process.

6. Good stuff from Viral Nova: Barefoot Street Performer Stuns The Audience With Her Soulful Voice, and Japanese Artist Delivers Beautiful Paper Works Of Art, and These 31 Google Street View Pictures Are Hilarious, and Tiny Houses That Are Cooler Than Mansions.

7. Wisdom from Jessica Patterson,

Through kindness, strength arises. Not force, control, defense, manipulation, or intimidation. Those strategies keep us disconnected, tense, and ultimately far more breakable. Whether you’re talking hamstrings or heart strings, the real power is in being kind. And real kindness requires you show up open and receptive to what is (vs what you want).

8. Good stuff from Upworthy: Some People Came Out With A Cool New Kind Of Poster. When You Hang It, People Cry From Happiness. and This Might Be Jon Stewart’s Best Rant Ever. Because Ferguson.

9. “Wild”: Telluride Review. I can’t wait to see this movie.

10. 3 Things I Know About Becoming a Writer on Be More With Less. Word.

11. 7 Discipline-Mastering Practices and How to Breathe on Zen Habits.

12. The 4-Year-Old’s Workday on McSweeney’s.

13. Support Jes Baker Creating World Change. I really want to see this work, for many reasons.

14. Good stuff from Elephant Journal: Your Problems Are Blessings (really, do the exercise she suggests — it’s powerful), and Why One Life Hack Can Change Everything, and The interview Moment that changed Oprah’s Life (and mine).

15. My Facebook Friend Lived a Good Life and Then Died Too Soon on New York Observer.

16. Comic Strip of Alan Watts’ Lecture: “What If Money Was No Object?” (thanks for sharing the link, Sandi).

17. Reboot of Die Trying: One Man’s Year of Digital Detox from Outside Online.

18. Good stuff from Treehugger: Romantic tiny forest home built in 6 weeks for $4,000 and What would our homes look like if designed around how we use them?

19. The Most Amazing Stone Walls You Will See Today on Twisted Sifter.

20. Sit a Spell on SouleMama.

21. What no one wants to say about Ferguson!, a very Buddhist perspective on recent events.

22. A Life of Balance: Turn Off The News from Jack Kornfield.

23. This Is What It’s Like To Be An Unarmed Black Man In America from Funny or Die on Huffington Post.

24. This College Student Will Carry Around Her Dorm Mattress Until Her Alleged Rapist Is Punished.

25. Good stuff from MindBodyGreen: How To Do Downward Dog (Cute Infographic!) and 30 Amazing Photos That Will Make You Wish You Were At Burning Man 2014.

26. Why You Might Be Asking the Wrong Question About Suicide from Todd Mitchell.

27. Navigate Your Life: Karen Walrond from Jennifer Louden.

28. How Can Men Help Prevent Sexual Assault? on The New York Times.

29. “The List Of Rules For Women” By Jay Smooth Gets Everything Right on Huffington Post.

30. IKEA’s 2015 Catalog Launch Is the Perfect Spoof of iPad Ads.

31. On wholeness & loving ourselves realistically from Susannah Conway.

32. White Trash Buddhist: Do you have to break the bank to break into the upper middle way? A Kentucky native shows us what practice looks like on minimum wage on Tricycle.

33. What This Puppy Does After Noticing The Old Dog Having A Nightmare Is ADORABLE! And At 0:42…OMG!

34. The place I want to get back to from Judy Clement Wall.

35. Shared on Chookooloonks’ this was a good week list: Naterade : Being good to each other is so important, guys, and The Myth of Effortless, and Jennifer Orkin Lewis on Lisa Congdon’s blog.

36. force creates fear, fear destroys trust… from Pia Jane Bijkerk.

37. I wrote an article no one wanted from Paul Jarvis, (thanks for sharing the link, Laura).

38. Abandon hope on Painted Path.

39. Us/Them from Dallas Clayton.

40. We Must Move Into Love from Sandi Amorim.

41. Good stuff from Austin Kleon: Notes to self and What your days look like.

42. 23 Dog Thoughts That Will Change Your Outlook On Everyday Dog Life.

43. I went to the mountains and remembered why we have kids on Renegade Mothering.

44. 50 Essays Guaranteed to Make You a Better Person on Flavorwire.

45. Where good things happen from Christina Rosalie. *sigh*

Something Good

watermelon

This is in my garden, seriously…

1. What do you do when the trolls come marching in?, wisdom from Paul Jarvis.

2. Behind the scenes of this post from Judy Clement Wall.

3. Finding the courage to transform your life, from Caroline Leon of Life is Limitless.

4. The Imaginary World Of…, Keri Smith’s new book.

5. This post on 3x3x365, especially the part about Burg the wonder dog.

6. He Had No Idea He Was Being Recorded Dancing With His Dog on Viral Nova. I bet Eric does this with the dogs when I’m not around.

7. What do you know for sure?, and The Creativity Conversation Continued, wisdom from Elizabeth Gilbert on Facebook.

8. Lisa Congdon Words for the Day :: No. 35.

9. Wisdom from Marianne Elliott on Facebook, “Your home yoga practice is where you find out what really works for you, and what doesn’t. But, maybe above all else, home yoga is where you begin to rebuild your own trust in yourself, your body and your innate wisdom. And very little is more important, and more powerful than that.”

10. Wisdom from Rilke, (thanks for sharing, Sherry).

Sometimes blocked in,
sometimes reaching out,
one moment your life is a stone in you,
and the next, a star.

11. Good stuff from Be More With Less: Jumping Gently Into Minimalism, and If Life Were Simple, and especially this, How to Really Take a Day Off.

12. Be careful what you wish for… it just may come true!!! on Diamonds in the Sky with Lucy.

13. Love, Curvy Yoga – Episode Ten: An Interview with Susan Piver, Anna Guest-Jelley’s podcast, two of my favorite women talking about some of my favorite things.

14. Less internet – but more of what? from The Art of Simple.

15. What Your Random Jobs Have in Common on Create as Folk.

16. Conversation with Lisa Congdon (Art Inc.) on art & lemons in which Lisa talks about her new book, which I need.

17. 11 vegetarian snacks to help you avoid the vending machine, some yummy recipes.

18. lisa congdon: a studio visit and a brand new book from SF Girl by Bay, because you can never have enough Lisa Congdon.

19. Lower Your Standards from Jennifer Louden. I’m loving this particular series from her, a Queen Jenny Bee wisdom primer.

20. Wisdom from Pema Chödrön, “If we really knew how unhappy it was making this whole planet that we all try to avoid pain and seek pleasure — how that is making us so miserable and cutting us off from our basic goodness — then we would practice as if our hair were on fire.”

21. Take a Deep Breath from Mara Glatzel.

22. Truthbomb #605 from Danielle LaPorte, “You are the temple.”

23. Good stuff from Chookooloonks: this was a good week (& the philosophy behind it) and respite.

24. Simple Living – Does it Have to be All or Nothing? from Slow Your Home.

25. Fudgy Vegan Chocolate Brownies, a recipe from Kris Carr.

26. regular people answering hard questions: stacy morrison on Angiecat.

26. My embarrassing picture went viral on Salon.

27. Simply Genius: Nick Offerman Reads Reddit’s ‘Shower Thoughts’ on Hello Giggles.

28. Good stuff from Renegade Mothering: I thought age 4 would be better. I was wrong. and We don’t start with needles in our arms. (Watch her read this essay at BlogHer ’14. She said this about the experience,

So I was honored to be chosen as a 2014 “Voice of the Year” by Blogher for the piece “We Don’t Start with Needles in our Arms.” Here I am reading it. Moments before I went on stage, Arlo had a blow out and I thought maybe I had poop on my fancy clothes. As I changed him on the floor backstage I thought “This is some hardcore parenting right here.” Moments after I got off stage, people started coming up to me, telling me about their alcoholic brother mother sister friend student and I thought “What a life, all of this. Thank you.”

29. What’s In A Body Type? from Sunni Chapman.

30. Summer Homes + Anne Black Ceramics on decor8. The summer home made me *swoon*

31. The Lies Your Mind Tells You to Prevent Life Changes on Zen Habits.

32. This, everything about this. A picture that Susannah Conway took of her nephew on a visit to the circus. He’s a magical kid, and the image just screams “be yourself.”

33. A really important quote shared by Austin Kleon, about the difference between humor and depression.

34. What Your Junk Drawer Reveals About You, shared by Tammy on her Happy Links list.

35. Shared on Positively Present Picks: Why doing less actually makes you more successful (and how to do it without hurting your productivity) and 5 Ways to Live in the Moment.

36. Shared on Susannah Conway’s Something for the Weekend list, The Life Changing Crackers, which led to The Life-Changing Loaf of Bread.

37. Wisdom I’ve shared before, but just saw it again and it’s worth resharing,

Six Words of Advice – by Tibetan teacher, Tilopa

Let go of what has passed.
Let go of what may come.
Let go of what is happening now.
Don’t try to figure anything out.
Don’t try to make anything happen.
Relax, right now, and rest.

translation by Ken McLeod
Quoted in Tara Brach’s guided meditation: Emptiness Dancing

38. More wisdom from Pema Chödrön, “It’s important to hear about this in-between state. Otherwise we think the warrior’s journey is one way or the other; either we’re all caught up or we’re free. The fact is that we spend a long time in the middle.”

39. Navigate Your Life: Sarah Selecky from Jennifer Louden.

40. Mary Lambert has a new album coming out in October!!! The first two songs that have been released are so so so so so good.

41. The Spiritual Art of Saying No from On Being, which ends with,

You say no so you can say yes. It’s sad in the way that all limitations are, but also liberating. You are human and finite and precious and fumbling. This is your one chance to spend your gifts, your attention, most importantly your love, on the things that matter most. Don’t screw it up by being sentimental about what could have been or delusional about your own capacity. Have the grace to acknowledge your own priorities. Prune and survive.

Something Good

1. Wisdom from Tulku Thondup,

In order to help others, first we must make ourselves into a proper tool for serving others by improving our own qualities. If our mind is filled with negative emotions, whatever we do will be the expression of those emotions, and therefore, in whomever we reach we could cause ill effects. If we are equipped with loving-kindness, however, even our mere presence could bring authentic peace and joy to those around us. So we must improve our own mental state first, through meditation training.

2. Tiny Humans Lost In The Majesty Of Nature on Bored Panda.

3. Should women shave their legs and under-arms? from The Guardian.

4. A Man With Alzheimer’s Drew Himself For 5 Years. These Photos Are Heartbreaking. on Viral Nova.

5. You Don’t Have a Purpose (Yoinks! I said it.) from Create as Folk.

6. This beautiful poem by Mary Oliver, Mindful, (thanks to Erica Staab for sharing it and reminding me).

Every day I see or hear something that more or less
kills me with delight, that leaves me like a needle
in the haystack of light. It was what I was born for – to look, to listen,
to lose myself inside this soft world – to instruct myself over and over
in joy, and acclamation. Nor am I talking about the exceptional,
the fearful, the dreadful, the very extravagant – but of the ordinary, the common, the very drab,
the daily presentations. Oh, good scholar, I say to myself, how can you help
but grow wise with such teachings as these – the untrimmable light
of the world, the ocean’s shine, the prayers that are made out of grass?

7. Bearing witness to the journey on Visible and Real.

8. The unchangeable past from Judy Clement Wall.

9. Note from the Universe,

See, Jill? I told you everything was lining up for you; that the right people were headed your way; that the right things would be said; that you’d become a total love magnet; and that very little of this would be apparent as it was unfolding, yet in hindsight you’d see the stunning perfection. It’s just that right now, you’re mostly in the unfolding part.

10. Transforming Difficulty into Joy from Zen Psychiatry, in which Elana says, “We suffer not because there is no joy in our life; we suffer because there is joy all around us that we fail to notice.”

11. I Don’t Want to Eat this Way on Be More With Less.

12. Good stuff on Medium: I’ve been blogging for 8 freaking years. Here’s what I learned as I went along. and Behind the Till.

13. Do you wish your food and exercise was “consistent?” from Isabel Foxen Duke.

14. Motivation and bravery from Hannah Marcotti, who was able to clarify something for me in this post that I have been struggling with. Also from Hannah,
A woman’s thirst. {A 40 day *free* adventure}.

15. Little Book on Simply Celebrate.

16. Grandpa Just Lost His Dog And His Wife Of 63 Years. How His Family Surprised Him Made Me Cry. Me too. meeeee toooooo.

17. Good stuff from Anne Lamott on Facebook.

18. Don’t mind me, I’m just lost (in the existential sense, thanks) on Renegade Mothering.

19. Here’s What Happens When Your Joke Goes Massively Viral On Twitter, a really interesting article on Business Insider.

20. Wisdom from Dallas Clayton

Much as I love to soul search, there are moments when you realize that perhaps today you are further complicating life by relentlessly seeking elusive answers to profound questions. Perhaps today is a day where you take what you already know to be true and apply it. Simple things we’ve had figured out for decades like the value of exercise, of dipping your feet in the nearest body of water, or having a good laugh with a few close friends. Fruits and vegetables are obvious in that way. Not too complicated, nothing really to fuss over, but simple, delicious, and just as good for you as they’ve ever been.

21. Are You the Judging, Comparing, or Fixing Type? on Dharma Wisdom.

22. An important reminder from Brave Girls Club,

You are doing so many good things. You are going so many wonderful directions. You are spreading so much goodness and kindness and wild-happy energy. You are making goals and dreaming dreams and trying to do even better than you did yesterday. You are thinking about people you love and how you can serve them, you are a loyal friend and family member. You are making an enormous difference in the lives of all who know you, and in so many lives you don’t even know about too.

It’s time to give yourself a break…time to stop and thank your body and your soul for everything it does to keep you going. This would be a great weekend to do just that…give yourself a break. Pat yourself on the back and take a nap and a hot bath…even eat some chocolate! :) Sure, there are still lots of things for you to work on…and you will get to that. You are doing great, and sometimes you just have to stop and let yourself breathe…evaluate…rest…recharge…restore. Take good care of yourself, fabulous friend…we need all of the fabulousness of you! You are loved, loved, loved.

23. Everything is Wonderful. Everything is Terrible. on Wit & Delight, shared by Susannah on her Something for the Weekend list. My favorite part is the paragraph near the end,

Some days, everything is wonderful. Some days, everything is terrible. It’s par for the course, even for those free of mental afflictions. Being human means riding these waves. If you have one or two bad days a week, you’re doing great. If you have one melt-down every few years, you’re doing spectacular. If you are having the worst year of your life, hold on to hope, because it does get better.

24. Hello Wonderful, “a deliciously free series of email love notes meant to usher us sweetly into the new season” from Mara Glatzel.

25. An artist compiled all her rejections in an ‘anti-resume.’ Here’s what can be learned from failure, (shared by Alison Luterman), which says,

So the anti-resumé remains my deceptively simple answer to the question, ‘How do you do it?’: that I persisted during all those years of rejection for no other reason than that I loved writing so much I wanted to spend all my time doing it. Writing must be its own reward, even for the most talented and hardworking writers, or they’re going to have a tough time.

26. Today I Will Do Nothing, (shared by Sandi Amorim).

27. Wisdom from Elizabeth Gilbert on Facebook.

28. I am Andrea Gibson, a queer touring poet with extreme stage fright. AMA! on Reddit. One of my favorite poets. Here’s a video of one of my favorite poems by Andrea, “A letter to my dog, exploring the human condition.”

August Break: Day One

theaugustbreak_redThis will be my third year doing August Break with Susannah Conway. She describes it this way, “This is a community project that has no real rules –  the idea is to simply take a photograph every day for the whole of August. That’s it. Pause, look around you and shoot what you see. Live inside each moment. Pay attention to what’s there.” I love the way this project has always transitioned me from summer to fall, from vacation back to work, helps me to slow down and notice the shift in seasons. Here’s what the schedule of prompts looks like this year.

theaugustbreaklist_redToday, I made myself a chicken salad sandwich for lunch. Last night Eric barbequed a whole bunch of chicken breast for the dogs and had already chopped it up, so it was easy. He picked some basil from our garden, and I mixed it with our favorite mustard, the vegan mayonnaise I use (mixing chicken with vegan spread, a contradiction of sorts I know, but I can live with it), dried cranberries, and walnuts. I put that and some spinach between two slices of Dave’s Killer Bread, the Good Seed variety. I really wish I’d had some purple grapes because they are in season and so delicious right now, so I made sure to add them to the grocery list. May you be well fed today, kind and gentle reader.

lunch

Something Good

1. Stand Up For Burg! a gofundme campaign to help one of the best people, Amy McCracken, help her dog, the amazing Cheeseburger, get the surgery he needs to be able to get around, to ease his pain. If you want to read about the beginning of their love story, here’s what Amy wrote about the night they met. The love between a girl and her dog is a beautiful thing, (I should know), and the way that love can heal us is priceless.

burg

The Burg, (picture from the campaign page).

2. Good stuff from Seth Godin: Finding your peer group, and The artist who dances on the edge, and How will you choose your next project?

3. August Break, a 31 day photo challenge hosted by Susannah Conway. I’ve done this the past few years and it’s quite fun.

4. Wisdom from Brave Girls Club, on letting go.

What are you willing to let go of today? Life is so much about knowing what to hold on to, and what to let go of — and having faith that it will all work out in the end.

Your heart and your gut know exactly what you need to let go of, even if your brain is giving you all sorts of reasons to clamp your fingers around it. There are seasons and times to have different things, relationships and situations in your life, and then the seasons change and it’s time to let go of many of those things. Change is hard, but change is absolutely necessary.

We’ve all got to let go of old habits, old situations, old behaviors and sometimes even old relationships to make room for what is meant for the next part of our lives. If we just get quiet, get brave, and listen very closely, our hearts will tell us what to let go of. This doesn’t mean it will be easy. It just means that it is what is meant for now.

You can do this. Listen to your heart. Be brave.

5. Memories Do Not Burn from Smashed Picket Fences, (originally shared by Tammy in her Happy Links list).

6. Good stuff on Medium: The power of your writing: why you should write even if you think nobody is reading, and Call me a quitter: Just ask Vince Lombardi, and How a password changed my life, and Why I’m so negative about positivity, and 10 Things No One Tells Women about Turning 40 (thanks for sharing this last one, Lindsey).

7. Maya Stein’s 10-line Tuesday, because of this, and lines like this, “You need more light, not less,” and poems like this:

orientation
Just east of certainty. A little south of courage. A hair’s
width from ease. Clicks away from ready. A turn
or two from acceptance. A shuffle from faith. A set of stairs
from achievement. A riverbed from happiness. A handspan from
peace. A wink away from freedom. A few lines until the poem’s
done. A highway, a night’s sleep, a phone call, a touch, a rotation
of gears away from that certain yes that tells you where you are is
exactly where you need to be. I know, the signs can look as if they’re missing,
and the map so distant and unclear.
But I’m telling you, you aren’t lost. You’re never lost. You’re always here.

8. Mara Glatzel on delight, and more wisdom from yet another of her newsletters, (seriously, why haven’t you signed up for it yet?),

As women, we have a tendency to shrink. As a woman who spent many, many years believing that I had to apologize for my body or my intelligence or my wild spirit, the impulse is still alive and well, living in my muscle memory.

But, so is the restlessness of personal choice and self-responsiblity, of granting myself the permission to be exactly who I am, no matter what the circumstance.

9. A righteous conclusion about easing up on righteousness… from Danielle LaPorte.

10. don’t forget to eat (and knit) and cousin love from SouleMama.

11. Shared by Susannah Conway on her Something for the Weekend list: Small Buddha Head Planter on Etsy and the oon power outlet.

12. Good stuff from Create as Folk: 23 Things You Didn’t Know About My Career and Create as Folk is Seeking Monthly Contributors.

13. Good stuff (as always) from Courtney Carver (author of Be More with Less): The Answer is Less, and Vulnerability is the Core of our Connection, and How to Create Heart Space (and why it’s a big deal), and The Tiny Guide to Parke Diem.

14. Wisdom from Zen Habits: The Painful Beauty of Impermanence and How to Change Other People.

15. Wisdom from Pema Chödrön,

Recently, in a friend’s kitchen I saw on the wall a quotation from one of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche’s talks, which said: “Hold the sadness and pain of samsara in your heart and at the same time the power and vision of the Great Eastern Sun. Then the warrior can make a proper cup of tea.”

I was struck by it because when I read it I realized that I myself have some kind of preference for stillness. The notion of holding the sadness and pain of samsara in my heart rang true, but I realized I didn’t do that; at least, I had a definite preference for the power and vision of the Great Eastern Sun. My reference point was always to be awake and to live fully, to remember the Great Eastern Sun—the quality of being continually awake. But what about holding the sadness and pain of samsara in my heart at the same time?

The quotation really made an impression on me. It was completely true: if you can live with the sadness of human life (what Rinpoche often called the tender heart or genuine heart of sadness), if you can be willing to feel fully and acknowledge continually your own sadness and the sadness of life, but at the same time not be drowned in it, because you also remember the vision and power of the Great Eastern Sun, you experience balance and completeness, joining heaven and earth, joining vision and practicality.

16. Good stuff from Marc and Angel Hack Life: 20 Habits Happy People Have (But Never Talk About) and 12 Quiet Rituals of Enormously Successful Humans.

17. Good stuff on Chookooloonks: forty-seven and how to live a perfect life in three easy steps, (which might just be one of the most important blog posts of all time).

18. Wisdom from Ann Patchett, “Never be so focused on what you’re looking for that you overlook the thing you actually find.”

19. We from Rachel Cole, (also might just be one of the most important blog posts of all time — two on one list!).

20. Vegan Blogger’s Unusual Eating Disorder Shocks Followers.

21. Colbie Caillat – Try. Thank goodness, cause I stop trying a long time ago.

22. Writers at Work, shared by Austin Kleon.

23. Vivid Foods, “joy in a jar.”

24. You Say “Flawed”, He Says “Sexy”: What Men Really Think About Your Body from My Tiny Secrets.

25. Beautiful floral art, shared by The Cool Hunter: Flower Paintings by Thomas Darnell (the peonies! *swoon*) and amazing hanging installations from Rebecca Louise Law.

26. Note from the Universe, “The greatest perk, among countless others, Jill, that comes from loving someone right now, just exactly as they are, instead of waiting for them to change, is that you get to love someone right now.”

27. The truth behind the tweet from Kat McNally.

28. Keep Coming Back on 27 Powers, just one of the 27,000 reasons I will sometimes spontaneously text Laurie to tell her how much I adore her.

29. positive choices: lessons from 4 years of sobriety from Positively Present. And shared on her Positively Present Picks list, An epic guide to developing self-awareness: how to improve your leadership skills by understanding yourself.

30. A recipe for Blueberry Hand Pies, shared in this sweet post by Biscuits and Bobbins.

31. A message about miracles from Brave Girls Club,

Take some time today to see the miracles that have unfolded in your life.

If there was a time when you thought you could not make it ONE more day, and you did — that was an enormous blessing and a grand miracle created just for you.

If there was a time that you thought your heart might just break, and that you would never be the same, but you made it — that was a beautiful miracle of love just for you.

If there was a time you never thought thatyou would reach the goal you had worked so hard for, and you finally did — recognize the miracle inside of that experience.

We never walk alone. Miracles are unfolding every minute of our lives — miracles meant for our joy and for beauty and heart-peace. Take them for what they are meant to be and enjoy your life. Know that the miracles will not stop happening, that you are never alone on your journey.

The miracles are there…reminding you that you are loved.

32. This Human of New York, on Brittnay, Herself, (also a contender for one of the most important blog posts of all time, which if you are keeping score is three in this list!).

33. How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Start Loving My 185 Pound Body on Huffington Post.

34. Relax, a beautiful poem by by Ellen Bass,

Bad things are going to happen.
Your tomatoes will grow a fungus
and your cat will get run over.
Someone will leave the bag with the ice cream
melting in the car and throw
your blue cashmere sweater in the drier.
Your husband will sleep
with a girl your daughter’s age, her breasts spilling
out of her blouse. Or your wife
will remember she’s a lesbian
and leave you for the woman next door. The other cat–
the one you never really liked–will contract a disease
that requires you to pry open its feverish mouth
every four hours. Your parents will die.
No matter how many vitamins you take,
how much Pilates, you’ll lose your keys,
your hair and your memory. If your daughter
doesn’t plug her heart
into every live socket she passes,
you’ll come home to find your son has emptied
the refrigerator, dragged it to the curb,
and called the used appliance store for a pick up–drug money.
There’s a Buddhist story of a woman chased by a tiger.
When she comes to a cliff, she sees a sturdy vine
and climbs half way down. But there’s also a tiger below.
And two mice–one white, one black–scurry out
and begin to gnaw at the vine. At this point
she notices a wild strawberry growing from a crevice.
She looks up, down, at the mice.
Then she eats the strawberry.
So here’s the view, the breeze, the pulse
in your throat. Your wallet will be stolen, you’ll get fat,
slip on the bathroom tiles of a foreign hotel
and crack your hip. You’ll be lonely.
Oh taste how sweet and tart
the red juice is, how the tiny seeds
crunch between your teeth.

35. Kacy Catanzaro at the 2014 Dallas Finals | American Ninja Warrior.

36. Even Cancer Couldn’t Keep Me from WDS: 12 Lessons from the 2014 World Domination Summit from Zen Psychiatry.

37. No wedding, no problem: 4-yr-old turns flower girl dreams into a reality.

38. Wisdom from Susan Piver, one of the wisest, most compassionate humans I know,

There is so much to be sad about in this world. Because it is so uncomfortable, we immediately want to turn sadness into what we imagine will hurt less: anger, hopelessness, helplessness. When the wish to help is rooted in anger, it will only create more confusion. And of course, when we feel hopeless or helpless, we take refuge in non-action, which also creates confusion. When we allow sadness, action arises from love.

Be brave. Be sad.

39. Wisdom from Geneen Roth, “Relentless attempts to be thin take you father away from what could end your suffering: getting back in touch with who you really are.”

40. One last piece of wisdom from Brave Girls Club,

You can do amazing things with the simplest things. You can have so little and be so happy. You can take small amounts of time and perform life-changing acts.

Is it time to simplify? Is it time to pare your life down to the handful of things that mean the most to you, and let the rest go so that . . . you can give the very best of yourself to the very best things . . . instead of being spread in a too-thin layer all over the place?

Your heart knows when it’s time, and you will have the strength to do it. And best of all you will see enormous changes happen in your life when you let the unimportant things go and embrace the things that quietly sustain you and bring you joy.

It may not look like the most glamorous life, but it is one filled with joy, peace and harmony . . . one where laughter is a welcome and frequent companion . . . one where worries are few and where long meaningful conversations are many . . . one that is waiting for you when you are ready to take the steps to get there.

Simplify today, one little thing at time. You can do it. You are loved.

Something Good


Kind and gentle reader, this will be my last Something Good post until Monday, July 21st, and that first one back might be a little light. We are going on vacation, and while I love curating these lists for you, they are a lot of work, and I’d like to make this trip without my computer, so I’m going to take a bit of a sabbatical. In fact, I don’t know if I’ll be posting at all while I’m away, but Eric will have his computer with him, and I love it here so much that I can’t promise I’ll be able to stay away entirely. I’ll miss it, but I also haven’t taken a real break since I started (my very first post was Beginning, posted on September 16, 2011), and for long stretches, I’ve posted something every day — it might be time to rest a little.

1. 100 Day Promise, a new offering from Sandi Amorim. Would you like to make an important promise to yourself and have the support and guidance to follow it through? Sandi is launching a new project that offers just that. I’ve taken part in her communities before, and I am telling you the truth: there is no better guide than Sandi. Her programs have helped me make significant transformations, and, a disclaimer: I adore her. Here’s a post she wrote about the process of the launch of her new project and new site, Lessons from the Birth Canal. P.S. if you sign up before June 13 you’ll also receive a bonus 1-1 session with Sandi!

2. Light Gets In: Living Well With Mental Illness from Esme Wang.

3. To be at the beginning again, knowing almost nothing and, The 5/5 Creative Challenge from Christina Rosalie. Make sure to keep up with her 5/5 posts. They’ve been beautiful so far. She’s an amazing writer.

4. Just the right words. Just the right time. Three stories to inspire you to SAY them. from Alexandra Franzen.

5. The Mindful Leader: The Wisdom of Mindfulness in the 21st Century Workplace with Michael Carroll, a live event at the Fort Collins Shambhala Center, July 12th. I am so sad I’m going to miss it (we’ll still be in Oregon) because I adore Michael Carroll and think he’s doing some of the most important work of our time.

6. Indie Kindred is available for rent online. Like I told Jen Lee, the filmmaker, I was more excited about this than the new season of Orange is the New Black. So good.

7. Leaf art by Lorenzo Manuel Durán. So delicate, so beautiful, so amazing.

8. Wisdom from Pema Chödrön, about having the courage to wait,

When you’re like a keg of dynamite just about to go off, patience means just slowing down at that point—just pausing—instead of immediately acting on your usual, habitual response. You refrain from acting, you stop talking to yourself, and then you connect with the soft spot. But at the same time you are completely and totally honest with yourself about what you are feeling. You’re not suppressing anything; patience has nothing to do with suppression. In fact, it has everything to do with a gentle, honest relationship with yourself. If you wait and don’t fuel the rage with your thoughts, you can be very honest about the fact that you long for revenge; nevertheless you keep interrupting the torturous story line and stay with the underlying vulnerability. That frustration, that uneasiness and vulnerability, is nothing solid. And yet it is painful to experience. Still, just wait and be patient with your anguish and with the discomfort of it. This means relaxing with that restless, hot energy—knowing that it’s the only way to find peace for ourselves or the world.

And this, (thanks for sharing, Erin).

The real thing that we renounce is the tenacious hope that we could be saved from being who we are.

9. Wisdom from Mara Glatzel, in the form of her latest newsletter. If you aren’t signed up yet, you really should.

10. The one simple question that keeps me focused on achieving my dreams from Life is Limitless.

11. A Little Guide to Lighten Your Life and Make Love: mini-mission on Be More With Less.

12. Wisdom from Brave Girls Club,

There is something wonderful and strange and difficult and painful and amazing about becoming more of who we are. When we stop squeezing our actual soul shape into the shapes of everything else around us just to fit it…and we let ourselves look and feel and BE who we actually are….we feel relieved, but sometimes we also feel profoundly lonely for a while. This is normal, dear girl…and so worth sticking through…

It becomes quite a habit to work so hard at fitting into places where we thought we were supposed to be like everyone else. We work so hard at for so long and sometimes it has been sooooo long that we forgot what we were like before we started doing it. Our soul knows, though.

There comes a day when our soul has just had enough of the squeezing and coloring and carving and polishing we keep trying to do to change it (or hide it!)….and our soul just wants to be authentic and raw and whole and FREE. Our soul wants us to hold hands with it and BE WHO WE ARE. Our soul just wants to be the light that it is…without having to wear a mask or a cape or a shiny veneer of anything at all. It just wants to shine.

Sometimes we feel a bit like a freak when we stop trying to fit in…..don’t let that stop you, dear soul. The more layers we peel off….the brighter we can shine…that stuff is just covering up our light….and the world needs more light. The world needs YOU. YOU need YOU.

You are amazing and unique and wonderful….keep peeling off anything that is covering up all of the you-ness of you. It will be worth it…

13. Someone Put A Camera On A Bird’s Nest… And I’m So Glad Because Watch What It Caught! on Viral Nova.

14. Melissa McCarthy can dress herself on Salon.

“Trying to find stuff that’s still fashion-forward in my size is damn near impossible,” she told the Hollywood Reporter in 2011. “It’s either for like a 98-year-old woman or a 14-year-old hooker, and there is nothing in the middle.”

Amen.

15. Amazing Resonance Experiment! This totally freaks me out, in the best kind of way. Thanks for sharing it, Susan Piver.

16. The Frustratingly Slow Pace of Making Changes from Zen Habits.

17. The American Dream Is Alive—and It’s Really, Really Tiny. I love what Tammy (the author of Rowdy Kittens and You Can Buy Happiness (and It’s Cheap)) has to say about making conscious choices.

18. Sometimes you need a creativity reboot from Susannah Conway.

19. 23 Photos Of People From All Over The World Next To How Much Food They Eat Per Day, shared by Susannah on her Something for the Weekend list.

20. Jen Lee on Being Seen and Finding Kindreds.

21. Practice is an invitation to the future from Sandi Amorim. She gets it.

Have a wonderful start of the summer, kind and gentle reader!

Something Good

1. Wisdom from Maya Angelou, “There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.” No kidding.

2. The Daring Interview Series: Meet Gavin Aung Than on Brene’ Brown’s blog.

3. How to End the Endless Game of Catching Up on Be More With Less.

4. Wisdom from Mara Glatzel, “Believing takes practice.” (P.S. Click the link and read the whole newsletter. I promise it’s worth it.)

5. These 22 Photos Will Make You Fall In Love With Foxes on Bored Panda.

6. 17 Baby Elephants Learning How To Use Their Trunks on BuzzFeed.

7. Jawdropping views of cozy homes built in an abandoned office tower, a lagoon, a recycling heap and more on the TED Blog.

8. When I Am Among the Trees by Mary Oliver.

When I am among the trees,
especially the willows and the honey locust,
equally the beech, the oaks and the pines,
they give off such hints of gladness.
I would almost say that they save me, and daily.

I am so distant from the hope of myself,
in which I have goodness, and discernment,
and never hurry through the world
but walk slowly, and bow often.

Around me the trees stir in their leaves
and call out, “Stay awhile.”
The light flows from their branches.

And they call again, “It’s simple,” they say,
“and you too have come
into the world to do this, to go easy, to be filled
with light, and to shine.”

8. 4 Good Reminders When You’ve Had a Bad Day from Marc and Angel Hack Life.

9. 20 Magical Tree Tunnels You Should Definitely Take A Walk Through on Bored Panda.

10. He Sent A Photo Of The Sunset In Japan To His Parents. What He Got 20 Minutes Later Is Beautiful. on Viral Nova.

11. The biggest adventure: forever, then all of a sudden from Christina Rosalie.

12. Trust and attention, the endless dance and The right moment from Seth Godin.

13. Wisdom from Isabel Foxen Duke,

Trying to control our weight is really just an attempt to control the uncontrollable — primarily, but not limited to, what other people think of us…There is nothing you can do about uncertainty in life…except stop trying to control it. Let go or be dragged.

14. The Crossroads of Should and Must by Elle Luna on Medium.

15. Real Artists Have Day Jobs by Sara Benincasa on Medium.

16. Dealing and Healing After Loss: 9 Tips to Help You Get Through the Day on Tiny Buddha.

17. Note from the Universe,

Everything in your life, right now, Jill, is awesome. Everything is in its right place, under grace, and whether or not this makes perfect sense yet, one day it will. And the time swiftly approaches when you’ll be exceedingly grateful for all that has brought you to this day and contributed to who you’ve become, because it is exactly that person who is now poised to live as you have always dreamed you would one day live.

18. A reminder from Brave Girls Club,

You know so much more than you think you know, you just have to remember it. There’s so much wisdom in that amazing heart of yours that just needs to be reminded and listened-to and encouraged to speak out.

Think about when you were a little girl….all of those hopes, dreams and ambitions that were unique and wonderful and unabashed. What held you back as you grew older, from wanting or working for those tender dreams?

Don’t be afraid to be the person that you thought you might grow up to be….that person that you dreamed of being…that amazing woman that you looked into the future to see when you were a little girl. Uncover those dreams again and believe in them….shoot for what is deepest in your heart…and be the woman that you always wanted to be.

19. How I Became a Buddhist and What It Really Means from Sandra Pawula.

20. Shared by Susannah Conway on her Something for the Weekend list: Dani Shapiro on mastering the craft of writing.