Category Archives: Blogging

Reverb 14 and December Reflections

smileselfieThis morning I put the finishing touches on the Self-Compassion Saturday ebook. If you’ve been keeping score, that project ended one year ago. The ebook is something I’ve been planning to get done for a long time, had promised. I kept setting the intention, a goal, committing to a specific finish date, and that would pass and it still wouldn’t be done. First I thought I’d get it done that first Winter Break, but I was so worn out from the year before and we were getting ready for a new puppy so I decided to take it easy on myself. Then I thought it would be complete before we left for summer vacation, but with a new puppy and me starting yoga teacher training, there was just too much going on. Then I thought I’d finish it before I went back to work in the fall, but the puppy and the training were still so much harder than I’d imagined. Then I decided for sure I’d get it done by the end of the year, trying not to cringe that it would be a whole year later, so late. All of it was a great exercise in self-compassion — I would fail, not beat myself up for it, and begin again.

But in this case done was more like almost done. As I wrapped it up this morning, I realized I would have to go to my CSU office to convert the file to a PDF, and there certainly will be issues with the conversion that I’ll have to address before it’s done, done. Then there’s emailing it to the women involved, and announcing and putting it up on the blog. There are still things to do, but it feels good to be finally this close.

Part of the hold up was that there was another book that wanted to be written. Because it’s about my self-compassion journey, I couldn’t figure out if it was part of this ebook. I kept getting the two confused. In my bewildered state, I couldn’t find my way in, figure out how to start. On retreat with Susan Piver recently, I finally came to some understanding. I wrote the opening of that other book and realized what it was, what it wanted to say, that it was its own thing, another beast altogether. In that way, I was released, able to focus on the ebook without distractions. Plus I had the time off work, the space in my schedule.

Vacation is a difficult place for me. Vacation means time away from my CSU work but not much time away from working, from doing. It’s the time when there is room in my days to be able to focus on all the other things that normally have to wait, get overlooked or ignored. That’s everything from working on a book to cleaning out my closets to taking the occasional nap. For example, I signed up for an online dog training class this summer, and even though it was only five weeks long, we were given access to the materials for six months. That time is almost up, and my plan was to go through them over Winter Break, to collect the information I wanted to save and apply it, spend some extra time working with Sam and Ringo. The desire to do so is tangled up with guilt over the money I spent and have thus far “wasted,” and shame about how “untrained” my dogs are.

vacationcouchingIn the last few days, I’ve been considering the fact that I might need to just let the whole thing go, to give myself a break. It might be time to admit that the expectation I could have perfectly trained dogs by the end of a two week break, along with everything else I did and was planning to do, is a tad unrealistic. I can’t do everything. That might seem obvious, but I struggle with accepting it.

I got an annual blogging report from WordPress yesterday. Apparently I started off 2014 by blogging 34 days straight. I’m ending the year by doing almost the same thing, having blogged almost every day in December, sometimes posting twice. Today is the second to last day for Reverb 14 and December Reflections. I’ve done most of the prompts for both, blogging and posting pictures to Instagram, but when I read the prompts for today, I just couldn’t find the energy I needed to make the effort. This voice in me said “I don’t wanna, do I have to?” and was followed by the glorious realization: no, if I don’t want to, I don’t have to.

So there.

It’s My 3rd Blogiversary!

Way back in the beginning

Way back in the beginning

Three years ago today, I wrote my first blog post. I titled it “Beginning,” and talked about a fortune from a cookie that is still, three years later, taped to my computer monitor: “Begin…the rest is easy.” In that first post, I talked about the difficulty of starting, the sadness I felt about how long I’d been stuck, and how it was that I finally woke up — stopped waiting for something to happen and happened.

So much has changed in three years. Dexter got cancer and died, some really painful and pretty awful family stuff happened (things I haven’t shared here because they aren’t my stories to tell), we got Sam and then we got Ringo (my echo dogs), my job at CSU continued to change shape, I went into therapy for my disordered eating, I traveled, I essentially did a second Master’s degree with a curriculum of my own making (ecourses, videos, lectures, books, workshops, and retreats), I found my voice, I found my tribe, I shared my writing in other spaces as well as here, I became a certified yoga teacher, and I got really clear about what I want, what I have to offer.

Just yesterday was a really good example of how different my life is now, three years later. I spent the morning meditating and writing, an interview I did with Andrea Scher for her Morning Mantras class went live (we talked about “No mud, no lotus”), I finished a project at CSU that my department chair said was “one of the most stunning things I have seen,” telling me “I think you’re a genius,” and an open love letter I wrote to Cheryl Strayed that I’d posted…well, she read it and tweeted me about it.

cherylstrayedtweet

Blogging has given me so much. As I’ve put in the effort, focus, and time, it has returned to me:

  • A tribe of like-minded people making similar efforts and supporting mine, connection and community
  • Kind and gentle readers
  • My own voice — clarity about my truth, a direct relationship with my experience, a way to work with my story
  • Confidence, as Susan Piver describes it, “the willingness to be as ridiculous, luminous, intelligent, and kind as you really are, without embarrassment”
  • The opportunity to share my work in other spaces
  • A public place to practice, which provides accountability and acceptance

Three years has always been a magic number for me. Any time I make a shift, a transition, a move, a change, I know that it will take me three years to get comfortable with it, to settle in. This has always been true for me. The same is so with blogging. I’m comfortable and confident now. I feel like I know what I’m doing, and I can do it with relative ease — I’ve got this.

When I think a little bit ahead, I see a clear path. I don’t mean there are no obstacles, but rather I know where I’m going, feel like I can find where I am on the map, have the right equipment and supplies and support necessary to reach my goal. My most immediate intentions are to finish my Self-Compassion Saturday ebook, begin the real work of putting together the other book I’ve been carrying around, make other offerings, (such as ecourses, in person workshops, classes, and retreats), settling even deeper into my practices, taking the first steps towards becoming a meditation instructor and possibly a coach, and continuing to heal in the places where I’m suffering or stuck. And always, always continuing to blog about my efforts to transform, to rehab my life, to ease suffering in myself and the world.

I’m so grateful to you, kind and gentle reader. Whether you are new here or have been with me the whole three years, your loving witness to my story means so much to me. I adore you.

Something Good

ericmoonoverriver02

image by Eric

1. Loyal dog won’t forget his best friend on Dog Heirs. *sob*

2. House Rule: In These Bodies We Dance from Brittany, Herself. I love the picture at the end. This is what joy looks like.

3. mary jo hoffman :: still from Lisa Congdon. So beautiful.

4. Meet Darcy, The Most Famous (Flying) Hedgehog On Instagram from Bored Panda. So cute.

5. 27 Days: Writing Prompts to Grow Your Powers, for FREE! Here’s an excellent gift you can give YOURSELF for the holidays, 27 Days: Writing Prompts to Grow Your Powers, Laurie Wagner’s 27 Day writing prompt program delivered daily to your inbox. It’s a simple way to keep your writing practice alive during the holidays, and an excellent opportunity to start a practice if you don’t have one. You’re welcome.

6. Architect Bypasses Mortgage Payments, Builds a Tiny Home on My Modern Met. My obsession with tiny houses is not that I want to live in one, (my house is only a little over 1000 square feet, so I’m in a pretty small space already), but that I want something like this in my backyard, to use as a studio, class, guest space.

ericmoonoverriver7. 9 ways to cope with loss during the holidays from Positively Present.

8. Maybe there is really only ONE story in life – the story of learning to be real on Unabashedly Female. (P.S. I haven’t watched the video at the end).

9. How ‘hygge’ can help you get through winter.

10. Mom’s memory lives on in sweet dad, daughter photos.

11. ‘Tis The Season To Be… Mindful on Huffington Post.

12. From Patti Digh: your daily rock : go forward and your daily rock : tell it like it is and your daily rock : burn those jeans! and your daily rock : live like you are dying.

13. Nathan loves Bella….(sweet little boy loving a special pitbull), a CNN iReport.

ericfrozenriver02

image by Eric

14. what if girls were rewarded for being authentic instead of being thin? from Justine Musk.

15. Indoor S’mores on Dessert for Two. Oh my…

16. ‘Christmas Jammies’ Rockets Holderness Family To Viral Video Fame on Huffington Post.

17. 139. BRENÉ BROWN: The Woman in the Arena from Zen Pencils.

18. Magical Photographs Follow the Lives and Friendship of Two Argentine Girls on Feature Shoot.

19. What I’ve Been Reading: 2013, a great list from Marianne Elliott.

20. The Daring Interview Series: Meet Elizabeth Gilbert from Brene’ Brown.

21. When is the best time to create? from Paul Jarvis.

22. Good stuff from MindBodyGreen: 10 Ways To Scare Your Friends & Family Away From Yoga (Funny) and Want To Find Your Purpose But Have No Idea What It Is? Read This.

23. Stuff to think about from Austin Kleon: On the “death” of blogging and Forget setting goals and commit to a process.

image by Eric

image by Eric

24. The Year’s Best Books on Writing and Creativity from Brain Pickings.

25. Gift to the Soul: The Space of Presence, Tara Brach on Huffington Post, in which she says,

When we’re speeding along, we violate our own natural rhythms in a way that prevents us from listening to our inner life and being in a resonant field with others. We get tight. We get small. We override our capacity to appreciate beauty, to celebrate, to serve from the heart.

26. Want To Quit Blogging? Read This First! from Gala Darling, in which she says,

A blog isn’t just a blog: it is a chronicle of your life, and just like your soul, it is constantly evolving.

27. Short answers to big questions from Alexandra Franzen.

28. 10 Artists You Should Have Known In 2013 from NPR.

29. 5 Lies You Were Told about Grief and A Self-Made 12-Step Program for Living an Authentic Life from Rebelle Society.

image by Eric

image by Eric

30. Wisdom from Kris Carr on Facebook,

Fear contains powerful messages. When we’re courageous enough to be with what scares us, we can awaken our intuition and create a new path for healing. Whether you’re worried about getting sick, you’re currently dealing with a health issue, or you’re scared and struggling in other areas of your life, don’t judge your fears, invite them to tea.

It’s common to belittle our fears and try to pre-maturely cleanse them away. But just because we’re afraid, doesn’t mean we’re toxic or failing or falling off the spiritual wagon. Fear is one of the many colors in our emotional palette, and it’s often there for a reason. There’s nothing weak or less evolved about being frightened. And guess what, you’re not alone. We’re all scared. No one is fearless.

31. Wisdom from Rumi,

Be crumbled.
So wild flowers will come up where you are.
You have been stony for too many years.
Try something different.
Surrender.

32. Family Gatherings: The Ultimate Mindfulness Training Ground from Zen Habits.

image by Eric

image by Eric

33. Me, the universe, and Javier Bardem from Judy Clement Wall.

34. 3 Ways to Prepare for Career Change on Create as Folk.

35. All feelings are mutual on Superhero Life.

36. 15 Best Photos of the Day of 2013 on Tree Hugger.

37. Wisdom from Rilke,

Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love.

38. Teachers, writers, speakers: On confidence and owning your true authority from Susan Piver.

ericsunriseriver

image by Eric

39. Wisdom from Cheryl Strayed,

Nobody’s going to do your life for you. You have to do it yourself, whether you’re rich or poor, out of money or raking it in, the beneficiary of ridiculous fortune or terrible injustice. And you have to do it no matter what is true. No matter what is hard. No matter what unjust, sad, sucky things have befallen you. Self-pity is a dead-end road. You make the choice to drive down it. It’s up to you to decide to stay parked there or to turn around and drive out.

40. 34 Examples of Installation Art That Don’t Suck on Your Daily Media.

41. How to Visit Your Family Without Going Crazy on Purple Clover, which shares these quotes,

“How shall the heart be reconciled to its feast of losses?” asks Stanley Kunitz in a poem.

and

Thomas Merton, the great Benedictine monk, captured this paradox succinctly. “Prayer and love are learned in the hour when prayer becomes impossible and heart has turned to stone,” he wrote.

42. An Elderly Couple Took The Same Photo Every Season. But Nothing Could Prepare Me For The Last One on Viral Nova.

image by Eric

image by Eric

43. 8 Ways to Encourage a Meaningful New Year on Be More With Less.

44. In Marriage, Beware of Big Boxes on Modern Love from The New York Times.

45. Fortyhood: Why You’re Too Old to Have a Baby After 40 on Huffington Post.

46. Wisdom from Roy L. Smith, “He who has not Christmas in his heart
will never find it under a tree.”

47. friday’s confession: I’m slowing down. from Tiffany Han.

48. Belka (Alaskan Malamute/Siberian Husky), our 20 day old pup howling.

49. Shared by Susannah on her Something for the Weekend list: Life from One Foot Up by Derek (which made me realize Fray is back online), and Quinoa & Brussels Sprout Salad recipe, and Favorite Job Interview Questions, and this video, ‘Female Freedom Has an Expiration Date’ – Being 35 and Single,

50. This Post Secret card.

51. The Answer to All Your Questions…the First Four Words You See Describe You on Elephant Journal. My words were passionate, peaceful, thoughtful, and genuine.

52. 10 Things You Can’t Do AT CHRISTMAS While Following Jesus and 10 Things You Can’t Do While Following Jesus from The God Article.

53. What You Believe About Homosexuality Doesn’t Matter from In the Parlor, which says,

So whatever you believe about homosexuality, keep it to yourself. Instead, try telling a gay kid that you love him and you don’t want him to die. Try inviting her into your church and into your home and into your life. Anything other than that simply doesn’t matter.

54. Homage To Rae Kline, My First Yoga Teacher on Recovering the Body.

55. A Bundle of Joy and Peace: 21 Inspiring Quotations from Thich Nhat Hahn from Always Well Within.

56. Wisdom from Sakyong Mipham, “Open hearts, kindness, and care – these are our most precious gifts.”

57. More wisdom from Rumi, “Don’t think the garden looses it’s ecstasy in winter. It’s quiet, but the roots are down there riotous.”

image by Eric

image by Eric

58. iPersonic Personality Test. My result was “The Good-natured Realist” which was pretty accurate.

59. 10 Things Food Banks Need But Won’t Ask For.

60. I Don’t Know Where The Rich People Are Who Lived Here, But What They Left Behind Is Frightening on Viral Nova.

61. Heartwarming Photos of SF Zoo’s New Baby Gorilla and Her Doting Grandmother from The Modern Met. There is almost nothing cuter than a baby gorilla.

62. 12 Easy Ways to Make Life Simple Again from Marc and Angel Hack Life.

63. “In an abundance of caution” from Seth Godin.

64. Truthbomb from Danielle Laporte, “Can you remember who you were before the world told you who you should be?”

samhikinggreyrock06

image by Eric

Gratitude Friday

cityparksunrise031. The sky in Colorado. It does stuff like the above, all the time and for no special reason, sunrise and sunset and everything in between. This happened the other morning while we were walking Sam at City Park. Luckily Eric had his phone so we could get a picture of it. This is one of the reasons I get up early, leave for a walk while it’s still dark. This.

2. Red Table, my favorite cafe that was scheduled to close for good on December 22nd is not disappearing, just moving. Once a new lease is signed, they’ll announce where to, and there will be dancing in the streets, even if it’s just me, a flash mob of one.

redtableburrito3. Yoga Teacher Training at Om Ananda Yoga, (I’m official, all signed up and ready to go, we start in January) and a new yoga mat from Eric for my birthday. I am so excited to see how this is going to shift my practice, my relationship to my body, my life.

newyearseveyoga4. Birthday wishes. Lots of love there.

5. Guest post request from Rachel. She’s taking a blogging break, so “lined up a few great ‘substitute teachers’,” and asked me to be one of them. I am still working out what I’ll write about, but am so excited for the opportunity, so touched and grateful that she asked.

Bonus Joy: Sam. We have (mostly) decided that rather than get a new dog over Winter Break, we are waiting until Spring Break. *sigh* There are lots of really good reasons, but the most relevant is that Eric and I are still feeling the trauma of losing two dogs in a row to fatal cancers and need a bit more time to work with that before being responsible for another life, before inviting another beast in who will eventually break our hearts. The only issue I have with this decision is it isn’t necessarily the best one for Sam, because he needs another dog. He’s developing fears he never had before (the washing machine, which means the dryer too by default, the vegetable steamer, even the toaster because it sometimes sets off the smoke alarm) and will be much happier, calmer once he has another dude.

Mr. Sam, hiding in his bed because I was doing laundry

Mr. Sam, hiding in his bed because I was doing laundry

Something Good

1. Good stuff from Marianne Elliott: Why I haven’t practiced yoga for five weeks. And why that makes me a better teacher and How I pack for 5 months: a packing ninja reveals her secrets and Telling the difference between a bad day, a run of bad days, and burnout.

2. Good stuff on Elephant Journal: Natural Remedies to Heal your Thyroid, and 7 Ways to Help Someone Who is Grieving, and We Are Not Here to Do Everything, We Are Here to Do Something, and 10 Things You Need to Stop Doing Today to be Happier, and Letters to Myself. P.S. Maybe you’ve noticed I share a lot of their stuff? I’m a paid subscriber — the content is totally worth it.

3. a room with a view on SF Girl by Bay. I’ve talked before about how much I love Amsterdam. Next time I go, I want to spend at least a month, maybe a whole summer, and stay in an apartment just like this one.

4. Good stuff from Jen Louden: How Being a Good Girl Gets in the Way of What Calls You and Finding Your People Right Where You Are.

5. Wisdom from Tama J. Kieves,

Do not be afraid to follow a thousand directions. You are only listening for one voice. You are following heat, light and truth. There is no right answer to find. An inspired life is all about developing a relationship with your own wholeness and love.

6. Good stuff from MindBodyGreen: Why Paleo Didn’t Work For Me, and 5-Step Cleanse To Maximize Thyroid, Adrenal, Immune & Digestive Health, and 5 Ways To Love The Present No Matter How Scared You Are, and 10 Fun Facts About Sweet Potatoes, and The 7 Chakras for Beginners, and Autumn Kale & Quinoa Salad, and 5 Things A Yoga Instructor Should Never Say.

7. Rise and shine: the daily routines of history’s most creative minds on The Guardian.

8. In case you feel like you need permission today… from Kat McNally.

9. Karma points, happy break-ups, true confessions, darkness + light: the BEST things I’ve ever written … that aren’t on this site from Alexandra Franzen.

10. Mudita from Rachel Cole.

11. The Body, Mind, and Space of Self-Care for Creatives – Part 3: The Space on Scoutie Girl.

12. My Pursuit of the Art of Living on Zen Habits.

13. Wisdom from Pema Chödrön,

At some point, if you’re fortunate, you’ll hit a wall of truth and wonder what you’ve been doing with your life. At that point you’ll feel highly motivated to find out what frees you and helps you to be kinder and more loving, less klesha [i.e. mental states that cloud the mind and manifest in unwholesome actions] driven and confused. At that point you’ll actually want to be present—present as you go through a door, present as you take a step, present as you wash your hands or wash a dish, present to being triggered, present to simmering, present to the ebb and flow of your emotions and thoughts. Day in and day out, you’ll find that you notice sooner when you’re hooked, and it will be easier to refrain. If you continue to do this, a kind of shedding happens—a shedding of old habits, a shedding of being run around by pleasure and pain, a shedding of being held hostage by worldly concerns.

14. 3 habits for dissolving envy from Danielle LaPorte.

15. 25 things every woman needs to know from Hanna Brencher.

16. Be Cool and Don’t Be an Asshole, really good advice from Chris Grosso on Huffington Post.

17. Shared on last week’s Positively Present Picks: Need-To-Know: Practical Magic, and 21 Harsh But Eye-Opening Writing Tips From Great Authors, and The path is not straight, and Dog People Unite Temporary Tattoo, and Be Happy: 46 Proven Techniques to Increase Your Happiness and One Way to Get More Sex, and Convos With My 2-Year-Old – Season 2, Episode 1 – “Dinner Time,” (this whole series is one of the funniest things ever).

And on this week’s list, Socktober from Kid President and Soul Pancake, and How to Do What You Love.

18. feeding the feelings: my confession (please be gentle) from Liv Lane.

19. When did you get the call to service?, a beautiful confession from Andrea Scher on Superhero Life.

20. 10 Dog Training Tips for Rescue Dogs, (which seem like good tips for any dog owner really).

21. The Inconvenient Moments from The Scribbler’s Journal.

22. Tender from Simply Living with Ariana Pritchett.

23. Get Simple and Focus on What Matters Most on Be More With Less.

24. Missing Mahlon from Rowdy Kittens.

25. Hashtags: #MomTexts with Jimmy Fallon.

26. Pack Dog, a website I am afraid to join because of the potential for time suck and cuteness overload.

27. Where Bloggers Blog on Tumblr.

28. 6 Things Every Couple Should Stop Doing from Marc and Angel Hack Life.

29. Claire has a birthday message for her mommy, on Hello Giggles. Warning: Danger Baby alert, (“Danger Baby” is code for a kid so impossibly cute, it will make you want to make, adopt, or steal a tiny human, immediately). Even though this video is only a minute and a half long, you know that the adult who filmed and edited spend hours and hours working on it.

30. Wisdom from Chögyam Trungpa,

We must be willing to be completely ordinary people, which means accepting ourselves as we are without trying to become greater, purer, more spiritual, more insightful. If we can accept our imperfections as they are, quite ordinarily, then we can use them as part of the path. But if we try to get rid of our imperfections, then they will be enemies, obstacles on the road to our “self-improvement.”

31. Wisdom from Mark Nepo, “The reward for kindness is not goodness or being thought well of or even having kindness returned. No, the reward for kindness is joy.”

32. Don’t know if you heard, but I am currently obsessed with all things sweet potato. Here are a few recipes I’m going to try: Black Bean and Sweet Potato Quesadillas and Sweet Potato Black Bean Enchiladas.

33. The truth about Columbus from The Oatmeal.

34. 3 Powerful Insights About Finding Yourself and Creating Change on Tiny Buddha.

35. What do you do when you DON’T KNOW what to do? from Kute Blackson. This guy has so much good energy, watching one of his videos is like watching someone dance.

36. 7 Ways To Find Your Inner (and Real) Happiness, Ed and Deb Shapiro on Intent Blog.

37. The Other Things We Do: Going to the Dogs, a beautiful post about grief, dogs, and words.

38. The Freedom of Less on Becoming Minimalist.
homecoming1639. Rescued Pit Bull saves foster family’s 4-year-old son on Dog Heirs. What I love about this story is that the mom had initially only planned to foster this dog, but after what TatorTot did for her son, “I am never going to let this dog go…I owe him for the rest of his life.”

40. Potty Talk! [Original] Need a good laugh!? You’ll have tears streaming… It really is the funniest video.

41. Wisdom from Randy Pausch, The key question to keep asking is, “Are you spending your time on the right things? Because time is all you have.”

42. An interview with Susan Piver about the Open Heart Project, in which she shares this wisdom,

If I was to measure my life by how much money is in my bank account, you know, I would not be very happy right now…But if I had to measure my life by how myself can I be every day, and how much can I offer that makes me happy – I don’t mean to sound sappy about it – but it makes me overjoyed to offer this.

43. Wisdom from Laurie Foley, “To do lists used to be my tada lists, summits upon which to plant flags. Now they are merely trailheads where I start letting go.”

44. A piece about Brandon Stanton, the photographer behind Humans of New York, from ABCNews.

45. Dutch TV interview with David Sedaris, (the interview portion is in English).

46. Julie+Nate // Portland Engagement Session, a beautiful set of pictures from Phil Chester. The ones with the light and the trees are brilliant, so beautiful they almost hurt to look at them.

47. Plant Your Feet, a poem from Ken Roberts on Museful Things.

Something Good

1. 75 ways to live a positively present life from Positively Present.

2. Karen Walrond at TEDxHouston 2012, shared on Upworthy in their post This Is Why Your Lover Thinks You’re Gorgeous In A Holey T-Shirt And Sweatpants. I recommend her blog too, maybe start with this recent post, random thoughts: on happiness, gratitude & meaning. She’s a speaker, photographer, writer, and all around superwoman “wildly convinced you’re uncommonly beautiful.”

3. Sh*t Hipsters Say.

4. This wisdom from Aart Van Der Leeuw,

The mystery of life
is not a problem to
be solved,
but a reality
to be experienced.

5. When I Read This I Think of You and 10 Things to Do When You Get Up Before the Sun on Elephant Journal.

6. Wisdom from Anne Lamott on Facebook.

7. Wisdom from J.M. Porup, “The job of the writer isn’t to answer questions. The job of the writer is to ask the questions for which there are no answers.”

8. The Daily Life of a Grandma and Her Odd-Eyed Cat, a sweet series of photos by Miyoko Ihara on demilked.

image by Miyoko Ihara

9. The World’s Top 10 Most Unusual Bonsai Trees.

10. One of my favorite websites, Humans of New York, now has a theme song, and I have a new favorite band.

11. This wisdom from Elizabeth Gilbert on Facebook, and what she said about morning.

12. 11 Habits You Need to Give Up to Be Happy and 7 Effective Ways Happy People Think from Marc and Angel Hack Life.

13. Your Daily Rock from Patti Digh: your daily rock : make peace, and your daily rock : recharge your soul, and your daily rock : wholeheartedly.

14. What if the Gift is the Ending? We Can Reimagine Our Lives? from Rachael Maddox.

15. Just Because He Breathes: Learning to Truly Love Our Gay Son on Huffington Post. On her website’s about page, this mom says,

Although I am a Christian, I feel broken-hearted by the things that the church in America has become most known for. You will never find me marching in a parade against gay rights, abortion rights or immigrant rights. I do not resonate with those who are known for being AGAINST things, especially when what it amounts to is being against people’s hearts and souls.

16. How to Enjoy a Chore-less Weekend from Be More with Less.

17. Turning kindness inward, what Judy Clement Wall had to say about her Self-Compassion Saturday post.

18. How to Let Go: 5 Essential Tips on the Positivity Blog.

19. Home Retreat: The Practice of Doing Exactly What You Want from Susan Piver.

20. “The truth will set you free, but first it will piss you off.” ~Gloria Steinem

21. Wisdom from Natalie Goldberg,

There is no ultimate goal in meditation. Meditation is an acceptance of the mind, however it comes to you. And the mind changes all the time, just as the ocean waves change. Sometimes the water is turbulent, sometimes calm. Thoughts rise and then disappear; you don’t grab hold of them. The heart beats, the lungs breathe, and the mind continues to produce thoughts. Even if you’ve practiced for a long time, it will still produce thoughts, but you’re no longer thrown by them. You don’t have control of your mind; it goes where it wants to go. But with practice, you can have a relationship with it.

22. Discipline, devotion & dazzling charm: what I learned from three of the most famous bloggers in the world from Alexandra Franzen.

23. Wisdom from the book Zen Teachings on the Practice of Lojong by Norman Fischer,

We admire people who are wealthy, famous, or skillful in some way, but it’s not hard to be like that. If you are born with some talent, a little luck, and you know the right people, you can do that. Many people do that. Much more difficult and much more wonderful is to be a bodhisattva. Not someone that many people know about and talk about but someone who has the almost magical power of spreading happiness and confidence wherever he goes. What a vision for your life, for your family, to be a light for those around you! To think of everything you do, every action, every social role, every task, as being just a cover for, an excuse for, your real aspiration, to be a bodhisattva, spreading goodness wherever you go. This requires no luck (even if everything goes wrong in your life, you can do it), no special skills, no need to meet special people and get special breaks. We can all do this. This is the aspiration we should all cultivate for training the mind.

24. Wisdom from Tama J. Kieves,

When I was younger, “being different” cost too much. I did anything I could to fit in. These days, “being normal” costs too much. I’m not willing to fit in with the pack, if it costs me my soul, my strength, and my reason for being. I didn’t come here to duck. I came here to fly.

25. Becoming More Authentic: Accept Yourself and Stop Seeking Approval on Tiny Buddha.

26. Wisdom from Tulku Thondup,

For any spiritual training or mental activity, we need concentration. Learning how to concentrate makes our minds strong, clear, and calm. Concentration protects our inner wisdom, like a candle flame sheltered from the wind. If our minds are cluttered with plans, concerns, thoughts, and emotional patterns, we have no space for our true selves.

And

Learning to live in the moment is a great and powerful skill that will help us in everything we do. To ‘‘be here now,’’ relaxed and engaged in whatever we are doing, is to be alive and healthy. In Buddhism, the awareness of what is happening right now is called mindfulness.

27. Every place is under the stars, a really great quote shared on A Design So Vast.

28. Appreciating My “Regular” Job and 50 Ways You Can Be Brave Today on The Self-Compassion Project.

29. Twenty seconds away from more joy! on Cherry Blossom Soup.

30. Whitney Cummings on The Conversation

31. From Brave Girls,

Today we have a sweet little challenge for you. What if for the next 24 hours, you focus on what is right, and not waste a single minute thinking about what is wrong? What if you run towards what you want, instead of running away from what you don’t want? What if you notice the beautiful little miracles and ignore the big distractions. What if you listen to the voice inside of you and let all of the other voices go? Just for 24 hours? Will you take us up on it? We suspect that it might just end up being one of the best days of your life. Enjoy it! Every single second of it! You are so loved. xoxo

32. Wisdom from Mr. Rogers, “There isn’t anyone you couldn’t love once you’ve heard their story.”

33. Mark Bittman’s Spicy Cheddar Shortbread recipe. I make a biscuit like this that my friends call “crack biscuits,” so I am totally going to try this one.

34. From Positively Present Picks: How to let go of your ego, How to buy happiness, and A Dad had some weird conversations with his two-year-old daughter. So he reenacted them with two grown men, (two new episodes!).

35. From Rowdy Kitten’s Happy Links: Xanthe Berkeley Photos and Films, which led to this, her video set on Vimeo — really beautiful work.

36. From Susannah Conway’s Something for the Weekend list: honeysuckle biscuits with sea salt peach butter + honeysuckle mint vinaigrette, gorgeous food, luscious recipe.

37. Lots of new episodes on Why We Rescue.

38. When Facebook Likes Meet Real Life, Things Get … Complicated on Upworthy.

39. This wisdom from Hafiz, “You yourself are your own obstacle – rise above yourself.”

40. This wisdom from Pema Chödrön,

Whatever we’re doing could be done with one intention, which is that we want to wake up, we want to ripen our compassion, and we want to ripen our ability to let go. Everything in our lives can wake us up or put us to sleep, and basically it’s up to us to let it wake us up.

Something Good

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1. Ronen Goldman has been recreating his dreams in photos for the past six years. Some weird dreams that made for amazing photographs.

2. The Self-Acceptance Project: Finding Our Sense of Fundamental Worthiness, a free 20-week Video Event Series from Sounds True, beginning Monday, March 4, 2013. There are an amazing group of teachers involved with this, and did I mention, it’s free?

3. From Justine Musk, creative badass, “those who tell the stories, rule the world.”

4. This quote from Seth Godin, “It’s not what you’ve got. It’s about how brave you’re prepared to be.”

5. “Dear Internet” by Tina Fey. Just one more reason to love her.

6. This quote, “The most solid advice . . . for a writer is this, I think: Try to learn to breathe deeply, really to taste food when you eat, and when you sleep, really to sleep. Try as much as possible to be wholly alive, with all your might, and when you laugh, laugh like hell, and when you get angry, get good and angry. Try to be alive. You will be dead soon enough.” ~ William Saroyan

7. This quote from Geneen Roth, “Huge and lasting transformation is possible but it isn’t about striving to be different than you are. True change is allowing yourself to be exactly what and who you are—and becoming aware of what’s standing in your way.” And this one:

You can do it. You can rescue yourself. No matter what you believe about your competence or your worth, no matter if you weight 400 pounds on the scale or in your mind, you can change. You can become every courageous inch of yourself. But you have to act. You have to make an effort. You have to find a path or practice that knocks at the door of your heart, and then you have to do it. Keep doing it even if you don’t feel like it on an particular day. If you do nothing, nothing will change. If you act, if you make an effort, then little by little, bite by bite, morning after morning, you become the promise of yourself.

8. When Love Wins on Kind Over Matter by Jo Anna Rothman.

9. This quote from Pema Chödrön:

The Beginning of Growing Up: Opening to the world begins to benefit ourselves and others simultaneously. The more we relate with others, the more quickly we discover where we’re blocked. Seeing this is helpful, but it’s also painful. Sometimes we use it as ammunition against ourselves: we aren’t kind, we aren’t honest, we aren’t brave, and we might as well give up right now. But when we apply the instruction to be soft and nonjudgmental to whatever we see at this very moment, the embarrassing reflection in the mirror becomes our friend. We soften further and lighten up more, because we know it’s the only way we can continue to work with others and be of any benefit in the world. This is the beginning of growing up.

10. This quote, “The highest form of human intelligence is to observe yourself without judgment.” J. Krishnamurti

11. This quote, “Don’t take anything personally. Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream.” Don Miguel Ruiz

12. This quote from Cyndi Lee:

When we really see, in our mind’s eye, a person we think we don’t like, and instead of solidifying our reasons for hatred we honestly wish them happiness, good health, safety, and an easeful life, we start to forget what we thought we hated and why we felt that way in the first place. A sense of equanimity toward everyone arises as we do this practice—we feel compassion for those who were once invisible to us, and our disregard and apathy morph into concern for their well-being and safety.

13. This quote from Tama J. Kieves, “The more you do what you love, the more you realize your direction. It’s like remembering night-dreams, the more you write them down, the more you remember. The truth is always present. You just have to honor your inspiration before you have clarification. Doing what you love will make everything clear.”

14. This quote, “If you want to identify me, ask me not where I live, or what I like to eat, or how I comb my hair, but ask me what I am living for, in detail, ask me what I think is keeping me from living fully for the thing I want to live for.” ~Thomas Merton

15. Go Public With Your Bad Self?, a perfectly timed (for me) and true post by Jonathan Fields, which also includes an inspiring Good Life Project interview with artist Lisa Congdon, who I’ve always liked and admired but am officially obsessed with after seeing this interview. I’m especially in love with her 365 Days of Hand Lettering project. Jonathan says in this post,

We all suck in the beginning. We’re SUPPOSED to suck (with the rare exception of that freakish apriori artist savant friend we all love to hate to love).

The thing that gets us from there to “Sweet Mother of God, YOU made that?!” is practice. Beginner’s mind. Being massively prolific, even if what we create on any given day is really, really bad. That, and having the vision of where we want to get to, the will to do the work, the faith that our efforts will yield progress and the sense of humor needed to forgive ourselves and be vulnerable along the way….

16. From my teacher Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, “We Need to be Warrriors,” in which he says,

Bravery is the key instruction in the Shambhala teachings. This is why these teachings use the image of a warrior: when confronted by great challenges, warriors rise to the occasion. When cowards are confronted by difficulties, they withdraw. The challenge of being brave points to one specific instruction—that we stop cowering from our basic goodness.

To be brave is to actualize our nature as an offering to others. In paying attention to the details of our daily lives in relation to each other and the environment, we proclaim our worthiness to be alive and to inhabit this planet. We empower our relationships with presence and appreciation, because when we see the goodness in ourselves, we recognize it in others. This form of warriorship builds and creates; it does not destroy. Being brave enough to fully embrace our humanity is how we will accomplish good things.

17. This quote from George Lois, “The joy of the creative process, minute by minute, hour after hour, day by day, is the sublime path to true happiness.”

18. Home, on Doorways Traveler by Lisa Field-Elliot. This:

i believe that light prevails. that even though each and every one of us will wind up in the most senseless of dramas where the smallest parts of our brains, and the arrested parts of our hearts, will make decisions that wound and hurt, i still have to believe that light will prevail.

Amen.

19. Love Will Find You Out by Jen Lemen. I’ve read it before, but she reshared the link this week, and I read it with fresh eyes, an open heart. It is so beautiful, and made me cry just as hard this time as it did the first.

20. 108 yoga images from 2012: through the lens and from the soul of Robert Sturman. I look exactly like this when I practice yoga. Wait…why are you laughing?!

21. “To realize your true nature, you must wait for the right moment and the right conditions. When the time comes, you are awakened as if from a dream. You understand that what you have found is your own and doesn’t come from anywhere outside.” Buddhist Sutra

22. Deep Soul Dive Episode #1: Andrea Scher of Superhero Life, an interview with Maggie Hollinbeck.

23. Singer-Songwriter Aimee Mann on Rejecting the Life of a Pop Star, an interview on Bullseye with Jesse Thorn. I realized listening to this that I have been in love with Aimee Mann for almost 30 years. This is where it started, back in the tender wonder years, with Til ‘Tuesday:

24. Sherwood Anderson on Art and Life: A Letter of Advice to His Teenage Son, 1927 on Brain Pickings.

25. The Underground New York Public Library is a visual library featuring the Reading-Riders of the NYC subways.

26. This quote, “All that you are seeking is also seeking you. If you sit still, it will find you. It has been waiting for you a long time.” Clarissa Pinkola Estes

27. A good reminder from my Inner Pilot Light:

Feeling overwhelmed? Try taking steps to simplify your life today. Do you really need that long to-do list? Or can you cross stuff off and just accept that it’s not going to get done, at least not today? Do you really need all that stuff in your closet? Or can you sort through it and make room for spaciousness and expansiveness? Do you really need that crowded social calendar? Or can you just pare down to the activities that really nourish your soul? Must you really say yes to what others ask of you? Or can you give yourself the gift of NO? When you simplify your life, you make room for more of ME. And when you let me in, magic starts happening.

28. Magical (and giveaway!), a good review of a book that I clearly need to read on Walking on My Hands. This single line makes me want to read the whole book, “As Katrina begins her month of yoga teacher training at Kripalu, her teacher tells her, ‘You are not here to remake yourself but to remember yourself.’ ”

29. 15 Bloggers to Watch in 2013, (12 are women–right on!).

30. And by now I am sure you are wondering “what’s up with all the quotes on this list?!” but here’s one last one, from Cheri Huber:

How do we end suffering?  By accepting everything, exactly as it is. Hearing that is like a knife in the heart.  Inside we shriek, no! That is the shriek of the ego devoted to suffering.  In fact, there is no choice other than accepting everything exactly as it is, because everything is exactly as it is.  It is as simple as that.  There is nowhere else to go.