Category Archives: Lisa Bonchek Adams

Something Good

1. Good stuff from Marc and Angel Hack Life: 7 Things to Remember When You Feel Discouraged and Defeated and 10 Courageous Ways to Live Life Without Regrets.

2. Good stuff from Derrick Clifton: 10 Celebrities Who Had the Perfect Response to Fat Shaming and Kelly Clarkson’s Response to Criticism of Her Weight Deserves a Standing Ovation.

3. Wisdom from John Lubbock:

Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under trees on a summer’s day, listening to the murmur of the water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time.

4. Classic Vegan Caesar with Avocado & Chickpeas recipe. Looks yummy.

5. Bill Murray’s Dharma Talk on What It’s Like to Be You.

6. Why I stopped giving a shit about my size.

7. Questions of Priority on Zen Habits.

8. Good stuff from Be More With Less: The Life Altering Practice of Making Cuts and The Challenge of Not Doing.

9. 3 Ways to Responsibly and Compassionately Respond to Panhandling.

10. 39 Stunning Images Of Women At Work All Over The World.

11. Pieces about Lisa Bonchek Adams on The New York Times: Lisa Bonchek Adams Dies at 45; Chronicled Fight With Breast Cancer and Remembering Lisa Adams.

12. After decades in prison, first day outside a shock for Colorado parolee, the first in a five-part series on former inmate Kevin Monteiro and the state’s parole system.

13. How I learned to live in my body from Susannah Conway.

14. how to dismantle the patriachy from Sas Petherick.

15. From Jamaica to Minnesota to Myself on The New York Times Magazine.

16. Telling Them a Story from Laurie Wagner.

17. The Side of the Oklahoma Racist Frat Story That Nobody Is Talking About.

18. Good stuff on Medium: Why Work Is Broken: The Changing Face of Vocation and Why It Matters, and I’m Not Pregnant, and Why I Live At The P.O.

19. Kids Are Super Ultra Mega Fucking Weird on Terrible Minds.

20. 3 Reasons Your Employees Hate Their Jobs.

21. Dutch students can live in nursing homes rent-free (as long as they keep the residents company).

22. Good stuff on Bored Panda: Rescued Magpie Becomes Lifelong Friend With The Family That Saved Her Life and Urban Treehouse Uses 150 Trees To Protect Residents From Noise And Pollution.

23. Wisdom from Pema Chödrön:

In the early seventies a friend kept telling me, “Whatever you do, don’t try to make those feelings go away.” His advice went on: “Anything you can learn about working with your sense of discouragement or your sense of fear or your sense of bewilderment or your sense of feeling inferior or your sense of resentment—anything you can do to work with those things—do it, please, because it will be such an inspiration to other people.”

That was really good advice. So when I would start to become depressed, I would remember, “Now wait a minute. Maybe I just have to figure out how to rouse myself genuinely, because there are a lot of people suffering like this, and if I can do it, they can do it.” I felt a sense of interconnectedness. “If a schmuck like me can do it, anybody can do it.” That’s what I used to say, that if a miserable person like me—who’s completely caught up in anger and depression and betrayal—if I can do it, then anyone can do it, so I’m going to try.

24. the ripple effect, redux from Chookooloonks.

25. Baby Steps from Jeff Oaks.

26. Homeless Former U.N.C. Player Balks at Efforts to Help Him from The New York Times.

27. Wisdom from Jiddu Krishnamurti, “It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society.”

28. Confessions of an Uneducated Queer, by Lauren Zuniga.

29. Ellie Goulding – Take Me to Church (Cover).

30. Ebola Survivor Ashoka Mukpo: “I Knew I Had to Practice” on Lion’s Roar.

31. Diet doesn’t cure disease. And it’s irresponsible to say otherwise from Sarah Wilson.

32. Paul Kalanithi, writer and neurosurgeon, dies at 37 and his essays How Long Have I Got Left? and Before I Go.

33. Good stuff from Tiny Buddha: 52 Ways to Tell Someone You Love and Appreciate Them and 40 Ways to Give Yourself a Break.

34. Make Yourself Comfortable from Rachel Cole.

35. Finding Your Personal Magic (and Mine) on The Mojo Lab.

36. How to Use Your Work to Get a Better Life from Laura Simms.

37. What Yoga Taught Me About the Balanced Life on The New York Times.

38. The Problem With ‘Fat Talk’ on The New York Times.

39. 10 things I learned while writing my last book from Austin Kleon.

40. Shared on Susannah’s Something for the Weekend list: Frittata Two Ways + New Zealand and 23 Things Only People Who Love Spending Time Alone Will Understand.

41. Good stuff from Dances with Fat: Say Something Sunday – Fat Joke Edition and Body Shaming Baby Onesies.

42. Water For Elephants Author Sara Gruen Reflects On The Life Of A Writer.

43. Wisdom from Anne Lamott, “I decided that the most subversive, revolutionary thing I could do was to show up for my life and not be ashamed.”

44. Double and half (freelancer math) from Seth Godin.

45. Good stuff from Alexandra Franzen: Your reasons will always win the battle, and Email guidelines for the world, and Gold Interview with Alexandra Franzen.

46. #36: Food Sanity, a podcast interview with Isabel Foxen Duke.

47. Wisdom from Eve Ensler, (thanks for sharing, Kirsten),

I was raised in America. All value lies in the future, in the dream, in production. There is no present tense. There is no value in what is, only in what might be made or exploited from what already exists. Of course the same was true for me. I had no inherent value. Without work or effort, without making myself into something significant, without proving my worth, I had no right or reason to be here. Life itself was inconsequential unless it led to something. Unless the tree would be wood, would be house, would be table, what value was there to tree?

48. What Keeps Me Up at Night (and It’s Not My Bladder) by Lisa Sadikman.

Something Good

1. READ THIS when you can’t remember who you are, what you do, why you do it — or how to talk about it from Alexandra Franzen.

2. Intimate Portraits of Cosplayers at Home from Twisted Sifter.

3. Simplify Your Life by Writing It Down and The Greatest Secret to Productivity That No One is Talking About from Be More With Less.

4. From Chookooloonks: what are we looking for? which led to what we hope to find.

5. Wisdom from Danielle LaPorte, “With envy out of the way, you’ll have more room for your own greatness.”

6. Wisdom from the Dalai Lama,

When the teachings say we need to reduce our fascination with the things of this life, it does not mean that we should abandon them completely. It means avoiding the natural tendency to go from elation to depression in reaction to life’s ups and downs, jumping for joy when you have some success, or wanting to jump out the window if you do not get what you want. Being less concerned about the affairs of this life means assuming its ups and downs with a broad and stable mind.

7. Good stuff from MindBodyGreen: 10 Ways To Stop Stressing & Start Living Peacefully, and Is It Time To Stop Worrying About Sugar? (You Don’t Have To Quit It), and The Ultimate Bliss Salad With Ginger Miso Dressing.

8. My 10 favorite “Before I die” responses: Candy Chang celebrates the release of her book on the TED Blog.

9. Wisdom from Pema Chödrön,

We use our emotions. We use them. In their essence, they are simply part of the goodness of being alive, but instead of letting them be, we take them and use them to regain our ground. We use them to try to deny that in fact no one has ever known or will ever know what’s happening. We use them to try to make everything secure and predictable and real again, to fool ourselves about what’s really true. We could just sit with the emotional energy and let it pass. There’s no particular need to spread blame and self-justification. Instead, we throw kerosene on the emotion so it will feel more real.

10. No One is Coming from the Positivity Blog. Oh how I wish the right person would read this, really hear it. *sigh*

11. Hello 35!, a list of lessons Tammy from Rowdy Kittens has learned over the last thirty-five years. She’s one smart cookie.

12. Wisdom from Ronna Detrick, “It is one thing to admit, maybe only to ourselves, what we most want, need, and deeply desire. It is another thing entirely to trust that we might be worthy of such, to give that internal voice any semblance of credibility.”

13. Danielle LaPorte Truthbomb, “So much is a cry for love.”

14. Distraction or desiring? What you are choosing? from Jennifer Louden.

15. Good stuff from Elephant Journal: Can Yoga Save Us? and How I came to love my body–just the way it is.

16. 15 Reasons why Fort Collins is the Greatest City in America. I love where I live, but do not understand why Lee Martinez Park is not on this list. Wait, scratch that — let’s continue to keep it our little secret.

17. The Simple Guide to a Clutter-Free Home from Becoming Minimalist.

18. DIY: Hem Jeans Fast & Easy.

19. your daily rock : amazing grace and your daily rock : let someone help you

20. You don’t need to dance before your double mastectomy to be awesome from Lisa Bonchek Adams.

21. From Susannah Conways’s Something for the Weekend list, The Plant Whisperer.

22. Shared (first stanza) by Kelly Rae Roberts in her newsletter:

What in your life is calling you?
When all the noise is silenced,
the meetings adjourned,
the lists laid aside,
and the wild iris blooms by itself
in the dark forest,
what still pulls on your soul?

In the silence between your heartbeats
hides a summons.
Do you hear it?
Name it, if you must,
or leave it forever nameless,
but why pretend it is not there?
~Terma Collective

23. A 4-Year-Old Girl Asked A Lesbian If She’s A Boy. She Responded The Awesomest Way Possible, a really great talk Ash Beckham gave at the TEDx Boulder, shared here by Upworthy. I especially loved, “Hard is not relative, hard is hard,” and “When you do not have hard conversations, when you do not tell the truth about who you really are, you essentially are holding a hand grenade.”

24. Shared by Tammy Strobel of Rowdy Kittens on her Happy Links: Everything You Need to Know to Start Your Microbusiness and There are no rules.

25. Lessons in love – a tribute to Charlie on Life is Limitless. *sob*

26. This is an actual essay written by a college applicant to NYU.

27. Golden Retriever Puppy Cam. This is only going to get better.

28. Dogs vs. broccoli from Dog Heirs. I had no idea this was so popular.

29. 11 Things I Wish I Knew When I Started My Business from .

30. Comfort Food: No one brings dinner when your daughter is an addict on Slate.

31. There is no gone, on Painted Path. Amen.

32. Wisdom from Tama J. Kieves,

You want to know “how” you will do your dreams. You want a guarantee. I’ll give you one. Commit to tasting the nectar of anything that brings you joy or peace. Get hooked on your own idiosyncratic ecstasy. You will have found your reason. You will have experienced an undeniable power. Then you will listen to yourself. And that is how you find your how.

33. Wisdom from Parker Palmer, shared by Curvy Yoga, “The heart is where we integrate what we know in our minds with what we know in our bones, the place where our knowledge can become more fully human.”

34. Creating the Life We Want from Annie Neugebauer, in which she says really good stuff, like,

It can be indescribably difficult sometimes, to follow through with our desires. For me, the main push-back comes from intangible socieital pressures. I don’t want to care what others think about me, but holy crap do I ever. I really care. I want people to like me. (Why is that made into such a despicable sentiment? Doesn’t everyone want to be liked?) More importantly, I want people to respect me – or at least accept my choices. The problem, then, arises when what I want isn’t what society wants me to want, and I must overcome that natural instinct and step beyond its draw.

35. 2013 Holiday Gift Guide – Part Two from Rachel Cole. Registration for Rachel’s Wisdom Notes for a Well-Fed Holiday is now open. Most people have holiday traditions, and I think this is becoming one of mine.

36. Stunning Portraits Of The World’s Remotest Tribes Before They Pass Away on Bored Panda. Makes me think two things are natural about, fundamental to humans, that honoring these things is essential to our survival: we are creative and we have a relationship with the earth and its creatures.

37. The first lie… from Seth Godin.

38. Free High-Resolution Photos from Paul Jarvis.

39. Wisdom from Mark Nepo, “To be broken is no reason to see all things as broken.”

40. Day 1: ‘Hey, What’s The Neighbor Doing To His Lawn?’ Day 60: ‘OMG!!’ This is exactly what we are doing to our front yard, little by little.

41. From Positively Present Picks, Two people decided to surprise New York’s jaded subway conductors, and the results will make your day.

42. Photographer Takes Beautiful Portraits of Shelter Dogs to Find Them Homes, shared with me by Justine, who like me wants to rescue all the dogs.

43. New music on SoundCloud. I am obsessed with Furns, and Sales is good too. Furns “Power” might be my favorite new song.

44. Are You Happy And In Love? Here’s Why That Makes You So Sad. from Upworthy. The only thing I disagree with here is that he says the Buddhist practice of non-attachment means you don’t care, and that is just wrong, a misunderstanding of the basic concept.

45. The Control Myth, a brilliant blog post by Michael Baugh that combines dog training with the wisdom of Pema Chödrön and Brene’ Brown, and says “What do we want, control or connection?” Thanks for sharing it, Sarah (and thanks for about 100 other things too), my favorite dog trainer.

46. Two brilliant pieces on being self-employed from the brilliant Susan Piver, Self-Employment: Three Things I Wish Someone Had Told Me and The pain of pricing.

Something Good

1. Fall session of ZenPen, “Body-Based Writing for Healing, Transformation, and Personal Growth” from my dear friend Courtney Putnam starts September 30th.

2. Finding Freedom and Writing Memoirs with Meg Worden, an interview on BlogCast FM.

3. Funny stuff from Elephant Journal, Sorry about all the poop: The 10 Commandments of Your Dog and Conan O’Brien and Louis CK “Everything’s Amazing and Nobody’s Happy.” And not so much funny as true, The Truth About Hitting Bottom.

4. An excerpt from The Signature of All Things, Elizabeth Gilbert’s new novel.

5. A Bunch Of Young Geniuses Just Made A Corrupt Corporation Freak Out Big Time. Time For Round Two. on Upworthy. Boulder certainly is one of my favorite things about Colorado, for reasons just like this.

6. 36 Surreal Instagram Images From Burning Man. I’m not hip enough to attend, and besides it would be too hot and there would be too many people for me, but I’m so glad that something like it exists.

7. Are You a Highly Sensitive Person? on Tiny Buddha, (and, the answer is “uh, yes!”). Also from Tiny Buddha, 10 Journaling Tips to Help You Heal, Grow and Thrive.

8. Honor the Signs Your Future Self is Sending You and Finding Your Creative Flow: 17 Writer’s Tricks to Get Un-stuck and Start Creating on Scoutie Girl.

9. A few thoughts & actions that will help you open up more and Money: A Love Story. Kate Northrup & I talk debt, cash, freedom. from Danielle LaPorte.

10. This post from 3x3x365, in which Patti Digh describes the very best reason to marry someone.

11. Brene’ Brown interview, Vulnerability and Shame, on How She Really Does It with Koren Motekaitis.

12. Wisdom from Pema Chödrön, in her book Comfortable with Uncertainty,

Compassion practice is daring. It involves learning to relax and allowing ourselves to move gently toward what scares us. The trick to doing this is to stay with emotional distress without tightening into aversion; to let fear soften us rather than harden into resistance. We cultivate bravery through making aspirations. We make the wish that all beings, including ourselves and those we dislike, be free of suffering and the root of suffering.

13. Wisdom from Thich Nhat Hanh, “For things to reveal themselves to us, we need to be ready to abandon our views about them.”

14. Wisdom from Atticus Finch,

I wanted you to see what real courage is, instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand. It’s when you know you’re licked before you begin, but you begin anyways and you see through it no matter what.

15. Truth from Gloria Steinem, “Writing is the only thing that when I do it, I don’t feel I should be doing something else.”

16. Wisdom from Tara Brach,

When we identify with a small self, we are perceiving ourselves as a cluster of ocean waves, not recognizing that we are made of ocean. When we realize our true self is ocean, the familiar pattern of waves—our fears and defensiveness, our wants and busyness—remains a part of us, but it does not define us.

17. Wisdom from Tama J. Kieves,

When you’re in transition, you walk in two worlds. You walk in the world in front of you, which may seem stark or burdened. Yet you also walk in the world you carry in your heart. You know you are blossoming & the fruit trees hang heavy, the sun shines, & the clients call, & money is not an issue. The life you are feeding is the life that becomes true.

18. 10 Paradoxical Traits Of Creative People from Fast Company.

19. 10Q, a really fun thing that Rachel Cole shared last week,

Answer one question per day in your own secret online 10Q space. Make your answers serious. Silly. Salacious. However you like. It’s your 10Q. When you’re finished, hit the magic button and your answers get sent to the secure online 10Q vault for safekeeping. One year later, the vault will open and your answers will land back in your email inbox for private reflection.

20. The Magic of Impermanence from Lisa Congdon.

21. Stop Chasing Success. Seek Significance. from Becoming Minimalist.

22. Interview with Jen Smith of LivingLegendary.org from Lisa Bonchek Adams.

23. Wisdom from Elizabeth Gilbert on Facebook, and even more wisdom from Elizabeth.

24. 10 tips for a mindful home from Karen Maezen Miller.

25. Staying Awake from Jeff Oaks.

26. I Found A Blind Baby Sparrow Below My Balcony After A Storm from Bored Panda.

27. {this moment}, a beautiful end of summer image on SouleMama.

28. 8 Good Morning Questions that Create Happiness on Marc and Angel Hack Life.

29. What this internet addict learnt from three weeks offline from Satya on Writing Our Way Home.

30. Truthbomb from Danielle LaPorte, “It takes as long as it takes.”

31. My friend Sherry sent me this last week, a poem from Hafiz,

How did the rose ever open its heart and give to this world all its beauty? It felt the encouragement of light against its being, otherwise, we will remain too frightened.

32. Wisdom from Geneen Roth’s latest newsletter,

…binge eating is not defined by the amount of food you eat but by the way you eat it. Two cookies can be a binge if you eat them with urgency, desperation, and the pressing need for an altered state. Food is a drug of choice, and when you binge, you are using your preferred substance to deny, swallow, or escape your feelings.

33. Whatever Happens Next, a beautiful and heartbreaking story of saying good-bye on Huffington Post from Judy Clement Wall.

34. I want to talk about Body Positivity, OK? from Mary Lambert.

35. Here Come the Good Movies: A dozen films opening before Thanksgiving are more than worth your time and money on Purple Clover.

36. Stop beating yourself up…It’s a WASTE of time! from Kute Blackson. I already shared this yesterday, but I really want to make sure you don’t miss it.

37. The Value of Suffering, an opinion piece by Pico Iyer on The New York Times, also something I already shared, but want to make sure you see it.

38. Shared in this week’s Positively Present Picks list: Custom Pet Stamp on Ebay and Do You Suffer from the “Easy to Buy, Hard to Use” Phenomenon? on Happiness Project.

39. From Susannah Conway’s Something for the Weekend list: It’s OK Not To Want It All from Amy Palko, Amelia the Airstream, a Vacation Home on Wheels on Design Sponge, and A poem a day from Austin Kleon. Bonus: Susannah shared two of my links!

40. Speaking of Susannah, How I Do It: An Interview with Susannah Conway (+ a Giveaway!) on In Spaces Between.

41. Wisdom from Kute Blackson, “Every feeling is a signal, which if you pay attention to will point you in the direction of something that you actually need to deal with, a part of you that needs loving compassion or needs to be released.”

42. 55 Quick Tips to Start Your Self-Care Practice from Anne-Sophie.

Something Good

Bench at Greyrock, but Eric Salahub

Bench at Greyrock, by Eric Salahub

1. The Sunday Rumpus Essay: Grief Magic by Emily Rapp.

2. How To Thrive At Work (Even If You Can’t Stand Your Job) on MindBodyGreen.

3. Wisdom from Elizabeth Gilbert on Facebook, Is Your Gut Instinct Your God Instinct?

4. Celebrating Little Steps on Becoming Minimalist.

5. Always Go to the Funeral, a This I Believe essay on NPR. I learned this the hard way.

6. First Listen: Neko Case, The Worse Things Get, The Harder I Fight…, Neko Case’s new album on NPR.

Bench at Greyrock, by Eric Salahub

Bench at Greyrock, by Eric Salahub

7. On Recovering the Body, Monday Discipline: Rest and Mindful Friday: You’re Already Awesome.

8. For Apologists, a Confessional Phone Line Is Reborn on The New York Times.

9. Wisdom from Tama J. Kieves on Facebook,

The only thing in your way right now — is an idea. Let go of that one idea or story and the universe can rush in with a thousand new possibilities. Everything is waiting to support you. Let go of what you “think” is in the way and discover the way.

And,

Are you waiting for your one big chance? There is no one big chance. There are a thousand chances every day. In an inspired life, we keep loving, showing up, practicing our promises ourselves. We’re not looking for a ship to come in. We’re sailing daily.

10. The story I cannot edit from Lisa Bonchek Adams.

11. A Love Note to the “Hypersensitive,” “Too Nice,” & “Takers-of-It-Too-Personally” from Randi Buckley.

12. The Blessing Is Next to the Wound, Dani Shapiro on Positively Positive.


13. 23 Signs You’re Secretly An Introvert on Huffington Post. I’m pretty overtly an introvert, but I still liked this list.

14. Wisdom and other good stuff from Elephant Journal: 50 Reasons Why You Are Absolutely Beautiful, and Ashton Kutcher Reveals His Real Name & Inspires in Speech at Teen Choice Awards and Baby, I was Born to Blog (amen, Britt).

15. How Four Years Can (and Should) Transform You: Mark Edmundson’s Essays Ask, “Why Teach?” from The New York Times.

16. When you shouldn’t give up sugar on first ourselves, in which Karly Randolph Pitman says,

But if you feel that your desire for sugar is really a symbol of a deeper desire – a desire to let your deepest essence unfold in the world – don’t cut out the sugar. Instead, listen to your desire. Befriend, allow and listen to your longings for sugar. Sit with them. Let your tears fall and ask yourself: How is my longing for sugar my voice, and what is it trying to say? What I am truly needing?

Listen to this voice. There’s so much wisdom in it.

And then be willing to go out on that limb – trusting what you hear – and live it. Let your deepest self speak, and your essence, unfold.

How many times, how many ways has Rachel Cole tried to tell me this? How many times do I need to hear it, from how many, before I finally get it?

18. Charity:Water is at it again.

17. Of tiny pink dumbbells and fat chicks from Carrie Patrick.

18. Thin Women: I’ve Got Your Back. Could You Get Mine? on Jezebel, in which Lindy West says, “ALL of our energy, collectively, no matter what our size, should be directed at the system that makes us hate ourselves for profit.” Amen.

19. What Happens Here Matters, living on the internet like I live on my block from Brit Hanson.

20. How I revolutionized my relationship to “doing”: Meet The Divine Medicine Woman & The Impeccable Street Sweeper from Danielle LaPorte. I think I need to fire my street sweeper.

21. Wisdom from Seth Godin, “Do you have three minutes?” The conservation of mental bandwidth and 120 seconds (shipping vs. rushing)

22. Wisdom from Marc and Angel Hack Life, 7 Questions You Are Too Scared to Ask and 10 Ways Happy People Prioritize Their To-Do Lists and 9 Things You Will Regret Not Doing Sooner.

23. The Many Flavours of Freedom from Deva Coaching.

24. Wisdom from Pema Chödrön,

You can cruise through life not letting anything touch you, but if you really want to live fully, if you want to enter into life, enter into genuine relationships with other people, with animals, with the world situation, you’re definitely going to have the experience of feeling provoked, of getting hooked, of shenpa. You’re not just going to feel bliss. The message is that when those feelings emerge, this is not a failure. This is the chance to cultivate maitri, unconditional friendliness toward your perfect and imperfect self.

25. Creating Your Habit Environment on Zen Habits.

26. #Inbound13 and the Culture of Caring from Susan Piver.

27. Architecture Student Bought a School Bus and Turned It Into Cozy Mobile Home from Bored Panda.

28. 10 small things you could do today that just might change your life (or at least your state of mind) from Justine Musk.

29. Monday Blues on SF Girl by Bay.

30. The 30-Day Negativity Cleanse on Live After Tampons. I’m in. What about you?

32. Wisdom from Your Inner Pilot Light,

Not sure whether you’re making the right decision, sunshine? Ask yourself these questions. 1. Does it make you feel free? 2. Is it in line with your vision and mission? 3. Does it feel authentic? 4. Will it help more people than it hurts? 5. Does it make you break into a happy dance? 6. Will it light my fire?


32. 18 Everyday Products You’ve Been Using Wrong on BuzzFeed.

33. Wisdom from Sharon Salzberg, “Generosity is the very first quality of an awakened mind.”

34. Poem shared by Elizabeth Gilbert on Facebook, There’s a Hole in my Sidewalk.

35. Motherhood: The Big, Fat Fuck You on Scary Mommy. I’m not a mom, but I totally get this.

36. The Days Before Classes Begin by Jeff Oaks.

37. A free video series by SARK. Don’t miss it! on Superhero Life.

38. From Brave Girls Club,

Keep looking for goodness, beauty and truth. It is worth the effort. While life is sometimes dull and gray and even downright miserable in patches, there is always even more beauty and truth than darkness and ugliness. May you find other beautiful souls who are seeking just like you are. If you cannot find what you are seeking today, may you go out and create it. You are more than capable and you will effect more lives that you could ever know . . . especially your own. Keep looking. It is there, and you will find it.

39. From Positively Present Picks list, The Psychology of Color.

40. More on the wisdom of grief, from Amy McCracken on 3x3x365.

41. Bright Flashes, from Danielle Ate the Sandwich, just because.

42. 7 Truths About Being A Yoga Teacher That No One Will Ever Tell You on MindBodyGreen.

43. Brené Brown On Why Courage, Vulnerability And Authenticity Have To Be Practiced on Huffington Post, in which she says, “The people who practice authenticity work their ass off at it.”

44. Modern Love: Picking Up the Scent on the Road to Bliss on The New York Times, in which Tatjana Soli says,

Necessity creates opportunity that can lead to bliss… In my life, dogs have always been a part of that equation, a way to find the small, grounding moments in life — the grass, sunlight and sweet bite of plums — that we commonly call happiness.

45. If I Were a Dog, a beautiful poem by Richard Shelton.

Something Good

1. If You Have Unrequited Dreams, You’re Probably Making Some of These Mistakes from Life After Tampons.

2. New Origami Street Art by Mademoiselle Maurice on Bored Panda.

3. I hope you wake with a gasp, a thousand flutters in your heart, a 10-Line Tuesday poem from my new favorite poet, Maya Stein.

I hope you wake with a gasp, a thousand flutters in your heart **
Not from the whirlpool of worry. Not from a bad dream.
Not from a deadline or a string of demands, or the great to-do
of the still-to-be-done. Not from the lopsided weight of futility and failure
or some wayward mutiny shaking your bones. Not from the loss
of letting go or the grief of giving in. Not from the illusions of your metaphorical
imprisonment or escape. Not from grass-is-greener or anywhere-but-here.
I hope, instead, you rise from the tremble of something finding its edges,
earthquaking its way into being. That riotous pulsing of birth, and the cry that comes
just after, the lungs taking in their first overwhelmed breaths. That same lucid
sweetness of entry and release. The song of your life being sung.

** I stole this line from Jean Reinhold’s latest writing in her must-read blog: http://jcreinhold.blogspot.com/

4. NOW I know why my finger bleeds like a %*##@ when I get a paper cut, from Reddit.com. Eric emailed me the link to this image and said “it looks like a tree.” (Have I told you lately how much I love him?)

wearetrees

5. This wisdom, “The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.” ~Chinese Proverb.

6. Your Daily Rock from Patti Digh: your daily rock : ask the question. wait for the answer and your daily rock : you belong.

7. My weiner dog kind of looks like snoop from Reddit. Makes me smile, every time.

snoopdog

8. Twelve Habits of Happy, Healthy People Who Don’t Give a Shit About Your Inner Peace from I Am Begging My Mother Not To Read This Blog.

9. This wisdom from Tulku Thondup,

By just allowing our minds to be caring, peaceful, and relaxed, our daily activities and work—even our breathing—can become part of our healing practice and we will gain strength spontaneously. If we are open to it, our ordinary life will turn into a life of healing. Then, even though we may not be spending hours in formal sitting meditation, our life will be meditation in action.

10. Judge Less: mini-mission and Why You Should Give Away 50% of Your Stuff from Be More With Less.

11. How To Stop Making A Big Deal About Your Problems, Pema Chödrön on MindBodyGreen.

12. From Brave Girls Club,

Dear Gorgeous Girl,

Chances are, you are needing some rest right now…after all, being brave is hard and exhausting work.

Would it be so bad it you took a little break and let yourself recharge? Of course it wouldn’t be a bad thing….to the contrary, it would be a VERY GOOD thing for you to do, especially if you can’t even remember the last time you let yourself rest for a little while.

Choose a good, uplifting book and let yourself read it without interruption, take a hot bath….get under the covers for an afternoon nap. You’ve got to recharge or you will burn out…it’s just a fact of life. This doesn’t mean you are weak, it means you are human…and little breaks here and there are an essential part of a productive life.

Enjoy some time to yourself…you deserve it. You are loved. xoxo

13. Jamie King on The Conversation: Listen to Your Intuition.

14. “What you teach is what you are. You don’t teach by telling people things.” ~Milton Glaser

15. “Does one really have to fret about enlightenment? No matter what road I travel I’m going home.” ~Shinsho

16. This wisdom from Tara Brach’s Radical Acceptance,

New meditation students often mention the value of learning to focus and settle the mind, but they also name something more basic. As one person put it recently, “Just having those moments to be quiet is a gift to my soul.” It is a gift to the soul. Stepping out of the busyness, stopping our endless pursuit of getting somewhere else, is perhaps the most beautiful offering we can make to our spirit.

17. The Time You Have Left (in Jelly Beans) from ZeFrank

18. Like dollhouse rooms left abandoned, a poem from Lisa Bonchek Adams. *sob*

19. What If I Feel Like Giving Up On Self-Acceptance? from Anna Guest-Jelley on Curvy Yoga.

20. More new to me music, Royals from Lorde, shared by my friend Aaryn. Also new to me, what I’ve been listening to for the past few days, the band Daughter, specifically the Daughter radio station on Last.fm.

21. An interesting perspective from Notes from the Universe, “Anger is almost always a sign, Jill, that you’ve been quiet for too long.”

22. “Too sexy for the Internet?” 3 questions to help you decide which stories & shots to reveal — and which to keep sealed in a vault! from Alexandra Franzen. I think these questions work when you are considering anything you put on the internet, sexy or not.

23. Thinking about money from Seth Godin.

24. Wisdom from Tiny Buddha: After Tragedy: 3 Reasons And 21 Ways To Bring Joy Back into Your Life and Why We Need to Create Our Own “Normal”

25. Thoughts to contemplate from Raam Dev:

Live as though your life can make a difference, because it does. What difference it makes though is entirely up to you.

and

You have no idea what you’re capable of until you’ve done it, or until you’ve truly failed trying to do it. If unsure, fail again.

26. This wisdom from J.K. Rowling, “It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all — in which case, you fail by default.”

27. From Susannah Conway’s Something for the Weekend list: 30 Important Websites For Highly Sensitive People, Master of Pen and Ink: The Monumental Drawings of Manabu Ikeda, and this wisdom from Arianna Huffington,

“I was lucky in that I had a mother that was full of this colloquial wisdom and she used to say to me ‘You know, failure is not the opposite of success, it’s the stepping stone to success. There is nobody who has not failed along the way.’ So I think its very important for young women, especially as they are starting in life, to recognize that because otherwise, they only see people’s success. So, when I speak, I speak of my failures.”

28. From Positively Present PicksCalm.com, 50 Life Hacks Your Future Self Will Thank You For, Major Radical Self Love Bible Inspiration! (what a great idea! and am realizing I already started making one of these, just didn’t know what it was called), Skillshare, and a reminder of this site, Tattly.

29. Pissed Off And Purposeful: Why Radical Self Love Incurred My Wrath This Morning from Gala Darling, (can’t wait to see her interview on Good Life Project).

30. A process for How to Never do Anything You Don’t Want to do Ever Again from Sas Petherick, in her July Love Note, (you really should sign up for her newsletter).

31. Defining Self-Care from Pittsburg PhD, one of my favorite people.

Something Good

For those of you who are new to my blog, here’s the story behind my Something Good posts: When I am feeling bad, I will often ask my husband Eric to “tell me something good.” When I need something to hang on to, to make me feel better, something to show me that it’s not all bad. When I am in that dark hole, way down at the bottom, and the mean things with teeth are down there with me –”tell me something good.”

He’s really good at it, because even when all he can think of is “I love you,” it totally works. I mean, how great is it that the person that you picked and who said “yes” almost 20 years ago, and knows you better than anyone, knows all the embarrassing and ugly stuff, continues to love you? He usually is able to give me a whole list when I ask him, followed by a hug and “what can I do for you, how can I make you feel better?”

So on A Thousand Shades of Gray, Monday’s feature is: Something Good. I like the idea of gratitude generating joy, and the opportunity my gratitude has to spread joy when I share the good things, so every Monday, I give you a list.

Here’s this week’s list:

1. 5 Plants You (Almost) Never Have to Water on House Logic.

2. Stunning Self-Portraits by a 14-year-old Photographer on Bored Panda.

3. Diana Fayt’s Painted Rocks (& Other Lovely Things) from Lisa Congdon.

4. Be Brave: A Poem-Film for Anyone Asking for Courage to Create from Jeffrey Davis.

5. Cute Pets in Windows from Bold Italics, originally shared by Rachel.

6. Reflections on Fearlessness and Best Links (May), a great list of good stuff from Sandra at Always Well Within, (confession: one of my posts is on the list).

7. Reason to Forgive | DubStep, video of a 12 year old who is an amazing dancer.

8. You’re not needy. You’re starving. from Rachel Cole. Amazing.

9. Out of the water from Lisa Bonchek Adams.

10. Patrick Stewart Speaks About His Childhood, Domestic Abuse and PTSD. The woman involved in this specific moment wrote about it on her blog as well, Let me tell you a thing, about an amazing man named Patrick Stewart.

11. This message from Brave Girls Club came just when I needed it,

Dear Sweet Girl,

You don’t have to have special permission to take a break, you know. You have done enough. When you are tired, and weary and feeling worn out, you need to be kind to yourself and take good care of your body and your spirit.

Please be good to yourself, beautiful friend . . . the world is not the same without the best of you. The people that you love the most have better lives because of you and the people you have not even met yet will have enriched lives because of you.

Your life will be better, happier, more effective, more efficient and more meaningful if you stop and take care of yourself. No more putting guilt trips on yourself or letting anyone else do it. No more working yourself so hard that you can’t even feel anymore . . . it’s time to REALLY nurture and take care of yourself. You are a gift to the world, please take care of YOU. Today’s a great day to start.

12. There’s Just No Time from Paul Jarvis, shared by Laura of Create as Folk.

13. Rijks Museum Free Hi-Res Art Downloads shared by Pugly Pixel.

14. Introducing Prancercise, just silly enough to be kind of awesome.

15. Be the Giver from Danielle LaPorte.

16. 9 Rules for a Simpler Day from Zen Habits.

17. What is Your Gift to the World? on Scoutie Girl.

18. Wisdom from Pema Chödrön,

Tigers Above, Tigers Below: There is a story of a woman running away from tigers. She runs and runs, and the tigers are getting closer and closer. When she comes to the edge of a cliff, she sees some vines there, so she climbs down and holds on to the vines. Looking down, she sees that there are tigers below her as well. She then notices that a mouse is gnawing away at the vine to which she is clinging. She also sees a beautiful little bunch of strawberries close to her, growing out of a clump of grass. She looks up and she looks down. She looks at the mouse. Then she just takes a strawberry, puts it in her mouth, and enjoys it thoroughly.

Tigers above, tigers below. This is actually the predicament that we are always in, in terms of our birth and death. Each moment is just what it is. It might be the only moment of our life, it might be the only strawberry we’ll ever eat. We could get depressed about it, or we could finally appreciate it and delight in the preciousness of every single moment of our life.

19. 7 Things You Need to Stop Doing Every Day from Marc and Angel Hack Life.

20. Make Me: Fabric Gift Bags from Decor8.

21. Celebrate and Embrace Ventures and Adventures from Be More with Less.

22. Her Lilac Jacket on SouleMama. The sweetest pictures! This one is my favorite, (her little hand!).

23. Racists Very Upset Over Interracial Family in Cute Cheerios Commercial. The little girl in this commercial is super cute. Someone posted on Facebook last week about this and added, “Whomever has a problem with this better just go buy a white hood right now and be honest with yourself.” I couldn’t agree more.

24. it’s complicated from Sas Petherick. *sigh*

25. Inside the Paris apartment untouched for 70 years: Treasure trove finally revealed after owner locked up and fled at outbreak of WWII.

26. Your Daily Rock from Patti Digh: your daily rock : what would love do?, and your daily rock : just breathe, and your daily rock : you are enough.

27. Name-calling Has Its Place: BED is Now Named as a Distinct Eating Disorder. So what’s in it for you? from Drop it and Eat.

28. Another Origami Fox from How About Orange. I wish I was better at this. I’d be making some of these, (shared by Positively Present).

29. This quote, People from a planet without flowers would think we must be mad with joy the whole time to have such things about us. ~Iris Murdoch

peoniesonmydesk02

30. Google Poetics, (shared by Positively Present). “This blog started collecting Google Poems on October 2012 and is run by its founder Sampsa Nuotio and curator Raisa Omaheimo. Google Poetics is born when Google autocomplete suggestions are viewed as poems.” I could get lost in this site for a very, very long time. For example,

pain is temporary
pain is weakness leaving the body
pain is inevitable suffering is optional
pain is love

Or,

I am a disco dancer
I am a dwarf and I’m digging a hole
I am a dynamic figure
I am a dreamer

Pure awesome.

31. Patti Smith, We all have a creative impulse, shared by Susannah on her Something for the Weekend list. The site where this video is posted, Channel Louisiana, has lots of other really cool stuff, if you want to get lost for a little while and haven’t already spent all your time on Google Poetics. Also on Susannah’s list this week was What’s Inside Our “Going Out” Bags.

32. Humans of New York. I’ve shared this site before, but it’s so good, I want to share it again in case you missed it the first time. You can also follow them on Facebook.

33. Issa Rae: Own Your Awkward on The Conversation.

34. From Rowdy Kittens’ Happy Links post: A Revolution of Contentment by Sandra Pawula on the Bridgemaker, and Chic Tiny House in Omaha Nebraska on Air BnB, (the loft beds in tiny houses always make me think of sleeping in a tree house — magic).

35. My Dentist Was Made To Believe I Was Dead And It Made Me Realize Why I Shouldn’t Kill Myself And You Shouldn’t Either on xojane.

36. This wisdom from Marianne Williamson, “The kind of rest you seek you will find not from sleeping but from waking.”

37. This Poster Might Just Change Your Life. by Nicole Duncan on Elephant Journal.

38. This wisdom from Lama Christie McNally, The Tibetan Book of Meditation,

Tibetans say we should do our meditation practice “as if our hair was on fire.” We should have the same urgency to get out of this pain filled place as someone who has just woken up in a burning, smoke filled house. But it’s hard- all the distractions of this life keep stealing away our time and our mind. We keep telling ourselves, “I’ll meditate later.” Then one day you look up and realize life has passed you by, the time is gone, and it’s too late.

39. This wisdom from Jen Lemen, “I don’t want to be famous or popular or known for anything other than that I was deep and wise and had a soul that was wildly beautiful, full of mercy and light.”

40. Amanda Palmer on Creativity as Connecting Dots and the Terrifying Joy of Sharing Your Art Online and Be All Your Selves: Joss Whedon’s 2013 Wesleyan Commencement Address on Embracing Our Inner Contradictions on Brain Pickings.

41. Quotes shared by Justine Musk, You cannot truly enjoy life through your mind…It’s through the heart + the body that we get to party,” (Kagiso Msimango), and “There’s nothing more powerful than a woman who has met the truth inside her. Nothing,” (Meggan Jane Watterson).

42. Are Children Natural Vegans? by Sara Crolick on Elephant Journal.

43. This quote from Cheryl Stayed, “That silence is such a beautiful thing. It’s like the stars at night in the great alone and you there beneath them, saying thank you.”

44. Karma and Smartphones: How to Use Technology From a Buddhist Perspective, Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche on Huffington Post.

45. Dog People Problems, from Reddit.

goodmorning

46. 2 year old problems: cinnamon rolls aren’t instant, from Reddit.

twoyearoldproblems

47. Wisdom from Chogyam Trungpa,

Meditation is not a matter of trying to achieve ecstasy, spiritual bliss, or tranquility, nor is it attempting to be a better person. It is simply the creation of a space in which we are able to expose and undo our neurotic games, our self-deceptions, our hidden fears and hopes.

48. Father and 2-year-old boy sing Beatles’ ‘Don’t Let Me Down’ in viral hit.

49. Let go … again, still, more from Lindsey on A Design So Vast.

50. The Pros and Cons (But Mostly Pros) of Adopting a Shelter Dog on Hello Giggles.

51. you are worthy. from Liz Lamoreux.

52. Feeding the Right Wolf, with Marianne Elliot on Sacred Circle.

53. The Big Book Giveaway! from Susannah Conway. This is a great set of books, some of my favorites! You should totally enter this, (but just know, I plan on winning the Book Bomb).

bigbookgiveaway

P.S. I think this might officially be the longest Something Good list e v e r.

Something Good

1. You don’t have to pander from Seth Godin’s blog, in which he says, “The reason you don’t have to pander is that you’re not in a hurry and you don’t need everyone to embrace you and your work. When you focus on the weird, passionate, interesting segment of the audience, you can do extraordinary work for a few (and watch it spread) instead of starting from a place of average.”

2. Website designs I like, non-perishable goods and Positively Present‘s new look–both simple and clean, minimalist.

3. Daily Rocks from Patti Digh: your daily rock : love your layers, your daily rock : ignore all critics, and your daily rock : forget about the audience

4. From David Whyte’s poem Out on the Ocean,

Always, this energy smoulders inside,
when it remains unlit,
the body fills with dense smoke.

5. New video from Danielle of one of my favorite songs, The Have Nots.

6. one hundred journeys from Sas Petherick, “The disturbing ugliness and the profound love, the sheer bloody hilarity of being human.”

7. From Geneen Roth, “Peace and contentment are feelings that take practice to achieve. They are not a consequence of being successful or being in love or being thin. They are, among other things, a consequence of stopping in the present moment and looking around.”

8. Why being rash, hasty & stupid is the smartest thing you can do from Alexandra Franzen.

9. The Bigness of God from Julia Fehrenbacher.

10. My Best Mistake: Too Much Success by Gary Vaynerchuk.

11. How to write books and articles more quickly by Cynthia Morris. I will most likely never be this organized, and yet I still aspire to be.

12. Two things that made say “OMG!”: Royal Winnipeg Ballet to debut Margaret Atwood’s “Handmaid’s Tale” next season, and coming out this fall, Mary Oliver’s collection of dog poems, Dog Songs.

dogpoemscover

13. From Danielle LaPorte, these Daily Truth Bombs, “What do you really want to happen, really?” and “No dream will serve you if you’re forcing yourself to make it happen,” and New Age Judge Judy and Lessons in Yoga Class.

14. From Elephant Journal,  8 Blunt Truths About Becoming a Yoga Instructor,
Complete Protein? Complete Nonsense, The 10 Things You’ll Do Once You Start Yoga That Have Nothing To Do With Yoga, and The Positive Attitude Paradox.

15. A Miniature Bohemian World, which further reveals my love for book filled, messy spaces.

16. Pictures of people who mock me on Salon.

17. Off Camera interview with Aimee Mann.

18. Loveland’s Anthology Book Co. gets new lease on life. Such good news!

19. Masterpiece In A Mug: Japanese Latte Art Will Perk You Up.

20. From Bored Panda: 22 Unbelievable Places that are Hard to Believe Really Exist, (holy wow…), and Dad Illustrates Kids’ Sandwich Bags with Fun Drawings Every Day.

21. I have a crush on Jeff Oak’s writingI found his blog through another of my writing crushes, Guinevere Gets Sober. The fact that they both understand grief and addiction, and have beautiful black dogs doesn’t hurt one bit.

22. The Spiritual Journey, inner journeys and stories of personal growth.

23. Why you should write daily on Zen Habits.

24. On All the Sentimental Stuff and Clutter from Be More with Less, (speaking of writers I have crushes on who have amazing dogs).

25. This quote from Mark Victor Hansen, “Your belief determines your action and your action determines your results, but first you have to believe.”

26. Manifesto on Basic Goodness on Huffington Post–a plan I can get behind.

26. A Beginner’s Guide to Neil Gaiman

27. The Conversation is back! Well, sort of. There are two new, short interviews–better than nothing!

28. In celebration of being ordinary, from Jennifer Louden.

29. Finding a New Rhythm from Jen Lee in which she says,

It’s funny because the old-school approach to getting work done–the entrepreneurial, management-style approach–says that if we start clearing our spaces or wanting to read in bed, we’re just avoiding our work. That we should “push through” and keep in motion.

But that approach has never worked for me in the realm of creative work. Clearing space and resting are as essential to my productivity as the sun and water parts are for growing plants.

30. plumb the depths 26 questions for pure insight from Kylie on effervescence, the art of liking yourself. Also on effervescence, why it’s not selfish to make art…that’s just for yourself.

31. 30 DIY Ideas How To Make Your Backyard Wonderful This Summer. I probably won’t do any of them, but they are awesome, (especially the backyard beach and the tents).

32. Shared by Positively Present, 33 Dogs That Cannot Even Handle It Right Now and Alison Brie mimes your favorite memes.

33. From Susannah’s Something for the Weekend post, 30 Abandoned Places that Look Truly Beautiful and Sneak Peak: Paula Mills and Family, a beautifully designed living space.

34. I am in love with this treehouse.

35. This can still happen anywhere.

36. Shared by Stephanie in her Weekend Treats post, Self-Care Is Not A Punishment and 29 Ways to Stay Creative: Start with Darkness.

37. The calming manatee.

38. 39 Reasons Why You Must Read In Order to Write Well, shared by The Mojo Lab.

39. Writing advice from writers handwritten on writers’ hands [14 pictures]

40. Expiration Date by Lisa Bonchek Adams. Lisa’s story, her telling of it keeps breaking my heart, and sometimes I think it would be better to look away, to stop following her, to stop watching and reading, checking in and waiting, that it would somehow be a healthier choice, a saner option to disengage. But then I realize “Lisa is dying.” Someone’s mother, wife, sister, daughter, friend is dying. She may not be literally mine, and yet she IS mine, and for that reason, I won’t look away, won’t unsubscribe or ignore or wish it away. I will be a loving and kind witness to her reality, which in the end is the same for all of us.

41. The most difficult practice of allfrom Susan Piver–“stop feeling bad about yourself.”