Best of Our Blogs

Best of Our Blogs: April 15, 2016

There is a deficit in this country. People are starving for it. Countries are warring over it. The greatest need we have is compassion. It takes effort to put yourself in the shoes of your judgy mom or the aunt who thinks you’re making up your illness. But if you were to see things from their perspective, you might not take it so personally. Most times people are critical and harsh because they’re critical and harsh with themselves. The key to peace isn’t stretching outward to find it, its finding love, understanding and empathy in your self.

In Whatever Arises Love that, Matt Kahn says the following:

“When I’m sad, I deserve more love, not less. When I’m angry, I deserve more love, not less. When I’m frustrated, I deserve more love, not less. Whenever I’m hurt, heartbroken, ashamed, or feeling guilty, I deserve more love, not less…No matter the past that I’ve survived, I deserve more love, not less. No matter what remains up ahead, I deserve more love, not less. On my worst day, I deserve more love, not less.”

But isn’t it true that when we’re depressed or struggling with addiction, we’re the cruelest to ourselves? It’s at the moment when we decide to speak our mind, follow a dream, or express a hidden emotion that we deserve and need support most. We often look outside ourselves for it. But we won't buy into it unless we've given that to ourselves. Good or bad, we must as Kahn says, “love that.”

Our bloggers are talking about everything from being a step-parent to dealing with relationships and addiction. No matter what you're going through, respond with love.
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Best of Our Blogs: April 12, 2016

You keep searching for the key thing to make it all better. You spend more moments than you'd admit looking for the perfect thing to fill that vacuum. I know the place. I've been there before.

The pain of feeling unworthy, and unloved feels like a slow, dying. You think no one else is going through what you're going through. And the only energy you have is focused on how to escape it.

If I could talk to myself back when I was struggling, I would say, "There is hope. There is light. There is happiness, joy and love beyond what you can picture for yourself. More people love you than you realize. You matter and you will find your way. It takes courage to get through one moment at a time."

If you're struggling, surround yourself with supportive people including friends, family, and a good therapist. Our posts this week will also deliver this important message: whether you're struggling with loneliness, emptiness, or addiction, you're definitely not alone.
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Best of Our Blogs: April 8, 2016

Quick. Fill in the following:

"I am ____."

What words come to mind? Does it change throughout the day? Does, "tired," follow during the morning and "worried," follow night?

In Oprah's Super Soul Sunday, Pastor Joel Osteen says, "“I don’t think we realize that...what follows that ‘I am’ we’re inviting into our life."

Start tuning into your inner voice and notice if you're repeatedly saying things like "I am sick. I am ill. I am fat. I am unloved." If so, it's time to change your narrative to reflect what you want, deserve, and who you really are.

To end this week, our bloggers will guide you on a path towards greater self-worth, support and resources so you can transform, "I am helpless and alone," to "I am worthy, loved and enough."
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Best of Our Blogs: April 5, 2016

There's one thing you can do to instantly improve your health. It's not just diet and exercise that can boost your mood and body.

Rest.

It's something many of us don't get enough. And it's not just sleep. But it's taking time to sit in silence, unplug, and resist the urge to keep busy.

All that constant external noise from technology is a barrier that interferes with our intuitive connection with our selves. Instead of going to sleep when we're tired or lying down when we need rest, a video game, new app, or Facebook update pushes us towards our second wind. But ignoring our body when we're exhausted is a battle we'll lose. In the end, our mental and physical health suffers.

Forcing ourselves to keep going when we've had enough makes us impatient, un-attuned and negative. As you'll read this week, procrastinating on sleep or neglecting your needs will eventually catch up with you. It will deplete your energy making you susceptible to a compromised body and life.
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Best of Our Blogs: April 1, 2016

Are you in a shame spiral for feeling like a fool? It's April Fool's today, but the real hurt comes when loved ones shame you for doing something you need to do for you.

I met a woman who has two young kids living in another state. It was a conscious decision to make their father legal guardian. Instead of supporting her for what was a difficult decision, her family criticized and abandoned her. Yet, her awareness that she couldn't care for them while managing her own mental health was a lifesaving one. Her and her two kids are healthy and happy because of it.

It takes courage to do something that's best for you especially if others don't agree. If you're getting your own share of pushback because of how you're coping with ____ (anxiety, OCD, your kids, etc.), you'll appreciate our top posts this week.
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Best of Our Blogs: March 29, 2016

You're probably here because you're searching for answers. You're struggling with anxiety, ADHD or a relationship. You have a strong desire to fix things, to want to make things right.

The experience of working through these issues is an uncomfortable, sometimes painful process, but often necessary to solve them. In other words, sometimes we have to go through crap because it's what we need to evolve.

Our lives are marathons, not sprints. We need stamina, perseverance and faith to be able to get through the hard parts.

Think of this week's top posts as the water break for the path you're on. Read them to get the motivation you need to reflect, reconnect and reengage with life no matter where you are on your journey.
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Best of Our Blogs: March 25, 2016

In the throes of physical or emotional pain, or both, it can feel like an unending tunnel. Anyone who is breathing can attest to it. It's a deep, dark hole that takes courage, faith and support to climb out of.

When we're in the heat of it, we don't realize that things can change. We don't realize there are people who have endured the same thing. We don't know that there is support out there if we have the courage to walk through it.

I've had many moments in my life where I felt hopeless, desperate and alone.

All you want is to not feel that pain. Only when you've overcome it, you understand that the thing that broke you is the thing that makes you whole.

In reading our top posts this week about abuse, anger and troubled relationships, I hope you'll realize you're never alone in your pain. As long as you keep fighting the fight by walking through the fire, things will always get better.
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Best of Our Blogs: March 22, 2016

The discomfort of not scratching an itch seems unbearable. A pause between a sentence is too uncomfortable. Not fixing a child's problem feels like torture.

But to fully be present in our lives, it takes inner strength. It takes stretching beyond what's comfortable. It means getting used to not filling an emptiness or automatically fixing a problem. It takes sitting in the well of what is (in your body, mind and life) and really being in it without spending the entire time willing it away.

It's not easy. It can feel unbearable to not change things right away. But the ability to accept and surrender to the moment without changing it can dramatically shift your life in the best way. It can give you courage, confidence and build resilience. Learning to not avoid, but embrace all your emotions this week will cultivate strength you never knew you had.
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Best of Our Blogs: March 18, 2016

Anxiety can feel like an uninvited guest. Maybe you've come to expect it during certain situations or it always takes you by surprise. You've tried a lot of things to scare it away. But you may not have done this.

You've tried to eradicate it from your life. That makes sense. We call an exterminator to get rid of pests. We take medicine to get rid of illness. But recently when fear and anxiety began to bug me, I did something different.

Instead of meeting it with warring words and "I hope you just go away" mentality, I decided to be kind. I asked it what it needed from me. I told it that everything in this moment was just fine as it is. I said, "Thank you. I understand you're just trying to help me." The anxiety did not go away immediately, but it slowly and gradually began to dissipate.

While medicine and professionals are sometimes necessary resources, going with instead of against what's difficult may be enough to soothe our suffering.

This week our top posts will help you ease your mind. Whether performance anxiety, depression or narcissism is getting the best of you and/or a loved one, maybe the first thing you can do is to be kind, compassionate and patient with it and yourself.
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Best of Our Blogs: March 15, 2016

Are you hiding a secret?

Do you judge others for buying/eating/gossiping too much, but do the same thing yourself? Are you afraid that your husband will find out how much you're really spending online, or your friend will discover you're secretly sabotaging your health?

Gretchen Rubin shared this quote in Rules for Life That Happy People Know.
"Pay very special attention to anything you try to hide. The desire to hide something, from family or co-workers—to keep them from seeing what's on the computer screen or from knowing how much time or money is spent on a habit—shows that, in some way, your actions don't reflect your values."
The habits you're trying to hide may be pointing to an area of your life that requires your attention and self-reflection.

Read our posts this week and you may just close the gap between your actual and ideal life.
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Best of Our Blogs: March 11, 2016

I have a two-year-old so my home is often filled with the sounds of toddler tantrums. The constant yelling made me wonder where tantrums go when we grow into adults. We may have learned to silence our inner child in public, but how many of us are walking around with our own need to scream?

Take a look at the internet and TV and it's not hard to see we're an angry bunch of folks. Chances are we're projecting our inner state of unhappiness on the world.

Perhaps, our inner child is screaming for validation, for rest, for a chance to be heard. Instead of tapping into how we really feel, we're sabotaging our relationships with others and our self.

Maybe your road rage with a fellow driver, fight with your neighbor or agitation at the store clerk has little to do with them. Use our top posts this week to start asking yourself what you're really in need of. Whether it's advice on dealing with your partner, your illness, or therapy, you'll start to see that healing yourself will change your life from the inside out.
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Best of Our Blogs

Best of Our Blogs: March 8, 2016

These days there are subscription based services for everything from healthy snacks to yoga gear. Opening a box full of surprise gifts every week or month curated just for you can feel a lot like Christmas.

Wouldn't it be nice if there was a mental health subscription box to make you feel good on the inside?

What type of things would you put in there?

Photos of loved ones that includes your furry friends.
A beautiful journal for creative expression.
Your favorite tea.
A coloring book.
Coupons for things like calling a friend.
A self-care book or favorite fiction read.
Written inspirational quotes.
Printed out blog posts like the ones below. For example, helpful ones with tips on calming an anxious child, funny ones like the post on narcissism, and for inspiration, a post on dealing with feeling out of control.
A printed out list of loving and kind words others have written or said about you.
A photo or trinket that reminds you of a place that makes you feel safe, peaceful and happy.

Creating a self-care box will boost your mood when you're going through a difficult time and may be the best gift you could give a friend and yourself.
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