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How to Overcome a Bad Day

Photo by Vanessa Paxton
Each morning when I open my eyes I say to myself: I, not events, have the power to make me happy or unhappy today. I can choose which it shall be. Yesterday is dead, tomorrow hasn't arrived yet. I have just one day, today, and I'm going to be happy in it. ~Groucho Marx

One day a few weeks ago, my alarm failed to wake me up, which sent me rushing around the house. My day suddenly put into fast-forward.

I decided to take one last sip of coffee before I left for a meeting and ended up spilling it all over my clothes. I changed and ran out the door only to realize later that I left my grocery list in my other pants.

This was quickly turning into “one of those days.” You know the type. Nothing seems to go right, no matter how hard you try.

And one of the hardest parts of those days, at least for me, is keeping my chin up. It’s so easy for my outlook to go south when a few chips are stacked against me. It’s like a chain reaction of mood dominoes.

The World’s Simplest Meditation

Photo by Shannnnon
Editor’s Note

I did this meditation once with a stranger at a seminar years ago, during which I found myself with tears, much like what Richard describes below. Check it out. Try it with a friend.

If you want to know God Then turn your face toward your friend And don’t look away. ~Rumi

I sat looking directly into the young woman’s eyes.

She looked right back.

After a few minutes, tears began flowing uncontrollably down her cheeks.

We kept looking.

Twenty minutes into our gazing session, the tears stopped.

“What happened for you?” I asked gently.

What I Learned About Fear – Reflections on Colorado Theater Shooting

Photo by Shannnnon
Editor’s Note

The news of the shooting that took place at a Denver Colorado movie theater shook the world. Our TSN contributor Kayla Albert happens to live a few minutes from the theater (and ironically had tickets to the midnight showing of the movie that night and ended up not going). This article was written three weeks ago on her reflections to the traumatic event. Don’t miss this article.

Love is what we were born with. Fear is what we learned here. ~Marianne Williamson

My eyes followed him as he paced back and forth from window to door and back again. He appeared agitated and on edge, and his demeanor immediately made me uneasy. I felt the pit in my stomach expand each time he passed by my table.

A few short minutes later, someone else appeared and the two sat and chatted at a nearby table. The scene I was witnessing was simply a man keeping an eye out for his late friend. Yet it sparked in me something I wasn’t used to feeling: fear.

Fear is generally not something that I grapple with – I’ve always felt that the world is filled with kind, loving people and I don’t need to be on alert every time I’m in a public place.

Then last Friday morning I awoke to the horrific scene that was unfolding at a Colorado movie theater a few short miles from my home.

The Illusion of Control

Photo by Simón Pais-Thomas
Editor’s Note

Don't miss this inspiring and beautifully written article on finding inner peace through our core. Kate eloquently articulated something I’ve been feeling but haven’t quite bubbled up into words. Amazing job.

Undertaking the journey to get some ground under our feet, is completely missing the point. ~Pema Chodron

Things I have tried, in order to reach a state where my life felt like it was all put together, where it was all in order, and to never again feel bad:

  • Meditating
  • Yoga
  • Reading lots of spiritual books
  • Attending workshops
  • Counseling, therapy, coaching
  • Raw foods diets (the books always talk about feeling so “clear” and “mentally alert”)
  • Workshops oriented around catharsis

There are more things that I could list off, but I’ll stop there–you get the picture. All the while, I was searching for something that the searching itself was going to keep me from finding–because all the while, I was “doing stuff” in order to maintain the illusion of control.

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