Personal Growth Can Be a Wonderful Thing, But It Can Also Sometimes Mean Losing People

a dandelion flower that's gone to seed that's lost most of its seed and is very bare. Beneath the photograph is a caption that reads "Loss"
Image by John Morgan / CC BY

People tend to talk about personal growth in rather glowing terms, like it’s always a desirable goal. Something to be worked towards. Commendable.

But the truth is that the outcome isn’t always rosy, at least not in the short term. The most important growth usually doesn’t come without some sort of cost.

The hardest part about figuring yourself out is that you can’t always take other people with you.  » Read more

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Princesses Are Good, Queens Are Evil

It's a stillshot frame of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic wtih a unicorn chilling in front of a fire with a pen and quill. Words over image read: My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic. Princess Celestia was originally a queen but was changed because Hasbro executives thought Disney had too closely associated Queens as villains
Image by Popcorn Logic / CC BY

I know most people don’t talk about memes very much. Most people consider them trivial, barely worthy of fleeting attention. But I personally enjoy and share them a lot and have found some memes to offer unexpectedly deep looks into subjects, mirrors that reflect what we share in common with others, or don’t. While most memes are pretty silly,  » Read more

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The Key to Effective Self-Help Is Knowing Where You Are, Relative to the Advice

a dirty hand holding a compass

“It’s really easy to find self-help advice nowadays,” she says. “It’s all over the Internet.”

I nod. “Sure is. I even write some myself.”

“That must be a real trip,” she says. “Just putting it out there and seeing how it’s applied.”

“It can be,” I say. “It does help that I don’t know most of my readership personally.  » Read more

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Hey, Stop Being So Mean to My Friend: A Self-Compassion Conversational Interrupt

It's someone's lecture notes from a lecture. At the top left it reads "Self compassion Kristen Neff, PhD." At the top right, it reads "2015-03-24a, notes by Sacha Chua." Going top to bottom, left to right, first heading reads compassion. Under it it reads recognition of suffering, feelings of kindness, desire to help, shared Next heading: Self-compassion, under heading it reads self-kindness, common humanity - everyone, mindfulness, (awareness of awareness, responding vs reacting) next heading exercises, under heading is letter from imaginary friend, 3-chair (self-critic, judged, wise, compassionate observer), self-hug, caress, identify interconnectedness, noting thoughts, mindfully working with pain, mindfulness meditation, self-compassion journal, soften, soothe, allow, develop your own self-compassion mantra, compassionate imagery, compassionate body scan, identifying the trickster (ego), next heading "why is this a challenge," under heading: the need to feel better than others, parents, culture, the desire for control, map vs. territory, self-esteem opt out, contigent?, self-compassion is more helpful, love not fear, hate can't conquer hate, self-judgement can't stop self-judgement, next heading better, under heading understand, have compassion - actively comfort, replace w/kinder response (embrace & replace), next header, attachment patterns can be reformed, love, therapy, unconditional support, next header this is a moment of suffering. Suffering is a part of life. May I be kind to myself in this moment. May I give myself the compassion I need. Next header. Identifying what I really want, procrastination and understand fear, self-compassion & our bodies, taking care of the caregiver, next heading phases, backdraft, infatuation, true acceptance, next header Marshall Rosenberg, What am I observing? What am I feeling? what am I needing right now? Do I have a request of myself or someone else? next header control, not thoughts but how we relate to them, observe doesn't equal believe, next header p. 53 Notice - stop & recognize, soften, reframe, next header rumination, don't judge yourself, next header give yourself, kindness & care, remind yourself pain is part of the shared human exp., mindful awareness, next header dark chocolate - happy + sad, next header, directing, loving-kindness to our suffering, identifying your relationship patterns, self-compassion break, next header releasing sexual shame, transforming negativity, take a pleasure walk, next header, the demoralizing whip, next header loveliness, I don't belong, because of focus uniqueness, us vs. them, next header perfectionism vs being human, learning, next header interconnectedness, next header suffering = pain x resistance, the more we resist, the more we suffer, next header compassionate, mind training, mindful awareness parenting, gratitude & savoring, next header finding the silver lining, keeping a gratitude journal, savor the moment
Image by Sacha Chua / CC BY

I’m standing in middle of the kitchen, clutching my head out of frustration. “Ugh,” I say. “I just wish I weren’t so freaking stupid sometimes.”

“Page,” Justin says.

I move my hand and look directly into his eyes. “What?”

“Stop being so mean to my friend.”

I crack a smile.  » Read more

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Disappointment Lives in the Space Between Fantasy and Reality

a concrete train platform. It has the following stamped on it in blue letters "BEWARE GAP WHEN BOARDING"
Image by Laurence Grayson / CC BY

Every fall into love involves the triumph of hope over self-knowledge. We fall in love hoping we won’t find in another what we know is in ourselves, all the cowardice, weakness, laziness, dishonesty, compromise, and stupidity. We throw a cordon of love around the chosen one and decide that everything within it will somehow be free of our faults.  » Read more

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