Category: Dealing with Hardships

How to Overcome Perfectionism (“Never Good Enough”)

No matter how hard I worked or how much I achieved, I NEVER FELT GOOD ENOUGH. If I fell short of my unrealistically high standards, I would beat myself up (metaphorically) and label myself as completely inadequate—not just in terms of the task at hand, but as a human being. What seemed like the pursuit ...

How to Stop Being Jealous of Someone Else’s Success

You know the feeling: someone announces good news on social media and suddenly you feel a pang of envy—that odd combination of admiration mixed with insecurity and the sense of feeling threatened by someone else's success, while simultaneously feeling ashamed of yourself for feeling this way in the first place. It's so easy to fall ...

The Space Where Healing Happens

A few weeks ago, something happened that triggered me. By "triggered", I don't mean being overly sensitive or easily offended (as the word seems to suggest these days). I mean that something happened, which was so reminiscent of a traumatic memory from my past, that I literally felt as if I had been transported back ...

Woman floating in the water.

A Small New Year’s Reminder

As the new year approaches, we can't help but look back at the past year and consider how far we've come and where we're heading next. For many of us, 2020 has felt like being in quicksand: as much as we've tried to wriggle ourselves free, we can't help but feel somewhat stuck. Many of ...

Man looking at his reflection in a puddle.

20/20 Vision: A Year of Awareness

At the start of 2020, people used the hashtag #2020vision to describe how they would pursue their new year's resolutions with razor sharp focus. That, of course, was drastically put on hold, as we progressed through the very year that would derail everyone's plans. My experience was similar: rather than pursuing my goals with absolute ...

My grandmother's memoir, written by hand in nine notebooks.

My Grandmother’s Memoir: Finding Meaning for the Past, Present, and Future

I never really knew my grandmother. But that all changed when I discovered she had begun writing her own memoir. It turned out that nine notebooks that made up my grandmother's memoir had been sent to my mom in Canada from the Philippines several years ago. They were handwritten in English and Tagalog, collecting dust ...

Checklist

7 Things to “Stock Up” on During a Pandemic (Hint: They Aren’t Sold in Grocery Stores)

In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic that's sweeping across the globe, here are seven things we could all stock up on that wouldn't tip humanity towards the brink of extinction or cause unnecessary chaos (unlike that toilet paper fiasco). Good news: they are absolutely free, they are not susceptible to shortages (no hoarding needed ...

Enjoying vs. Enduring Life — Which One Are You Doing?

Last week, Vancouver was hit with its first snowfall of the season. As expected, the rain-accustomed city basically shut down when the snow reached its peak; bridges started to close, buses stopped running, cars got stuck, and classes got cancelled. And, sure enough, my lovely but prone-to-worry mother sent me a flood of texts urging ...

A Meditator’s Advice for Measuring Progress with Anxiety or Depression

When it comes to mental health challenges like anxiety or depression, it can be tricky to measure progress in a tangible way than, say, weight loss. Progress is often slow, subtle, and incremental, and the changes we make on the inside are often barely detectable on the outside (at first). It's incredibly frustrating to feel ...

Embracing the Messiness of Life

Having just moved into a new apartment, I naturally have the desire to keep it clean and tidy. My kitchen is a prime example: when I first moved in, I restricted my movements to keep it as spotless as possible, only to realize this was holding me back from actually doing anything. In order to ...