Accept Difficulity

Is it hard? The Practice: Accept difficulty. Why? Sometimes things are difficult. Your legs are tired and you still have to stay on your feet another hour at work. You love a child who’s finding her independence through emotional distance from you. A long-term relationship could be losing its spark. It’s finals week in college.

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Handling Blocks to Any Inner Practice—Meditation, Yoga, Gratitude, Mindfulness

When you try to change your life for better, sometimes you bump into a block, such as distracting thoughts. Blocks are common. They’re not bad or wrong—but they do get in the way. What works is to explore them with self-acceptance, and see what you can learn about yourself. One valuable aspect of taking in

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The Importance of Gratitude and Gladness for a Happy Life

Gratitude and Gladness Gratitude is a feeling of thankfulness about something you have been given. Gladness is a more general sense of feeling pleased, rewarded, delighted, or happy about something, without it necessarily being a gift. Much of the time these two sweet feelings form a blend, so we’ll explore them together here. Gratitude, gladness,

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Preliminary Findings on the Taking in the Good Course

Resilience, positive emotions, compassion, gratitude, and other inner strengths lower stress, grow well-being and effectiveness, and heal anxiety and depression. Like any other mental capability, inner strengths are supported by structures in the brain. So, how can a person develop the neural networks that support inner strengths? Through what’s called “experience-dependent neuroplasticity,” the main way

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Hardwiring Our Children’s Happiness

I’ve used taking in the good with young people in therapy and also spoken with parents and teachers who have used it with their own children or students. As with an adult, there are four ways to offer the HEAL steps to a child, while naturally adapting them to the child’s age and situation. First,

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Turning a Negative Nelly Into a Positive Polly

I’ve been talking about ways to Hardwire Your Happiness on the blog lately.  So I thought it would be great to give you a sense of how it feels to take in the good. If you are someone who usually focuses on the negative experiences in the world you can turn that around over time

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How to Build a Happier Brain – Atlantic Article Tweet

Here's my latest article in The Atlantic – "How to Build a Happier Brain" – http://t.co/vHQ4IpAaPW — Rick Hanson (@drrhanson) October 24, 2013

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Interview on Self-Directed Brain Change – Part 1

In the first half of a two-part interview based on my program Self-Directed Brain Change, Tami Simon and I speak about the ways we can “install” positive brain states as lasting traits; how we can respond in situations when we feel our basic needs are threatened; and the three ways of working with unpleasant experiences—letting be, letting

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It’s Possible to Heal Yourself

A friend of mine suddenly lost her relationship after more than a decade of happiness with her partner. He was the love of her life. After he left, she felt empty and despairing. She talked with her friends, exercised, meditated, and saw a therapist, all of which helped. But her grief still felt intense, and

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Feel The Support

What helps you carry your load? The Practice: Feel the support. Why? We’re all carrying a load, including tasks, challenges, worries, inner criticism, mistreatment from others, physical and emotional pain, loss and illness now or later, and everyday stresses and frustrations. Take a moment to get a sense of your own load. It’s very real,

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