We have a few hundred participants from the 2019 Real Happiness Challenge writing about their experiences throughout the month on our blog. These posts are an honest look at what really happens when we practice everyday.


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  • February 18 #RealHappinessChallenge Day 18 – distracted, hijacked, or sliding by – thoughts by

    Today’s #meditation practice focused on working with thoughts that come while you are meditating.  Sometimes these thoughts are just distractions that come and go, other times they hijack our meditation and take us down a path where we focus on Read More

  • February 18 Like petting a cat by

    I’ve noticed a curious cumulative effect of using diverse approaches to my daily meditation. It feels like my half-mouser, half-Garfield mind is finally a calmed, recalcitrant cat. With variety is apparently how I like to be petted. New techniques help Read More

  • February 18 Day 18: Watching Thoughts Float Away by

    I’m not the greatest at letting thoughts go. In fact, as I was getting settled in my home office to sit down for today’s meditation I was thinking about an article I just finished writing and the spring break travel Read More

  • February 18 Day 18 – River of Thoughts by

    Sometimes, it’s easy to let go of thoughts, or just watch them float down the river. Those tend to be thoughts about things like the weather, or what errands I need to run. There aren’t too-too many thoughts that can Read More

  • February 18 River of Thoughts by

    Here’s the pattern of thinking that grabs me and takes me down the river so fast I get lost: not…good…enough. It defines me, confines me, becomes the bones that structure my life. And I know it’s not true! Sharon’s lovely Read More

  • February 18 Thoughts as boats on a stream by

    this sounds so peaceful.  I see myself struggle with this, much like in today’s Q&A question. Will it be okay to do this when I am with friends?  With family?   But sitting with the cat in the morning it Read More

  • February 18 I am aware of a certain toughness that I have by

    Yesterday I did not feel like going to the last day of the flamenco workshop. But I went anyway and of course it was wonderful. On my way into the building I suddenly had this thought, I’m tough! Because of Read More

  • February 18 On the Shore by

    We used to live beside a river.  In the summer neighbors would spend a lot of time in boats on the river.  One neighbor had an old, small pontoon boat that they decorated in festive colors and many flags and Read More

  • February 17 Day 17 – Difficult Emotions by

    This comes at the perfect time. Yesterday, I was feeling “meh,” which was my default state for decades, even during the 22 years I took a variety of antidepressants. Then I suddenly realized that “meh” is part of the human Read More

  • February 17 challenging emotions by

    I have to admit, today’s meditation was somewhat opaque to me – I do not invite this type of thought or emotion to the meditation cushion. I don’t get involved in drama, as I have taken the decision a long Read More

  • February 17 Day 17 Meditation on Difficult thoughts by

    An important exercise and lesson to remind me that I can endure difficult and unpleasant thoughts and experiences. It’s not my favorite mental place or space.  I felt like trying to let go of the thought or that it could Read More

  • February 17 Enough by

    My husband has cancer. And in today’s practice I noticed that my anger and fear about that fact was lodged at the base of my throat.   Sharon’s gentle instruction helped me stay with the thing lodged in my throat Read More

  • February 17 #RealHappinessChallenge Day 17 Negative/Difficult Emotions by

    When I saw the title of today’s meditation – I didn’t want to do it.  I thought to myself – why not a positive one – part 2?  However, once I read the pre-meditation material, where it talks about “We Read More

  • February 17 Day 17 — Welcoming Discomfort by

    Today’s meditation is all about the practice of being with difficult emotions and thoughts, even welcoming and allowing them.  This is such a different approach!  Our culture stresses to us that not only do we need to be comfortable in Read More

  • February 17 Day 17: Meditation on Difficult Emotions by

    Today was an 8-minute meditation on mindfully accepting a negative feeling. I thought back to a negative event that caused me great frustration, noticed where in my body I felt it (a nervous feeling in my stomach), then accepted it Read More

  • February 17 Difficult emotions but with soft kindness by

    I started the audio before I could give myself a chance to be scared of it. It felt okay to see how it all fits together if I don’t have to fix the difficult emotion, but to offer it kindness. Read More

  • February 17 Day 17 by

    I find it difficult to recreate a challenging time.  I remember what it felt like but a hard to recreate the feelings.  The lesson, however us very valuable and powerful.

  • February 17 Day 17 • Meditation on Difficult Emotions by

    The only thing interfering with our ability to experience joy in this moment are our thoughts about this moment. Even in the empty depth of wrenching heartache and despair, joy can be found: I speak from personal experience here. Whatever Read More

  • February 17 So surprising to actually focus on something unpleasant by

    This was a big surprise! This is something that feels pretty new for me. Instead of adding on agonizing or judgement when I am feeling fear or panic,  I am choosing to notice what the sensations in my body are. Read More

  • February 16 busyness and mindfulness, sensation and thought by

    As Sharon says, for most of us, mindfulness is fleeting… For the better part of this crazy week, I could not even fathom posting on this blog every single day. Sitting and watching the thoughts pass and letting them go Read More

May all beings be happy ♡