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Man’s best friend. Unconditional love. Health booster. Cuddles. Love. Patient. Playful. Loving. Fun. Happiness. That’s what comes to my mind when I think of dogs. So much we can learn from them. And none better than my dear friend Guilie–who blogs about dogs at Life In Dogs, and about everything else at Quiet Laughter–to showcase those lessons! I am privileged to know Guilie and I am thrilled to be part of The Dog Book Blog Tour for her forthcoming book It’s About the Dog: The A-to-Z Guide for Wannabe Dog Rescuers (Everytime Press, April 2018): a hands-on, less-tears-more-action, 100% practical introduction to dog rescue. Over to you, Guilie! Here’s an endless supply of coffee ♥ And thank you so much for this grand finale to my April A to Z Challenge, 2018. THE ZEN OF BEING MORE DOG Vidya, thank you so much for having me! You were such an…

You hardly need me to tell you that busy lifestyles and increasing stress levels can only endure up to a limit. Soon enough, we reach that point when we become desperate to find ways to bring back that balance in life, and yearn to slow down.  Here’s where mindfulness comes in, as a solution for those that aim to lead a meaningful life. Of course there’s research for the skeptic, proving that mindfulness brings significant benefits—both for mental and physical health. Not the first time I am saying this, but mindfulness is the act of consciously paying attention to everything happening around us and within us, without criticism, without judgment.  It is about not living on autopilot. I have a book review for you today. How to Train a Wild Elephant & Other Adventures in Mindfulness: Simple Daily Mindfulness Practices For living life more fully and joyfully By Jan Chozen Bays,…

When we are able to make others happier and more successful, we feel happier too. We’ve all been told countless times “You can’t change other people.” But this societal belief is not only disempowering, it is, perhaps surprisingly, scientifically FALSE. Today, I am pleased to introduce you to researcher and bestselling author of Broadcasting Happiness, Michelle Gielan. Michelle, along with her husband and famed TED presenter, Shawn Achor are partnering with PBS for an INSPIRE HAPPINESS television special that started airing in December 2016, focusing on the powerful message: When we are able to make others happier and more successful, we feel happier too. Drawing on research from positive psychology and neuroscience, Michelle Gielan provides a compelling scientific case that shows we change people ALL the time, and when we apply the research to our everyday lives, we can move the people we care about to a more positive, resilient state. I am inclined…

I started writing my Gratitude Circle blog post during our visit to my son’s music teacher’s house last week. The glorious sound of their voices singing enveloped me. I couldn’t help marvelling as I mulled over the ten years we’ve known this music teacher, my son’s guru. Let me tell you about her. She is just over 80 years old and is dedicated to her profession, teaching music. Strict, yet loving. Kind, but firm. Cares deeply about her students, and Vidur, who has been learning from her for a decade, is very lucky to be one of them. In July last year, when we knew he was going to study on campus for the next five years, his first concern was: what about my music class? Fair enough, since he adores his music. Sadly he had to resign himself to practising on his own whenever he could and meeting her only…

When Darla tagged me for the Eight Photos of Happiness bloghop, I was delighted. I love photos. Every photo I click feels like a story, a precious package of memories that transport me to that moment in time. And of course, a total de-stresser! Darla is a fabulous writer and a warm person, and a pleasure to know! Please do visit her blog and enjoy! She also writes at the Writer’s Retreat Thank you, Darla! Now, if there’s one thing that absolutely challenges me, it is choosing photos. Considering I am constantly clicking them and am a chronic shutterbug, my biggest dilemma is picking a few of my favorites. Luckily, this time I have a theme – my favorite theme – happiness. So let me try and do my best here. Predictably, these are photos of my family. I just pulled out my favorite album and chose random photos. Because…

Paradise is a place on earth. In my home. In my mind. Really. Because I choose to think that way. I was just reading Elle’s post about little words making a big difference and it took me back six months to the beautiful trip we made to Northeast India. Oh, that was paradise, indeed. Now that I am forced to rest most of the time, I can’t help fantasizing making another trip to Sikkim to visit all the monasteries we missed during our short trip. Unfortunately we couldn’t stretch it because flight tickets were not available on the dates we wanted on the specific airline we were supposed to travel in.  It sort of irked me that  Indigo had a great package, but since this was an “official” holiday, we were bound by rules. Still, once the formalities were taken care of, we had quite a lovely time although it…

Yes. I had to. You see, here I was, counting down to Jan 1, 2013, going 5, 4, 3, 2…..and 1….and…0….and here I was, already in 2013 while most of my friends were still enjoying the last few hours of 2012. I went to bed happily, imagining all sorts of things to do on Jan 2013.  I woke up, refreshed, even though I only slept about four and a half hours. I lit the lamp, offered fruit and a cup of milk with sugar (I somehow suspect God likes sugar in her milk) and stood in my little prayer room, smiling, thinking of you all, my dear friends and inhaling the gentle scent of the jasmine flowers I had bought the previous day. As I wished everyone a glorious year ahead in my heart and then made my specific requests on behalf of my friends to God (yes, remember that…

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