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Blog by Kelley Bren Burke

Want to be happier? Eliminating 14 Extreme Words Changed My Life

Posted by Kelley Bren Burke on

Should. Have to. Need. Must. How often do you say these words? I said them a lot. I have to do yoga today. I should work until at least 5 PM. I need to get my hair cut. I also said them to others. Mostly my husband. “You should work on taxes for the business.” “We have to get that project done this weekend.” I learned about Communication Extreme Words or Communication Swear Words in therapy. These words intensify the situation unnecessarily. They add a sense of urgency and duty. Here’s the list of Extreme Words: I instantly knew which...

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How a Daily Meditation Practice Changed My Life

Posted by Kelley Bren Burke on

Meditation was my gateway drug. It led me persistently down the path to becoming a self improvement junkie. In 2016, my goal was to begin a new happiness boosting habit each month. Then I would carry out the new practice for the rest of the year. I hoped that these small habits would slowly change my life. And you know what? They did.  I started with meditation. I began meditating in the summer of 2015. I started with the tiniest expectation: meditate for two minutes every day. I’m a  busy, busy Thinker and a Doer. The idea of sitting still...

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Easy DIY Gift Idea: Make Personalized Ribbon & Paper Bookmarks for $1

Posted by Kelley Bren Burke on

 DIY bookmarks are the perfect gift for the book lovers in your life! Custom paper bookmarks are beautiful personalized gifts for teachers, students and book clubs. Each bookmark cost about $1 to make. 

I belong to two book clubs, and they bring me such joy. I gave these printed ribbon bookmarks to the members of both book clubs.

I've been in my neighborhood book club for about two and a half years. I made this colorful word bookmark with the title of every book we've read together. We've read about 25 books so far. I love to chat about books, so feel free to ask me about any of the books on the bookmark. Most of them are nonfiction

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Pain is Inevitable, Suffering is Optional

Posted by Kelley Bren Burke on

  It’s 3 AM. A frenzy of anxious thoughts swirl through my mind. What if my business has horrible sales this holiday season? What if my business fails entirely? Will I have to go back to working retail? Worse yet, maybe no one will hire me. Then we won’t be able to pay the mortgage, and we’ll be homeless.  I went to bed last night without knowing the results of the U.S. presidential election. I knew that the New York Times predicted that there was a 95% chance that Donald Trump would be president. I woke up at 3 AM and...

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Want to be a kinder person in one minute a day? Try this!

Posted by Kelley Bren Burke on

An SUV drove towards my car on a quiet neighborhood street. It was barreling down the middle of the road, forcing me to veer closer to the curb. “Nice driving, dink!” I muttered. Then I remembered that I had vowed to beam some lovingkindness out into the world. I amended my sentiment to include “May you be at ease and happy.”  I’ve been meditating daily for almost a year. I've read a little about lovingkindness meditation. A lovingkindness meditation is a practice for developing compassion. In a lovingkindness meditation you first send positive wishes to yourself, and then to others....

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