The Zen Library Blog

Living in Gratitude

Saturday 7th November 2020

Even on a bad day, there is a reason to be happy. Many things can constitute a bad day in our minds but what can make it a good day? When we are grateful for what we have, life has meaning, simply in light of the fact that we are alive, we have our health, strength and a roof over our heads. When our basic needs our met, we have so much to be thankful for. Having gratitude for the simple things in life can really help to put our lives into perspective. If you've ever heard the following: 'You should count yourself lucky that...' you'll know how frustrating this 'helpful' comment can be... I actually have an aversion to this kind of thinking. If…

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When you feel close to giving up....remember what is possible.

Monday 26th October 2020

It has been a hard year...to say the least.  2020 has been without a doubt, the hardest year of my life for many reasons one of which is trying not to lose faith in humanity and in myself. It can be very hard to keep believing in the goodness of people when so much of the world is awash with the utter derangement of world leaders, polarisation and if you have been watching the news, Tory MP's denying school children the right to free meals.  What on earth is going on?  I have wanted to quit on humanity altogether and I cannot recall a time when I felt so depressed with things. Pulling myself out of that feeling has been a struggle to…

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How I overcame OCD by surrendering

Monday 26th October 2020

As much as we would like to, we cannot control life. What we can do is go with the flow of the world around us. In fact, when we try to control what happens to us, we end up getting more and more frustrated, tense and anxious because we are blocking the flow of life. Now - I used to believe in controlling my reactions, my mind and in doing so, I stopped myself from connecting with the deepest aspects of myself. I did this unconsciously for years and I didn't even realise why I had so many problems with being myself. Truth be told, I was acting in accordance with what I had deemed to be an unsafe environment. Even…

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Staying 'Positive' throughout Covid-19

Monday 26th October 2020

I have been struggling a lot this year as I'm sure many people have been with Covid-19 lockdown. This has been a very challenging period to say the least and so many people are wondering how they are going to pick up the threads of their life again, if that's even possible. The  'New Normal' is not a phrase I like or use lightly. If anyone has told you to 'Just stay positive', this post is for you.   Staying 'positive' throughout this has actually been very hard because I have felt exactly the opposite. If we don't feel positive, it is better to be honest and say just how awful we feel. Being true to how we feel can help us…

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The Perils of 'Staying Safe'

Thursday 15th October 2020

It took a long time to get to the point where I felt I could surrender to OCD anxiety. Every ounce of my being told me that I wasn't safe and performing a compulsion to create that feeling became the standard practice. Practicing surrender is something that requires daily practice and it seems to be something that is lost in today's world.  More than ever before, we seem to be fighting to survive. With the arrival of the Covid-19 pandemic, 'staying safe' is the phrase that I hear repeated more often than not. At the end of a phonecall with a relative, when we leave work and say goodbye to our colleagues, 'stay safe' is how conversations seem to end now,…

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How to be human in an increasingly inhumane world

Thursday 15th October 2020

I tend not to watch the news very much anymore and I am very selective about what I read on social media. Maybe I am too sensitive for my own good but it really gets me down and I usually end up feeling very angry due to the sense of injustice I feel at what's happening in the world and with UK politics in particular. I just cannot get my head around how apparently insane things have become. Perhaps it is the effect of Covid-19 and lockdown but I feel myself struggling to be compassionate when there seems to be so much negativity and doom and gloom everywhere you look. Society is becoming increasingly polarised and it is fuelling discontent…

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The Healing Heart

Sunday 11th October 2020

Listening to and following your heart sounds very romantic. Almost like an ideal situation that we have forgotten about and shelved for the time being as it doesn't seem to get us anywhere. I remember years ago when a friend asked me what I wanted to do with my life and I said 'I want to be a musician'. She said (actually she laughed) and said 'That's all very well, but will it bring money in? I doubt it.' If I wasn't stronger in that very moment, I would have listened to her and lost out on some of the best experiences in my life so far. It is doing what feels right and natural that seems to be the most…

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