Something Good: What You Need to Read This Week

Art in odd places, reasons to meditate, and how relinquishing control gives us more of it: Your weekly dose of good.

This is a curated version of a list that originally appeared on “A Thousand Shades of Gray.” For more of your weekly dose of happy, please visit the complete list here.

Leap Day! A whole extra day! What are you doing with yours?

Quirky New Chalk Characters on the Streets of Ann Arbor by David Zinn. Super cute. I love it that there are people in the world that take the time to do this, to practice their art, and to surprise people with the joy of it.

Beginner-Friendly Meditation Retreats in Some of the World’s Most Beautiful Settings. Number three is one of my favorite places on the planet, (so much so that I kinda wish they hadn’t included it ’cause I want to keep it my own little secret).

100 Years of Beauty—Episode 18: USA Men 2 (Lester). Every time I watch one of these videos, I am so appreciative of the effort it must have taken to put it together. (And, for the record, I don’t think the ’90s was a good era in fashion for anyone.) After you watch this, check out some of the other videos on WatchCut Video’s YouTube channel. They have lots of cool stuff.

Simplicity is the Way Back to Love from Be More With Less.

Art at Altitude: Watch Artist Simon Beck Trample Calculated Murals onto Snowy Mountaintops. So much effort for something that’s just going to melt—and yet, it all melts eventually, doesn’t it?

Tips and Myths About Extending Smartphone Battery Life. I don’t know about you, but the state of my cellphone charge gives me anxiety. This was very helpful.

The life that’s left from Jamie Greenwood. This is such a good reminder. “The only thing I was ever promised at birth was life and THIS, this loss wrapped in pain wrapped in sweet remembrance wrapped in joy, is all part of the package.”

5 Reasons to Meditate by Pema Chödrön. “Yes, it’s a strange thing to do—just sit there and do basically nothing. Yet the simple act of stopping, says Pema Chödrön, is the best way to cultivate our good qualities. Here are five ways it makes us better people.”

Manny Selfie Cat, one of the best accounts on Instagram.

The Hunger for Rest, an important reminder from the amazing Rachel Cole: “If you find yourself eating as a way to avoid the rest you’re craving or as a way to silence your inner critic who bashes you for your laziness, consider embracing your unique needs for rest and see what happens.”

Our Everloving Quest to Control Our Lives from Zen Habits. This is such an important read. We should all probably just memorize it, recite it in the mirror every morning. We’d all be so much happier if we could “get” just this one thing.

Five Ways To Love Yourself Courageously on Life is Limitless. This is also so important. Caroline starts by saying, “I’ve been focused on personal growth quite intensely now for many years, I’ve read countless books, taken various courses, spent years in therapy, worked with a number of coaches and the number one thing that I learnt from it all is this: If you don’t love yourself deeply and completely, then you can’t ever be truly happy.”

Jill SalahubJill Salahub writes about the tenderness and the terror, the beauty and the brutality of life, and of her efforts to keep her heart open through it all on her blog, A Thousand Shades of Gray.