MINDFUL MONDAY #7: Time to Rest


As the winter months start to arrive, the most notable change, besides the obvious newfound need for a coat and scarf, is that the natural landscape around you has changed. Once bright green foliage is suddenly found barren. What little green remains is rough, sharper to the touch, and dulled from their usual brightness. There's an important reason for this though. Plants know that they would be unable to survive the winter if they kept constantly trying to follow the pace they set at the beginning of every spring. They know that they must take a time of rest, where they are not responsible for taking in carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen. They simply need a time to be.

As you find yourself surrounded in the hustle and bustle that always accompanies this time of year, don't forget to find time for yourself as well. We cannot continuously try to do everything at once and expect any less than our bodies and minds screaming at us to simply be. Whether your time is a day of nothing but a book and some tea or a twenty minute break to simply stop and meditate or even just an hour you take for yourself, don't forget to take it. Just as the trees, we are not immune to nature's call to rest and simply be. So remember to take a break for yourself and live your life like the trees would.


Written by Onyx Loan

MINDFUL MONDAY #6: So hum or so what?


The journey of yoga, of self-knowledge, is like peeling an onion.  We go through layer after layer and comb through the many levels of existence and identity to get to the core, to the “I am” and once we get “there” we learn we were already “here” and always have been, and well, always will be.  It’s a journey that persists.  There’s no end to the spiritual surf, and to the peeling.  So, why not have fun with it?

I’ve been lucky in that I have had the opportunity to spend time with some enlightened masters first hand and the one thing that stands out is their presence – they are powerful, light, wise, and child-like, without being childish. It’s not that they are making light of serious problems, but they are going about solving them and serving others with a smile. 

I once asked Sri Dharma Mittra, a yoga master, about his fun persona, and he replied to me “I read in the scriptures that all the wise men act like a child. The Bible says only the children will enter the Kingdom of God. When you become child-like only then will be you able to catch the essence of yoga. You have to be playful.”

With finals week in tow - work hard, be responsible, nose to the grindstone, give it all you got! But at the same time – be simple, smile, laugh, and remember- what matters most is the genuine reverberation of your laugh, of your smile, of your uplifted presence.  When that doesn’t work, So Hum.  Still not there?  Then so what?  Don’t lose sleep over that missed question.  Life and your true nature are much too vast. 


Written by Jill Klimpel

MINDFUL MONDAY #5: Self-Acceptance


One of the most profound pieces of advice I have ever received is, “Other people’s opinions of you are none of your business.” This idea is one that can be very difficult to incorporate into our daily lives, but it is one of the most beneficial paradigm shifts I have ever made. I have always been a little…different, so as a child, peers at school dubbed me “Freak.” For a long time, this affected the opinion I held of myself. I took to heart what others were saying and it began wearing away at my fragile adolescent self-confidence. I became very unhappy and no longer liked myself. It wasn’t until I heard this jewel of wisdom that I began to question why I gave my power away to others. I realized that the key to my being happy was to stop focusing so much on what others thought of me and instead focus on what I thought of me. I started to see that I liked being different. I noticed that the traits others judged so harshly were the very things I considered to be some of my best attributes. This allowed me to mentally free myself from the chains of others opinions.

How often do we focus on the words and opinions of others? How often do we seek validation from people other than ourselves? I feel that this is something everyone is guilty of. We crave approval from others and take to heart any criticism directed our way. It becomes an obsession that leads to dependence on others and unhappiness. In the age of social media, this is becoming even more of a problem. We find that we cannot be satisfied with ourselves if others are not praising us with likes on social media posts or compliments, but at the end of the day, what really matters is that you approve of you. You are stuck with yourself for the rest of your life so the only opinion you need to worry about is your own.


Written by Hailey Stern

MINDFUL MONDAY #4: The Story We Tell Ourselves

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“Complete peace equally reigns between two mental waves.” – Swami Sivananda

A few years ago, I found myself in a rather unfortunate situation. As I was checking out of a hotel room, I realized that my purse – containing my driver’s license, my school ID card, and my credit card – was nowhere to be found, and neither were the purses of four other people I’d traveled with. Evidently, this was a case of robbery. And, as one may naturally think to feel when your valuables are stolen, I started to grumble and stomp around and be generally (and very, very visibly) upset.

Then I took a moment to stop and ask myself how I really felt. Interestingly enough, I didn’t feel angry or stressed at all. In fact, I noticed that my actual feelings were calm, collected and focused, and it almost felt as if I was “acting out the part” of someone who had their things stolen. In reality, I was not compelled to act grumpily, and was only really doing so because I “thought I should.” With this insight, I made a conscious decision to remain peaceful as I went through the process of calling, then meeting with the police officers who arrived at the hotel, and filing a case.

This taught me an important lesson: the story we tell ourselves creates our reality, not the other way around.

I was telling myself I “should” be frustrated, that I “should” grumble and complain and stop my feet. I was holding on to this story, disturbing my natural state of peace and rationality, like a monkey clinging to a peanut in a jar and being unable to remove its hand in its adamance. But the moment I realized that I was actually narrating and then acting this contrived story out to myself was the moment I realized I could stop, see myself and the situation as it was, and rewrite a better story. I gained clarity of my situation, I gained clarity in direction and action of appropriate measures I needed to take, and perhaps most importantly, I gained peace of mind.

This may be one of the most important lessons we can bring to all of the various stressful situations we encounter in our lives. Perhaps the next time we find ourselves stressing over a difficult assignment for class, or other stressful situation, we might notice that the moment we label it “stressful” or “scary” is the moment that the assignment becomes even more so. We’re writing a scary story and making ourselves the lead character. But in these types of situations, if we can notice that a narrative – one that may or may not reflect the truth – has started writing itself in our minds, then we can begin to differentiate mind-story from reality. This flash of insight, this situational mindfulness, restores our strength in a difficult moment. We become able to rewrite the story we tell ourselves, and the best part? We can spin a tale of peace.


Written by Roshini Srinivasan

On Gratitude


This is an invitation to unfold and bring to light the beauty of gratitude. When we become aware of our complaints, demands, and problems then we realize how foolish we can become in an instance. By simply being content with your life and by not being greedy, grace will flow into your life like a beautiful river. The river follows its path with great intensity and other times it flows with calming tranquility. Realize that everything, including yourself, will one day dissolve. Knowing that there is an end will provoke a natural feeling of gratitude. I hope you can feel the sensation of gratitude beating loudly from your heart. This is the feeling of love, joy, and contentment with the life you were given. This is the journey back to the Self. This is home.


Madison Frey

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

MINDFUL MONDAY #3: Having Power in the Unknown

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Going through life, especially when you’re young, can be confusing and downright scary. As we broaden our horizons, it seems that with everything we learn, the more we realize we don’t know.

Who am I? Who do I want to be? What is my purpose?

It’s easy to feel insignificant when we know so little about a universe that is infinitely, inconceivably massive. We are, after all, just specks rotating about in space.

On the grand scale, we are practically nothing.

However, you can find comfort when you remember that everything and everyone is connected.

Think about all the random encounters that had to happen just for you to exist today. How your parents met, how your ancestors came to live in your region, how humans first came to be—you could go back to the very beginning, whatever that may be for you.

Now take a look at the world around you. Everything you see is a result of those small, seemingly inconsequential actions of those before us, which is insane when you consider how complex everything is. It’s also promising when we remember that as a whole, life has improved for people.

Every action you take has a butterfly effect. So with your time on Earth, act with good intentions, and the world that you wish to see will manifest in one way or another. If things aren't the way you’d like them to be just yet, remember that there is time and limitless possibilities out there—just have faith that together, we’re moving in the right direction.

We can do anything, and we are everything.


Written by Pearl Chen

MINDFUL MONDAY #2: Uncertainty and Unpredictability


Life has a tendency of catching us by surprise. We can have a plan for how a specific event or day may unfold, only to be blindsided when it didn’t go as we’d expected. This can cause unnecessary suffering to arise. However, if we can become aware of the inconsistencies in life, we can live more in the present moment.

I’m a planner. I map out how each morning will go, the things I have to attain that afternoon; the time it will take for me to accomplish them. So, when an interruption arises, it can be challenging not to become anxious. However, is it possible to see these disruptions as something other than irritations? Can we learn to not only recognize them but accept them with confidence?

Let’s say that you’re in a rush at the grocery store and run into a neighbor that loves to chat. When they approach you, you may feel a sense of animosity. “Can’t they tell that I’m in a rush?” “Please go away.”  What we don’t realize, is that when we’re mentally feeling or reacting this way, we’re bringing an immense amount of suffering onto ourselves. Becoming mindful of these irritations and understanding that they’re to be expected in life's every day moments, can help us relax.

Try to practice accepting the situation(s) in life that cause you stress, and switching your attention to it in a favorable way. Uncertainty and unpredictability are not your enemies. Think of them as life's gentle reminder to approach each day with curiosity.


Written by Dania Hamoui

Yesplus Spotlight: Kiersten

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Every month we will be spotlighting 1 (maybe 2!) of our super awesome club members so you can get to know them a little better :)

This month we are featuring our amazing club member Kiersten Pappas!


Kiersten's Hometown: Chagrin Falls, Ohio 

chagrin falls

Kiersten's Favorite Food: Eggplant parmesan


Kiersten's Favorite Animal: African Grey Parrot 


Kiersten's Favorite Song: Light My Fire by The Doors 

Kiersten's Favorite Thing About OSU: All of the clubs and limitless possibilities!


Kiersten's Favorite Thing About Yesplus: All of the amazing, kind people and having a community with a shared interest in meditation and spirituality 


Kiersten's Passion: Art! I love painting, drawing, sculpture, writing and all kinds of art. A big part of my personality is my creativity and sense of individuality and self-expression. I love to develop my own vision and aesthetic further.


Isn't she such a talented artist?!

Stay tuned for our next member spotlight!


MINDFUL MONDAY #1: Let’s Have a Heart to Heart

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How many times have you been having a conversation with someone and it seems like you’re both talking to a wall? Everything you have to say is bouncing off that person like a boomerang and the conversation seems to be going nowhere? Yeah. Me too.

We all have had a moment like this at least once in our lives. A big reason for this is that a lot of the time we are having conversations with our intellect. This is the layer of our consciousness that deals with analysis and judgment. When our intellect is turned on during a conversation, most of the time we’re not really listening. We’re either waiting for the other person to stop talking so that we can chime in with our own input or we’re agreeing, disagreeing, and saying “yes” or “no” inside. We’re not really in the present moment, we’re not really giving 100%, and we’re not really gaining much from the situation.

Better yet, sometimes this kind of passive listening can get us into a lot of trouble. “…Are you even listening to what I’m saying?” Yeah, we’ve all been there. But what would happen if we had conversations with our heart? What would this look like?

In my own personal experience, I’ve noticed that when I listen with full attention to what another person has to say, it makes them feel heard and seen and recognized. With heart-to-heart communication, there’s more depth, more connection, and more love. Not to mention the fact that you’re more likely to remember what that person said later on. Now who doesn’t want more of that in their lives?  So much of the suffering and bickering in the world could be solved if we simply had more conversations from the heart. What will you choose today?  


Written by Kaitlin Acton

A Yesplus Halloween! Fun + Fundraiser


Yesplus Club celebrated Halloween in style this year!

We did yoga and meditation in costume

Listened to spooky stories 


Danced, drank Halloween Punch, played Mafia, and had a general blast!!! 


Besides getting together for a good time, we also put on this event as a fundraiser to support disaster and trauma relief efforts being carried out by Yesplus's parent organization, the International Association for Human Values (IAHV). Volunteers from IAHV have been doing a lot to support those affected by Hurricane Harvey and those victimized by the shootings in Las Vegas, which you can read about here. Although these events are in the past, the trauma remains and volunteers are still working to physically and emotionally restore these areas. We've been able to raise $50 so far, any amount you can give is so helpful and valued! If you would like to donate, you can Venmo your contribution to @behappyosu or yesplus.osu@gmail.com

In fact, one of our fellow Yespluser's in Arizona played a large role in the trauma relief efforts in Vegas. She helped to organize the "Vegas Meditates" event to give those affected by the shooting a safe space to decompress, and she even met a former member of our very own Yesplus club there! It's truly a small world :)