e-book Life Is Always Smiling: Stories from My Life

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  1. Always Smile
  2. Here are 38 Quotes about smiling to boost your mood!
  3. Smiling in the Face of Adversity: The Paula Hickey Story | HuffPost
  4. MORE IN Wellness

She offers proven techniques for sharpening our focus, enhancing our relationships, and living each day more mindfully and joyfully.

Always Smile

Skip to main content. Facebook Twitter Instagram eCourse Login. Why is the Dalai Lama Always Smiling? Available now. Paperback Amazon. Audiobook Amazon. And that's what makes it so astounding when you meet someone who looks that same curveball in the face In the short time that I've gotten to know Paula Hickey, I've found her to be a revelation.

Listening to her bright, cheerful voice and her words of optimism and wisdom, it seems impossible that she is speaking to me from a hospice bed. And I found myself wondering As I set out to discover Paula's secret to living with joy, in spite of the deck of cards she's been dealt, I was humbled by the realization that millions of us take for granted the privileges that Paula and so many others have never had--chief among them, the privilege of a healthy body, free from pain. Yet she has achieved the success and happiness that elude thousands of people with far less obstacles.

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So what sets the fighters, the winners, apart? What makes a life truly worth living, even in the face of pain and fear? In speaking to Paula, I discovered five key traits that allowed her to write her own story--to live life on her terms. Find The Humor In Everything While the other kids her age were busy with school, playdates, and after-school sports, Paula was forced to spend her childhood in and out of hospitals. She endured two major heart surgeries before the age of seven, one of which resulted in her developing scoliosis after the doctors cut her breastbone to perform the surgery and subsequently realigned her spine.

And after a traumatic brain aneurysm burst in her head at age nineteen, Paula's go-to joke became, "I need that like I need a hole in my head! Instead of feeling sorry for herself, or self-conscious in front of her classmates, Paula took the remarkable approach of looking at life as a comedy.

Here are 38 Quotes about smiling to boost your mood!

She was nobody's victim; she was like the star of her own quirky sitcom. And that's what drew people toward her.


All the surface self-consciousness melts away, leaving you to be your true self Paula's take on adolescent cruelty and bullying? So go ahead and give it your best shot--but you're never going to hurt me. Paula's brave perspective came from hard-earned experience, but what if there was a way we could all look at the opinions of others in a similar manner? My conversations with Paula showed me that we have the power to decide the importance of what other people say, think, or do. We can just as easily choose to let it go As Winston Churchill said- "Never, never, never give up.

I deserve more, I deserve the best education I can get," she insisted.

Smiling in the Face of Adversity: The Paula Hickey Story | HuffPost

And as her friends say, "If Paula wants it, she'll do anything to get it! I've never given up. I've always kicked my own butt. No one expected Paula to work, either, but she dreamed of having a career.

She worked as a Human Resources consultant for ten years, flying across the country and growing from four clients to three-hundred, all while never disclosing her illness. When she was finally forced to go on long-term disability, Paula's boss was shocked to learn that she was sick. She never made it a defining characteristic, because, as she told me- "I never wanted anyone to treat me differently. If there was ever someone with a perfectly good excuse to drop out of school, to not bother working, it was Paula--and yet she once again refused to be a victim, refused to give up on the life she deserved.

Her story is a reminder to always get back up after a fall, to keep pushing yourself and your life as far as you can.

To never, never, never give up. The Power of Selflessness Paula married her high-school sweetheart and best friend, Sean, and the couple experienced several years of wedded bliss. But as time went on, Paula was increasingly troubled by the sensation of the clock ticking. Not her clock She couldn't forget something Sean had told her back when they were kids playing in the park: that his dream was to find the perfect mother for his children.

Paula's medical conditions meant that she wouldn't be able to have children, and she was terrified that she would leave him widowed at a time when it would be too late for him to find someone new and start a family.

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Incredibly, her love for Sean superseded any of her own self-interests. I thought about that all the time--that Sean needs a do-over," Paula told me. It gives me such great comfort.