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Photographer Atiba Jefferson has shot the world’s top skateboarders, basketball players, and musicians with a unique eye and vision.

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Books, TV shows, and movies that get The Local Optimist team feeling creative.

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Being creative opens up your mind to more possibilities and more ways to express yourself.

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Despite not getting serious about real estate until her late 30s, Jade Mills has more than $6 billion in sales.

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Free-climbing El Capitan and summiting Mt. Everest are great ways to cultivate patience and calm.

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Matt Walczak, a MyWellbeing Integrative Hypnotherapist, shares three tips to help you form habits that actually stick.

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After studying in Japan, Matt Puntigam of Dandy Farmer brought his own interpretation of the ancient art of bonsai to New York City.

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World-renowned Buddhist scholar Robert Thurman shares his insights on the practice of patience.

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4 tips from a licensed therapist that can help you cultivate greater patience with those closest to you.

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This month, we asked the question and wanted to share your answers about how you practice patience.

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For her latest Inner Piece story, Sadie Newman connects with actor Branden Cook about trusting the process.

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Our first movie is Pixar’s Soul. Watch it on your own and then join Local Optimist staff and others for a discussion.

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How patience helped one student navigate a long and winding path to the college of her dreams.

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Learn helpful strategies to help you make the most of the time you have so you can achieve your goals.

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January can be a month full of resolutions. The more patient we can be, the more likely we are to achieve those goals.

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The family that kids are raised in can have an enormous influence, both good and bad, on the types of adults they grow into.

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Disagreements with family members during the holidays can cause a lot of stress. These 5 strategies can help.

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A good book can help you develop greater empathy, find solace, and validate personal experiences.

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Our monthly series answers frequently asked questions from our mental health Hotline so that everyone can benefit.

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Reconciling a privileged upbringing with his race helped shape the writer’s worldview.

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After years of struggling to figure out where she fit in, McCann now approaches her career and mental health from a more positive place.

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How one person learned to cope with her father’s suicide by learning to accept the value of acceptance.

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Try these 5 tips to help keep the “winter blues” at bay

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While it means different things to different people, the concept of family plays a constant role in our lives.

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Using skateboarding, surfing, and snowboarding, Stoked is a mentoring organization that builds bridges with boardsports.

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These 4 strategies can help you cultivate a positive response, even in challenging situations.

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Learn about the connection between cooking and mental health. Plus, discover how to make green shakshuka.

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A community fridge in New York's Greenpoint shows the power of neighbors stepping up to help each other.

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Our monthly series answers frequently asked questions from our mental health Hotline so that everyone can benefit.

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For the renowned former Top Chef contestant, the ripple effects of sobriety stretched inside and outside the kitchen.

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Feeling gratitude isn’t always easy, but these three mindfulness practices can help.

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This month’s theme at The Local Optimist is Gratitude. So get to know what it means, how it’s good for us, and how you can practice it, even now.

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How a mixed Israeli and Palestinian basketball team is changing the world one person at a time.

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Our fifth installment of the Student Series: Perspectives on COVID-19.

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Understanding mental health comes through research and how research can lead to mental wellness. Which is exactly why we’re partnering with our friends at AIM Youth Mental Health to help fund urgently needed mental health research. 

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We created this series to answer our most asked Hotline questions for our entire community. To see that other people are going through some of the same challenges you are, and to get real answers from a real person.

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Our fourth installment of the Student Series: Perspectives on COVID-19.

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NFL legend Marshawn Lynch sat down with psychologist Dr. Michael Gervais as part of the Madhappy® / UNINTERRUPTED® “More Than My Feelings” campaign to celebrate World Mental Health Day.

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We teamed up with the meditation and mindfulness app Headspace to guide you through the most popular mediation techniques. The only part that really matters is, which one works best for you?

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The Local Optimist Hotline is back and here to stay! Text “Hotline” to 310.299.9414 to tell us whatever’s on your mind. We can’t wait to talk to you!

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What's the difference between stress and anxiety? How about feeling anxious vs having an anxiety disorder? We're breaking down the basics to help us understand anxiety, so we can then tackle coping with it.

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Part 2 of our Anxiety Booklet covers four different research-backed coping strategies for helping alleviate our anxiety.

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Suicide is not your only option. There are always more ways to get help, take away the pain, and feel better - even when you can’t see them right now.

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At Madhappy, we like to call Anxiety the result of resisting our feelings... The more we learn about ourselves, and what type of anxiety we struggle with, the better we can be at both identifying it and overcoming it. 

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Our fourth installment of the Student Series: Perspectives on COVID-19.

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Our third installment of the Student Series: Perspectives on COVID-19.

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While play seems like the antithesis of work, fostering a sense of playfulness and bringing that to our work can be extremely helpful.

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Our second installment of the Student Series: Perspectives on COVID-19.

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There is no one-size-fits-all formula for play; it is highly individualized depending on what brings the most joy and happiness to one’s life.

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One son's story of learning about his father's personality, beyond his PTSD, through the legacy he left behind and the stories of people he touched along the way.

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Our first installment of the Student Series: Perspectives on COVID-19.

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Play can take us back to our childhood days: running around in your backyard with the neighborhood kids or playing pretend with Polly Pockets. But, what is it now?

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We can still find small and beautiful moments of stillness despite the chaos. We can pick up our puzzles and our paints and find what gives our inner child light.

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Play can look, feel, and manifest itself to different people in a myriad of ways, but it always follows one common theme: enjoyment for the sake of enjoyment.

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What must primarily be acknowledged is that sometimes we don’t understand. Every individual has a unique experience with mental health that manifests in several different ways.

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While expressing our feelings and emotions is important, making others feel seen, heard, and understood is the ultimate goal when talking about mental health.

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It can be difficult to express how depression or anxiety feels. It can be even more difficult to share those feelings with someone else.

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The dissonance between how we present ourselves on social media and how we really are can be quite damaging to mental health. How can we restore a healthier relationship with our online selves?

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Part 1 of our Communication Toolkit! The more we talk, the more we know. The more we know, the more we grow. The more we grow, the better we feel.

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This July, we are turning our attention to talking, listening, and understanding- the patchwork mosaic of good communication.

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"The first step towards resolving that uncomfortable feeling of cognitive dissonance. Who was I beyond addiction?"

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Jacob is 24 years old from New York City, NY.

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Sara is 25 years old from San Diego, CA.

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Corey is 25 years old from Los Angeles, CA.

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Just know that if you are angry right now, we are too.

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We’re celebrating what it feels like to be true to yourself and exploring the relationship between truth, acceptance, and pride. Through each conversation, we hope to take another step toward a more open and optimistic world.

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Startled. Amazed. Excited. Awe. Eager. Energetic.

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Avoidance. Revulsion. Judgemental. Hesitant. Disapproval

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Where Fear gets complicated, is when we start to anticipate threats or have thoughts about potential dangers. 

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If Happiness is something that we are always chasing, Sadness must be something that we always want to avoid, right? Not quite.

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Happiness can look 100 different ways to 100 different people, and that is part of what makes it so special. 

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Aaron, a homeless outreach worker, shares his perspective of being an essential worker during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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May is our favorite month - Mental Health Awareness Month! For 2020, our theme is 'How Are You Feeling?'. Get a glimpse into this jam packed month with Mason & Meadow.

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When you surrender into your reality, you accept that this is, put simply, what it is. And when you recognize that this is what it is, you can work towards making that reality a stronger, better, more positive experience. 

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"How can it be problematic to just like yourself right now while you're in the process of healing? It's not a binary decision: acceptance or healing."

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I really pinpoint the precise moment in which I outwardly decided to accept others’ portrayal of what my life was supposed to be, but I do know that it happened.

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Acceptance is a theme that is more pertinent now more than ever. Whether it's accepting where you are, the state of the world, or yourself - there is a lot of lessons wrapped up in Acceptance.

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You can take the self work even further by adding more mindfulness and awareness in, rather than attempting to push your thoughts out.

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As another week in social isolation comes around, Meadow notices that my inner roommate is quite chatty.

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Elizabeth Segran, author of The Rocket Years: How Your Twenties Launch The Rest of Your Life, helping us navigate this new reality.

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Sometimes, waking up and choosing to have a good day feels impossible. But, we have more control over how our days go than we like to believe.

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With World Happiness Day coming up this month, we chose to dedicate the entire theme of the month to just that: Happiness. The seemingly never fully attainable concept we all strive for.

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"What was wrong is that we are conditioned to believe that 'more' is always 'better.'” A story on burn out by therapist and friend of the blog, Alyssa Petersel.

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Meadow & Mason here to introduce February's theme: LOVE. Each month of 2020 we'll be announcing our word of the month that will be the central theme for our digital content and monthly events!

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“When I first started therapy, boundaries are not what I went in for, but they are what I came away with."

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Stress is one of those fun Darwinisms that I really would rather do without.

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The “elevator pitch” version of my life includes a family that has coped with bipolar disorder, addiction, suicide, cancer, homelessness, and that’s just to name a few.

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“When I first started therapy, boundaries are not what I went in for, but they are what I came away with."

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What does it mean to express gratitude? What if we thanked the little things each day? How would this improve our lives?

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I know we always ask each other and ourselves if we’re happy, truly happy, but what does happiness really look like? Editorial piece written by Madhappy Co-Founder, Mason Spector.

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