Life and Living

In Order to Move Forward, We Must Learn to Be Still

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This article was first published in Maria Shriver’s Sunday Paper.

“I’m sick of people telling me I’m going to save the world,” said my friend Eliza over coffee. “I know they mean it as a compliment, but it feels like one hell of a burden.” A charismatic activist, thought-leader, and author, Eliza (not her real name) gives people hope and confidence when both are in short supply. No matter what horrific mass shooting or eco-crisis comes up on the news, Eliza finds a way to help people believe everything will be okay. Her energy seems boundless. It isn’t.

“I’m just [...]

Getting Unstuck

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Right now, I’m beginning—all right, planning to begin—several new projects. I’m going to launch a new fitness routine, declutter my closets, and start working with a new editor on my current book. It’s all hugely exciting, and I’m feeling so… stuck.

I don’t mean literally, of course. I’m physically free to start any of these projects at almost any moment. But my mind has been working overtime to convince me otherwise. I keep getting bogged down in what internet guru Zefrank calls “the terrible space between zero and one.” I know I want to do some awesome things—I can almost [...]

To Stay Present, We Must Accept Change

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This article was first published in Maria Shriver’s Sunday Paper.

A couple of weeks ago I boarded a plane from London to Philadelphia and immediately sensed something weird was going on. Our flight had been delayed for hours by mechanical problems, and I expected everyone, including the crew, to be tired and grumpy. Instead, the flight attendants appeared to have been drinking some sort of love potion. They practically leaped to assist us passengers as we arrived. They smiled into our eyes, joked with us, said things like, “Honestly, if there is anything I can do to make this flight more [...]

When Life Wallops You, Turn It Into a Personal Revolution

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This article was first published in Maria Shriver’s Sunday Paper.

A friend of mine recently experienced something I call a “life wallop.” You’ve probably had a few wallops in your own life: a relative you funded through rehab calls, high as a kite, asking you for bail money; an elderly parent, lost in dementia, snaps something brutally cruel; you see your ex on a date with your next door neighbor.

“I feel like a truck hit me,” said my friend. “It’s so stupid—I know I should just shrug it off, but I can barely get out of bed. I’ve been [...]

The Gathering Room

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I always used to tell my clients that if they moved to a new geographic area, they could expect to feel disoriented for about a year. Well, now I’m eating those words. Because I’ve discovered something that wasn’t true when I started coaching. In the past couple of decades, we’ve ALL moved to a new place. THE SAME PLACE!

 

As far as houses go, I recently uprooted from the West Coast of the USA and plopped to earth “back East.” But I haven’t felt much disorientation. Why?

 

Because you and I are still meeting where we always have! Here!

 

As [...]

Sometimes You Can Find Happiness Right Behind You

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This article was first published in Maria Shriver’s Sunday Paper.

Whenever I hear a flight attendant say, “Remember, your nearest exit may be behind you,” I think, “As above, in air travel, so below in ordinary life.”

Most of the time we focus only on what we already believe. Fixated on these ideas, we don’t notice anything that could spark new ways of thinking. Since we evolved to be highly alert to danger and difficulty, we can get stuck staring at them, seeing only what we believe rather than believing what we actually see. This is a recipe [...]

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