Up To It: Compassionate Confidence as an Antidote to Anxiety, Stress, Avoidance & Reactivity

How different would your life be if you really trusted yourself?

What if you knew in your bones that you had the internal resources you needed to deal with disagreement, disapproval, discomfort, disappointment, setback, loss….

What if Read More

“Tell Me More”​ — Practicing Listening & Understanding When You are Triggered

Imagine a moment in a debate where a Democratic candidate responds to a Republican candidate (or vise versa) with something like “Let me see if I understand your point” and then reflects back what she Read More

The Courage and Self-Compassion to Receive (and Really Consider) Feedback

“This is bull.” I have had these three words directed at me twice while speaking in public. The first time was several years ago. On that occasion I did what I have done many times Read More

The Freedom and Power of Acknowledging Our Mortality

We are each going to die. Ouch. What a first line to a blog post. While this is not a popular thing to acknowledge or discuss, it is a simple truth of human existence. Unless Read More

How Human Is Your School?

Think about this past week. Consider the challenges you faced and dealt with in your own life. What percentage of these challenges were resolved with academic knowledge? What percentage of these challenges were inner-personal or Read More

10 Minutes That Can Make Your Life More Peaceful & Joyful Everyday


These thoughts are inspired by time spent with a young man who is earnestly seeking a meaningful and fulfilling life. I have known him since he was a little boy, but have not sat down Read More

How to Enjoy Life

“It did not really matter what we expected from life, but rather what life expected from us.” ~ Viktor Frankl

You can be overwhelmed, underwhelmed, or just plain whelmed. You can be disgruntled (upset), but you Read More

Enough. The incredible practice of knowing that you are up to it.

“You are enough.” This is a popular sentiment in the self-improvement world. But what does it mean exactly? I think of it this way — you can deal with whatever happens. Maybe not perfectly. Maybe Read More

Mindfulness Practice: Cultivating the Love We Seek

Since I was quite young, I can remember feeling an emptiness in the middle of my body. A longing. It seemed to go away when I received praise, appreciation, or affection. So, over time, I Read More

Four Ways That Mindfulness Meditation is Just Like Life


I started meditating about twenty-five years ago. I began because I was struggling with anxiety, doubt, and insecurity, and my coping strategies were often more destructive than the emotions I was trying to avoid. So, Read More

The Blessing of Not Beating Yourself Up

Here’s a glimpse into my life. It starts with sitting in an airplane in Chicago for two and a half hours while they fix something related to one of the engines. I am actually not Read More

Mindfulness: Working Peacefully With A Reactive Nervous System in a World Full of Triggers

I have a reactive nervous system – what I mean by this is that little things in the environment can trigger a strong reaction in my body. In fact, until I was in my early Read More

“You’re one of us” — Observations of Humanity

Yesterday I was in the Newark airport. I had some time before my flight, so I stopped by the meditation room in my concourse. When I walked in, there was a young woman praying the Read More

“We’ve Done The Mindfulness Thing”: Teaching Students To Use Their Attention Skillfully

“We did the whole mindfulness thing.” This was an assurance from an educator that I met at a national conference. She went on to tell me about how they had had people come in and Read More

There Is No Lesson Here — It’s Just Awesome

Recently I was meeting with a group of pre-kindergarten students in Oregon. I was teaching them some practices for paying attention. We began by closing our eyes, sitting still, and listening to sounds. Each time Read More

A Baker’s Dozen of Small Choices for a Kinder, Happier & More Fulfilling New Year

My coaching centers around unconditional well-being — these are the aspects of our quality of life that are not dependent on our circumstances. These are dependent on what we practice regardless of our situation.

How Read More

Heaven & Hell In Daily Life

There are two stories of heaven and hell that I love. The first comes from the Zen tradition.

A wise teacher is sitting in meditation when a warrior barges into the hall, strides up to the Read More

Calm While Anxious? Working Mindfully with Chaos

 Stuck in traffic. Late for a meeting. Can’t fall asleep. Getting kids out the door. Need to have a tough conversation. Concerned about finances. Waiting to hear from the doctor. There are lot’s of situations Read More

Mindfully Leverage Your Brain For A Fulfilling Life

The human brain is complicated. It can lead to irrational behavior such as yelling at small children about the importance of kindness or creating unnecessary stress by putting off simple tasks.

A lot of our complex, Read More

How Mindfulness Has Changed (and Possibly Saved) My Life

When I was growing up, the world around me felt like an intense and sometimes dangerous place. There was a lot of drinking, yelling, and unpredictable behavior. My nervous system came up with ways to Read More

You Are Not a Badger: Training Your Human Brain for a Peaceful Life

Human beings are more complicated than badgers. This is not a criticism of badgers – I love them.

I want to be clear, I am not a badger psychologist. I do not have special insight into Read More

A Lifetime of Thriving: Teaching the Skills of Unconditional Wellbeing

I have been studying wellbeing for the last thirty years. My motivation for doing so originated from my own struggles with anxiety that began at an early age. I developed strategies that included perfectionism, avoidance, Read More

The Secret to a Good Life is Not a Secret

I have been studying wellbeing for over thirty years. My motivation for doing so originated from my own struggles with anxiety that began at an early age. Having no guidance, I developed strategies that included Read More

The Power of Kindness and the Health Risks of “Anti-Other” Politics

I was standing on the corner when it happened. A cyclist was in the bike lane when a car took a left hand turn into his path. He tumbled off his bike, hopped up, dropped Read More

The Life-Changing (and only) Notification On My SmartWatch

When I travel I spend a lot of time in airports, hotel lobbies, and on public transport. I see almost everyone absorbed by small screens and wonder how much human interaction we are missing out Read More