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

The Most Important Life Lessons I Have Learned After Studying Wellbeing For Thirty Years

 

My wife gave me the news. I was getting on an airplane after speaking to a group of educators about wellbeing in schools when she called to tell me that one of my clients had Read More

How Mindfulness Helps Me Work With Chronic Discomfort

 

I have shingles. For those of you who don’t know, shingles is a result of the same virus that causes chicken pox. The virus remains dormant and sometimes resurfaces later in life. It goes after Read More

Misunderstanding Mindfulness: How Hype and Hyperbole Take Away From the Truth

 

 

Sitting quietly, I pay attention to the sensations of my breath. My attention wanders to a thought about the email I need to send. A feeling of restlessness ripples through my body. When I notice Read More

How To Optimize Life In the Face of Uncertainty

 

“Live each day as if it were your last.” This advice has never made much sense to me. If I assume that today is my last, do I put money in savings? Do I get Read More

A Great Start to The Day

 

I used to wake up with anxiety on most days. And then I would feed it. I would make a mental list of what was wrong, challenging, and potentially a problem. This is how I Read More

Happiness Includes Discomfort

 

 

My friend is dying. As we sit together, her sadness, fatigue, and pain fills the room. All I want to do is tell her something that will make her feel better. I want to tell Read More

Compassion Is A Critical Foundation For Business and Politics, Not An Extra

Standing in line at a coffee shop, I watched a man counting out dimes and pennies to pay for his order. The person behind him tapped him lightly on the shoulder and offered “Will you Read More

This is Why Your Unconditional Wellbeing is a Good Thing for the Planet

As an adult I have gone through treatment for leukemia. Twice. I would never have chosen this for myself. There were aspects of it that were uncomfortable (nausea from chemotherapy), there were aspects that were Read More

Seven Simple Ways to Reduce Your Smartphone Dependency

My eighteen year old son recently left his smartphone for a flip phone. He had become so dependent on his little screen that he was neglecting important things like real people, sleep, exercise, and reading. Read More

What is Your Practice for Being Purposeful?

This is a comfortable period of time in my life. Chemo is over, I am not traveling too much, work is rewarding, our family is healthy, and we will all be together soon when our Read More