I found that the first question I had my clients ask themselves after Says Who?—“Have I heard someone say this before?”—helped establish where the thoughts came from, which then helped determine whether they were just the opinions and beliefs of others that they took on as their own.
We can learn a lot about people through how they use social media. For example, Twitter language can be used to predict the risk of dying from heart disease.
Sometimes people on a spiritual path feel a hesitation about using creative visualization. Their conflict comes from the apparent paradox between the idea of “being here now,” letting go of attachments and desires, and the idea of setting goals and creating what you want in life.
Ask yourself what is actually preventing you from being happy right now, right this very moment? If you are honest with yourself, you will probably say it's because you don't have what you want. This could be ...
A startling number of sex therapists recommend commercial pornography to patients. While it might sound surprising that trained psychologists, counselors and sexologists prescribe...
When you have a strong emotional reaction to something—a song, a speech, a beautiful scene—and get goose bumps, experts say it’s simply a biological reaction to adrenaline.
Most survivors -- whether they've forgotten the abuse or not -- have deep anger which manifests itself in chronic health problems such as cancer, gynecological disorders, back or neck pain, migraines, hemorrhoids, heart palpitations, skin problems, insomnia, alcoholism, and obesity.
Can you feel the energies bumping up against you? One minute, you feel pushed; the next minute, pulled. One minute, you’re OK, and the next minute, you’re not. It’s chaotic out there. Our world is in flux; nothing feels normal anymore.
The holiday season is upon us, and so are its attendant myths, most prominent of which is the Santa Claus story. Given the many absurdities and contradictions in that story, it’s surprising that even young children would believe it. Yet research from my lab shows...
Change is a necessary part of living. Many of us use planners to lay out the course of our day. Then, plans change — someone cancels a meeting, or the car won’t start, or the kids get sick. You couldn’t predict that something else was going to happen, but it did. So, you...
Since the industrial revolution, humans have been driving towards ever greater efficiency. In fact, efficiency – making the best possible use of the resources at hand – has become the core concept of how we run the world.
Our ego mind prefers safety, routine, and the status quo. It does not want us to step too far out of the front door into anything too new or different. On the other hand, our essential self wants us to stretch, grow, shed what is unnecessary or heavy, and explore this life more fully.
Buckets lists – inventories of things to do before you die – are often developed by people who know they have little time left. It seems like a good idea.
Michelle McGagh is a bold woman. A personal finance journalist, she has just completed a year in which she vowed to spend no money at all except on essential bills, simple food, and charitable donations.
Minding other people’s business is a surefire way to make yourself unhappy. That’s why if you want to enjoy the coming holiday season and live a happy life, I highly recommend you take a close look at this mechanism and ask yourself whose business you are in?
Most people don’t know that they need to protect themselves from negative energies around them. Most people on this planet do not even think in terms of ‘energy’ at all, which is strange, because everything on this planet is a form of energy, and we use these different forms of energy all the time!
Happiness has become a modern obsession. Searching for it, holding on to it, and wishing it on our loved ones have all become motivating forces for how we live our lives.
For seniors who want to age in a supportive community environment, cohousing is an exciting alternative to traditional options such as retirement homes and assisted living centers.
I doubt you want a “mediocre” life. I doubt you want to just pay your bills or settle for a sort of loving relationship and call it good. I think you want to cry with gratitude when it’s all said and done. I’d like you to cry with gratitude before then.
What seems to be a dead end sign is an arrow pointing you in another direction. The universe is saying, “This is not it. There is a better direction for you. Go that way and you will find what you are looking for.” No movement in life is wasted. It all has a purpose. You just have to know how to read the signs.
There once was a man who was sentenced to die. He was blindfolded and put in a pitch dark cave. The cave was 100 yards by 100 yards. He was told that there was a way out of the cave, and if he could find it, he was a free man.
When a crisis erupts in our lives, we need to ask ourselves what is really going on. Whatever form it takes, it’s usually some kind of wake-up call. However difficult the circumstances are, we need to trust that something isn’t working and is trying to change— ultimately for our benefit.
People tend to throw around a lot of words to describe their emotions and feelings. We're confused or we feel frustrated. We're hurt or we're excited. Whatever the label, deciphering feelings from emotions can be a bit perplexing. If we start by learning the difference there are big rewards.
Underneath the dogma, we’re all pretty much the same and we want very similar things. We may differ wildly on how to achieve them, but if we start with objectives that we can agree on, like safety for our children, health care for all of us, an economy that rewards honest work, etc., then perhaps...
Painful experiences are steppingstones to right direction. Rather than considering them curses or crosses to bear, regard them as wake-up calls or course corrections. While you may have gone through a difficult...
I certainly can’t imagine that we are on this planet simply to eat, work, and sleep. And we aren’t here just to procreate and keep humanity going, because if we were, all of us would have children. Why, then, are we here? I believe it’s for a much larger reason.
The burdens and pain we overcome grow into our greatest storehouse of wisdom and compassion. They literally become the power that enables us to assist others in their healing. Our suffering has been our initiation of the heart...
When we are authentic, we are living from our essential self; whenever we deny a truth, we are living from the social self—in other words, inauthentically. As Freya Madeline Starke phrased it, "There can be no happiness if the things we believe in are different from the things we do."
Is a wandering mind an unhappy mind? A new review of studies on spontaneous versus controlled thinking challenges that adage.
During a lab meeting, one of our PhD researchers recalls how her father would forbid her from using paper to help solve maths homework problems by writing them down.
We come to know our true potential through opening to whatever life offers us — the good, the bad, and the ugly. The Chinese character for crisis includes those for both danger and opportunity. Birth and death, joy and sorrow, gain and loss, success and failure — these are all partners. You can never have one without the other.
That which you "most choose to have in your life, you must first become." It is time for us all to "be" what it is that we wish to be. It is time for us to "be" the Divine Light rather than insist that it must come from outside of us.
Are you a person who one day asked herself (or himself): I wonder if my thoughts are accurate? I wonder if I should really believe all my thoughts without question? I wonder if my thoughts actually represent the ultimate truth about myself, about others and about life?
What we think we know to be true, we actually borrowed from somebody else. When you were born, your subconscious mind began to record all the sensations and inputs you were exposed to. Bit by bit, you sucked up, without question, the tribal belief patterns you were exposed to...
The date for an important exam is looming. You know you have to study for it. Suddenly, it’s the evening before the dreaded date, and you feel like you haven’t studied enough, if at all.
A lack of flexibility in high-stress jobs may literally be a matter of life and death, experts warn.
An attitude that focuses on vibrant well-being creates the mental and emotional framework for the entire healing process. Expecting a successful outcome of the chemotherapy experience will help to bring about that result.
At hundreds of colleges and universities across the country, thousands of students are in the midst of the fall semester, trying to manage the academic tasks of studying, exams, papers and lectures.
I think it is important to differentiate between a need and a requirement. I say this because I often say to people that I have no needs, meaning that all my needs are taken care of by my soul before I know I have them. However...
I consider myself an expert in recovering from emotional shocks. The past six years has been a long series of extremely difficult events that were accompanied by heavy emotional after-shock for me.
Consumer society is growing fast around the globe. In 2011 it was estimated that 1.7 billion people were living in what is considered to be the “consumer class” – and nearly half of them are in the developing world.
Many times we seem to experience life as if we have no power to make changes -- no power to make a difference. If you don't feel powerful, or if you feel that power is unavailable to you, take a look at where, in your daily life (and in your past), you have relinquished your power.
What if we defined wise spending in terms of the happiness that it brings? Research shows certain spending can bring us closer to others.
“Weak”, “sick”, “immobile”, “decrepit”, “lonely”, “depressed”. If the prospect of growing old brings thoughts like these to mind, you are not alone. It seems that many people – of all age groups – have a preconceived idea of what being old will be like. And it’s generally not good.
The guidance your IGS (internal guidance system) gives you is specific to your life. It takes into account how you are to think, feel, and behave in order to be happy and successful in every situation you encounter. If there is a difficult situation or conversation that you need to have...
As someone who was once unhappy in every sense of the word, I can personally verify that misery leads to heartless behavior, and vice versa. For years I experienced failed relationships, financial struggles, poor health, depression, and an endless stream of...
A recent explosion of neuroscience techniques is driving substantial advances in our understanding of the brain. Combined with developments in engineering, machine learning and computing this flowering has helped us enhance our cognitive abilities and potential.
We can all think of someone in our lives we view as being “resilient”. They are the people we know who impress us with their seemingly endless ability to carry on – no matter what.
I now live my life from joy instead of from fear. This is the one very simple difference between who I was before my near-death experience (NDE) and who I am today. Before, without even realizing it, everything I did was to avoid pain or to please other people...
Personality is a broad term describing how people habitually relate to the world and their inner self. After the developmental period through childhood and adolescence, these patterns of relating remain reasonably stable through life.
The reproductive success of men in non-industrialized societies is closely tied to their social status, report researchers.
Since change is the only constant in life, we have to get used to the idea that letting go of our fear of the unknown allows us the opportunity to create space and the potential to birth something new and potentially greater in our lives...
When your heart opens, you access your natural sense of confidence. It emerges when you embrace the moment fully — no matter what is happening. When you show up, available for life just as it is, you feel fully awake and alive.
Many people today believe they possess a soul. While conceptions of the soul differ, many would describe it as an “invisible force that appears to animate us”.
Students from disadvantaged neighborhoods are often drawn to for-profit trade schools after high school, seeing them as the quickest route to jobs.
Posting a meme isn’t being the change. Neither is hash-tagging. No matter how relevant and important the cause, you’re not changing the world with a hashtag; you’re just making yourself feel better. If you’re unwilling to actually work toward a solution...
What am I doing? is the most frequent question I ask as I let go of my most recent job and relationship. The answer always comes back the same: You are being true to yourself. You are living your Truth. This is crazy, I say to myself. No job, no security, saving good-bye to someone who loves me, whom I love.
The Dalai Lama once said, “My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness.” What a simple yet profound creed! Having adopted this same philosophy, I’ve discovered that this belief system supports not only my own spiritual journey, but more important, all of life...
The annual back-to-school season is filled with high hopes for making new friends, meeting new teachers – and, from the view of many policymakers – promoting gains in science achievement.
If we all work side by side in an open-plan office or “hot desk”, moving from place to place, it’s sure to increase collaboration! It turns out that may be wrong. If you don’t have your own space, perhaps you are better off working remotely with your cat for company.
The level of language skills young children possess early in life can predict their likelihood of experiencing depression later, a new study suggests.
I am quite sure we would all be much more careful of what we say if we were aware of the power of the spoken word. If we understood that every word we speak or write is an affirmation. To affirm literally means to make firm....
Living in unabashedly racist communities may shorten the lives of both blacks and whites.
As families consider the living options available to their college students and look at the costs of college education, what might not be as evident to them is how on-campus living can actually maximize their college investment.
What follows are some activities from which I draw for my personal faith and mindset practice. I don't do all of these things every day but, across the span of any given month, I endeavor to do some combination of these activities or disciplines regularly. The result? For me, greater clarity, less time feeling scattered
I have to admit. I have a hard time asking for help. I have that “false pride” thing about being able to do it myself, that if I have to ask for help, it means I’m helpless. It makes me think about the two year old who proclaims, “I can do it myself!”
Do we have free will? This is a question that scholars have debated for centuries and will probably continue to debate for centuries to come.
If you’re a “morning person,” you’re more likely to undermine your performance on a stressful task early in the day, research suggests. The same goes for “night owls” and performance in the evening.
Where does our hope lie? Where shall we ground ourselves for continuing on and changing our ways radically? Creativity can redeem and save our species. I agree with Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estés that all women and men are born gifted. All we need to do is release this creativity, get out of its way, as M. C. Richards used to say.
Many of us have lost our way, or at least we lose our way during the day or the week. Some people feel that their joy can only exist on weekends, as the week is consumed by work. Joy is sometimes relegated to two days a week at the most! If we've lost the path of joy...
For every terminal couch potato, there’s another person, probably older than you, who has cast off a mislabeled past history and is living life wholly, vibrantly, victoriously. They didn’t accept that it was “too late” to do what they wanted to do.
Fortunately, over the years, I’ve picked up some strategies to not only cope with the overwhelm, but to get back into alignment with my best self. Here are my top 7 strategies.
When you feel depressed, you may despair that your life will never get better. Rather than telling yourself how hopeless your situation is, you can restore hope and get rolling. I know this because I've worked with people who believed their downer feelings would never end, and I've seen them take action to turn the corner and find the peace, love, and joy they'd been yearning for.
Going with the flow might seem easier than sticking up for yourself against unanimous disagreement. However, bodily responses suggest that expressing your opinions and core values can be a positive psychological experience.
In the middle of his bar routine – having flung himself into the air with style and skill – Dutch gymnast Epke Zonderland missed the bar at the last grasp and face-planted into the mat.
We’re more likely to take on unpleasant but necessary tasks—taxes, bills, and housework—when in a good mood, new research shows.
Stories are like boxes we build around ourselves to give structure, identity, security and familiarity. We are attached to them even when they are traumatic and painful, because they feel so much part of us... However, stories also limit us...
In the 1990s, a psychologist named Martin Seligman led the positive psychology movement, which placed the study of human happiness squarely at the center of psychology research and theory.
Philosophy has been a favorite whipping boy in the culture wars since 399 B.C., when an Athenian jury sentenced Socrates to death. Nowadays, philosophers are no longer accused of “corrupting the youth.”
Despite the fact that we have a good chance of reaching one hundred (whether we like it or not), many of us fear the unknown landscape of aging. We fear illness, not having enough money, losing our mental abilities, being dependent on others, and becoming a burden to our families. Truth is...
Every day we make choices. Some seem simple, some seem complex. What will I eat for breakfast? What will I say to this person? How will I react to this situation? Some choices we make without even thinking about it, and sometimes we are simply remaking a choice we made a long time ago.
Observing a pianist at a recital – converting musical notations into precisely timed finger movements on a piano – can be a powerful emotional experience.
As a young adult in college, I decided to learn Japanese. My father’s family is from Japan, and I wanted to travel there someday. However, many of my classmates and I found it difficult to learn a language in adulthood. We struggled...
For the past five years, I haven’t lived anywhere for more than six months. I spent 28 days in Lisbon, three months in Bali, and a random half-year in downtown Las Vegas.
When we were children, the summer holidays seemed to last forever, and the wait between Christmases felt like an eternity. So why is that when we get older, the time just seems to zip by, with weeks, months and entire seasons disappearing from a blurred calendar at dizzying speed?
It may seem that wise, strong people typically have gone through a few hard times in their lives. By comparison, those who have led a very sheltered and privileged life often appear to crack more easily under pressure
So much is at stake in our times. Whether we like it or not, and whether we accept it or not, the choices we make, individually and collectively, in the coming years will make an incredible amount of difference, perhaps...
We’ve all read countless stories that stress is bad for our health and leads to weight gain, heart disease, and a host of other emotional and physical issues. We’re told to reduce our stress, which sounds like a solid idea, but how does one accomplish that in this crazy-busy world?
Here’s some wonderful advice for being miserable: Ignore all the good and decent things that surround you in the course of an ordinary day. Here’s more: Complain about the things you can’t change, and even complain about those things you can change. The list could go on...
A new study finds that early-career doctors—and the rest of us—can be better at our jobs if we simply set aside as little as 30 minutes a day for some “me time.”
Researchers at King’s College London say they are able to predict educational achievement from DNA alone. Using a new type of analysis called a “genome-wide polygenic score”, or GPS, they analysed DNA samples from 3,497 people in the ongoing Twins Early Development Study.
Large swaths of the American public want Donald J. Trump to be their president – maybe even a majority, according to an analysis from Nate Silver’s FiveThirtyEight in late July.
Just as true happiness is not simply the absence of problems but an internal life state that enables us to challenge any obstacles to happiness that come our way, health is not simply the absence of illness. The important issue is whether we defeat sickness when it comes or whether sickness defeats us...
I’m tempted by efficiency. My overactive brain craves the order of a predictable routine, a color-by-numbers life, the safety of no surprises. But I also crave enchantment. My heart craves the unpredictable, the spontaneous, the magical. In many ways, the two are...
Pretend, for a minute, that we’ve all come to Earth to learn something. Since we may not care for little boxy classrooms, instead we have a whole planet for our current lessons. Now pretend that there’s not one of us who isn’t in the test of some major challenge.
The Binewskis are no ordinary family. Arty has flippers instead of limbs; Iphy and Elly are Siamese twins; Chick has telekinetic powers. These traveling circus performers see their differences as talents, but others consider them freaks with “no values or morals.”
What the most confident-seeming people have is not brazen ballsiness, impressive bravery, courage or any of that elusive stuff really...it’s PASSION. It’s enthusiasm. It’s WILLINGNESS. It’s RESILIENCE and FLEXIBILITY.
Each of us has a Default Mechanism, a subconscious pattern of returning to memories of previous experiences in your mind to find a response to a current experience. Your default powers your very first, almost automatic, reaction in response to the events of your life.
We live in an increasingly competitive world where we are always looking to gain an advantage over our rivals, sometimes even our own colleagues. In some cases, it can push people to extreme, unethical and illegitimate methods – something we’ve seen recently in the doping scandal that has hit the athletics world.
"You are at your very best when things are worst.” In celebration of the release of my new book The Grace Factor, I would like to cite some acts of grace that ultimately affected many people...