Lessons from Africa, Chapter 2: Practice Compassion.

We stared out the windows of the van as Benon, our driver, steered us north on the main highway out of Kigali towards Uganda, our next stop. Overloaded bicycles, topped with burlap sacks filled with produce, were pushed, tugged, and prodded uphill by their weary riders; thousands of people, many of them with baskets, clothing, […]

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Lessons from Africa, Chapter 1: Reconciliation is Personal.

I recently returned from a three-week tour of Africa, visiting Rwanda, Uganda, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Zambia, and South Africa. This was a deeply moving trip with family and friends, an opportunity for my wife to return to Rwanda (where she volunteered back in 2011), a chance for our group to make some small contributions to a […]

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Focus on living your life – not measuring it.

We owe our current-day obsession with metrics in large part to Frederick W. Taylor, the early 20th-century engineer and management consultant who introduced the concepts of metrics and data analysis as important tools to increase industrial efficiency. Since Taylor’s day, metrics have become omnipresent, moving well beyond the factory to intrude in almost every aspect […]

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Free yourself from what is holding you back, so you can be free to live the life you want

“You must give up the life you planned in order to have the life that is waiting for you” “Follow your bliss” Joseph Campbell I believe that each of us has an obligation to make the most of the freedom we are lucky enough to enjoy – to use it to improve ourselves, to learn, […]

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Are you motivated by self-loathing – or self-love?

Many of you may know Alex Honnold, the famous free-climbing rock star who solo-climbed the sheer granite face of El Capitan on June 3, 2017 – 3,000 feet without a rope or mechanical assistance of any kind – making him the first and only human in history to do so. You may also know Laura […]

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If you want to be happy for life, plant a (metaphorical) garden

Most of us have heard the old Chinese proverb about happiness and gardening; one variant goes like this:               Pleasure for one hour, a bottle of wine;               Pleasure for one year, a marriage;               But pleasure for a lifetime, a garden. On the face of it, this seems pretty simple: get out that garden […]

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Channel Your Inner Child to Overcome Challenges

Like most of you, my wife and I get together with our family over the holidays to celebrate, make and enjoy meals together, catch up, and play games. This year our kids introduced us to a multi-player video game called “Ultimate Chicken Horse” (google it), and we spent hours learning the ropes and laughing ourselves […]

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Five Simple Freedom Habits for the New Year

Simplify, simplify, simplify – that’s what Thoreau urged in Walden. Over the past year, I’ve tried to take his words to heart as I’ve removed things, influences, people, and places from my life that made no positive contribution. I’ve also tried to be more succinct in thought, word, and deed (hey, David Byrne, you were […]

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WHAT’S your type? Warrior, Helper, Artist, Truth-Seeker – or Sheep?

Each of us has a default mode of engaging the world around us, a lens through which we see the people, places,and things with which we interact each day and which guides how we behave. Call it a stance, a way of being in relation to the world, which frames our interactions and gives them […]

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Difficult, Annoying People are Everywhere: Deal with it

A driver cuts you off on the highway without signaling. Your spouse makes a snippy comment about your eating habits over breakfast. An old friend behaves like a jerk, insulting you in front of friends at a party. A co-worker embarrasses you in a meeting with an under-handed remark about your last presentation. It seems […]

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