Words create our reality. Once we put them out there, we can’t take them back. Expressions like “I didn’t mean to say that” or “I was only kidding” come too late.
So why do couples get into needless arguments? Jeffery S. Smith, MD, writes in Psychology Today:
The cause of arguments and fights is a lack of mutual, empathic understanding. When empathy is not engaged, then people revert to a self-protective mode and become judgmental. The result is a bad feeling on both sides and no happy ending.
People want to be understood, not just heard.
The world is full of uncertainty right now, and many people are experiencing the ups and downs of adapting to new ways of living. I’ve had a few emotional dips recently, which took me by surprise—I’m generally an upbeat person.
But William Bridges, author of Transitions: Making Sense of Life’s Changes, has some compelling explanations for these ebbs and flows. He explains that change is external—moving from one city to another, for example—but transition or adaptation to change is an internal, psychological process.
Bridges describes three nonlinear phases of transition: endings, neutral zone, and new beginnings. Endings occur with significant…
Recently, I sat with my wife in our back garden, a small wood and Scottish peat fire burning in front of us, smoke curling up, the earthy smell of peat hanging in the cool air. I looked up at the stars and planets, sparkling bright in the clear, pitch-black evening sky. A peaceful feeling wrapped me like a warm blanket. I felt so good.
After about an hour, my wife said she wanted to go inside. Seconds after she left, my mind kicked in, “Why is she going in? She should stay out here with me. If we were on…
‘Wisdom comes with age’ is not just an aphorism. Life experience is one of our greatest teachers. As we move through life, we accumulate wisdom about who we are, what’s really important, and how we can live productively and happily.
With this in mind, I recently polled about 100 people, all over the age of 50, for advice on making the most of life. I studied their comments, looking for the particular mental attitude or belief underlying each one. …
I looked up at the stars on a clear night recently — the beauty of our universe was undeniable. It puts our life in perspective, too, seeing this vast cosmos of which we are just a tiny part. I felt peaceful, blessed to be alive and humble. I thought to myself, looking up is good for us.
So is meditation, or looking within.
The purpose of meditation is not to control your mind, hear your inner voice, improve your health, find your passion in life, or solve your problems. …
I don’t know about you, but sometimes I doubt myself. I doubt I can write another decent article; I doubt an email I sent to someone will be well received; I doubt I can improve my golf game; I doubt I’m a good enough parent.
I sent an email the other day to a coaching client who works in a very high-pressure, toxic environment, challenging him not to forget the essence of leadership is about spirit. After I sent it, I wondered how he would react to it? I didn’t hear from him for a few days, so a slight…
A few years ago, when I finished my dinner on a hot summer evening at a wine bar in Austin, Texas, I had no idea my life was about to change.
I asked for the check, and two women sitting next to me overheard my conversation with the waitress. One of them commented on my sometimes-New Jersey-Tony Soprano-like-fuggedaboutit accent. The next thing I know, we’re drinking large quantities of wine, talking about what we each did for a living, exchanging business cards. Then, we were on to relationships — the wine was kicking in.
One of them asked, “Are you…
That was my 10th grade English teacher, Joel Kabatznick doing his “Words of the Week Club” routine. Every Friday, he’d spend about ten minutes teaching us words we didn’t know, like “idiosyncrasy” or “meretricious.” And, every so often, he’d slip in his brand of sex education, which would make every teenager squirm and blush when they had to say things they thought about but would never say in public, much less in a room full of kids they didn’t really know.
Mr. Kabatznick was by far the most memorable, inspiring, and hippest teacher I’ve ever had…
I died in October 2020. I was almost 14 years old.
Life was good to me, right to the end. But, I did go blind in my left eye for the last few months because the darn tumor on my neck pressed up against a nerve. Was I in pain? Not really. I was well taken care of. I’ll tell you more about my life later; right now, I want to tell you about how things changed in March of 2020.
All of us, me, the man and the woman, were out in the back garden. I heard them grumbling…
“Never be afraid of the conversations you’re having. Be afraid of the conversations you’re not having.” — Susan Scott, Fierce Conversations
Have you ever struggled with saying what’s really on your mind? We all do. When we’re not being fully honest with others, it’s often because we:
However, problems occur when you don’t speak honestly: