Life Is Hard

LIFE IS HARD: Being alive means we’re bound to feel alone, lose loved ones, grow old (hopefully) go through some crazy family dynamics, encounter immature behaviors—our own and other people’s—and live with the consequences of our poor decisions. We have people in our community who have been run over by a truck, lost loved ones, been abused by loved ones. Yes, life can be hard, but when we learn to live consciously, instead of contracting to protect ourselves, we expand and celebrate each day we are alive.

How To Deal With Despair

What emotion do you find most challenging? For me, it’s despair. I leave myself empty with despair. I used to find it hard to see any value at all in despair. Despair is not like anger—with anger I can motivate myself in constructive ways. It’s not like...

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The Answer To Life’s Problems

Are you ready for a New Year? How different will it be from last year? Will you be far less anxious? Will you have much greater clarity about your life purpose? Will you free yourself of your negative self-talk? Will you love your partner as well as you’d like to—or...

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There is a gift in everything

I have come to believe that there is a gift in every event, every encounter, and every difficulty. Is this true? No, but it’s an example of how I choose to make meaning and it serves me really well. Some times I have trouble seeing the gift, but if I’m willing to look...

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What’s Your Story?

We can free ourselves from all forms of emotional suffering, even many forms of physical suffering, when we learn how to change the way we make meaning. But here’s the problem, talking to people about how they make meaning is like talking to fish about water. The fish...

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The Story Of All Stories

Once upon a time there was a story . . . a story that helped people to change their lives. The story teller was a man made of sand. Depending on how the wind blew, he would take on different shapes. So everyday he had a different appearance. When I stopped to look at...

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Acceptance

The difference that makes the difference. Over the last few days I’ve been thinking about why Live Conscious is different than other forms of psychology, self-help practices and group dynamics. I’ve been in therapy several times over the years— in my mid-thirties I...

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Why Not Be Present? There’s A good Reason

Life is difficult There is a simple reason why most people choose to not be present in their lives. It’s because being present sucks—if you don’t like your job, don’t get along with your partner or don’t feel good in your body—and therefore you’d rather be someplace...

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Live Well So You Can Die Well

I want to die in the same manner that I am learning to live—with gratitude and a sense of wonder and awe. Wednesday night I got a message that one of my oldest and dearest friends had a stroke. I’ve been a good friend with Jimmy and his wife Katie for over 30 years. I...

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Don’t Waste Your Life

I have a client I’ve been working with for a couple of years who recently fell off the self-help wagon and then found her way back onto it. I share this story with you because, to me, her experience is emblematic of so many people who are trying hard to make the most...

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Up Against The Glass

I’ve recently returned from a two-week excursion of channeling my mother. Not what I would call a luxurious holiday, but looking back I see it was a necessary fact finding adventure. And, like many adventures, I found myself in turbulent waters, desolate landscapes...

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Can I recover from child abuse?

I left a small child—my child—over 30 years ago because I was afraid to be a mother. I made sure he was in good hands and then I ran away. For years we have pretended that what I did was acceptable because of my own pain and my terrifying childhood. Can my son recover...

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Healing Ourselves

I think that most of us are chasing ghosts. The ghosts are our unfulfilled needs from childhood. Not getting the love we wanted. The validation we wanted. Not feeling valued. Not feeling safe. So, later in life we pursue ways of healing our old wounds, and many forms...

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How To Eliminate Suffering

What lives between the onset of emotional pain and the resolution of that pain is suffering. I am learning to radically reduce the time between the onset of emotional pain and the resolution of that pain—thereby reducing or eliminating suffering. I don’t know if...

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Why Do I Hold Myself Back?

I recently received an email from a client asking, “Why do I hold myself back?” Her precise words were, “I continue to feel myself holding back a small part of me … not wanting to fully engage myself. I recognize that I do this in several areas of my life....

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How To Deal With Loss

Less than a week ago there was a tragedy in Arizona, six people were killed and eighteen wounded, when a lone gunman violently expressed himself. In response to the tragedy, President Obama delivered a memorial speech in Arizona, a speech, which I believe addresses...

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