Tag Archives: Articles

Martha Beck’s 7 Steps to Creating the Life You Really Want…

A simple guide to mapping out the journey of your lifetime.

I read this article recently in O Magazine and found it a clever way of practicing introspection. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did…

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Odysseus just wanted to go to Ithaca. No, not the one in upstate New York—the one in ancient Greece. He dreamed of it the whole seven years he spent trapped on the island of the nymph Calypso. Eventually the pitying gods ordered Calypso to free him, at which point he managed to build a boat and set out on what he hoped would be a brief and pleasant journey.
Ha.
At every turn, Odysseus’s travels were filled with surprises. He conquered monsters at sea only to find worse ones waiting on land. He encountered seductions that sent him half mad with longing. Finally, in the Land of the Dead, he got clear directions from a seer who, oxymoronically enough, was blind.
Does this ring any bells for you? Maybe you, too, feel stranded in your life, awash in a turbulent sea, or lured by the Siren song of a terrifying love. Or maybe you just hope to experience Winnipeg someday, if only for a long weekend. Fortunately, you have your own internal “blind seer”. It can feel its way into the future and draw you a map. I mean literally. Our project today is to help you create a map of your own epic tomorrows—a magically morphing guide that will get more detailed and accurate as you travel.

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Perfect Strangers

Perfect Strangers

by Angela Soelzer Ragosa

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Perfect Strangers

Me:

I wish you all the best!

Perfect stranger’s reply:

But you don’t even know me…

Me:

I really mean it; I wish you all the best…

Perfect stranger’s look:

Puzzled…

This exchange brought me to the page this morning. I wondered why this person seemed so unable to wrap his head around the concept of a perfect stranger wanting all the best for him… Was it not plausible in his mind for someone completely unfamiliar to him to feel true empathy and compassion for him? Intrigued, I suddenly found myself weighing all the possibilities… I began to question what happened in his life in order for such distrust to exist.

I wondered who this person is…

I wondered about the shoes he’s walked in and the miles he had walked in those shoes… I wondered what his parents were like and did they embrace him with a loving ease? I wondered how much praise he had received for a job-well-done, if in fact, he had ever received any praise at all… I wondered what made this skeptic tick… I wondered if he could feel and come to know the unconditional love & support for him from a perfect stranger…me. I wonder

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Easy secrets for body confidence

Easy secrets for body confidence

By WeightWatchers.com

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Photo:Google Images

Not happy with your reflection or brimming with body confidence? Unsurprisingly, you’re not alone. But sadly there are too many women are embarrassed with their bodies and giving their figure the thumbs down. New research from the University of Queensland shows that about 80% of Australian women are unhappy with their body image.

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7 steps to busting out of a rut & finding happiness…

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Are you charting a course to fulfill your dreams? Or are you wandering around without a compass, hoping you’ll somehow find your way? If you’re stuck in a rut, this article’s for you…

1. Don’t Try to Buy Happiness
Would you be happy if you had a hundred new pairs of Jimmy Choos or a brand new BMW? Maybe at first you would, but as time went on you’d “just want more, bigger, better and different in a never-ending fashion,” explains Alan Gettis, Ph.D., author of The Happiness Solution: Finding Joy and Meaning In An Upside Down World (Trafford, 2006). The pleasure centers in your brain come alive when you score the perfect skirt or a great pair of jeans, but the feeling fades. After all, if you could really buy happiness, everyone would have bought it already!
If you still believe money is the secret to satisfaction, consider this: According to a University of Illinois study, the Forbes 400 (the wealthiest billionaires in America) and the Maasai tribes of East Africa (simple, pastoral herdsmen) exhibit the same levels of happiness, regardless of their monetary differences. In plain English: Money doesn’t buy happiness.

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One More Time

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One More Time

Marked by the Muse

“Have enough courage to trust love one more time and always one more time.”
— Maya Angelou

Today, trust that you can create the change that is calling within you one more time.

You can create your dreams come true one more time.

You can trust your creative spirit is leading you one more time.

You can have faith that what you envision is in process of becoming one more time.

You can gather the courage to create what your inner whispers are urging one more time.

You can take one more step one more time.

You can believe that your journey will yield the fruits of your heart one more time.

You can imagine that those blooms will become the fragrance of joy within your everyday life one more time.

You can remember you are here for a purpose one more time.

You can honor the value – your value – that you bring to others one more time.

You can share those inner whispers with the world, instead of holding them mute inside you one more time.

You can have confidence that you hear the voice of your Spirit and are following its guidance one more time.

You can be free now by singing your song today one more time.

You can draw from the well of strength deep within your spirit one more time, to live one more day and become one step closer to being who you truly are.

You are unique and your finger print proves it.

Today, is about celebrating you one more time.

Tomorrow you begin to continue one more time…

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The Double Standard of Aging…

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“How old are you?” The person asking the question is anybody. The respondent is a woman, a woman “of a certain age,” as the French say discreetly. That age might be anywhere from her early twenties to her late fifties. If the question is impersonal-routine information requested when she applies for a driver’s license, a credit card, a passport-she will probably force herself to answer truthfully. Filling out a marriage license application, if her future husband is even slightly her junior, she may long to subtract a few years; probably she won’t. Competing for a job, her chances often partly depend on being the “right age,” and if hers isn’t right, she will lie if she think she can get away with it. Making her first visit to a new doctor, perhaps feeling particularly vulnerable at the moment she’s asked, she will probably hurry through the correct answer. But if the question is only what people call personal-if she’s asked by a new friend, a casual acquaintance, a neighbor’s child, a co-worker in an office, store, factory-her response is harder to predict. She may side-step the question with a joke or refuse it with playful indignation. “Don’t you know you’re not supposed to ask a woman her age?” Or, hesitating a moment, embarrassed but defiant, she may tell the truth. Or she may lie. But neither truth, evasion, nor lie relieves the unpleasantness of that question. For a woman to be obliged to state her age, after a “certain age,” is always a miniature ordeal.

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The Hidden Benefits of Anger, Cursing and Negativity

What you think of as your worst qualities can have some surprising upsides.

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Imperfect Harmony

In nature, nothing is ever black-and-white, and every yin has its yang. Time and time again we discover that things we thought were unequivocally unhealthy—like germs or UV rays—can sometimes be quite good for us. (We’re still waiting for some happy news about French fries.) And now researchers are beginning to find that the same is true of our habits and personality quirks. “In certain situations, what is typically a detrimental trait can turn out to be a good one,” says Bryan Gibson, PhD, professor of social psychology at Central Michigan University. In other words, what you perceive as faults—even minor ones like blurting out curse words when things go wrong or doodling whenever your boss fires up an Excel spreadsheet—can, in the right context, be strengths. Here’s why.

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When Midlife Seems Just An Empty Plate

By GINIA BELLAFANTE

The New York Times

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IN her 23 years as a specialist in eating disorders, Dr. Margo Maine has received countless telephone calls from women worried that their teenage daughters might be dieting into a danger zone. But several years ago, Dr. Maine, a psychologist who runs an eating-disorders treatment program with a partner in West Hartford, Conn., noticed a shift in the telephone inquiries.

”Increasingly, our calls began to include a significant number of adults seeking help not for their children but for themselves,” Dr. Maine said. Some of those callers — women in their late 40’s and early 50’s — were relapsing after overcoming eating disorders in their youth, and others were experiencing them for the first time.

Naomi Burton Isaacs, a public relations executive in New York, had been obsessed about her weight most of her life, she said, but it was only at age 45 that her dieting grew extreme and she developed an addiction to laxatives. She swallowed 25 pills a day. Ms. Burton Isaacs, who is 5-foot-9, withered to 105 pounds.

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Family Secrets: Mom, Interrupted

 

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photo getty images

 Manic depression pushed Ashley Prentice Norton to the brink of suicide. It took six months, her husband’s love, and 17 rounds of electroshock therapy to bring her back to her kids–alive.

It’s 8 a.m. on a Friday morning in early May. My 8-year-old daughter, Anderson, and I hold hands and walk up the three flights to her classroom. Normally, she leaves me standing outside in the crowd of parents, waiting for her to blow me a kiss. But today, I’m helping the girls make sandwiches for the local community food pantry. In her free hand, Anderson swings the supplies I bought the night before: a pound of smoked Virginia ham, a pound of Provolone, and three loaves of potato bread.

Almost all of the girls are already there, sitting in their mini-chairs with plastic gloves on. I know these girls. I was here in October to help them put on their costumes for the Halloween parade, have had them over for play dates, have listened to Anderson talk about them at the dinner table. I know they’re all going through a Harry Potter phase, racing to see who can finish the books first. They are adorable, familiar.

I turn and greet their teacher, and she returns my hello with an effusive hug. “Thanks for coming, Mrs. Norton. We’re so happy you’re here,” she says. It’s the enthusiastic welcome you’d expect after an absence far longer than the 18 hours it’s been since school pick-up–and I understand why. There was a time when I rarely made it to pick-up or drop-off, when I could barely slap together one sandwich, much less help with 40. I couldn’t retain the name of Anderson’s teacher. Honestly, I wasn’t even completely clear on where the school was.

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The Paradox of Our Age

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“The Paradox of Our Age”

by Bob Moorehead, Words Aptly Spoken

We have taller buildings but shorter tempers; wider freeways but narrower viewpoints; we spend more but have less; we buy more but enjoy it less; we have bigger houses and smaller families; more conveniences, yet less time; we have more degrees but less sense; more knowledge but less judgment; more experts, yet more problems; we have more gadgets but less satisfaction; more medicine, yet less wellness; we take more vitamins but see fewer results. We drink too much; smoke too much; spend too recklessly; laugh too little; drive too fast; get too angry quickly; stay up too late; get up too tired; read too seldom; watch TV too much and pray too seldom.

We have multiplied our possessions, but reduced our values; we fly in faster planes to arrive there quicker, to do less and return sooner; we sign more contracts only to realize fewer profits; we talk too much; love too seldom and lie too often. We’ve learned how to make a living, but not a life; we’ve added years to life, not life to years. We’ve been all the way to the moon and back, but have trouble crossing the street to meet the new neighbor. We’ve conquered outer space, but not inner space; we’ve done larger things, but not better things; we’ve cleaned up the air, but polluted the soul; we’ve split the atom, but not our prejudice; we write more, but learn less; plan more, but accomplish less; we make faster planes, but longer lines; we learned to rush, but not to wait; we have more weapons, but less peace; higher incomes, but lower morals; more parties, but less fun; more food, but less appeasement; more acquaintances, but fewer friends; more effort, but less success. We build more computers to hold more information, to produce more copies than ever, but have less communication; drive smaller cars that have bigger problems; build larger factories that produce less. We’ve become long on quantity, but short on quality.

These are the times of fast foods and slow digestion; tall men, but short character; steep in profits, but shallow relationships. These are times of world peace, but domestic warfare; more leisure and less fun; higher postage, but slower mail; more kinds of food, but less nutrition. These are days of two incomes, but more divorces; these are times of fancier houses, but broken homes. These are days of quick trips, disposable diapers, cartridge living, throw-away morality, one-night stands, overweight bodies and pills that do everything from cheer, to prevent, quiet or kill. It is a time when there is much in the show window and nothing in the stock room. Indeed, these are the times!”

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