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Be Aware: Training Your “Puppy Mind”

A puppy can be trained to be a faithful and loving companion. So can your mind. Practitioners of meditation often use the term “monkey mind” to describe the untrained mind: a mind that grasps wildly and randomly at whatever passes through its consciousness; a mind that seizes greedily at every passing thought; a mind unaware […]

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Be Sweet: Giving up Sugar and Savoring the Real Sweetness of Life

I gave up sugar a week ago. I am not bragging. It’s only been a week, and a week doesn’t especially give you bragging rights. And it certainly doesn’t earn you the privilege of finger-wagging. So just to be clear: I am not wagging my finger at anyone. But I do want to tell you […]

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How To Be Wise: Want wisdom? Just breathe.

What’s the wisest decision you can make in the new year? Simple: Breathe. Just breathe. Your wisdom is as close as your next breath.In the moments before harsh words escape your mouth.  In the seconds before you lift a fork to partake in the miracle of nourishment.  While being put on hold during a customer […]

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How To Be Devoted: Wishing won’t make it easier. Practice will.

I wish . . . I wish I could play the cello.  I wish I could do calligraphy.  I wish I could rock climb.  I wish I could grow an organic garden.  I wish I could speak a foreign language. I wish . . . I wish . . . I wish . . . […]

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How To Be Unburdened: Stop wrestling with your negative thoughts!

Yesterday on Facebook, I posted a simple proposal: “Name one thing you can let go of today to lighten your load.” I expected to get concrete answers: meetings, errands, appointments, household clutter, or chores. What I got back surprised me.  Most of the answers were not about concrete objects or time-sensitive work, but about habitual thoughts, […]

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How To Be Happy: Forget your troubles? Easier sung than done!

Remember the Judy Garland song that goes,  “Forget your troubles! C’mon get happy!”? It’s a great tune if you want to get up and dance.  But as advice goes, it’s pretty lousy.   First of all, it’s scarce on details.  Forget your troubles? How does one even begin  to do such a thing? Our troubles […]

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How To Be Patient: Rethinking Red Lights

When I was little, I used to love traffic signals.  I loved the way they kept our car rides interesting by punctuating otherwise tedious trips with spontaneous, colorful light shows.  I loved how they glowed at night like magical beacons in the darkness. I enjoyed the way they blinked and winked, like friendly robots that […]

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How To Be Grateful: “One of these days” … My philosophy of parenting

One of these days . . . One of these days my house will be clean. I will not find dirty socks stuffed between the couch cushions because it is apparently too far to walk to the hamper.  I will not have to muffle a cry of pain in the middle of the night because […]

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How To Be Relaxed: Don’t give in to “Prepositional Panic”

I suffer intermittently from a widely suffered yet rarely diagnosed syndrome.  It’s called Prepositional Panic.  I thought I might describe the symptoms to you so that in case you suffer from the same ailment, you might seek treatment for your symptoms.   Those who suffer from Prepositional Panic might find that they suffer from a […]

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Be Mindful: Do the dishes just to do the dishes

“Washing the dishes is at the same time a means and an end; that is, not only do we do the dishes in order to have clean dishes, we also do the dishes just to do the dishes, to live fully in each moment while washing them.” – Zen Master, Thich Nhat Hanh It was […]

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