The power of your autopilot

Don't underestimate the power of your autopilot. Learning to drive a manual-transmission car is the best metaphor I can think of to explain mindlessness, and the relationship between the conscious and autopilot parts of your mind. Automatic transmissions may work just fine to translate your intended direction via the steering wheel, gas pedal and brakes. But people are ofte...
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We will never force change

A poem I wrote early in my work in addiction treatment .... We will never force change It comes from within and runs from pressure We can only believe in the goodness that bears us all And the connection that can open with anyone With the right patience & acceptance All the clichés whirl around my head With meaning I can’t believe was absent When it comes to self-im...
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Why feeling stress is necessary for happiness

If you ask yourself  "How do I feel right now?" Is there a ready answer? Very often, to be successful in our society, we must pump up our thinking abilities.  Many of us lead very rich thinking lives and we certainly benefit in practical ways because  of it.  We must be able to problem solve and analyze and wordsmith.  So if you are a skilled thinker, it can be easy to s...
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The Do’s and Don’ts of Persuasion

  It may not always seem like it, but fundamentally we all change in a similar way. Ideally in childhood our parents let us experience an appropriate amount of uncomfortable consequences when we acted out. By experiencing this discomfort, we identified our own personal reasons why the behavior (or misbehavior) was not in our best interest. And ideally, this mechanis...
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How to avoid the most common obstacle to change

It's Tuesday morning and you are three days into your new clean eating plan. You've been feeling great and proud of yourself. But this morning was rough. You got up late, the kids were arguing the entire way to school, and now you are facing that box of donuts in the break room with far less resolve than you had about skipping dessert last night. This is where the ...
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How to find your authenticity

In a great 90's movie, "City Slickers", the weathered and wise "Curley" torments Billy Crystal's character by promising the answer to one of life's greatest questions..."What's the meaning of life?"  Even my ears perked up at the thought of this answer somehow being delivered by the end of the movie.  Eventually Billy Crystal's character does come to his own understanding of th...
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