Daily Life


Why We Need Outliers

We need outliers, and we need their ideas. We need the involvement in our lives, especially in the big projects on which we work, of those who see the world differently and think about things in ways which will surprise, if not discomfort us. For those who will quickly say that they already embrace diversity and discomfort, let them appreciate that those are their comfort zones, and they need the input of others, others who privilege uniformity and comfort. Whatever our default position is, be it political, social, spiritual or psychological, we......

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The Opportunity of Regret

Regret can be good. At the very least, regret is a part of every life, and something that each of us will deal with at some time or another. Who among us does not look back at decisions we have made, paths we have taken, and not had the feeling that we wish we had made some other choice? I sure have. It’s part of being being human. So is how we deal with it. While we probably all have some regrets, they need not make us as miserable as they often......

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Video: Why New Year's Resolutions Are Important

From Odyssey Network’s Faith on the Record series: Brad Hirschfield on Why New Year’s Resolutions Are Important.? “Every year most of us make them, and most of us break them, but it’s not success that matters as much as the statement of intent.”   Odyssey Networks tells the stories of faith in action changing the world for the better.? Their stories explore a wide range of issues including peace, tolerance, social justice and the environment.? Visit Odyssey Networks at www.odysseynetworks.org....

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The Year of the Selfie

Drum roll! What is Oxford Dictionary’s word of the year for 2013?? SELFIE! The term describes photos that people take of themselves to post on social media sites or similar platforms. The use of the word has gone up a staggering 17,000% in the past year. Not only have we had expected celebrity selfies from the likes of Beyonce, Justin Bieber, and Kim Kardashian but, also we had an ill-advised political selfie of President Obama with the PM’s from Great Britain and Denmark that made big news. And our first Papal selfie.......

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The Story of You

How would you begin the story of you? Where or when does it begin? Imagine that you are about to tell your story. You know, “Once upon a time there was this person, and her story begins…”? What comes next? All stories have beginnings, and all people have stories. All families and nations have them too. In fact, not only do we all have them, they may be the essence of who we are. So how would you choose to begin yours? Once you have an answer (and feel free to have......

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Standing Your Ground

How many opportunities do we lose out on, and how much time do we waste worrying about where we aren’t, instead of genuinely appreciating where we are?? How much energy do we expend agonizing over who we aren’t, as opposed to celebrating who we are? None of us is perfect, and I believe that striving to be more and to be better is a crucially important part of a well-lived life.? So too is feeling the rich possibility and potential of who we are, as we are, wherever we are.?? In fact,......

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Beauty in the Eyes of the Beholder

How do you react when you see a physically disabled person? Do you stare? Do you avert your gaze? What do you feel – discomfort, shock, fear, anxiety, curiosity, compassion? Has the way you responded to seeing the physically disabled changed over time? Research shows that viewers of positive portrayals of the disabled on television programs and in the movies are more likely to perceive discrimination and less likely to have negative emotions when encountering people with disabilities. There is what researchers call the “novel hypothesis”. Not only are people who are......

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Jury Duty Isn't Joyless: Exhibit A

I am sitting in a jurors’ lounge in Manhattan with about 100 other people, waiting to be selected for a trial or excused from jury duty (until my next summons arrives six years from now). At the cost of some embarrassment, let me be honest: I’m here after two approved postponements and one no-show/absence, which means this summons to duty had many more red lines and threats on it than previous ones. I’ve been one of the Americans behind the growing problem of courts struggling to find enough jurors for trials. So,......

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An Experiment in Gratitude

Check out what I picked for this week’s top inspiring video:? Much work has been done in recent years on the science of happiness and one recurring finding is that expressing gratitude significantly increases our happiness.? Interestingly, the more specific we are about what we are grateful for the greater the increase in our happiness. Try doing this practice this week. 1.?? ?Think about who in your life has been really influential.? Who has had the greatest impact? Who did something really amazing or important for you? 2.?? ?Write down as much......

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