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Master of one Renown writer, teacher and Buddhist nun Pema Chodron tells the story of being sent by her teacher to direct North America’s foremost Tibetan Buddhist monastery. After years of devotion, Chodron excelled at practice, scripture, stillness and meditation. But in her new position, Chodron discovered that she was no Buddha. She quickly learned that she had no idea how to lead effectively, and people were not shy about letting her know how bad she was at it. Her...

I discovered something essential about being a leader many years ago during my drama therapy internship at the West Haven Veterans Hospital. I was left in charge of eight burly Vietnam veterans to run their weekly “relationship lab”; a group which used improvised scenes to explore styles of communication and the effects of PTSD on interactions.

“One of the simplest paths to deep change is for the less powerful to speak as much as they listen, and for the more powerful to listen as much as they speak.” — Gloria Steinem Way back when I was a student and budding practitioner of psychotherapy, I took refuge in the wise words of writer/therapist Sheldon Kopp. He borrowed the title for his book “If You Meet the Buddha on the Road, Kill Him!” from an ancient Buddhist Koan....

A little while ago I crossed paths with the most gorgeous, good natured, collarless puppy. I named him Brad Pitt-Bull and took him home. He was very friendly and well-behaved for a three-month old pup. Pit Bulls have scary reputations, but this little guy followed me around everywhere, obeyed all my commands, and waited for the chance to shower me with kisses, snuggle in my lap and fall asleep. I talked to my “in the know” dog friends and learned...

When you think about the great leaders in your life, what qualities do they generally possess? Since we are all leaders in some way (I’m talking to you, mothers, healers and even administrative assistants!) it’s a good question to ask. I’ll bet on your list is an ability to find humor in many situations, without treating serious ones in a flippant manner.

Years ago, I learned about my limitations from a dog I rescued up the road. This summer, when we picked up this rascally-angel from the pound, I sensed we were in for it. Kedra (for my Facebook followers who saw the post introducing her, {click for cutie-pic!} there really is no “n” in her name, it’s just that since everybody adds it, I thought I’d simply introduce her that way), the new addition to the family, is a lover, a...

September: That bittersweet month for summer lovers when the lightly marked appointment books and lively green memories fade into the speckled background of fall foliage. It’s a time of new beginnings: a new school year, new projects, new ambitions, goals and if you’re lucky, a new pair of boots. Change is literally in the air, and in the quality and vibrancy of the light. Many books are written about human beings’ fear of change. My observation is that it isn’t...

If you have been hanging out online, you’ve probably noticed the copious amounts of free stuff that entrepreneurial practitioners like myself — teachers, coaches, artists, writers, etc. — have to offer.* To begin with, there are blogs and articles that showcase skills, philosophies and advice — information you used to have to purchase via book, magazine or other publications. Blog posts and other online written materials enable you to get to know a practitioner’s voice. The idea is that if...

Independence. What a wonderful thing. It is at the heart and soul of the American consciousness and in many ways it is synonymous with freedom. Summer is the time of year we celebrate it. I recently read a story in the New York Times about a wealthy, youngish man who gave up his lavish home and possessions to spend time with the people in his life and travel. It seemed like a noble calling, but, as the article revealed, this...

Ann’s boss was one of those bosses. Think: Devil Wears Prada. Although Ann’s boss was well-respected in the field, efficient, organized and detail oriented, she also had a reputation for being uncaring and highly critical. Her employees made a pastime of disliking her. And then, just a few years after working for “Cruella,” Ann found herself in a pretty cushy position, leading a team of copy writers at a new firm. “No matter what I do, I’m not going to...