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Somewhere in my news feed I saw a clip of our nation’s elected leader in Houston, telling the media and hard-hit flood victims, “Have a good time everybody.” It reminded me of the moment when, in the throes of the worst tragedy ever to hit my beloved hometown of New York, our mayor encouraged us to “go shopping.” Leaders may believe that encouraging people to make light or turn away from tragedy calms them, but I know the opposite to...

Years ago I heard a captivating talk by Resonate author Nancy Duarte at the World Domination Summit. Duarte’s talk, delivered seamlessly and in fact, resonating deeply, was about the elements of a great speech.  Her talk modeled everything she spoke of: it had a good story arc in which the audience was the hero, and she, as guide, clearly illustrated the potential for our success as speakers. She spoke mostly of renown speakers like Martin Luther King Jr. and Steve Jobs, but she included just the right...

If one doesn’t immediately come to mind, you’re probably scanning your life for your latest bad habit. Is it the late-night, TV-watching snacks? Or the TV watching itself? The addictive drugs or alcohol you’ve struggled with over the years? Maybe it’s more like a vice, like coffee. Or your phone. As you wade through the pile of destructive habits, I’ll wager there’s one that’s worse. A killer that lurks beneath the other habits, and one you may not have even...

This weekend I celebrated the 50th year of a close friend. It was a momentous and intimate gathering, and many people who could not attend contributed their thoughts and feelings about the birthday girl via letters to be read aloud. As we sat around the candlelit table, sharing these heartfelt words of appreciation, I could feel what a profound and powerful gift was being exchanged. We were all deeply moved, ricocheting between bursts of laughter and tears. My friend saw...

Donald Trump recently declared that he would not take the advice of his seasoned political colleagues to shift tactics because “It’s just not who I am.” A pundit immediately responded, saying, of course — one has to be true to one’s self — plus, you can’t change someone who’s 70 and stuck in their ways. This brings up a lot of questions about authenticity, malleability, our behavior and our ability to change it. Before we delve in, here are a...

  Not too long ago, nestled between the political rants, adorable animal videos and proverbial ‘happy life’ photos of my Facebook feed, this video stopped me in my tracks. In it, a young girl with a prosthetic leg receives a fancy doll who also has one, and she is overwhelmed by raw emotion that appears to be part joy for receiving a gift she so badly wanted, and part self-compassion, sparked from the experience of being mirrored. “She’s just like...

The other day I saw a short video talk that reminded me of a dear friend who lives on the other coast. I Facebook messaged it to her with a little note. She messaged me back within minutes, expressing gratitude and adding a few comments and questions. We had a sweet little back and forth. Later that night, I was fortunate to see the Tony Award-winning musical, “Hamilton.” As I tried to comprehend what life was like during the time...

5:45 am is not my best time, especially if there’s no coffee around. But that’s the time I was groggily awaiting a tour bus to take me from my desert hotel to a sacred site in Australia, a very large rock in the middle of the Outback called Uluru.   Without an International driving license, a professional tour was really the only way for me to see an Uluru sunrise — a spectacular daily event as the light comes up...

Whether or not you live in the Northeast, you’ve probably heard that winter came for a belated visit, right in the middle of spring. Some people loved the fact that after a warm, arid season, they got a taste of winter. But most bemoaned the fact that they had to dig out their winter wears again, one week after walking around in shirt sleeves. And on that note, the late visit from winter put a big dent in my spring....

I’ve generally kept my political views out of public sight — not as a matter of pride or principal; it is simply good business. I would hate to think that my political views propelled an otherwise inclined person to reject me as their guide through the self-confronting and rewarding process of stepping into one’s authority. But that choice was much easier before social media, before an intense polarization between parties, candidates, and ideologies was paraded before us via constant stream....