April 5, 2016

What is the key to getting more success and happiness out of life? If you believe in the Law of Attraction, you might trust the maxim that “like attracts like” and that by focusing on the positive you can attract the positive. Believe you’re going to land that job, win that contest, find the ideal mate, and good things will come your way. To a certain degree it makes sense, because nothing good ever comes out of negative thinking. But… Read more

March 25, 2016

About once a year, I’ll pick up a book about Jesus in search of fresh insights on the man and his mission. My personal preference is that these books not be tied to any specific dogma or religion, but that they explore the many mysteries and myths that surround Jesus and his life. And I found just such a book in Jesus, the Human Face of God by scholar Jay Parini. The author identifies himself as a Christian and a… Read more

March 17, 2016

The other night, I was driving home from a late day at work, when something caught my ear on the radio. It was a live broadcast of John Kasich’s victory speech after winning the March 15th Ohio Republican primary. And what surprised me was that it sounded more like a motivational speech than a political one. The part of the speech that stood out to me was about finding your purpose, a topic I’ve covered several times at Patheos in the… Read more

March 11, 2016

The marketer Seth Godin recently put out a short blog post that was so thought-provoking, it stuck with me all day. It was about the nature of work and how, no matter where we’re employed, our jobs often leave us feeling stressed. Godin reasons that: Responsibility without freedom is stressful. There are plenty of jobs in this line of work, just as there are countless jobs where you have neither freedom nor responsibility. These are good jobs to walk away… Read more

February 29, 2016

Have you ever tried to meditate and found you just couldn’t do it? Maybe you like the idea of meditation, are well aware of its benefits, but you just can’t get your racing, over-thinking mind to calm down enough to engage in the practice. This may help. About two years ago I wrote a Wake Up Call column titled How to Meditate like a Monk in 10 Easy Steps. It was based on a slim paperback book called Deep Meditation… Read more

February 22, 2016

The inspirational writer and business consultant Dawna Markova is a long-term cancer survivor who has been diagnosed with the disease on six different occasions. That’s not a typo, 6 different times. In fact, almost 30 years ago she was told she had only six months to live. Yet, after each diagnosis, Markova has battled back. I heard her interviewed on a Sounds True podcast and when this fact came out she was asked how she did it—how did she find the… Read more

February 17, 2016

Thomas Moore writes about it. Aretha Franklin sings with it. But even though they’re approaching it from two different perspectives, they share a unique ability—to touch the deepest part of our being, our souls, through their art. What is soul? According to the dictionary, it’s “a person’s moral or emotional nature, their sense of identity”—but in reality, we know it’s something that’s indefinable. A soul can’t be seen or touched, it can only be perceived within, and even then its… Read more

February 9, 2016

For me, the best part of this year’s Super Bowl wasn’t the snore of a game, but something that happened on the pre-game show. A clip was aired showing a player from the San Francisco 49ers, Anquan Boldin, being named the “2015 Walter Payton Man of the Year”. By NFL standards, Boldin has had a long career—13 years and counting. He won a Super Bowl with the Baltimore Ravens in 2013. But this award wasn’t for his heroics on the… Read more

February 3, 2016

I’ve been hearing about it on NPR, reading about it in the Wall Street Journal and New York Times and seeing it on various cable news shows. The story making the rounds this election-year goes something like this: There is a large part of the American electorate that is “angry and anxious”. People are “mad as hell” and think “the system is rigged against them.” They’re worried about losing their jobs to immigrants, about the power of big banks, about… Read more

January 24, 2016

If you had the choice, would you rather be happy or content? I’ve written about happiness several times on these pages, but it recently dawned on me that there’s a subtle difference between the two words. While the dictionary definitions of happy and content are fairly similar, for me happiness is best represented by this image: If you’re familiar with the happy face emoji, you may know that the same face is shown conveying a number of different emotions. It can… Read more

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