Anxiety

Relax Your Brain – You’ll Learn More and Be Happier!

I haven't met many people who say they wouldn't enjoy feeling more relaxed or even being able to relax-on-demand. The good news is that according to a study published in the journal Nature, learning how to get better at relaxing, not only feels good, but increases our brain's ability to remember new information (including strengths of mindfulness, compassion and joy).

The researchers in this study recruited eight epileptic volunteers who were shown 100 photos and then 30...

Altruism

Be Kind to Unkind People, They Need it Most

To be human is to be in relationship with difficult people.

The reality is if all the difficult people in our lives felt deep kindness in their hearts, they would cease to be difficult people. As Thich Nhat Hanh says, "Peace in oneself, peace in the world."

Aside from learning how to create a calm and stable mind, one of the months in my 6-month global online program A Course in Mindful...

Altruism

One Day, One Day, One Day

Lately I've had a lot of aggravation in my heart.

Right now there seems to be so much turbulence and violence, verbal and physical, in the world. On top of that,  because our brains' are wired with a negativity bias, we're automatically drawn to the fear, anger, and turbulence. The media knows this and so they keep updating their pages with new stories about negative things.

The cycle is vicious, depressing and contagious, leading to more...

compassion

The Truth About Time That We All Need to Remember

This will be a short piece because I know you're likely busy, but I promise it to be an important one.

Recently, I was eating with my family at a hotel restaurant in Liberia, Costa Rica and next to us I catch this older man who was sitting by himself, coming over to a young couple and placing a hand on both of their shoulders.

I overheard him saying, "I hope you don't mind an...

General

In Politics, Before You Speak, Consider these Three Questions

In the United States we're heading into a potential turbulent political atmosphere that has the potential to be disrupting to even our closet relationships.

You may remember from past elections, it's that moment we say something about some candidate or issue and as the last syllables leave our lips our brain has figured out that we have just ignited a fire that we won't be able to put out....

Anxiety

A Classic Natural Anti-Depressant Practice

Everyone at some point in their life will be affected by depression whether it's their own or someone they are close to. Almost 19 million Americans alone have periods where they feel a lack of pleasure or interest their usual activities combined with feeling tired and heavy, potentially overly emotional or numb, and an onslaught of negative and self defeating thoughts that can keep invading the mind over and over again.

The more periods...

General

Change in Yourself, Change in the World

Vietnamese Buddhist monk and author Thich Nhat Hanh once said, "Peace in oneself, peace in the world." Iconic singer and songwriter Michael Jackson wrote, "I'm lookin' at the man in the mirror, I'm asking him to change his ways. No message could have been any clearer, if you wanna make the world a better place, just look at yourself and make a change."

In The Now Effect you may have read about...

Bipolar

Three Common Mind Traps that Sink Happiness

There's a funny print cartoon that shows a man and woman sitting on the couch staring at a TV screen, and the caption reads, "It's 12 o'clock, do you know where your mind is?"

As time goes on and we grow from children to adolescents to adults, for many of us, somewhere along the way life begins to become routine. Day in and day out, whether we're walking, driving, talking, eating, going to the grocery...

General

I Officially Resign from Adulthood

Some days are just bad days when we wish we could give up this whole adult charade, go to recess, and get back to when times were a bit simpler.

Amen.

Life seems to get too serious as an adult, more responsibilities mean more worries, more stress, and more body aches.

I've spoken to hundreds of people about this exact issue and posed the question: "What does play mean to you?" Sadly, often the response...

General

7 Mindful Things You Can Do Today!

When people practice mindfulness they say things like, it makes me calm, it softens my body, it helps me be more aware of choice or I seem to be more clear about what matters. The question I love to follow with is, "what would the days, weeks and months ahead be like if there is more of this in your life?"

After this, there is often some kind of "aha moment." They say,...