Category Archives for "Exercises"

How You Respond to the Issue….Is the Issue

The smoke alarm in my bedroom went off at 6:30 am this morning.  Absolutely nothing was happening in terms of fire or smoke, but when I tried to turn it off or dismantle the battery, a voice message kept saying “Fire! Fire” Carbon monoxide.”Bewildered and annoyed by the constant beeping, I called the fire department. […]

“Have a nice day” – how about even 45 minutes?

It was one of THOSE days. Nothing overly disastrous. Just little glitches and annoyances, one after the other, with glimmers of gladness and goodness before the next wave of yuck. Three-car accident on the freeway, 15 minutes of creep and crawl for us commuters, fortunately no one killed or seriously injured in the accident itself, […]

Bouquets to Art; Deep Bows to Creativity

I recently walked through the Bouquets to Art exhibit at the De Young Museum in San Francisco, an annual festival of local florists, garden clubs, landscape architects, etc. each creating a floral sculpture embodying a painting/sculpture in the museum. (As above.) Hundreds of them. And as I walked through, delight, amazement, wonder, and awe bubbling […]

Asleep at the Wheel

One of those sudden computer updates, so common these days, where I have to allow Microsoft to access (send, revise, delete) input from my Google email account and allow access/storage of all of my public communications, or I can’t access my Gmail through Outlook. It was the conversation with my computer guru that was the […]

Comparing Mind

It is better to do one’s own dharma, even though imperfectly, than to do another’s dharma, even though perfectly. Bhagavad Gita I saw this quote on a poster in the stairwell every time I walked from my room to the dining hall when teaching at the Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health two weeks ago. […]

Memorial Day – War and Forgiveness

When I taught about resilience in Freiburg, Germany four weeks ago, one of the participants asked about tools for dealing with the collective trauma people still carried from World War II. I shared stories about forgiveness and reconciliation rituals and gatherings that have been held throughout Europe in recent years. And led the group in […]

A Shared Moment of “Wow!”

As the final notes of a public performance of Mozart’s Masonic Funeral music faded away, into the deep silence came an audible “Wow!”  And that “wow” was from Ronan Mattin, a 9 year-old autistic boy attending the concert with his grandfather, who acknowledge Ronan is primarily non-verbal and later told WGBH Boston radio: “I can […]

New Resilience Even from Losses Resolved Long Ago

I received the most encouraging testimonial about the Creating a Coherent Narrative exercise (see below) from someone in the U.K. who heard it on the Sounds True Brain Change summit last week: “I took a pause from taking notes at the slide ‘Coherent Narrative’ and started using the post-traumatic growth exercise on the death of […]

Realistic Optimism – the Goldilocks Sweet Spot of a Resilience Mindset

My friend Tracy, whose husband Dale suffered a minor stroke in February, (see Supporting Another Person’s Resilience – Brilliantly) is learning that tricky but essential sweet spot of a resilience mindset – realistic optimism. Not too pessimistic, “Oh well, better not take any risks or try too hard,” that could lead to depression, lack of […]

Resilience Becomes a Mindset

That which does not kill us makes us stronger. – Friedrich Nietzsche Well, that’s one way of looking at it. And we can reluctantly acknowledge the truth of what the brilliant German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche was saying so concisely: we learn to be strong and resilient from experience…and from learning from that experience. The learning […]

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