Category Archives for "Exercises"

Running Makes Your Brain Smarter

An article yesterday in the New York Times Health/Science section on “Exercise and the Ever-Smarter Human Brain” provides some strong incentives to include running or walking in our new year’s intentions. The evidence is steadily mounting that our brains work better, even into old age, when fueled by regular physical activity – period. Evolutionary biologists […]

Human Strength and Goodness After Sandy Hook

(I taught The Healing Power of Self-Compassion in the Wednesday morning meditation class at Spirit Rock Meditation Center yesterday. The post below came in from the Greater Good Science Center at U.C. Berkeley about an hour before I taught the class. I was able to incorporate the main ideas of the research into my talk. […]


Transforming trash into music and joy Please, please view the less-than-four minutes landFillharmonic video of the recycled orchestra, kids playing classical music on instruments transformed from trash in Cateura, Paraguay. Hear Mozart’s Eine Kleine Nachtmusik played on a cello made from an oil can and wooden pegs used to make gnocchi. You’ll be amazed and […]

The Grasshopper in the Salad… Adventures in Resilience

I buy my organic lettuce greens and salad mixings at the grocery story, come home, toss up a large salad, large enough to serve myself for lunch and put several containers away in the fridge for later. As I go to eat my salad, sitting on top of a spinach leaf is a big, juicy […]

Connecting through Safe and Loving Touch

As we move into the busy-ness, sometimes frenzy, of a holiday season, most of us earnestly seek the sense of connection, belonging and inner peace that can come from giving and receiving love and affection. Sharing the love, generosity and kindness that buoys and sustains us through times that could otherwise be lonely or disappointing. […]

Blessing the Space Between Us

(a practice for Thanksgiving, written by my friend Bette; title adapted from John O’Donohue’s lovely collection: To Bless the Space Between Us) Blessing Space Between Us May the presence and power of spirit surround, support and guide us and keep us safe. May we remember the deep love we have for each other. May we […]

The Cure for Exhaustion is Wholeheartedness

One of my favorite resources for recovering resilience of all time comes from the poet David Whyte reporting a conversation he had with his good friend Br. David Stendl-Rast. David was burned out working in the non-profit world, hesitant to risk following his passion to become a full-time poet. David asked Br. David, “What’s the […]

Hanging Out with Healthy Brains

Dan Siegel, author of The Mindful Brain, once said at a conference focused on resilience and well-being, “Why are we all here at this conference today when we could be home learning everything we want to learn from a book? Because our brains learn better in the resonance, in the dialogue, with each other.” Because […]

Kindness and Connection

(These Resources for Recovering Resilience explore what I’ve come to call the 5 C’s of Coping: Calm, Compassion, Clarity, Connection, Competence. (Courage is certainly a part of resilience as well, and will be included in future posts.) The exercise below guides us in connecting with others through the core value or virtue of Kindness.) Kindness […]

Practicing Compassion

I had just returned from presenting at the FACES conference on The Art and Science of Mindfulness and Counseling in Seattle. A wonderful opportunity to meet with and talk deeply with Kristin Neff, author of Self-Compassion, about the necessity of self-compassion practice, as therapists, as human beings, particularly as mindfulness practices are becoming more integrated […]

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