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Positive Thinking

What I’ve Learned: Reflections back on 2015

By | Explorations, Life 101, Positive Thinking, Zen | 2 Comments

Ed Loh is an explorer of life’s greater questions. Of almost everyone he meets, Ed asks “What have you learned?” – So Ed, here’s what I’ve learned: We live in a universe of constant change. People come and go. So do jobs, finances, and all material goods. What matters most is not what we have, or even what we do with it – it’s how we are; our state of being. Are we happy? Are we uplifted? Do we uplift others by simply being ourselves? We’ve seen good friends pass in 2015. Locations change and careers transition. Amid life’s challenges, have been many moments of glory. I’ve met wonderful people, made new friends and reconnected with old. I’ve let go of much of what I owned and embarked on the essentialist’s path to “simplify my life” – which, as you know, is actually quite complicated. And in January 2016, I…






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On Living with Impermanence

By | Life 101, Positive Thinking, Zen | No Comments

Recent events in Paris have acted as further potent reminders of our fragility, uncertainty and impermanence on this earth. What do we do with our time here? How do we persist in the face of such chaos? This post simply summons wisdom from the following quotes I’ve collected over the years and found to be most profound in addressing feelings of uncertainty. If you have any quotes to add, please do so in the comments below… Quote #1 from – The Epic of Gilgamesh – A powerful reminder to make the absolute most of what little we have and to show up every day… “When the heavenly gods created human beings, they kept everlasting life for themselves and gave us death. So, Gilgamesh, accept your fate. Each day, wash your head, bathe your body, and wear clothes that are sparkling fresh. Fill your stomach with tasty food. Play, sing, dance, and be…






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Ben Ahrens on Uplifting Vitality, Self-Optimization & Sustainable High-Performance

By | Explorations, Food for thought, Health Insights, Human Performance, Life 101, Lifestyle, Medicine, Mental Perfomance, Mind-Body, Physical Performance, Podcast, Positive Thinking, Self Improvement | No Comments

In a recent interview, I had the pleasure of joining Alex Charfen of CHARFEN and identifier of the Entrepreneurial Personality Type (EPT). In this interview, we discuss the role of vitality in healing, recovery and life at large. Vitality, as I’ve come to define it as “the capacity to create”, is the most valuable and at the same time underappreciated resource most entrepreneurs possess. My aim is to fix that. Check out this fun interview: EP.25: Ben Ahrens Shifted the Paradigm of Medicine and Health with One Deep Breath0 Sep 24, 2015 – show notes: Ben Ahrens began his entrepreneurial journey working with athletes and post-rehab patients as a corrective-exercise and performance-enhancement specialist. Suddenly, in 2008 Ben was diagnosed with late-stage Neurological Lyme Disease and suffered crippling symptoms. The doctors and support groups told him he was broken and that his identity as an athlete would be forever lost. Undeterred,…






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what matters most

What Matters Most

By | Health Insights, Life 101, Metaphysics, Positive Thinking, Recovery, Self Improvement, Zen | 2 Comments

It’s so simple yet so elusive. I thought I had it figured out; the thing of greatest value and what it is that matters most. Vitality, of course! Without vitality (aka, life force, energy or the capacity to do our work on this planet) what else really matters? Sure money is important and so is time. But we all know that money without time has no value. Just as we may now assume that money + time without vitality ultimately has no use. But is there something else? Something who’s value is even more fundamental such that in it’s absence, even worldly resources and the energy to make use of them would still fall short? I wondered. As if an answer to my pondering,  yesterday morning, as I rummaged through some old file folders of mine, out popped this loose-leaf cryptic “note to self” I’d written when I was ill for…






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Change Your Attitude – The Power of Choice

By | Life 101, Lifestyle, Mind-Body, Physical Performance, Positive Thinking, Self Improvement, Zen | One Comment

I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. I’d never been so close to death, or so I felt. We’d been hiking for 3 days with no food and little water. Five hours ago the muscles up the back of my legs and base of my spine were cramping in spasm but now there was little energy for them to even attempt self-preservation, let alone power my staggering footsteps further up the mountain.   I veered off the rocky path and collapsed into a heap, panting, sweating and freezing at the same time as the early spring sun set off the trail leading up to the top of Thunder Mountain, Bryce Canyon. My knee was shot, my body ached, my lungs gasped for air, my leg muscles where gone – completely done. And worst of all, so was I.   The BOSS (Bolder Outdoor Survival School) instructor approached me out as…






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Don’t Chase Happiness, Chase “Hell Yes!”

By | Explorations, Life 101, Positive Thinking, Uncategorized, Zen | One Comment

Let’s talk business for a sec. This business of “being happy”, aka the notion that our primary goal in life should be, to be supremely happy in all situations and at all times. (Just now, after I wrote that second sentence, I popped it into google out of curiosity and here is the first thing I found.) As a culture we hold this notion that business, wealth, success (and sometimes secrets) will guide us to happiness. We hold the precept that happiness is the goal. We’ve made a terrible mistake. Happiness is not the goal but the measure of success. It’s a metric. A feedback that let’s us know, as human beings, how in-line with our purpose and potential we are. Am I doing the work that suits me? Am I making use of my unique talents? Is my inner wisdom and creativity being freely expressed and fully appreciated? Am I supported…






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Making Tea & Cookies

By | Explorations, Life 101, Positive Thinking, Self Improvement | 4 Comments

I swore after college that I’d never take another writing class as long as I lived… Some promises, perhaps, are better off broken. We’ll see…  This past Tuesday evening I found myself willingly sitting amid a classroom of writers in a YMCA Literary Arts, creative non-fiction class. Listening as my classmates read their work, it struck me how we all use the same words to form such distinct impressions. Below is my first assignment. Its’ message is simply this: We all start out with the same raw ingredients in life, be they words, concepts, or even tangible goods, to some degree. How we choose to combine them, and what we create from them, is the ultimate form of individual expression, that when woven together, forms the fabric of our lives. Here’s a short story I hope encapsulates this concept: Making Tea & Cookies         Emre set aside his blanket-pack…






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How We Make Progress in Work and Life

By | Life 101, Positive Thinking, Productivity, Self Improvement | One Comment

Author, psychologist, and Silicon valley leadership expert Gustavo Rabin  says: There are three things in life that better well work, in order for your life to work well… And they are: Your relationship to your work Your relationship to others, and Your relationship to yourself Many books have been written on all subjects in each category so I will not delve into psychology here. What will be most advantageous and get us to the point, will be the simple identification of the one universal roadblock that stands in the way of all personal, professional, and relational progress: Doubt. – Everyone has it, despite its utter uselessness. Still, as Friedrich Nietzsche so eloquently put it, “the irrationality of a thing is no argument against its existence, rather a condition of it.” So we’ve got that squared away. Now, we can move on to the 9 actionable practices that must be implemented,…






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How to Achieve Balance: by Accepting There’s No Such Thing

By | Life 101, Mind-Body, Positive Thinking, Self Improvement | 2 Comments

  At a glance it appears  she’s done it. She has reached a “balance point” that prevents her from falling, but a closer look with a keener eye will reveal that what we think of as balance is actually achieved by a continuous series of self-corrective movements, each aimed at bringing the subject back to center. If you were to watch the gymnast up close,  you could see that the muscles in her shoulders work constantly as she subtly shifts her weight forward and backward, side to side, to find and regain her center. Random little event after event will pull her away –  a gust of wind, a subtle vibration, a muscle-twitch, a misguided thought. Still, she regains composure and to the outside world, all is calm – she is balanced. In summation, we can see that the true skill in mastering a handstand has little to do with…






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Plugging Into Your Hard-wired Happiness

By | Life 101, Lifestyle, Positive Thinking, Self Improvement, Video | No Comments

The following presentation by Srikumar S. Rao, Ph.D was filmed in May of 2009 and made it’s way to the homepage of Ted.com on March 7th of 2010 where it has since been viewed nearly 500,000 times! The contents of this talk are universal, timeless, and absolutely true…. “Life is short. And uncertain. It is like a drop of water skittering around on a lotus leaf. You never know when it will drop off the edge and disappear. So each day is far too precious to waste. And each day that you are not radiantly alive and brimming with cheer is a day wasted. Stop right now and evaluate your life. YOUR LIFE. As it is right now. Are you, by and large and daily variations aside, happier now than you have ever been? Do you have the inner conviction that you are on the path that is just right…






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Is Life What You Make of It?: Q&A

By | Positive Thinking, Self Improvement | 2 Comments

Heard it before have you? “Life is what you make it.” Or, “The world is what we make of it.” – Sounds very Hallmark, or perhaps, like something you’d find in a fortune-cookie. Well, it’s time we crack that cookie open and examine the validity of its contents…. Q: Is life really what you make of it?                                                                           A: Yes.  Short story:  Once upon a time, two foreigners happened upon a small town and met with the mayor before coming to live there…   In his meeting with the mayor, the first foreigner asked, “what is it like to live here?” – to which the mayor replied, “first, why don’t you tell me what it is like…






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Why Advice Doesn’t Work and What to Rely on Instead

By | Lifestyle, Positive Thinking | No Comments

  So you find yourself sitting on a park bench, weighing the pros and cons of what has grown in your mind, to be the mother of all decisions. What started as a simple left or right on life’s I-95 has branched into a complex network of stop-lights and intersections, each holding over you, the power to determine your entire future; so it often seems. You know that choosing one path necessarily entails forgoing all others, and at no other time then in that moment, is it more crucial to keep your hands on the wheel. But you’re afraid of taking a wrong turn. Suddenly, you throw your arms in the air and cry out: “I just wish someone would tell me what to do?” The struggle to answer this question, what should I do, for any one of life’s decisions however big or small, is not a sign of…






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