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Showing posts from December 29, 2019

The Sound of One Hand Clapping

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"One morning in a local coffee shop, I was surprised to see a man at work on a little painting at a table nearby. It wasnt a place where artists gathered. I walked over, took a peek, and was surprised again. It was really good. I complimented the stranger on his work. He seemed to welcome the interruption, and I asked him a few questions. He was just passing through town and living from hand to mouth. Before long, having had nothing of the sort in mind, I found myself in a conversation that crossed into territory usually reserved for more intimate friends. All along, I halfway expected to be hit up for a little cash, but nothing of the sort happened. The more we talked, the more I was touched by this total stranger and his story..."


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How to Avoid Slipping Back into Bad Habits

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Making New Year’s resolutions? New research suggests you should prize the journey, not the destination.

By Kira M. Newman


You might already be aware that about 80 percent of New Year’s resolutions end in failure. Maybe you’ve taken steps to avoid that fate, like finding an accountability buddy, penciling your goal into your schedule, or downloading a habit-tracking app.

But there’s another pitfall to watch out for: success. What if you attain your goal—learn the language, lose the weight, go to bed earlier—and then, in the excitement of checking it off, fail to maintain it?

A new study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology found a way to keep people engaged in their goals even after the pride of triumph has worn off. It’s a common piece of advice that you’ve probably heard—and perhaps ignored: seeing your goals as a journey, not a destination.

Across six different experiments, Szu-Chi Huang and Jennifer Aaker from the Stanford Graduate School of Business studied ove…

The Peacock Chair: The Humble Beginnings of a Great Equalizer

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Could a chair be a symbol that connects us all? Well, from presidents to actors to even your own grandmother, for over a century, this chair has shown up time and time again in some of our most beloved images. But this piece of furniture has been more than just a beautiful place to rest—just take a look!

From presidents to prisoners, celebrities to shoe polishers, one chair has connected them all. For over a century this chair has gone nearly unnoticed, and yet it has been used as a symbol of power in some of the world’s most iconic images. This is not a throne of gold, no, its a chair of wicker; and its humble material and origins point to the fascinating promise of great “equalizers”.

By Sam Burns


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Conflict Resolution for Holy Beings

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From United States poet laureate Joy Harpo comes this radiant poem titled, "For Calling the Spirit Back from Wandering the Earth in Its Human Feet." Harjo is a member of the Mvskoke/Creek Nation and belongs to Oce Vpofv. She is the first Native American to serve as poet laureate.


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How to Make New Year’s Resolutions That Feel Good

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Christine Carter offers three steps to success in keeping your New Year’s resolutions.

By Christine Carter


You want to lose weight. Learn to meditate. Get out of debt. Eat more leafy greens. Call your mom more often.

But you’re afraid to really try, because of all the times you’ve tried before and failed. I meet plenty of people who refuse to make New Year’s resolutions for this reason: New Year’s resolutions can be a source of failure, year after year.

Research suggests that 88 percent of people have failed to stick to their resolutions to change. Frankly, that number seems low to me. Hasn’t everyone failed to keep a resolution before? My guess is that the only people who haven’t failed at a New Year’s resolution haven’t tried.

We fail to change our habits because our human brains crave routine and resist change. But it’s very discouraging to try to do things differently, only to find ourselves falling back into old patterns.

Having failed in the past is stressful—and it’s even more stres…

Playing Guitar with Your Toes & More Life Lessons from Mark Goffeney

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Although Mark Goffeney has no arms, he’s been playing the guitar since age nine. His talents as a musician are incredible, and his insights from a lifetime of performing can inspire us all to embrace our limitations more often!

As a life-long rocker, Mark Goffeney has always bucked what society expected of him. Including how we expect somebody to play the guitar. You see, Mark was born without arms, so, he shreds the guitar using his feet.

By Liesl Ulrich-Verderber


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Tiny Changes, Remarkable Results

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"James Clear is the founder of the Habits Academy and author of the New York Times bestselling book Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones. In this episode of Insights at the Edge, Tami Simon speaks with James about the mechanics of habit change specifically through careful, incremental daily improvements. James shares the dramatic story of the sports injury that nearly killed him when he was a teenager, as well as how his recovery experience informed his eventual career. Tami and James talk about how to discern what habits will serve you best and why small changes lead to big results. Finally, they discuss examples of bypassing through habit change and the optimal amount of time it takes to shift behaviors. "


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Late Migrations: A Jeweled Patchwork of Nature and Culture

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"The 112 essays in Renkl's first book, Late Migrations: A Natural History of Love and Loss, range from seven lines to just over four pages in length. Together they create a jeweled patchwork of nature and culture that includes her own family. This woven tapestry makes one of all the world's beings that strive to live and which, in one way or another, face mortality." This piece from NPR shares more.


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Wild Borders

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When human cultures rub up against each other, we talk of melting pots and borderlands. When geographic cultures meet up and create a free-flowing arrangement of habitats and life forms, the term used is Biogeographic transition zone. Russ Mcspadden shares the surprises such a vortex presents in this piece from Orion.


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How to Finish Your To-Do List and Run a Marathon in One Day!

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Could you check off your entire to-do list in one day? It’s not just possible, you can do it while having fun, doing what you love, and taking time to reflect! Here’s how!

Is it possible to check off your entire to-do list into one day? Even leave some time for creativity, exercise, and cooking a beautiful meal? Well, this doesn’t have to be a dream, in fact, we’re going to introduce you to a man who has conquered such an ideal day in a very unique way! It’s ideas like this that inspire our own versions!

By Liesl Ulrich-Verderber


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Leading Above the Line

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In this Farnam Street interview, Jim Dethmer, founder of The Conscious Leadership Group shares practical advice about becoming more self-aware, ditching the victim mindset, and connecting more fully with the people in our lives. This episode is a masterclass in understanding and regulating your thoughts and emotions. Dethmer covers how to operate from a place of love rather than fear and anger, the three ways you can increase your self-awareness, and the transformative power of 'the line.'


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Leaf Miners: the Unexpected Conservation Heroes

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Forget whatever you’ve heard about leaf miners, these common garden pests are little wonders that may be holding up an entire ecosystem! Head over to Hawaii with us to check out how these tiny creatures can have a big impact on conservation.

What can a common garden pest have to do with preserving fragile ecosystems on the islands of Hawaii? There are some astounding connections out there in the wild. Those leaf miners (little larvae that munch their way through leaves) that are destroying your precious pepper plants have some tropical cousins who are key to the survival of an entire species! Here’s your dose of wonder.

By Sam Burns


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METAdrasi: Escorting Children to Freedom and Hope

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"3,788 unaccompanied refugee children are currently located in Greece, having been violently separated from their families. For these children there are only 1,635 places in proper accommodation facilities, while the rest remain in Reception and Identification Centers, police stations, camps, even in the street. The National Center for Social Solidarity (EKKA) places unaccompanied children in accommodation facilities, depending on availability and on the vulnerability of the children. For many years, even before the refugee crisis, unaccompanied children would remain for long time in detention centers, even if a place in an accommodation facility in Greece had been found for them, as there was no one to escort them there. METAdrasi covers this gap since 2011, and, to date, has escorted with safety more than 11,100 children, during 4,000 missions. Such a mission for the escorting of unaccompanied children begun one day in May 2019..."


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Love and Philosophy Between Prison Walls and Ivory Towers

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In 1987, while teaching a class at MIT [the Massachusetts Institute of Technology] on nonviolence, philosophy lecturer Lee Perlman had a novel idea: "Why not take the students to a prison, to talk with men who had committed extreme forms of violence?" Now, 30 years later, through the MIT Prison Initiative that he founded, Perlman teaches classes to a mixed cohort of both MIT students and prisoners at two medium- to maximum-security Massachusetts Correctional Institutions in Norfolk and Framingham. Dr. Perlman considers himself to be primarily an educator, and has designed and taught a number of courses at MIT which offer students an integrated view of the humanities and sciences in the western tradition. More in this in-depth interview.


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