Browsing category: Stories

Illuminating Stories

Some months back, I attended a workshop with the acclaimed Harvard-trained biologist, practising psychologist, and best-selling author, Joan Borysenko. The workshop explored her studies in evolutionary narrative. With her unique blend of hard-core scientist and decades of study and practice in meditation, she has an abiding certainty in the mind-body connection, and how critical it is to marry a healthy mind to a vital body so we can become a meaningful presence in the world. Borysenko’s work in narrative is well renowned. As

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The Lure of the Elusive

Since films started projecting a visual representation of how others saw life and the people who lived in it, we began receiving messages about what is alluring and attractive. The original “It” girl was Clara Bow. She personified the carefree, spirited, self-assured, and happy independence of the newly liberated American woman. Her appeal wasn’t about being darkly mysterious or aristocratically posh but about being comfortable with who she was. She sported the flapper’s short hair and short dresses and confidently strode out and

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Flirting with Failure

Legend has it that the Japanese shōgun, Ashikaga Yoshimasa sent a much loved, but damaged tea bowl back to China for repairs. It was returned with metal staples bolting the broken pieces together which did not please the shōgun. He urged local Japanese craftsmen to search for a more aesthetic manner in which to repair the bowl. They chose to use lacquer to bond the pieces together and then dusted the lacquer with gold powder. The cracks of the repair therefore became part of the object, and so the art of kintsugi was born.

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The Narrative of Loss

“I’ve learned, the hard way, that some poems don’t rhyme, and some stories don’t have a clear beginning, middle, and end. Life is about not knowing, having to change, taking the moment and making the best of it, without knowing what’s going to happen next. Delicious Ambiguity” Gilda Radner

At all times loss surrounds us. We don’t always notice it though. People move to new homes, welcome babies to the world, get awarded promotions, graduate from school: no matter how welcome the change there is still the spectre

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Don’t Be Afraid to Catch Feelings

If, like me, you have a fondness for clever, animated films, you will have experienced a range of emotions watching the ingenious and artfully designed Pixar movie, Inside Out. It is here we meet the five dominant emotions that run humans: Anger, Disgust, Fear, Sadness and Joy, as they play havoc in the life of a young girl moving through the stages of human transformation. Smart researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, have dedicated study on emotions and the subtleties that exist between different feelings. They

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Suspending Your Disbelief

For most of us, we need to believe that we are good people, following sound thinking processes and purposefully using our bodies and minds as we move through our lives planning, deciding and acting with intentions that are good. We like to think we are making good choices because we are good people. It takes a particularly unique individual to approach life with an unadulterated belief that they are bad and must advance through life making poor decisions and consistently performing bad deeds. However, on any given day, from our

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Tuning In

In my time, I have examined the lines on my hand and traced them back to a book on palmistry to learn if the story of me was encoded in these furrows. I would fixate over where the heart line intersected the life line, where the head line terminated and how the folds in my fingers indicated my inner nature. I was searching for clues for who I was and who I needed to become. Our present selves have an innate curiosity about our future selves. We are clue gatherers, searching for signs that we’re on the right path, following our

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Chasing Happiness

Perhaps it’s because one of the inalienable rights specified in the American Declaration of Independence is the pursuit of happiness, but recently it seems the search for happiness is everywhere. Books on happiness, courses extolling the seven habits of happy people, there’s happiness conferences, and expos, and magazines, and TV shows. The need for happiness seems to be showing up everywhere I look. It comes up as a theme in coaching: people worried that they are not happy; that they are living below the happiness quotient

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