Recently at the Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health I had the opportunity to attend a three-day workshop presented by Rick Hanson, author of Buddha’s Brain. As many know, particularly those in the world of psychology, there is much documented evidence indicating that we can change our brains from a negative perspective to a more optimistic one by developing certain skills. Changing or reshaping the brain is known as neuroplasticity. The fact that we have the capacity to reshape our brains means we have the power within us to lead happier and more optimistic lives. This is indeed good news.
The bad news is as Dr. Hanson pointed out is that, “The brain is like Velcro for negative experiences and Teflon for positive [click to continue…]
Years ago, I directed the Stress Management Department at the Pain Unit of Boston’s Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital. My first mind-blowing exposure to addiction came when a diabetic patient communicated her physician’s warning that if she did not stop smoking, she risked having her legs amputated. Several days thereafter she was discharged from the pain unit. Three months later she returned to the hospital, this time with stubs for legs. Still she continued to smoke [click to continue…]
Linda, a 42 year old attorney with two young boys, felt guilt and disappointment both on the job and at home. She never quite felt that she was where she needed to be at any given time. For all of her accomplishments, she felt like a failure as a lawyer and as a mother. She strove for perfection in all facets of her life, but now was finding that juggling motherhood and her professional life made this impossible. The standards that Linda set for herself were unattainable and therefore an innate form [click to continue…]
As human beings we often dream of living better, more fulfilling lives. We wish to create lives for ourselves and our families that are happy, purposeful and passionate. We can not only dream about creating more gratifying lives, but we also possess the cognitive ability to strategize and plan to achieve [click to continue…]
Recently I had the good fortune of meeting the inspirational and highly motivated winner of the reality show, The Biggest Loser, Ali Vincent. At the recent Chat, Chew & Chocolate retreat, Ali shares her compelling story through her lens of fear, doubt and deep shame. Along her path she summons the courage and strength to challenge her greatest beliefs about herself. Ali pushes through her pain and loss and emerges not only the winner of The Biggest Loser, but fully embraces the empowered woman that she has become.
How did she find the motivation? How did she dare to stare her demons down? What lessons can we derive from her excruciating journey [click to continue…]