Books

7 Creative Shortcuts and Solutions to Simplify Life with Young Kids

Life with kids can feel anything but simple. Things rarely go as planned. You’re exhausted and could sleep for days. You feel like a mess surrounded by a whole lot of mess. Expert advice only makes you feel less-than and like you’re doing everything wrong. Which, naturally, only makes you feel more overwhelmed.

That’s what happened to author Asha Dornfest. Dornfest felt like she was drowning. For help she consulted parenting and productivity books and sampled time management systems, among other things. She assumed that other “more qualified people” would have the answers she needed.

“But expert advice didn’t fix my new life,” she writes in her book
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Books

4 Tips for Really Hearing Someone Even When It’s Hard

How often do we actually listen to other people when they’re talking? I mean listening without focusing on how we’re going to respond, without interrupting, without debating what they’re saying, without getting defensive. Probably less often than we like to think, even though listening is incredibly important. It’s important for building beautiful relationships and for navigating every area of our lives.

We need to listen carefully at work to our bosses and colleagues. We need to listen carefully to our clients. We need to listen carefully to our partners and our kids and to all of our loved ones. This is how we gain a deeper understanding of the people we’re interacting with. This is how we avoid misinterpretations and miscommunication. It’s how we resolve conflict. And it’s how we genuinely connect and strengthen our bonds.
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Books

4 Tips for Helping Your Kids Practice Mindfulness

Our kids get just as stressed out as we do. While they don’t have bills, a demanding boss or a continuously-increasing workload, they do have homework, classmates, teachers, bullies and big emotions. So it helps to have a variety of tools they can use to manage their stressors and regulate their emotions -- tools they can take into adolescence and adulthood. Because stress and emotions are part of everyone’s daily life. And because everyone benefits from having healthy coping strategies.

That’s exactly what author and clinical social worker Carla Naumburg, Ph.D, provides in her newest book Ready, Set, Breathe: Practicing Mindfulness with Your Children for Fewer Meltdowns and a More Peaceful Family. In this wise and down-to-earth book, Naumburg features practical and creative strategies for practicing mindfulness at home. She defines mindfulness as “the practice of choosing to pay attention to whatever is happening right here and right now, without judging it or wishing it were different.”
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Anxiety and Panic

To Deal with Chronic Worry Don’t Try to Get Rid of It

If you’re a chronic worrier, you likely take your worries seriously. You likely believe them wholeheartedly. Maybe you think of them as flashing signs of imminent danger.

What if I lose my job turns into, Of course, I will lose my job. And, of course, I’m too old to get hired, which means I won’t be able to find work. What if my manager hates my marketing plan, becomes She’s going to not only hate it but she’ll regret hiring me in the first place. What if I freak out during my presentation, becomes I will screw up.

You might try to fight your worrisome thoughts or reason them away. You might try to quell your worries by disproving them -- going to Google to find the answer, seeking reassurance from others, trying to reassure yourself.
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Books

Can’t Focus on Your Most Important Work? Try This.

In today’s world, doing “deep work” -- anything from writing an article, to learning a new skill, to creating an effective business strategy -- is tough. There are distractions at every turn. It’s hard to give a task your full attention when you’re trying to reply to email or stay on top of Facebook posts. Or you need to tweet out links to promote your work and connect with others.

Cal Newport, a writer and assistant professor of computer science at Georgetown University, coined the term “deep work” on his blog
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Books

3 Reasons Not to Date Online Just Because You’re Lonely

It’s late in the evening. All your emails are read and the good TV is over for the night. You’re feeling a little bit… lonely. Unsure what to do, you open that dating app and start to swipe. You bring your laptop out of hibernation and start to scroll. You see faces of potential partners wiz by and for a moment, it helps.

Your smile returns.

We’ve all been in this moment -- the moment when a twinge of loneliness spurs an online dating session. But is this really a good habit to get into when feeling lonely?
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Books

10 Books on Happiness & Success for Your Reading List

Being an entrepreneur is stressful work. You pour blood, sweat, and tears into making your business work. Even though it can test you down to your last nerve, there’s nothing more rewarding than starting your own company.

While it can be challenging to successfully balance your workload plus family, friends, fitness and some personal time, there are few things that rings true for most successful entrepreneurs. It’s their unwavering commitment to continuous self-improvement in all areas of their life from their business prowess to their personal relationships.
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Anxiety and Panic

For Those in Despair: You Are Not Alone

Whenever we’re struggling with something, we assume we are alone. We are the only ones. I’m the only one who can’t get through the day without crying. I’m the only one with sweaty palms and terror swirling through my body while grocery shopping. I’m the only one who isn’t blissed out after having a baby. I’m the only one who can’t shake this all-consuming sorrow or rage. I’m the only one who can’t sit still. Who can’t stomach myself.  

But you’re not alone. You’re not alone in your confusing emotions, dark thoughts and daily struggles. You are one of hundreds, of thousands and even of millions. Two recently published essay collections remind us of this. They remind us that while our stories may be unique, the themes are not. We are connected. And there is hope.
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Anger

How to Express Your Anger Effectively

When we’re angry, we yell, criticize, judge, shut down, give the silent treatment, isolate or say, “I’m fine!” (without of course being fine). These actions end up hurting both the other person and us. They feel bad, and we might feel worse. We might regret the insults and judgments we hurled their way. We might feel frustrated that we didn’t articulate the real reason behind our anger. We might feel frustrated that we weren’t heard.

Maybe we’re even afraid of anger in general because we associate it with aggression. But as Alexander L. Chapman, Ph.D, RPsych, and Kim L. Gratz, Ph.D, write in their comprehensive book, The Dialectical Behavior Therapy Workbook for Anger: Using DBT Mindfulness & Emotion Regulation Skills to Manage Anger, “Aggression involves actions or statements that might be harmful to someone or something, whereas anger is an emotional state.
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Anxiety and Panic

A Tip to Try for Anyone Who Struggles with Uncertainty

Many us, whether or not we struggle with an anxiety disorder, view uncertainty as intimidating. After all, uncertainty is ambiguous. It means unpredictable situations that we're convinced have the potential for discomfort, undesirable outcomes, bad news, and big mistakes.

So we avoid uncertainty. We don’t take a new route to work, because we might get lost. And what if there’s no one to give us directions? We don’t try a new restaurant, because what if we don’t find parking? What if the restaurant is packed? What if we hate what we eat and end up wasting all that money? We don’t let people in, because what if they don’t like what they see? What if they betray us? We rarely make decisions without consulting others because what if we make the wrong choice? We rarely delegate tasks to someone else because what if they mess things up?
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Books

A Great Way to Cultivate Gratitude

We know that being grateful is important. It boosts our energy and well-being. It helps us to cope with stress. Simply, it brightens our mood and helps us feel good. But sometimes we forget to give thanks. Sometimes, we give thanks only on certain days (such as holidays) and not on others (the days we’re exhausted, overwhelmed, burnt out). Sometimes, we count a few blessings to ourselves but quickly move on to something else.

In his book Gratitude Works! A 21-Day Program for Creating Emotional Prosperity author and psychology professor Robert A. Emmons, Ph.D, includes practices for cultivating, or growing, our gratitude. Because as he writes, “Through practice, giving thanks grows from the ground of one’s being. Grateful feelings, once buried, can surface if we take the time to notice and reflect… Gratitude is like fertilizer to the mind, spreading connections and improving its function in nearly every realm of experience.”
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