This Batshit Crazy Suggestion is Guaranteed To Make Your Life Better … Immediately

One of my yoga instructors, Ruth, teaches me an invaluable lesson every time I attend one of her classes. It’s why I make it a point to attend as many of them as I can.

The lesson is about finding joy even when you think you can’t.

It serves as the inspiration for this post.

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Choose Serendipity

‘Serendipity’ has always been one of my favorite words.

This is true in part because of how it feels on the tongue when you say it. Not many words make love to the mouth and cuddle the ear like ‘serendipity.’

But an even bigger reason why I love the word so much is because of what it represents: a happy accident; an unexpected bit of good fortune; a surprise blessing from out of the blue.

Yet, to simply ascribe serendipity to accidents or happenstance is to miss an essential element of the concept itself.

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A Eulogy for Sushi … And a Celebration of the Greatest Creatures on Earth

A friend of mine lost one of her best friends today.

Sushi was her name.

I’m told that Sushi’s favorite song was “Angel” by Jack Johnson, that she was the quintessential trooper even in her final days, and even without having met her I know that she was loving, loyal, and beautiful inside and out.


Sushi, loyal friend and companion, moved on to her comfy bed in Doggie Heaven today at age 13.

Unfortunately, Sushi was epileptic, had a heart murmur, and suffered from growths that occasionally bled out. It was this latter malady that reared its ugly head yesterday, forcing an emergency visit to see Sushi’s cardiac specialist to find out if she could make it through surgery.

The answer, perhaps inevitably, was no.

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The Power of Positive Expectations (Or Why You Should Always Stop at Wal-Mart and Buy a CD On Your Way to Austin, Texas)

“You spilled the salt, that’s what’s the matter! Spilling the salt is very bad luck! We’re driving across the country, the last thing we need is bad luck. Quick, toss some salt over your right shoulder.”  ~ Lloyd Christmas

We determine so many future outcomes simply by what we expect to happen.

No, not everything will turn out the way I expect it to. Nor will everything for you. But more often than not, our experiences will be heavily influenced by our expectations going into them.

And this is why I purchased a special 3-Disc edition of Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours at 11:30 pm Saturday night at a Wal-Mart in Waco, Texas.

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In Praise of Valentine’s Day

A lot of people think Valentine’s Day sucks.

There are the tired criticisms about how it’s really just part of some sinister plot hatched by Hallmark and flower companies to get us men to spend money on cards, flowers, and chocolate.

There are videos espousing the many reasons why Valentine’s Day, supposedly, sucks.

There is even a Facebook page called “Valetine’s Day sucks” that has 10,703 likes.

You, reading this right now, may very well agree. You may hate Valentine’s Day. You may consider it gratuitous or – if you’re among the conspiracists alluded to above – nefarious even.

Well I am here to tell all the Valentine’s Day haters that you’re wrong.

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Some (Mostly) Positive Thoughts After a Car Accident That Could Have Been Much Worse

“What the fuck just happened!?”

When I think back to last night – actually, the wee morning hours of the very day that is now drawing to a close as I type this – shouting those words is the first thing that comes to mind.

The impetus for the exclamation was the sudden, jarring impact that left my car looking like this:

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Last Night Was My First ‘No Light But Candelight Night’ … Here’s How It Went

How often do you get to the end of a week and just feel…tired?

Your body is tired. Your mind is tired. Your eyes are tired. Maybe even your spirit feels tired. You don’t feel like yourself.

Maybe you can’t even define exactly what is tired, or perhaps even why. You just keep saying to yourself, “Damn, I feel tired.”

That’s how I felt yesterday.

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The Biggest Lesson I Learned Getting Back In Physical Shape … And How I’m Applying It To Get In Better Mental Shape Too

I had a sudden realization today.

I’ve spent the last year deeply focused on improving how I care for my body. And I’ve gotten back in shape my making better choices. I’ve started eating better; I do yoga 6-7 times a week; I do cardio in between; I sleep more. And the results have been incredible. I’ve lost 40-some pounds and I’ve never felt better or had more energy.

So why am I not applying this same principle, with the same dogged determination, to improving my mind?

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What Are You Willing To Lose?

Earlier this week, based on the recommendation of my new colleague and friend Jessica Commins, I joined the website This Is My Jam. I love music and I’m obsessed with finding efficient avenues for finding good new music. Joining was a no-brainer. (So join and let’s connect.)

Her Jam at the time of me joining was “What Are You Willing To Lose” by Lucero, and it remains her Jam currently. I loved the title of the song immediately, and I liked the song as well once I listened.

The video is embedded at the end of this post if you want to listen.

Here is a taste of the lyrics:

So what if all my heroes are the losing kind
Not a chance in hell but still they lay it on the line
Would you give it all away for what you want to do
Would you keep on going if you couldn’t make it through now
What are you willing to lose
O what are you willing to lose

Jessica posted about this on G+, asking her friends there what they were willing to lose. I responded thusly:

“I am willing to lose lamentations on the past and unproductive thoughts about the future in exchange for more focus and presence in the NOW.”

It’s one of my mental goals moving forward: leave the past behind and think about the future only in ways that move me forward productively and positively. There is simply too much to do and experience in the present to not be fully engaged in it.

But that’s also some pretty general, abstract stuff. It’s damn near mumbo-jumbo (even if it’s true).

So I decided to get a little bit more specific. What else am I willing to lose in pursuit of happiness? Here are a few things right off the top of my head:

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I have an awesome girlfriend.

I could spend a whole post listing out the multitudes of qualities that make her awesome, but I think one quality in particular – which manifested itself when we exchanged Christmas gifts – speaks particular volumes.

And this particular quality that I admire so much is that she gets me.

This was strongly reinforced when I unwrapped one of my Christmas gifts from her to find a white coffee mug that had been customized like only she can.

On the mug, in bold, black, handwritten lettering is this phrase: “WAKE UP AND BE AWESOME!”

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