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In a Crisis? Let Your Words Create Your World!

Originally an article on Oprah.com

Psychologists say a single trauma will strike you twice. First, you will live through the actual event—dealing with the reality of it. Second, when you think or talk about the event with others, creating your personalized story of the event, you will recreate the event in your mind. Although there’s nothing you can do about what has happened to you, it’s important to stay mindful of how you describe the trauma to yourself and others—remember that your words create your world!

Boris Cyrulnik, a famed French ethologist, says there’s good reason to watch what you say. Most of the women he’s worked with who have experienced sexual trauma have said that it was not compassion that inspired them to recover, but the influence of being told they were strong. Simply being told they were strong helped them to be that way. Cyrulnik argues that if another person expresses too much pity or horror for you, their view can actually escalate your pain.

I can relate on a personal level. I’ve been through some highly challenging times—some of which led me to research everything there was to know about the psychology of resilience. I found it so powerful that I shared what I learned and how it benefited me in The Bounce Back Book. What was one of the easiest, yet most powerful, strategies for bouncing back buoyantly from adversity? Remembering the mantra, “I must watch the words I use—because they create the world I see!”

I learned the importance of surrounding myself with people who I knew would verbally reinforce my identity as a strong person. I knew on an intuitive level that positive words of encouraging faith from others would help to reinspire my own inner strength, but I didn’t know that studies support this positive ripple affect on one’s psyche.

Neuro-linguistic Programming (NLP) is a therapy that attempts to influence the subconscious mind and affect positive change by consciously using positive words to refocus on the things within one’s control. For example, Cyrulnik warns that after a trauma, you need to make sure you don’t talk with people who accidentally keep you in the victim mode by using depression-inducing language such as:

  • You must be suffering so greatly right now!
  • How very hurt and in pain you must be!
  • I bet you’re exhausted and depressed after all you’ve been through!

No, no, no! You must keep away from words like those! While on the surface they seem kind and empathetic, they’re far more capable of souring the mood of a person in crisis. During tough times, you must surround yourself with a chorus of folks who chant, “You are strong! You are strong! You are strong!” creating an endless loop of support!

Knowing the subliminal power of words, Morrie and Arleah Shectman, psychotherapists who specialize in bereavement counseling, purposefully use empowering language when helping people through a trauma. Morrie says he never talks “sympathetically” with his patients because it’s disempowering and keeps patients coddled in victim mode. “Too much ‘sympathy talk’ can keep patients stuck, reliving and examining their feelings rather than moving on,” Morrie says.

After a little research, I believe Morrie is practicing this “neuroscience of words”—purposefully priming his patients’ subconscious minds with positive language to serve as an inner-strength training program of sorts!

NLP is a pretty amazing phenomenon. In 2000, researcher John Bargh set up the now-famous study that showed how our linguistic context strongly affects our behavior. Bargh gave two different groups of people two different lists of words to unjumble, telling them they were being tested on simple problem solving.

The first list contained words suggesting impatience, rudeness and aggressiveness; the second list had words suggesting patience, politeness and calm. After the test was completed, the participants were asked to bring their lists to an administrator who was deep in conversation with a colleague—setting up the true experiment.

All the participants given the list of words suggesting rudeness and aggressiveness became those exact words—angrily interrupting the administrator. However, of the participants primed with language suggesting patience and calm 82 percent never interrupted the administrator at all. The lesson to be learned? The words we use and hear are powerful!

If you’re bouncing back from a challenging time, it’s essential to become aware to not dwell on the pain of what you are going through. Instead, consciously pepper your conversations, therapy sessions and journal writing with strong, uplifting, optimistic words that will keep you aimed in a strong, positive, healing direction!

“After you’ve been through a trauma or a large loss, assume people won’t be good listeners,” warns Dr. Al Siebert, director of Portland, Oregon’s Resiliency Center and author of The Resiliency Advantage. According to Siebert, the average person will listen to you talk about your ordeal for one to two minutes tops, before they want to get away or they interrupt you with their opinion. This can be really hurtful and emotionally stressful when you’re feeling vulnerable.

Siebert suggests you protect your spirit by constructing some boundaries and an “elevator pitch” of your story—a quick, one-minute answer. With this in mind, it’s helpful to take some time to consciously jot down what you want your elevator pitch to include so you’re prepared when people ask. Try to use neutral or positive language so you don’t keep reliving your pain. Be sure to put a positive “kicker” at the end. For example: “Yes, I’ve been through a horrible time, but I’m handling it okay. How about you? Have you ever been through anything like this?” Requesting empathy makes it less likely that your listener’s response will hurt or disappoint you.

If you feel you’re with someone highly supportive—a friend with whom you want to more freely share your experience—be sure to check in with them first, saying something like: “I must confess what I went through is a very emotional experience. If you have an hour, I’d love to share it with you.” That way you guard against the disappointment of not being able to share in the way you had hoped.

Siebert also reminds that it’s okay to decide not to share anything at all. You can simply tell people, “Thanks for asking, but I don’t care to talk about it right now.”

Another helpful NLP technique is to dilute strongly negative words. Try to stop saying things like:

  • I’m furious!
  • I’m devastated!
  • I’m completely crushed.

Instead replace them with milder expressions such as:

  • I’m a bit miffed.
  • I’m disappointed.
  • I’m surprised.

Be mindful that your words also have power in other areas of your life. For example, instead of saying, “I won’t get involved with cheating jerks or sociopaths or toxic people anymore!” you might say, “I’ll only get involved with healthy, loving, trustworthy people.” Instead of saying, “I am no longer going to be in total financial debt!” you might say, “I vow to become financially solvent.”

I’m also a big believer that who you think you are actually manifests who you will be. Your beliefs will create the actions and habits you choose. During a challenging time, it’s essential to view yourself as a strong person—capable of bouncing back stronger than ever! With this in mind, I recommend during tough times, you enter what I humorously call the “Identity Protection Program!” Own one of the following identities as yours:

  • I’m the type of person who makes the world say yes to me.
  • I’m an indomitable spirit, a phoenix rising from the ashes. Nothing keeps me down!
  • A lesser person would crumble right now. Not moi!
  • When life throws me curveballs, I hit ’em outta the park!

If you find yourself in a challenging time, remember to repeat these types of beliefs as often as possible, even if at first you have trouble believing them. As Muhammad Ali once said: “It’s the repetition of affirmations that leads to belief. And once that belief becomes a deep conviction, things begin to happen.” Or as I like to say, “Sometimes you gotta fake positivity till you make positivity.”

Need extra support and helpful tools to bounce back from a challenging time? Check out my best-selling BOUNCE BACK BOOK – recommended by Tony Robbins, Tim Ferris, Gretchen Rubin, Oprah.com and more! Click here to find out more info!

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    9 Tips for Speaking Up Honestly – and Kindly

    Originally an article on Oprah.com

    You know what’s funny? People can easily see all the stupid things other people do—but you have trouble seeing your own stupid errors. Despite the fact that your error is right smack in front of your nose—or even smack on your cheek. For example: If you have a smear of ink on your cheek, you won’t be able to see it yourself. You will know only when an honest friend tells you. The same thing goes if you have a problem with being too cheeky.Karen Salmansohn

    Personally, I want to be alerted if I’m walking around too inky or cheeky. For this reason, one of my favorite quotes is, “A friend is someone who stabs you in the front!” Some of my best friends and my current beau are what I call “front stabbers”—loved ones who are truly, lovingly looking out for me.

    If honesty really is the best policy for a happy, intimacy-filled life, then why do you sometimes find yourself avoiding telling the truth to someone or even yourself? By not sharing what’s going on deep down, you build surface-level relationships that can be lonely and unsatisfying. Yet staying mum may offer you the following perks:

    You feel keeping quiet is the best path to be liked

    Yep, you foolishly feel that by keeping a big, high wall between the other person and the truth, you will then stay closer to him or her. The irony is obvious: Without honesty and its incumbent vulnerability, you will never create true closeness and warmth.

    You feel superior by keeping people in the dark

    In other words, on some level you know that by not giving the other person the opportunity to know and correct his or her misbehavior, you get to maintain your lesser view of that person. And you’d rather be right than make the relationship be right. And/or you’d rather keep that person in the dark, so you can shine brighter.

    You don’t like change

    You prefer to cling to the status quo and your learned comfort zone. Enough said.

    You dislike vulnerability

    Being vulnerable or seeing someone else be vulnerable isn’t easy for you. Meaning? You derive some emotional safety benefits from remaining separate and lonely.

    You have low self-esteem

    Basically, you worry people will look down on what you have to say, so you don’t speak up.

    You are keeping secrets

    You recognize that by not sharing, you don’t have to change. Woo hoo! Plus, you get to keep on secretly beating yourself up about how bad a person you are for having this misbehavior—bringing you to a woo hoo number two!

    With all the above in mind, I want to encourage you to start regularly sharing more gut-honest conversations with people—and thereby increase your daily intimacy and happiness.

    Here are nine tips for how to start being an honest, warm, loving “front stabber” today.

    Be honest with yourself about yourself first

    If you want to boldly share a secret about yourself, always be sure to have a gut-honest conversation with yourself first. Ask yourself why you’ve been hiding what you’ve been hiding and name the exact emotions you feel about it—angry, resentful, hurt, embarrassed, humiliated, vulnerable, afraid, uptight, depressed. Researcher Matthew Lieberman from UCLA discovered that the simple act of recognizing your negative emotion can calm the emotion by 50 percent, because it halves your “amygdala activation” to consciously observe your emotions. When you are naming your negative emotion, double up the benefits by naming the positive emotion you want to feel—acceptance, forgiveness, surrender, empathy, warmth, love, understanding. Before you begin to reveal your truth, contemplate this positive word, over and over—as if it were a mantra—and then aim your conversation at this goal.

    Pick the right time and the right place

    Do you have at least 30 minutes of uninterrupted time ahead to start up an admittedly difficult “front stabbing” conversation? Are you in a place where you can talk openly and not self-consciously?

    Avoid harsh startups

    Relationship expert Dr. John Gottman says he can predict 96 percent of the time how a conversation will end based on its first three minutes. Hence you must never start a difficult, honest conversation with a negative attitude or negative words. Instead, you must always state up front that you care about this person—and your relationship with him or her—and that’s why you are committed to speaking truthfully. You might even try beginning with a compliment, sharing something you appreciate about them, so they believe in your good intentions.

    Let the other person know it is only your truth

    It is important to let the other person know your opinion is not necessarily the whole truth and nothing but the truth. Explain how you simply want to share your experience or perception, to bounce it around and hear his or her perspective. Live up to this promise. While sharing your truth, don’t focus on trying to win the other person over to agreeing with you. Focus instead on trying to have a winning relationship—or helping him/her become more of a winner in life!

    Use “I” instead of “you”

    You are more likely to own your point of view as just that—your microdot one person point of view. And, “In my point of view, you are being a jerk!” is not an example of a helpful “I” statement. If you find yourself trying to shove your truth forcefully down the other person’s throat, pause and reflect upon your truthful intentions. Are you honestly sharing your “truth” to help or harm the other person? Make sure your goal for open communication is never to open wounds and pour in salt. Make it your goal to always open your heart and pour in love and enlightenment.

    Speak from your heart

    Because your goal is to truly speak from your heart, try to emphasize and explain how the other person’s misbehavior affects your feelings, values, dreams and/or goals—or those of others you’ve seen affected by this person’s misbehavior. Basically, you want to awaken the other person to better and compassionately understand the cause/effect of his/her misbehavior—so the person will be more motivated to listen to what you’re saying and thereby change what might be unwittingly hurtful to others.

    Allow for conversation

    If the conversation escalates, know it’s because you’re not allowing the other person enough room to express views back. At this point, pause and allow that room—keeping in mind Stephen Covey’s helpful words: “Seek first to understand—then to be understood!”

    Don’t generalize

    If you are upset at this other person for something specific that he or she said/did, try not to generalize by saying, “You always do this” or “You always say that.” Generalizations tend to escalate emotional states, because they’re more vague to discuss…and less believable. Come on, be honest with yourself. A realistic “always” action is a very rare thing.

    Follow up within 24 hours

    Once you’re done with your honest conversation, be sure to close up by purposefully sharing all the empowering and loving benefits that bloomed from taking the time to risk being vulnerable and truthful. Then, sometime within the next 24 hours, follow up with this other person and make sure he or she is feeling loved—not judged—by all you shared.

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      What’s Your Potential? How to Know It and Grow It

      Originally an article on Oprah.com

      You know that expression, “The more things change, the more they stay the same?” Well, Aristotle thought of it first.

      A great philosophical thinker, writer and teacher, Aristotle believed that the universe is in a state of constant motion, always changing, always evolving. However, at the same time, there is one thing that remains a constant in everything—what he called entelechy or one’s essential potential.

      Aristotle believed that everything on this planet possesses its own entelechy, or as he coined it, “having one’s end within.” Entelechy is a vital force that motivates and guides an organism toward self-fulfillment.

      Consider the mighty oak tree. Its journey to greatness begins with a small acorn seed. Of course, the seed has to go through certain changes and stages of development in order to reach its full potential, but the potential is a constant: to become an oak tree. You will never see an acorn become a petunia plant, an umbrella or a pizza.

      According to Aristotle, there is always a reason for everything that happens. Your experiences are designed to shape you, define you and, hopefully, grow you into the mightiest you possible.

      Is it just coincidence that the trees that endure the stormiest winds grow the strongest trunks and branches? Doubtful when you consider that the trees grown in more windless environs tend to be more fragile, twiggy and weak.

      You too can use adversity to grow into your mightiest self. What Aristotle called nous poetikos—which roughly translates as conscious insight—is a fabulously unique human perk, if you choose to consciously tap into it. With conscious insight, you will find that you bend more easily with the stormy winds instead of angrily resisting the things that want to blow you over.

      You know that nasty break up you endured? You can choose to lovingly rename the experience “The break up that led to the breakdown that led to the breakthrough!”

      In other words, what may have at first seemed deflating, frustrating or painful can be experienced with conscious insight as an empowering growth opportunity breakthrough. After all, there is a reason for everything you find on your journey.

      So here’s the great news—you are guaranteed a happier life if you consistently choose to tap into conscious insight by keeping your life end goal in mind—to become your mightiest self.

      Of course, when things are going badly, there is always a tempting urge to shut down and shut off, to give in and give up, to get bitter, resentful, angry, spiteful, depressed, self-destructive and antisocial—all before breakfast!

      When I want to shut down, I think of a horror movie I once saw. These unconscious, soulless zombies were miserably going around taking bites out of all the happy, alive, soulful people. It wasn’t long before the soulful people were zombies too!

      The only way to survive being surrounded by soulless zombies is to use conscious insight to resist them! To become your highest, mightiest self, you must choose conscious insight and remain focused on being a good, loving, soulful person.

      Fact: Bad things—and bad people—happen to everyone on this planet.

      Fact: You cannot control much of what happens in life. Life is a lively fusion of free will merged with destiny.

      Fact: Free will gives you the choice to tap into conscious insight and become your mightiest self. With it, you can morph all your pain into all your gain and make your tormentors your mentors—turning all your struggles into valuable lessons that help you grow strong.

      So when times get tough, think of Aristotle. And don’t forget those zombies! Conscious insight is the most powerful growth formula you have to nurture your potential seed for growth. Use your entelechy—and believe in your soul’s path—so you will grow into your mightiest self!

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        Let Go the Pain of a Break Up : 6 Liberating Questions

        Originally an article on Oprah.com

        Pain in lifeI fully understand the pain of a challenging (aka: devastating) break up. Unfortunately, I found myself very much duped by a man who convincingly presented himself as loving, committed and loyal – only to later to discover that he was more than a two-timing cheater – he was a three-’n-four-’n-five-timing cheater.

        I know just how difficult it can be to pick yourself up after a painful romantic fall. At first, you might find yourself preoccupied with a bubbling stew of emotions: depression, shame, hopelessness, outrage, despair, rage, resentment, negativity, doubt, insecurity, fear and an overall sense of emotional hypochondria. You may become convinced that the best way to protect your breaking heart is to put on the permanent love brakes. It’s very important not to allow yourself to wallow in these negative emotions for too long.

        I believe you can never fail in life or love. You just produce results. It’s up to you how you interpret those results. There are no failed relationships, because every person in your life has a life lesson to teach.

        Ironically, life’s worst of times (aka breakups) can be exactly what leads you to your best of times—pain is your evolutionary buddy. Pain prompts you to wake up from your auto-pilot slumbers—and CLUNK—finally be more alert to seeing who are the best people and which are the best circumstances to aim at for ultimate joy.

        Sometimes, a breakup leads to a breakdown and then a breakthrough—helping you to discover who and what you need to live your happiest, most fulfilling life!

        I believe much of the pain of a breakup comes from having a life plan that you have fallen in love with. When it does not work out, you become angry that you now have to pursue a new life plan. But if you ever want to tame your inner demons, you must consciously choose not to become too attached to any particular life plan—and remain open to the idea that there might be an even better life plan for you. Embracing detachment as a way of life will always give you a healthier sense of peacefulness when you get plunked into one of life’s potholes!

        My personal definition for enlightenment is “the quiet acceptance of what is—and an open mind to embrace that there may be a better, healthier life plan for me.”

        After my breakup with my Prince Harming, I consciously chose to psyche myself up about my new life plan by owning the following as my empowering belief system: “I’m happy to be over this relationship with my now ex-Prince Harming because I know the lessons I’m choosing to learn are going to lead me into the arms of a much better life partner! My new, improved life plan is gonna beat the bupkes out of that old one!”

        The good news: It’s always your choice as to how you interpret and respond to life’s disappointing, heartbreaking ebbs. You can choose to be miserable, or you can choose to motivate yourself to stretch your mind—seeking out the best interpretations and most valuable lessons.

        If you’re presently trying to get over a painful breakup with a Prince Harming, I recommend you do some liberating mind stretching. Begin by answering the following questions for yourself:

        • Thanks to my Prince Harming Teacher, I learned in my next relationship I need to find a man who offers:
        • Thanks to my Prince Harming Teacher, I learned in my next relationship I need to—on a daily and nightly basis—feel more:
        • Thanks to my Prince Harming Teacher, I learned in my next relationship I need to—on a daily and nightly basis—feel less:
        • Thanks to my Prince Harming Teacher, I learned in my next relationship I will insist my man bring with him into the relationship the following deal-makers:
        • Thanks to my Prince Harming Teacher, I learned to keep my eyes open for the following red flashing warning light deal-breakers blaring in my face:
        • Thanks to my Prince Harming Teacher, I learned I need to start to especially value finding a man with the following values:

        After a challenging breakup, I suggest that every time you find yourself tempted to think negative thoughts, you return to the lessons that you’ve thankfully learned. If you find yourself with a pesky, self-flagellating thought spree rampaging through your mind, you can stop these thoughts by asking yourself the following question: “Are these thoughts I am now thinking leading me forward to finding more happiness—or backward to feeling more anger, shame and hopelessness?

        Every time a negative belief enters your head, repeat the word “forward” as your mantra! Every time you start feeling negative emotions, swap these out for new and very different emotions—one which doesn’t show up on the “Post-Break Up Emotions to Indulge In” list.

        And be proud of yourself. Yes, proud. If you’ve gotten hurt, it means you’ve put yourself out there in the world. You have jumped into the pool of life—swimming, splashing and making waves—instead of hiding beneath the solitary life’s big umbrella, wearing a huge floppy hat and oversize sunglasses with your body smeared in SPF 45.

        One of my favorite philosophers, Aristotle, said: “We live in deeds, not years; in thoughts, not breaths; in feelings, not in figures on a dial. We should count time by heart throbs. He most lives who thinks most, feels the noblest, acts the best.”

        I think what he means is that life will have its ebbs and flows. Unfortunately, life can sometimes feel like ebb, ebb, ebb, brief flash of flow, more ebb, ebb, ebb. But every ebb always offers the opportunity to think a new thought flavor and feel a new emotion flavor. The more varied the flavors of life you get to taste, the more interesting, layered, educated, self-developed, worldly, experienced and mightier as a human you will be!

        Here’s one last and highly helpful post-breakup healing mantra: “It is better to have loved and lost—and discover a far more fabulous life plan than originally conceived—than to live with a cheating Prince Harming for the rest of your life.”

        You can purchase this Oprah.com recommended book Prince Harming Syndrome. click here

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          Should You Break Up or Make Up?

          Originally an article on Oprah.com

          EvolveI’ve often joked that if life existed on other planets, there’s a quick way to assess if the aliens are more advanced life-form. And no, it doesn’t have anything to do with their technology. You simply need to find out if there is dating on their planet. If they didn’t have dating, it is proof they are a far more evolved species.

          Dating can really suck!

          People stay in bad relationships longer than they should because fear of the pain of dating seems scarier than the pain of a bad relationship. People prefer to cling to the familiar even when it’s painful rather than stretching themselves with the hope of expanding their happiness.

          Before I encourage you to take the leap into the great unknown, I want to encourage you to take a good look at where you’re at right now. And I don’t mean looking at your partner through a magnifying lens. I mean looking at yourself in the mirror.

          If you break up with your partner without really looking at yourself in the mirror, you could be on your way to duplicating your love problems in your future relationships just like in Groundhog Day—over and over.

          Remember: You are the common denominator in all your relationship problems. Wherever you go, your pesky repeated issues go until you shed a blazing light of insight upon them.

          Here are eight empowering insights to help you decide if you should break up or make up.

          1. Set aside time to talk with your partner about your childhoods—the good, bad and the dysfunctional. Recognize there’s often a “repetition compulsion” at the root of ongoing conflicts. Openly discuss the psychological belief that you choose your partner because they subconsciously represent the best and worst of your parents. Your subconscious’s goal is to recreate unresolved childhood issues and then hopefully mend them. Explore how you might more lovingly help each other unload emotional baggage for good.

          2. Swap same-value complaint cards with your partner like same-value baseball cards. Start by sharing a tiny, annoyingly irksome complaint about each other’s habits. Afterward, build up to a huge complaint. The reason it’s good to swap? Both of you must empathize with how it feels to be told you’re annoyingly irksome. Plus, you’ll both feel an equal sense of “growth opportunity” because you will both have an equal amount of issues to work on for the sake of happily-ever-after love.

          3. Is there something you’re hurt about or worried about and you haven’t told your partner yet? And now it’s hurting your love because you expect your partner to be a mind reader? Hate to break it to you, but even mind readers are not mind readers. Speak up! If something is on your mind, share it. One of my favorite quotes is from Emile Zola: “I came into this world to live out loud!” Your love life is only as strong as your open communication.

          4. Is your partner getting on your nerves because of static clinging? Do you take enough breaks and give each other enough space? The best relationship is one that does not foster too much independence nor too much dependence, but exists in the healthy interdependence zone.

          5. Are there deal breakers you’re just realizing you have? Are these true deal breakers, like: “He’s a cheater,” “He’s a liar,” “He hits me,” “He’s a gambler,” “He’s a jobless mooch,” “He doesn’t want to have children and I do” and “He has an addiction he’s not dealing with.” If your partner has a real deal breaker, that is a good reason to leave the relationship. However, be aware that sometimes what you think is a deal breaker could be turned into a “deal bender.” Some examples: “He stonewalls when he’s upset,” “He’s not physically affectionate enough” and “He’s too much of a couch potato.” If your issue is a potential “deal bender,” be sure to share your concerns.

          WARNING: If you don’t talk about your fears and needs, you can risk becoming a “negative evidence collector” by continually looking for evidence of your partner being no good, even when there’s no good reason for it. Stop having a silent fight with your partner. Start having an open, warm conversation instead.

          6. Are you sweating the small stuff so much that you’re harming your relationship? Even though I’m telling you to talk openly with your partner, I want you to do this within a moderation zone. Set the following intention: “I will not complain about anything to my partner for the next three days.” Would this be a hard intention for you to fulfill? If so, maybe you’re looking at your partner through an incredibly negative lens because you’re overworked and underexercised. Take a yoga class. Meditate. When you’re stressed, moodiness and irritability increase—two love-busters you want to avoid!

          7. Women love shoes. If you want to get more shoes as you get more love, put yourself in your partner’s shoes more often. You will understand how your partner feels and feel more love for your partner, instead of feeling like he’s a big creepy jerk you need to break up with. As Steve Covey so wisely put it: “Seek first to understand, then to be understood.”

          8. The philosopher Aristotle believed there are three kinds of relationships, and only one brings true happiness. There’s a relationship of pleasure quickly summed up as sex-mates not fulfilling in the long run. Then, the relationship of utility where partners use one another for beauty, money or status, which are also not fulfilling for the long haul. The final type is the relationship of shared virtue. You understood each other and you want to help each other grow into your best possible selves. Aristotle deemed these partners soul mates or “soul-nurturing mates.” He believed being with someone who helped you grow into your best possible self was not only what long-term happily-ever-after love was all about, but also what a long-term happily-ever-after life was all about. For this reason, you must recognize that it’s appropriate for a love relationship to have some challenge within it to help you to grow. Like Jack Nicholson’s character in As Good As It Gets said: “You make me want to be a better man.” Are you and your partner in a relationship of shared virtue where the challenges can be wonderful growth opportunities? Keep in mind a favorite quote from Leo Buscaglia, who said: “A great deterrent to love is found in anyone who fears change, for…growing, learning, experiencing is change. Change is inevitable.”

          You can now purchase this Oprah.com recommended book Prince Harming Syndrome as a convenient downloaded ebook – which you can read right away on your computer, iPad, Kindle – or anywhere you can read a PDF. Just click here now!

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            Good News For Good People!

            bounce back

            If you need support to bounce back from a life challenge,  it helps if you’re a good person! Read on…

            As many of you know, Aristotle is my favorite philosopher – for many reasons. In particular, I love his theories on happiness.

            One of Aristotle’s beliefs: A good person will always more resiliently recover from life’s challenges – far better than a badly behaving person. Aristotle described a good person as someone who “possesses the virtues of strong character.”  Basically, a good person has the conscience, discipline and self awareness to choose habits which they are proud of – and thereby act with kindness and compassion – even during times of stress and conflict.

            Why did Aristotle believe a good person will recover from life’s challenges better than a badly behaving person?

            For the same reason that a physically in shape person will more easily recover from a car accident than an out of shape person.  Aristotle believed that the person who “possesses the virtues of strong character” is intrinsically emotionally and spiritually stronger – and thereby recovery from tough times will be easier for them.

            I love this as a concept – that being a good person means that you’re in good, strong emotional and spiritual shape!

            Want proof of a good person recovering very well from a life challenge? How about Oprah! Here is a woman who was raped at a young age – but intrinsically “possessed the virtues of strong character” and thereby she was more able to bounce back from her challenge.

            The happiness lesson to be learned:

            Every day put in the effort of strong character to be a good person. You’ll not only feel happier on a daily basis – you’ll also become stronger spiritually – which is good “spirit insurance” to protect you should a challenge ever arise. Basically, when you’re a good person acting with strong character on a regular basis, you build up powerful spiritual muscles and big soul cajones – which then helps you to better bounce back from whatever comes your way.

            TWEET THIS NOW:  If you need support to bounce back from a life challenge,  it helps if you’re a good person! Read on…

            If you’re having a difficult time feeling happy, check out the resiliency psychology techniques found in best selling author Karen’s Salmansohn’s THE BOUNCE BACK BOOK – which has been praised by Tony Robbins, Gretchen Rubin, Tim Ferriss, Peter Guber – and then some – and is now going into its 9th printing! You can read more aboutTHE BOUNCE BACK BOOK by clicking right HERE right NOW.

             

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              Intention For The Day

              Stay centered.

              There are many ways to make sure you stay centered and strong, no matter what your challenges. I discuss some empowering techniques in my Oprah article called IN A STATE OF FLUX? DON’T WORRY, LIFE IS HOW YOU LOOK AT IT – which you can read by clicking right here, right NOW.

              If you’re experiencing an especially challenging time  – and are feeling just plain frustrated by life’s challenges – check out the resiliency psychology techniques found in THE BOUNCE BACK BOOK – which has been praised by Tony Robbins, Gretchen Rubin, Tim Ferriss, Peter Guber – and then some! You can read more about THE BOUNCE BACK BOOK by clicking right HERE right NOW.

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                Best Selling Author • Over 1 million books Sold • Oprah Columnist • Brand Consultant • Motivational Speaker • Proud Mommy

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