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Trying to Reason With Hurricane Season

Are you a Jimmy Buffet fan? A full-on Parrothead? Or maybe you’re someone who never understood the appeal of a man who wore loud shirts, shorts, and performed barefoot in front of thousands of adoring fans?

It doesn’t matter where you land on the Beach Balladeer’s spectrum of fandom, you’ve probably lived through a figurative hurricane season or two in your life, and maybe even been in the path of one or two literal hurricanes. It’s Hurricane Season 2024 from now through the end of October, and again this year, there will be people who will try to reason with hurricane season. Literal hurricanes, yes – and figurative ones, too.

Let’s use this Jimmy Buffett song as a springboard to talk about the very human trait of trying to control things that are completely uncontrollable. When a particularly stubborn person realizes their attempts at control have failed, they often try their hand at bargaining or even digging in their heels, adamantly...

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Can You Appreciate the Price of a Broken Heart?

When something hurts so much we say that it breaks our heart – does it really, or does it save it?

Have you ever lost someone you love? And yes, pets count. Can you remember the physicalness of the pain – the pain in your chest, the hollowness of your being? What is that? Why is that? And can we ever “suffer” a loss without suffering?

Probably not, and you probably wouldn’t want to, either.

Professor Yoram Yovell, a researcher on the relationship between emotional and physical pain and expert on the neurobiology of love and emotions, has studied why love and loss hurts so much. Turns out, emotional pain has a strong survival benefit – it alerts us to the fact that something has changed in our lives that we need to pay attention to.

When babies – human or not – are without their mother, they cry a very specific cry. Yes, the cry alerts their mother to return to them, and for the researchers, there was a surprising finding:...

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Better Bodies Equals Bigger Brains

Today is Women’s Golf Day, and whether you’re a golfer or a woman or a woman golfer or none of the foregoing, it’s a great day to talk about sports and how playing your favorite sport contributes to giving you a bigger, better brain and a longer, healthier life.

Human beings were nomadic hunter-gatherers in the early days of human development. It wasn’t until the inventions of things like wheels, levers, and gravity-fed water systems that humans could start setting up permanent living spaces. Even then, life was very active – no one had invented tractors, conveyor belts, or cars to make life easier. For most of our time on this planet, we have been an active species, able to adapt to different climate conditions, different food sources, and different behavioral challenges.

Fast-forward to today, where we can change our climate inside our homes, store food in a specific location in our homes for consumption at will, and actually never go outside if we...

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Can You Believe Your Beliefs?

Have you ever thought about belief? We think of our own beliefs as correct and even judge others based on whether they believe the same way we do or not. Our beliefs feel so real, and so true, that we can’t imagine how others could possibly believe differently.

And yet they do. And they always will. And that’s not just OK, it’s what keeps life interesting.

Today is the 13th anniversary of the end of the world. Well, except for that one small detail – it didn’t actually end 13 years ago. Harold Camping predicted the end of the world would happen in 2011, with the rapture occurring on May 21st and the physical world coming to an end five months later. He was a darling of the media, appearing on any and every news outlet that would have him, and focusing the programming on his Family Radio Network around the mathematical and theological certainty of his predictions. He believed. He believed with such fervor that he torpedoed his own reputation and spent...

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Freedom for Working Moms

This past Sunday was Mother’s Day. It’s a lovely holiday designed to let moms relax for one day of the year while being appreciated and pampered. It’s a day that features flowers, favorite foods, gifts, and maybe even a macaroni necklace designed by a 3-year-old. Can AI ever replace those? (Please don’t answer that!)

What about the other 364 days? Most moms are working moms, not stay-at-home moms, who were the norm when Mother’s Day came into being. Working moms have two careers – their job and their child or children – and neither one can be back-burnered.

So, if one person has two careers, neither of which can be neglected, what lands at the bottom of the to-do list?

  • Self-care.
  • Hobbies.
  • Passion projects.

The very things that feed the soul of the working mom get neglected due to lack of time and energy. During the pandemic shutdown, many or maybe most working moms found a way to better balance their various responsibilities, and some were...

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How Giving Gets You Far More

What do you have such a passion for that you give up your free time to support it? For some people, that’s a sport they play. For some, it’s a hobby like sewing or gardening. And for some, it’s being part of an organization in some sort of volunteer capacity. And whether you know it or not, the world runs on volunteers.

Scout leader. Children’s sports coach. Race official. Civic organization board member. Blood donor. Adopt-a-road clean-up crew. There are so many ways to give your time and talents to something you’re passionate about.

What is it for you? This week is your week – it’s National Volunteer Week. The word “volunteer” came into use in the 1600’s describing men in France who offered themselves up for military duty. It soon came to describe anyone who did work without expecting payment for it, and President Richard Nixon signed the executive order that recognized the value of volunteerism and volunteers in 1974 by...

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Creating More Creativity in Your Life

Today let’s talk about creativity. What it is, why it’s important, and how to create a more creative life for yourself.

First, what the heck is creativity? Merriam-Webster’s definition is “the ability to be creative.” Cambridge Dictionary’s definition goes deeper, making it by far the more creative definition: “the ability to produce or use original and unusual ideas.”

Creativity is curiosity unleashed. Creativity is vision in action. Creativity is imagination allowed to take the reins. Creativity is originality on display. Creativity is inventiveness, the first-born child of playfulness.

Creativity is about so much more than writing music, painting a picture, or producing a sculpture. Yes, those are creative pursuits and I’m in awe of those who make our lives better with their imaginative vision and masterful execution of their personal brand of creativity.

  • Creativity is also pulling together a fabulous outfit and wearing it...
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A Declaration of Victory for Analog

When was the last time you wrote a letter? Not typed a Word doc letter, not talked-to-texted a letter – when was the last time you put pen to paper and wrote?

OK, so if you still send actual, physical holiday cards, you’re winning on this one!

Today is National Handwriting Day, a “holiday” that began in 1977. You won’t be surprised to learn that this holiday was devised by the Writing Instrument Manufacturers Association as a way to remind people to use more pens, pencils, and writing papers. Today’s date was chosen because it’s the birthday of John Hancock, the first person to sign the Declaration of Independence and the one who gave us that famous and flamboyant signature.

None of that is the reason you’re reading about this “holiday” here. National Handwriting Day is a springboard into your brain – specifically, your brain on analog, not digital.

A group of researchers at the University of Tokyo in Japan published...

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Ready...Set...Share on Giving Tuesday!

Unless your eyes are just now opening for the very first time today, you already know today is Giving Tuesday. Today’s newsletter is short and sweet – if you’ll be giving today, please share the link to the organization you’re supporting. If you give at other times of the year, share the link. If you’ve got a group you’d like to give to and are waiting for the perfect time, share the link. 

If you're on Linked In, share your links here:

If you're on Facebook, share your links here:

Whether you give time, talent, or treasure, please share the group, organization, or cause you support. And on this Giving Tuesday, please remember to give to yourself, too. Here are three episodes of the world’s second-shortest podcast to help you remember that you matter, too.

Are you giving away your own power? Here’s a Tiny Bite for that!

Need to stop...

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Got Big Plans for Halloween Tonight?

Full disclosure – today’s post is just for fun. OK, you’re right – fun is important for team cohesion, stress relief, and for mental wellbeing, so today’s newsletter might be useful, too.

And it’s mainly for fun, and yes, there’s a prize involved!

Do you love Halloween? I love Halloween – always have. Mom made our costumes because she loved Halloween, too. My two brothers and I were all sorts of craziness as we headed off to school on costume day, and as soon as I was old enough, I helped Mom with the make-up and accessories. There was that one year when I was sent home because my I Dream of Jeanie outfit was deemed too risqué for 5th grade, so I put on a pink t-shirt under the top, tucked it into the harem pants, and went right back and won a prize in the costume contest.

Fast-forward to adulthood, when Halloween got even more fun when the candy came with a side of adult beverages and semi-suggestive fun. (Yes, the leopard...

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