dove release

The direct cause of suffering is desire.  What you want for your own life may not be what the world wishes or needs.  There may be something much bigger and bolder waiting for you.  Surrender your will.  Trust that a larger story of your life is unfolding.

Practice these three tips:

1. Recognize the difference between capitulation and surrender

Capitulation feels like you’re resisting “what is” without any horsepower behind it.  A great business example is when your boss makes a bad decision and you have little choice but to follow along even though you don’t agree with the direction.  Surrender removes the resistance as you simply take a step back and watch what unfolds from a neutral position.  You don’t judge it as good or bad, it simply “is.”

2. Accept your life as it is, not how you think it should be

How many times have you said to yourself, “I should be making more money,” or “I should be driving a brand-new Tesla by now just like my college roommate.”  Instead, why not experience your life as it is?  Living becomes way more interesting when you take a step back and observe how your life actually operates.  With some practice, you’ll amuse yourself instead of being the jury and the judge of your existence.

3. Trust that your life is unfolding for your highest good

The bottom line is this: you are here on Earth to experience life in all its manifestations, good, bad, indifferent, that’s the beauty of the human condition. Be awake and aware for all the choices you make, then surrender your will and watch what happens.  When you release attachment to outcome, liberation becomes your trusted companion and you are free to create the life you actually want to live in.

WisdomI’m now part of the Wisdom 2.0 Street Team.  What does that mean?  I’ll distribute postcards advertising the San Francisco Wisdom 2.0 Conference on Feb. 27 – March 1, 2015 to over 50 South Bay locations including coffee shops, yoga studios, and health food markets.  I’ll get to visit the campuses of Stanford, Google, and Facebook.  The result of this volunteer effort will be a free three-day pass to the conference.  In the words of rock band the Who, “I call that a bargain, the best I ever had.”

The concept of wisdom and technology bewitches me heart and mind.  I get freaked out by the singularity concept, the moment when humans and machines merge and nonbiological intelligence, err…robots take over the world.  I want to engage in conversation that sculpts humanity’s role to live with greater wisdom, purpose, and meaning while using technology in ways that create a more open and healthy culture.  Score one for humans, stupid robots! Plus, I have a cool idea for the postcard distribution project.

My goal is to discover the answer to this question: What role does wisdom play in technology?  The kaleidoscope responses to this query will be myriad, there is no one answer, but rather, many facets to view the question.  I simply want to create awareness that wisdom and technology are intimately connected.  How will I do that?

One things for sure, it will be a pen-and-paper, low-tech project, duh!   On a 11 x 17 legal-sized sheet of paper will be a handwritten question:  “What role does wisdom play in technology?”  At each postcard distribution site I’ll ask a real person to write their response using a black sharpie.  Then I’ll snap their picture and post it on social media, contributing to the larger conversation that’s taking place right now, sculpting our future.  This is my own way of integrating community at the grass-roots level.  Wish me luck!

Logo ~ Wisdom CircleFinally. The elixir. Geez. I’m starting a wisdom circle. So excited. I thank my cousin Angela Andrews for asking me, “Don’t you have a masters degree in spirituality?” (humblebrag) “Why don’t you use it?” Well, me scared. I’m only three-years-old. Whatever. Thank you Kevin Aschenbrenner for helping me hatch my plan. And then to my brand new friend Jane Sanguinetti for renting me her gorgeous Moss Beach yoga studio for the six-week pilot program. The wisdom circle is almost filled for the first night. Yippee!!   I’m just feelin’ so gosh-darn grateful for having the courage to step into my own power.  But here’s the best part of the wisdom circle, I’m not the leader, simply the facilitator. The purpose is to inspire and be inspired. One by one we’ll contribute to the group’s collective wisdom and discover a deeper, more authentic way of communicating. As we learn from one another, we’ll recognize the power of a larger community to discuss big ideas in a safe space set up for listening and speaking. This wisdom circle feels like it’s so California. And I have to laugh and say, well, I wrote the book on California. Thanks everyone, for all your love and support along the way. Me happy.

Want a huge dose of testosterone and adrenalin?  Listen to Gary Vaynerchuk’s passion-filled Building Personal Brand Within the Social Media Landscape presentation.  Note: lots of adult language, some of it vulgar and offensive, and that’s what makes it so gut-level good.  This guy’s on fire!  Just don’t ask him what wine goes with fish, he might just slug you in the face.  A special thanks to Joe Hines at A-Cubed Marketing for sharing this life-affirming speech.  

Am I A Mindful Communicator?

September 24, 2014

megaphoneGosh I love it when a personal and business friend’s name pops up on a social media site with a great blog post.  Surprise! Kevin Aschenbrenner, a law firm communications consultant, and grad school alumni of mine from Holy Names University in Oakland, has written a thoughtful and entertaining blog post: Am I A Mindful Communicator?

Here are the bullet points from his post:

  • Really listening to reporters, clients, and colleagues and keeping in mind who they are and where they are coming from. Maybe they just got dumped on by someone else, missed a deadline or spilled coffee all over their keyboard.
  • Letting go of my impulse to formulate a response in my head to what someone else is saying while they are saying it. That extra pause lets me respond in a more mindful, charitable way.
  • Keeping this saying from my days at ProfNet and PRNewswire front of mind: We’re all on the same team.
  • Be one of the good guys when it comes to pitching reporters: Respect deadlines and busy times, don’t be aggressive and don’t pitch garbage.
  • Realize that, as a handbook I got years ago when traveling on a Contiki tour said, “There are few things in life that are actually fatal.” And there is likely nothing I do in legal PR that could result in a fatality. So, chill out, dude.

Congrats dear Kevin, for a job well done.  Bravo.

CheckyChecky answers a simple question: how many times a day do I check my phone?  If you’re anything like me, the number is high and teeters on the brink of addiction. Yesterday I took BART from San Francisco to Berkeley.  I checked my phone at just about every stop.  A total of 10 times in less than 30 minutes.  This new app is much needed in our technology addicted culture.  I can only speak for myself, and my sense is that once I can actually observe this disturbing habit using data, I can monitor myself in a more mindful way.  This hyper-vigilance around instant gratification is unhealthy.  The way forward is to free up time that’s wasted on impulse phone checking and use it for more productive endeavors, allowing a sort of spaciousness to emerge.  From that expansive place, creativity can flow.  Tapping into this creative wellspring is good for business.

Ojai’s Best Library

August 25, 2014

Kratona Library ~ for SaraI spent time at the Kratona Library in Ojai studying my new non-religion—theosophy.  My daughter Haley (pictured above), a Cal-grad, joined me to visit this well-stocked library, which was built in 1924 and houses rare, out-of-print books focusing on the esoteric branches of knowledge such as alchemy, astrology, and mysticism. In my opinion, the Kratona Library invented and now owns “New Age.”  Sometimes we have to get out of the digital world and smell the scent of books.  Often I would simply sit in the library while looking out from the floor-to-ceiling picture window at the Heritage Oak tree and rose garden, absorbing the teachings without ever opening a book. Does anyone remember the osmosis joke from college days?  I’m just soaking it in, osmosis-style. 

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