23 — What are Self-Esteem and Self-Worth, Really?

Is there a difference between self-esteem and self-worth? Not really. Much has been written about self-esteem—especially in children—most of which doesn’t seem to distinguish between the two (see Wikipedia here and here), so we’ll use the two interchangeably. Much has also been written on the influences on self-esteem and what to do about low self-esteem (see this extensive list of articles from Psychology Today). There are also many articles recommending alternatives to focusing on self-esteem; e.g., compassion, status, self-respect, and self-recognition and acknowledgement.

If you’ve followed my other posts, you might guess that I feel they’ve all got it wrong! Continue reading


21 — Mutual Exchange of Value

Much of our lives is spent in exchanges. Whenever we make a purchase, that’s an exchange of value; when we make a donation to a favored charity, that’s an exchange; so is the $2 or $10 or $20 you gave to the homeless individual standing on the corner asking for help; and in very many ways, so is the conversation you’ve just had with your child, or your doctor, or the person standing next to you in the grocery store checkout line. It’s pretty obvious to see that, when you purchase something and pay for it, you’ve made an exchange of value. Perhaps it’s more difficult to see that a short conversation in the grocery store line with a complete stranger you may never see again is also an exchange of value, as is the case when you give money to a homeless person. Continue reading


20 — Passion vs. Lust

What is passion? What is lust? Is there a difference? We’ve talked several times before about passion (1 — Empowering Yourself—Finding Your Passion!2 — What is Your Passion and How Can You Live It?3 — Creating a Living from Your Passion, and 13 — “Truly” Awakening Your Passion — you might want to take a look at those blog posts to refresh what we’ve had to say before, as well as look at 6 — Who Are You? Who Am I?), but we haven’t talked about lust, or about lust in relationship to passion. So, what’s the difference, if there is one? Continue reading


19 — What Influences You?

What influences you in your life? What are the influences that you’re conscious of? Perhaps more importantly, what are the influences you’re not conscious of? The ones you’re conscious of are generally those you’ve thought through, or had an emotional reaction to or about, or that have come explicitly from friends or colleagues, or that you’ve read—for example, a book to read, a movie to see, or clothes to buy. These are all conscious choices, and because they’re conscious, you have the option of allowing them to influence you, or not.

But the unconscious choices give you no such option! Continue reading


18 — How Do You Spend Your Time?

This blog started out to be about finding your passion and living it—creating a living from that which most sparks your energy, your enthusiasm, and your love of doing it. But the name that came to me when the blog idea first arose is “Healthy Body Mind Soul” (www.healthybodymindsoul.net). And what has emerged here is a variety of blog subjects and topics that are much broader than just finding your passion.

So, that’s OK! What I write about is what comes to me—mostly during my morning meditation—and the words seem to just flow on that topic… until they stop! Continue reading


17 — The Human Impact of Poverty

Close your eyes for a moment and deeply feel one or more of the following:

  • You can’t stop by a Starbuck’s or Pete’s or your favorite coffee house for even a latte because that might make a difference in whether or not your child has something to eat that evening.
  • You have to stop going out to lunch every day, or even once a week, because the $60 a month you’d spend for lunch is needed to pay your phone or water bill.
  • You just scrape by each month paying the utilities, taking advantage of your utility company’s willingness to let you stretch your back payments over several months.
  • You can no longer afford to buy organic fruits and vegetables because of the cost difference.
  • You try to eat fewer meals so that you have enough to pay the rent or the utilities or for food for your children.

Sound impossible in Marin County? Think again! It’s very real in Marin County, and it’s greatest impact is on our county’s children! Continue reading


16 — Can You Change Your Mind?

Where did this question come from? I received an e-mail today—one of many that I get because someone who promised not to sell my e-mail address sold it anyway—the title of which was “Subconscious Mind v. Conscious Mind.” The link took me to a short video clip that was actually about the Reticular Activating System, or RAS. The speaker proceeded to talk about how all you had to do was keep your goals constantly in mind and you would sensitize the RAS to ensure that, whatever those goals were, they would now start coming true because the RAS would watch for them for you and somehow or other filter them from the 10’s of millions of stimuli you receive each day/hour/minute in your subconscious mind.

The speaker’s comments reflected the widespread popular confusion about … Continue reading


15 — Reflections on Relationships and Intimacy

The following appeared August 18 on the Ultimate Life Today Facebook page:

When I got home that night as my wife served dinner, I held her hand and said, I’ve got something to tell you. She sat down and ate quietly. Again I observed the hurt in her eyes. Suddenly I didn’t know how to open my mouth. But I had to let her know what I was thinking. I want a divorce. I raised the topic calmly. She didn’t seem to be annoyed by my words, instead she asked me softly, why? Continue reading


14 — Where’s the Sanity in the World?

I have several e-mail addresses, one of which dates back to about 1993 and another to about 2004. As you can imagine, I get a lot of subscribed, solicited, and unsolicited mail in my inbox for both of these e-mails. Lately, I’ve gotten a lot of e-mails about things our illustrious Congress is doing or considering or trying to get passed—like closing post offices and stopping Saturday mail delivery, or a bill to replace peer review at the National Science Foundation (NSF) with a set of funding criteria chosen and overseen by Congress, which the sponsoring congressman wants to use as a model for every federal science agency we have.  Continue reading