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How to Balance Me and Us Time

Nobody can put a price on ‘me time’ – whether you’ve had a stressful week at work or just want a moment to have a good think, we all need a little time out now and then. But when you’ve got a partner, this can be easier said than done, particularly if you’re in the [...]

“It Is Easy To Be Heavy: Hard To Be Light.”

“It is easy to be heavy: hard to be light.” –G. K. Chesterton, “The Eternal Revolution,” in The Everyman Chesterton Agree, disagree? This idea haunted me as I was writing The Happiness Project. It seemed relevant to everything.

Video: For Habits, the Strategy of Convenience.

I’m doing a video series in which I discuss the various strategies that we can use for habit-formation. Habits are the invisible architecture of everyday life, and a significant element of happiness. If we have habits that work for us, we’re much more likely to be happy, healthy, productive, and creative. My forthcoming book, Better Than Before, describes the multiple … ?

WCML 036: Giving your heart away at the slightest provocation, with Susan Piver

A 4 and a car crash survivor, She’s also a great deep-sea diver. (I mean of the heart.) And that’s only part Of the beauty that is Susan Piver. Susan Piver is a Buddhist meditation teacher and a New York Times bestselling author of 7 books. She and I talk about the many, many paths(...)

The Stories We Don’t Tell

The stories we share with one another are important. They provide context and history. They connect us with the past and the people around us. They offer insight. They transfer wisdom. And they provide inspiration. The stories we choose to share as individuals and as a society are important to our development. But equally important […]

Want to Be Happy? 5 Powerful Ways Meditation Can Make It Happen

The power of the quiet mind, and how to get it. What if you could enhance and improve your life not by another new technique or tips you get from the media or books or online personal development blogs (including this one!) but rather...Show More Summary

Questioners, What Questions Do You Ask About Your Habits?

Every Wednesday is List Day, or Quiz Day, or Tip Day. I posted the other day about “Are you a people-pleaser?” This question is related to the  Four Tendencies framework, which I develop in Better Than Before, my book on habit change. (To hear when it goes on sale, sign up here.) A key piece of self-knowledge — which is … ?

“No One Wants to Admit They Were Tricked by the Size of a Scoop or the Shape of a Glass.”

Habits interview: Brian Wansink. I’ve been a big fan of behavioral scientist Brian Wansink for years. He does intensely interesting research on eating behavior and consumer habits, and his book Mindless Eating: Why We Eat More Than We Think was a resource for me as I was writing Better Than Before. For instance, he’s done a lot of research to … ?

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Do You Treat Yourself? Why You Should.

I offer free, signed bookplates to readers, and after I’ve signed them, my younger daughter helps me get the envelopes ready to mail. While we do this, we watch endless re-runs of the brilliant TV show, Parks and Recreation. (Before Parks and Rec, we watched The Office. What show should be next?) She’s thrilled, because if she helps me, she … ?

The Surprising Power of Apathy

One of the themes in this blog over the years is goal contagion, which is the idea that we often adopt the goals of the people around us. See someone helping others, and you suddenly want to be helpful. See someone being aggressive, and it makes you more likely to engage aggressively with others. What about apathy? read more

Narcissists Can Be Helped to Feel Empathy

Narcissists are people maintain their self-esteem by drawing on the energy of other people. They thrive on the accolades of others and like to broadcast their achievements. They also have difficulty in their social interactions, because they do not really empathize with others. read more

Why You Don’t Need to Run with the Cool Kids

“If you don’t fit in, then you are probably doing the right thing.” In high school, I played tennis and my favorite class was Accounting. I found out pretty early that the tennis team didn’t get invited to many parties…neither did the accountants. On the other hand, my twin brother started on the football team, […]

“Habit Change Is Easiest When People Move House or Undergo Some Life Transition.”

Habits interview: Wendy Wood. I was very pleased to get the chance to interview Professor and Vice Dean Wendy Wood, because she’s one of the top experts in the field of habits, and has done much of the most interesting research in the area. For instance, it was her research that showed that about people repeat about 40% of their … ?

Are You a “People-Pleaser?” What Do You Feel Obliged To Do?

I posted yesterday about “Do you resist when anyone asks or tell you what to do?”, about some questions I had about the Rebel Tendency, as part of the Four Tendencies framework I’ve created. The  Four Tendencies are part of what I discuss in Better Than Before, my book on habit change. A key piece of self-knowledge — which is … ?

Why We Don't Always Put Our Relationships First

A quick walk through the checkout line at most grocery stores takes you past an array of magazines that the store hopes you will grab on your way out. The headlines from those magazines scream out solutions to the problems people struggle with. And to judge from their content, three of the biggest problems center around weight loss, sex, and relationships. read more

9 Lies that Keep Our Schedules Overwhelmed

“Don’t get so busy making a living that you forget to make a life.” The speed of our world is increasing. Technology and communication continue to improve. Information moves faster. And social media rewards those who never turn it off. Expectations, demands, and accessibility continue to expand, but the number of hours in a week do not. As […]

How to Balance a Love of Food with a Desire to Be Healthy

By guest author Adrienne Erin Despite countless fraudulent Internet ads that claim the contrary, there is no magic pill to make us skinny. Even though we sometimes hate to admit it, it’s clear that the only road to healthy living is a two lane highway: exercise and healthy eating. Americans are famous for clocking hours [...]

How to Balance Our Time

By guest author Traci Lawrence How can we tell if our Lives are Out of Balance? We can tell that our lives are not balanced through honest self-evaluation. We can ask ourselves how we’re spending our time. Do we work too much? Are we connected to electronics continually? How much quality time do we spend [...]

How to Balance Appearance and Reality

By guest author Traci Lawrence What is the difference between Appearance and Reality? According to, appearance [uh-peer-uh ns] – the state, condition, manner, or style in which a person or object appears; outward look or aspect. reality [ree-al-i-tee] – the state or quality of being real; something that exists independently of ideas concerning it. [...]

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