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You Can Survive Even the Most Painful Feelings

It is normal to believe that we would not be able to survive a traumatic life event such as the death of our child, our spouse being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, or any number of other tragic and traumatic life events. However, once we develop the ability and courage to stay fully present with whatever we […]

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Video: Take the Risk of Diving Into Your Fears or Pain

I have often talked about suffering less by accepting and being fully present with pain or other symptoms. But, this seems counterintuitive and risky. A common question is: When I’m really afraid or in a lot of pain, why would I want to experience more of that? Wouldn’t it be better to do things to […]

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Acceptance of Feelings Creates Self-Acceptance

When we learn how to practice coming home to the body, especially when feeling overwhelmed by too much to do, traumatic life events, or by strong emotions, we develop loving self-care, self-compassion, self-empowerment, self-efficacy, self-valuing, resilience, and an increased sense of aliveness. In learning how to practice being fully awake and present in the body, […]

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Video: You Are What You Practice

We are all masters of practice in that we are practicing something in every moment. We commonly practice unhealthy behaviors and behaviors that are not aligned with our personal life values. If we go around all day being self-critical, we will have a very negative self-image. If we practice behaviors that make us feel good […]

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Video: Meaning and Purpose to Your Life

The terms meaning and purpose often appear together, and I would frame their relationship this way: when we act with purpose, we take actions that are important enough to lend meaning to our lives. Meaningful actions are always in accord with our personal life values, whether we value accomplishment, wellbeing, comfort and safety, healthy relationships, […]

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Video: Ships Are Safe In The Harbor But They Are Built To Sail The World

Many of us hold ourselves back from doing things that would enhance our lives because we’re afraid of embarrassment, shame, or failure. On the other hand, some people, especially those with bipolar disorder or borderline personality disorder, act impulsively in order to avoid the same very uncomfortable feelings. We all do this to some extent, […]

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Self-Acceptance

Although it is important to learn loving self-care practices and to incorporate those practices into as much of waking life as possible, it would not be effective to bypass full acceptance of your bodily experiences of unpleasant thoughts and feelings. Recognition and acceptance of troublesome thoughts and feelings is an essential starting place. As described in […]

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Video: The Importance of Being Open and Vulnerable

We are a lot like lobsters. Lobsters have a hard exoskeleton, which they must shed several times in order to grow into a mature lobster. Because of the hard shell, the only way for the lobster to grow up is to shed its exoskeleton each time it outgrows it. Between the time it sheds its […]

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Q & A with Dr. B. – You have written about practice being a way of life—something to practice throughout the day. What are the main practices that encompass this way of life?

The purpose of this website, my book, and the Community Education course I teach at the College of Marin, is to teach people how to live a vibrant, meaningful life through the cultivation of self-empowerment and self-efficacy. In this monthly Q&A column, I post questions from students and from people who attend my presentations along […]

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Video: The Wisdom of Coach John Wooden

By all accounts John Wooden was one of the best coaches of any sport in history. One of his most famous players tended to complain a lot. Coach Wooden said the following to him: “Things turn out the best for the people who make the best of the way things turn out.” He taught his […]

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