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“We think too much and feel too little.” – Charlie Chaplin

“The Wizard of Oz” is the most watched movie of all time, according to The Library of Congress. In it, Dorothy journeys to Oz to meet the Wizard so that she can find a way home. Accompanying her are the Cowardly Lion — who wants courage — the Scarecrow — who needs a brain — and the Tim Man — who longs for a heart. While courage and a brain are essential to helping us navigate through life, we aren’t fully human without a heart and the positive experiences it facilitates: connection, love, gratitude, empathy.

Do you live only in the mind OR do you experience heartfelt positivity?

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“The voyage of discovery lies not in finding new landscapes, but in having new eyes.” – Marcel Proust

Many of us do similar things each day. Our routines can become familiar and boring. But there is a simple exercise that can help us change our perspective. It comes from Harvard psychology professor Ellen Langer. She suggests noticing five new things each day anywhere you happen to be. Try looking around on your way to work, in your kitchen, at the gym, or in your local coffee shop. By noticing new things, we step into the present fully and mindfully and open ourselves to better health and happiness.

Do you surrender to boredom OR find the new in the familiar?

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“Intimacy is about letting yourself really be known, including parts that you or your partner don’t like.” – David Schnarch

Sing along from “The King and I”: Getting to know you, getting to know all about you. Getting to like you, getting to hope you like me…” We all want to be liked, but to be truly accepted and appreciated, we must let others know us, warts and all. This may mean risking exposure, embarrassment and even rejection, but love, connection and intimacy are the ultimate rewards.

Do you seek validation OR seek to be known?

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“Be the change you want to see in the world.” – Mahatma Gandhi

“Do as I say, not as I do.” This may be the directive of a despot or dictator, but not of an authentic leader. You can get people to change behavior through threats and intimidation, but a more effective approach is to embody the change you want to see in others. Have you ever noticed that the most genuine leaders lead by example? They don’t just tell you to act a certain way; they walk the walk, talk the talk and inspire you to do the same.

Do you rely on words OR lead with deeds?

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“To different minds, the same world is a hell, and a heaven.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Recipe for a bad mood:

  • 1 quart of taking things personally
  • 3 cups of resentment
  • 4 tablespoons of woe is me/victimhood mentality
  • 3 teaspoons of wallowing

Sautee until burned and inedible.

Recipe for a good mood:

  • 1 quart of acceptance
  • 3 cups of equanimity
  • 4 tablespoons of experiencing fully and letting go
  • 3 tablespoons of glass half full mentality

Mix completely and drink until satisfied.

Do you focus on the negative OR focus on the positive?