The Terrible Price of Conformity

All kinds of people push conformity. But why? Fitting in may sound harmless, but it leads to all kinds of misery. We need to talk about this. Read more »

William Booth Saw It Coming

William Booth was born in England in 1829 and died in 1916.

Perhaps his signature achievement was starting and nurturing The Salvation Army. Nowadays, the Army is known almost entirely for its charity work, which would appall The Founder (as Booth is known). Read more »

Pulling the Plug on a Dream

Some people give up easily. They keep a close eye on the sky; if a cloud happens by, they’re out of here. Dream’s over. Pack it up. Put it away. These Pollyannas aren’t really dreamers. Maybe quick buck artists. Perhaps dilettantes who never stick to anything. But they’re not dreamers.

Then there are heavy-duty dreamers who never give up. If drooling, man-eating aliens land on their front lawn, the never-say-die types see it as a great headline for an ad. The aliens would be burping and politely dabbing their snouts with a napkin before these diehards noticed their peril. Read more »

What Are Your Secret Talents?

Couch potatoes never know what bulging, rippling muscles they might attain by spending their couch time at the gym. On the couch, even repetitive bench pressing of the biggest, baddest universal remote won’t cut or tone a noticeable muscle.

What may not be so obvious is the same holds true for exercising/non-exercising of our talents. Just as a dedicated couch potato will never know if he has a set of six-pack abs waiting to be liberated, we’ll never develop our abilities without putting in time exercising them. Read more »

Understanding Pain’s Lessons

I talk to pretty much everybody. Starting conversations with strangers is my normal modus operandi. I mean, why stand in a line mute, an island unto myself, when I can have a perfectly lovely conversation with somebody I haven’t yet met? Read more »

Life’s Struggles

Life isn’t a stroll through the park, as you may have noticed.

In fact, if one problem or another doesn’t drag you into some kind of struggle fairly regularly–or at least, from time to time–you’re not engaged in the process, and life won’t end up well. Read more »

Pep for the Pooped: Discovering the Vitamins and Minerals Your Body Is Starving For – 2nd Edition

(Since health plays a big, big role in a good life, so I want to tell you about the new edition of my vitamin/mineral e-book.)

WooHoo! The second edition of Pep for the Pooped by Bette Dowdell is now available! Read more »

Emotions Need Muscle-Building, Too

It’s a much mourned fact of life that watching exercise videos doesn’t tone muscles. Couch potatoes who can legitimately boast about six-pack abs don’t exist.

Reading bodybuilding books doesn’t get the job done, either. Reading can take us on many wondrous journeys of the mind, but it won’t pump up the pecs. Read more »

Throwing Your Life Away

Life comes one to a customer. We’re all in the middle of a one-time event. We get one shot to do it right. When it’s over, it’s over. No rehearsals, no retakes.

Why, then, do we so casually throw our lives away? Read more »

You know life is not all you hoped for when you’re spending time at Pray let me tell you a story of staggering to triumph through, over and around adversity. Read more »

The Blank Slate Myth

Well, now, there are myths, and then there are myths.

Some myths could be called quaintly eccentric. You know, like the one about storks delivering babies. Some might argue the stork myth visits confusion upon the innocent, but it’s more charming than problematic. Read more »

Tell ‘Em You Love “Em

I grew up in a large, energetic, loud, happy, loving family. And talk about interacting! We all held a carload of opinions, which we freely shared at every opportunity. And sometimes even when an opportunity refused to present itself. Read more »

Of Course You’re Scared

When we think about making changes in our lives, it can scare us half to death. But it’s not always all that comforting to think life will never change. Sometimes, in fact, the thought of life always being the same is the more terrifying of the two. Read more »

It’s Always About the Timing

So, here’s the situation: We’re thinking about making some changes in life, and we’re wondering how to spot the perfect time to act. Perfect timing means perfect success, right? Read more »

The Four Stages of Life

Life has four stages.

We’re born into Stage 1. We can’t walk. We can’t talk. In fact, we can’t really do anything on purpose. What happens just happens. Read more »