You Can’t Find Purpose from a Job Alone

Read Time: 7 min.

It’s curious how artists are often able to describe realities with far fewer words than scholars. What takes a scientist or a historian hundreds of pages takes a lyricist or poet just a few lines or stanzas.   It’s also curious how sometimes an outsider’s take better captures the reality of insiders. A little critical distance, a little objectivity, helps&nb...

We Are Not Our Plans

Read Time: 6 min.

David Brooks recently observed that moments of suffering help us to realize that all of us think we are “our plans.” Our lives and identity are shaped around what we are planning for ourselves and our futures. Most of the time we take this for granted; we don’t think about it. But moments when our plans are thrown into question and our expectations are dashed, these are the times when we...

The Meaning of a Single Hug

Read Time: 5 min.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer is a 20th century martyr. He was killed for his involvement in a conspiracy to kill Adolf Hitler. Prior to his death, he was in Nazi custody for more than two years. Bonhoeffer was a pastor but served most actively as a teacher before his arrest. He spent a majority of that time at Tegel prison in central Berlin. Not far away was the home where he spent much of his youth a...

Healthy Progress, Not Perfection

Read Time: 4 min.

How anyone can keep up with the diet trends these days, I’ll never know. If you’re getting your health information online, what’s good for you and what’s bad for you is simply a matter of science… or opinion… or scientific opinion. It’s all very confusing! But the one thing I think everyone can agree on at this point is that what you put into your body matters. Through much...

Weird, Wonderful Creativity

Read Time: 3 min.

I have some issues with the word creative. I feel like it’s a word people say about you when they want to say that you are weird, but you are also in the room. This is really a shame because to be someone who creates (and is weird) is awesome! I create every day in my job at a Shakespeare Theater and most days in my downtime as a way of de-stressing. I have always loved painting. As a kid, m...

The Self-Inflicted Curse of Creativity

Read Time: 3 min.

I tend to be called creative a lot. From the moment I chose design as a major in college, I sealed my professional fate as a “creative” in the industry. Fast forward four years, a business minor, and way too many Red Bull-fueled late nights later, and I found myself as a proud… college graduate who was living at home with my parents — sound familiar? Thanks to my decision to pursue a creative care...

What We Hate Most in Others

Read Time: 3 min.

“You hate most in others what you hate most in yourself,” Mr. Baxter said, as he looked around my seventh-grade class. Then he focused his gaze on one of my fellow students in particular. She knew those words were meant for her. I saw her tense up. She did not take his words kindly. Why? Because instead of allowing for her to judge another pupil with impunity, Mr. Baxter turned the tables and push...

Our Confusing Selves

Read Time: 3 min.

When I was little, my dad had a poster of an adorable chimpanzee next to his desk. This was long before the days of memes, but you may have seen an updated version. The chimpanzee held a thinking pose above the caption, “I think, therefore I am… confused.” My dad explained to me about the concept of philosophy and a man called Descartes. I felt incredibly grown up to be in on what I consider...

Bracing for Holiday Challenges

Read Time: 2 min.

A few days ago, I called the father of my two twenty-something children. For the past couple of years, the kids and I have been celebrating Thanksgiving at his condo in Philadelphia—Christmas is at my house. I had gotten word through the “grapevine” (a.k.a. my son) that his dad was upset about the possibility that after dinner everyone would leave for their separate dwellings, and then he’d be stu...

Road Rage Versus the Grateful Heart

Read Time: 3 min.

For me, driving downtown is the worst. I lose all sense of patience and spend my entire commute questioning other people’s sanity and driving abilities. From start to finish, it’s a very negative experience. Then one day, it occurred to me: I could change my mind. Now there’s a thought. I like to think of myself as having a grateful heart. Most of the time, that’s true. Maybe I should say, in most...

Gratitude—The Big and Small of it

Read Time: 4 min.

Many of us, myself included, use the words “thank you” as carelessly as “excuse me” or “gesundheit.” We tend to throw around “thanks” without necessarily giving it a thought. We say it at the Starbucks drive-thru, after opening a present, or when someone holds the door open for us. But I want to talk about gratitude, and I’m not entirely sure that thanks and gratitude are as synonymous as we might...

Integrity and Freedom from Judgement

Read Time: 4 min.

As I’m writing this, the hearings on the newest Supreme Court judge have just finished. I purposely did not watch them… it was too much for me. Lately, I have been overwhelmed with the feeling that I’m waiting for a dream sequence to end; that I’ll wake up to a world where leaders don’t mock abuse victims, where honesty and integrity are still valuable, where character and courtesy mean something....

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