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Ten Percent Happier with Dan Harris

Ten Percent Happier with Dan Harris

Dan Harris is a fidgety, skeptical ABC News anchor who had a panic attack live on "Good Morning America," which led him to try something he always thought was ridiculous: meditation. He went on to write the bestselling book, "10% Happier." In this podcast, Dan explores happiness (whatever that means) from all angles. Guests include legendary meditation teachers -- from the Dalai Lama to Western masters -- as well as scientists, and even the odd celebrity. But the show also ventures beyond meditation, bringing on leading researchers in areas such as social anxiety, bias, creativity, productivity, and relationships. The animating insight of this show is that the mind is trainable. This is what science is showing us. Mental traits such as happiness, calm, generosity, compassion, and connection are not hardwired, unalterable factory settings; they are, in fact, skills that can be trained. On this show, you'll learn how.

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Episodes

#367: The Price of Secrecy | Michael Slepian

This episode is all about secrets.  Did you know that there are 38 categories of secrets?and statistically, according to Michael Slepian, you probably have about 13 of them right now? Slepian is the Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. Associate Professor of Leadership and Ethics at Columbia Business School. He studies the psychology of secrets ? and how keeping secrets affects our social life and work life, particularly as it pertains to trust and motivation. In this conversation we dive into common misunderstandings about secrets, the hardest part about having secrets, the toll secrets take (both physically and psychologically), how other people can help us handle our secrets in a healthier way, and the impact of societal systems and structures on our secret keeping. (One thing to note: There are brief references to abuse and other traumatic events that some people keep secret.) If you don't already have the Ten Percent Happier app, download it for free wherever you get your apps: https://10percenthappier.app.link/download-app. Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/michael-slepian-367
2021-07-28
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#366: How to Outsmart Your Pain | Christiane Wolf

Sit in meditation for a few minutes and you?re likely to experience pain, either physical or psychological. Hang around the meditation scene for very long, and you are likely to hear the expression, ?Pain is inevitable; suffering is optional.?  And that?s what this episode is all about -- boosting your pain tolerance through meditation. Because pain really is inevitable, but can you reduce your suffering through mindfulness and compassion?  Christiane Wolf argues ?yes?. She is a physician turned mindfulness and compassion teacher and teacher trainer. She is an authorized Buddhist teacher in the Insight (Vipassana) meditation tradition, teaching classes and retreats worldwide, and she?s also the author of the new book ?Outsmart Your Pain?. In this conversation, we talk about meditation techniques that offer us a better relationship to pain, how to work with the physicality of pain, the stories we tell ourselves about our pain, and seeing pain as an opportunity. Download the Ten Percent Happier app today: https://10percenthappier.app.link/install Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/christiane-wolf-366
2021-07-26
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How Not To Be A Jerk (Even with Difficult People) | Bonus Meditation with Oren Jay Sofer

With guidance from Oren, this session will let you experiment with ways to find a genuine sense of kindness for yourself and for others. To find this meditation in the Ten Percent Happier app, you can search for ?Practicing Kindness,? or click the link for the ?Kindness: Ted Lasso Style? singles meditation pack: https://10percenthappier.app.link/KindnessTedLassoStyle. Watch Ted Lasso on Apple TV+. Subscription required. Apple TV+ and/or select content may not be available in all regions. About Oren Sofer: Oren Jay Sofer teaches mindfulness, meditation and Nonviolent Communication. He has practiced meditation since 1997, beginning his studies in Bodh Gaya, India and is a long-time student of Joseph Goldstein, Michele McDonald, and Ajahn Sucitto, and is a graduate of the IMS/Spirit Rock Teacher Training program. He holds a degree in Comparative Religion from Columbia University and is the author of Say What You Mean: A Mindful Approach to Nonviolent Communication.
2021-07-23
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The Art and Science of Compassion | Thupten Jinpa

It can be incredibly frustrating when life-changing, world-changing concepts such as compassion and kindness are often presented as cliches, because scientific research strongly suggests that learning how to practice compassion -- through meditation and other modalities -- can genuinely change your life. And enough of us did it, it could maybe change the world.  One of the people who is the best at getting this message out, in new and creative ways, is Thupten Jinpa. He is a former Tibetan monk who went on to go to Cambridge University, where he got a B.A. in philosophy and a Ph.D. in religious studies. Since 1985, he has been the principal English translator for His Holiness the Dalai Lama.  In this conversation, we talk about developing a compassionate meditation practice, building kindness and empathy, the connection between intention setting and compassion, and identifying and regulating negative emotional reactions.  A few technical notes: This episode is a rerun. We do reruns when we have episodes that are amazing that we think our newer listeners might enjoy. We also do them to give our staff a break once in a while. We actually recorded this conversation live in front of an audience at the Asia Society in New York City a few years ago. It was the day after the school shooting in Parkland, so you will hear a few references to that.  Check out Joseph Goldstein's course on compassion in the Ten Percent Happier app: https://10percenthappier.app.link/CompassionWithJoseph Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/thupten-jinpa-repost
2021-07-21
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#365: The Voice in Your Head | Ethan Kross

The craving, complaining, and comparing voice in our heads can be the source of incalculable suffering, but is it all bad? And are there ways to talk to yourself that can turn your inner voice into a powerful ally?  Ethan Kross is a Professor in the University of Michigan?s top ranked Psychology Department and its Ross School of Business and the author of the new book, Chatter: The Voice in Our Head, Why it Matters, and How to Harness It.  In this conversation, we talk about why we have voices inside our head, how they can be either a blessing or a curse, how to access your inner coach rather than your inner critic, how changing our outer environment can impact your inner environment, and how you can use the much-maligned social media for support. Download the Ten Percent Happier app today: https://10percenthappier.app.link/install Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/ethan-kross-365 
2021-07-19
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Be Aware and Don?t Cling | Bonus Meditation with Joseph Goldstein

Too many expectations can lead to disappointment. This meditation helps you avoid preconceived notions and see what is already there. About Joseph Goldstein: Joseph is one of the most respected meditation teachers in the world -- a key architect of the rise of mindfulness in our modern society -- with a sense of humor to boot. In the 1970's, he co-founded the Insight Meditation Society (IMS) alongside Sharon Salzberg and Jack Kornfield. Since its founding, thousands of people from around the world have come to IMS to learn mindfulness from leaders in the field. Joseph has been a teacher there since its founding and continues as the resident guiding teacher. To find this meditation in the Ten Percent Happier app, you can search for ?Be Aware and Don?t Cling,? or click here: https://10percenthappier.app.link/content?meditation=9c0526bc-52b3-44f9-b386-61502770cf00. Download the Ten Percent Happier app today: https://10percenthappier.app.link/install
2021-07-16
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#364: Getting Over Yourself | Joseph Goldstein

For the uninitiated, Joseph Goldstein is one of the cofounders of the Insight Meditation Society (IMS) alongside Sharon Salzberg and Jack Kornfield. Since its founding, thousands of people from around the world have come to IMS to learn mindfulness from leaders in the field.  In this episode Joseph covers strategies for getting over yourself. Every year, Joseph does a three-month retreat by himself at his home in Massachusetts. This year, he emerged with a bunch of thoughts on what?s called ?the three proliferating tendencies,? or three ?prapancas,? to use the ancient Pali term.  These are three ways in which we perpetuate a sense of self -- not a healthy sense of self, but an unhealthy sense of self. You can think about the process of going deeper in meditation as a process of lightening up or getting less self-centered. Now, you?re about to get a master class in doing just that.  Download the Ten Percent Happier app today: https://10percenthappier.app.link/install Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/joseph-goldstein-364
2021-07-14
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#363: How to Keep Your Relationships On the Rails | Kaira Jewel Lingo

Today?s episode is about a Buddhist tool for resolving conflict and keeping your relationships healthy. Today?s guest, Kaira Jewel Lingo, was an ordained nun of 15 years in Thich Nhat Hanh?s Order of Interbeing, and is now a lay Dharma teacher based on Long Island. She graduated from Stanford University with a B.A. and M.A. in Anthropology and Social Sciences. She?s edited a few books by Thich Nhat Hanh, including Planting Seeds: Practicing Mindfulness with Children. In this interview, Kaira Jewel talks about: the Beginning Anew practice (and how even skeptics can see the value in it); how Beginning Anew can strengthen relationships and resolve conflicts; the four steps of the practice; and her own experience with the practice, as both a teacher of it and a practitioner of it. If Kaira Jewel's insights on gratitude within the practice intrigue or inspire you, you might like a fantastic meditation we released recently on the Ten Percent Happier app called "Daily Gratitude Booster" by Matthew Hepburn. It's the perfect way to cultivate a regular practice of gratitude, which, like meditation itself, is a skill that you can improve. Check it out by downloading the Ten Percent Happier app wherever you get your apps (https://10percenthappier.app.link/install) or click the link in our show notes to be taken directly to Matthew's meditation: https://10percenthappier.app.link/DailyGratitudeBooster. Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/kaira-jewel-lingo-363
2021-07-12
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Can You Be Curious Without Getting Judge-y? | Bonus Meditation with Oren Jay Sofer

In this session from Oren, learn how to use meditation to become less reactive and more open in relationships, conversations, and your life. To find this meditation in the Ten Percent Happier app, you can search for ?Curiosity without Judgment,? or click here: https://10percenthappier.app.link/content?meditation=26d7d194-8d16-4a6f-91e5-b1f07345abc8. Of course, if you don't have the app, you can download the Ten Percent Happier app today, for free: https://10percenthappier.app.link/install. About Oren Jay Sofer: Oren Jay Sofer teaches mindfulness, meditation and Nonviolent Communication. He has practiced meditation since 1997, beginning his studies in Bodh Gaya, India and is a long-time student of Joseph Goldstein, Michele McDonald, and Ajahn Sucitto, and is a graduate of the IMS/Spirit Rock Teacher Training program. Oren teaches retreats across the country and works as Senior Program Developer at Mindful Schools, teaching and developing curricula for one of the international leaders of mindfulness in education.
2021-07-09
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The Science of Happiness | Emiliana Simon-Thomas

In a previous interview with Dan, the Dalai Lama said something along the lines of, ?everyone?s selfish; that?s the way we?re wired. But if you?re going to be selfish, you should be wisely selfish.? Wise selfishness takes into account the fact that what really makes humans happy is to care for other people. This notion has been a central part of the Buddhist platform for millennia, but is now being borne out in scientific research.  Today?s guest is Emiliana Simon-Thomas. She is the science director of the Greater Good Science Center at UC Berkeley, where she is a co-instructor of its Science of Happiness online course. In this conversation, Emiliana talks to us about the difference between empathy and compassion, how we can be happier by being more compassionate and connected, what we misunderstand about love, and a more scientific definition for that culturally loaded term. Just to note -- this is a re-run of an older episode we pulled out of our vault for a few reasons:  1) It?s summer and we want to give our tireless staff a break; and 2) This is one of our all-time favorite episodes and one that many of our newer listeners may not have heard.  For more science-based happiness practices, you can download the Ten Percent Happier app today: https://10percenthappier.app.link/install. Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/emiliana-simon-thomas-repost
2021-07-07
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#362: Rethinking Your Relationship to 'Stuff' | The Minimalists + Oren Jay Sofer

We?ve been meaning to tackle our relationship to 'stuff' for a while now. This subject can go deep. It?s not just about decluttering (although that can actually be pretty substantial work); it?s about rethinking your whole life.  Recently we spoke to a pair of gentlemen known as The Minimalists -- whose names are Joshua Fields Milburn and Ryan Nicodemus. They?re perhaps best known for their documentaries on Netflix: ?Minimalism? and ?Less is Now?. They also have a very popular podcast and have written a series of books. Their latest book, ?Love People, Use Things?, comes out this month. In this episode, we talk about their powerful and painful personal path to Minimalism; the freedom that they say comes from living with less; how to actually do Minimalism; and the pitfalls of the path.  And as a bonus pairing, we?ve brought back a Ten Percent Happier favorite, Oren Jay Sofer. Oren is a renowned Buddhist teacher who has been meditating for nearly a quarter of a century. As part of his training he spent over two years living with less as a Buddhist renunciate, and he makes a compelling case for bringing minimalism into the mindfulness practice, and for letting go. For more from Oren and other great meditation teachers, download the Ten Percent Happier app today: https://10percenthappier.app.link/install. Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/the-minimalists-oren-sofer-362
2021-07-05
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Joseph Goldstein on Self-Compassion | Bonus Meditation

Self-compassion is powerful, but it's not always easy to acknowledge your own pain. This meditation helps you default to compassion. To find this meditation in the Ten Percent Happier app, you can search for ?Self-Compassion,? or click here: https://10percenthappier.app.link/content?meditation=0ee0c676-4215-4d7f-9b0d-9129a3d79a5b. If you don't have the Ten Percent Happier app, you can download it today: https://10percenthappier.app.link/install. About Joseph Goldstein: Joseph is one of the most respected meditation teachers in the world -- a key architect of the rise of mindfulness in our modern society -- with a sense of humor to boot. In the 1970's, he co-founded the Insight Meditation Society (IMS) alongside Sharon Salzberg and Jack Kornfield. Since its founding, thousands of people from around the world have come to IMS to learn mindfulness from leaders in the field. Joseph has been a teacher there since its founding and continues as the resident guiding teacher.
2021-07-02
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#361: Why Men Armor Up | Daniel Ellenberg

Today's episode is a deep dive into the male operating system and how it can be upgraded. Today's guest, Daniel Ellenberg, is a psychotherapist, marriage and relationship therapist, author, and facilitator. He has been leading men?s groups for over 30 years and is the new sitting president of the American Psychological Association's ?Division 51: Society for the Psychological Study of Men & Masculinities." In this conversation, Dr. Ellenberg explains: what masculinity actually means; what prevents men from forming bonds with other men; ?traditional masculinity ideology?; why men die earlier than women; the importance of self-compassion for men; and how to be a good role model as a dad, friend, and fellow man.    Download the Ten Percent Happier app today: https://10percenthappier.app.link/install Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/daniel-ellenberg-361
2021-06-30
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#360: Self-Compassion Ain?t Always Soft | Kristin Neff

There?s a widely held assumption that if you have a warmer, friendlier relationship with yourself, you will not only slack off and be ineffective, but also that you will be a doormat. My guest today says: not true. She?s making the case that self-compassion, when properly understood, can lead to a kind of ferocity. It can help you stand up for yourself and others.  Kristin Neff is the central pioneer in the field of self-compassion research and her work has had a massive impact on me and my own work. She is an Associate Professor of Educational Psychology at the University of Texas at Austin. She?s the author of the book Self-Compassion: The Proven Power of Being Kind to Yourself, and now she has a new book, called Fierce Self-Compassion: How Women Can Harness Kindness to Speak Up, Claim Their Power and Thrive.  This conversation is for everyone, whether you identify as a woman or not. These concepts are universal, although, as you will hear Kristen argue, there is special importance for women. And speaking of gender, we are dedicating this week to that subject. Coming up on Wednesday, we?re going to talk about masculinity with a guest named Daniel Ellenberg. In this episode with Kristin Neff, we talk about: tender self-compassion vs. fierce self-compassion; the three main forms of fierce self-compassion; how to take a fierce self-compassion break; destructive vs. constructive anger; why she wrote the book specifically for women, and why you should read it, regardless of your gender socialization; how men can help the women in their lives develop this kind of ferocity; and how self-compassion can help us face our biases. For more resources on self-compassion, you can download the Ten Percent Happier app today: https://10percenthappier.app.link/install Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/kristin-neff-360
2021-06-28
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The Delusion of Perfection | Bonus Meditation with Leslie Booker

The struggle to keep up in the era of social media is universal. Bring compassion to your inner critic & release the delusion of perfection. About Leslie Booker: Booker brings her heart and wisdom to the intersection of Dharma, Embodied Wisdom, and Social Justice. Much of her work has been supporting incarcerated and vulnerable youth populations. To find this meditation in the Ten Percent Happier app, you can search for ?Taming Your Inner Critic,? or click here: https://10percenthappier.app.link/content?meditation=2789fd7d-8427-4956-9378-0f01d59238c4.
2021-06-25
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#359: The Hard Questions That Might Save Your Relationship | Susan Piver

Today we have some counterintuitive relationship advice. If you?re in a tough spot with your loved one, why would you want to have a deep chat about religion, politics, work, or your eating habits? Wouldn?t that just make everything worse? My guest today says asking these hard questions is exactly what you should do.  Susan Piver is a fan favorite in TPH-world. She has been a practicing Buddhist for more than a quarter-century. She?s a graduate of a Buddhist seminary, founder of The Open Heart Project, and a New York Times bestselling author of many books, including How Not to Be Afraid of Your Own Life. This month, she?s releasing a revised and expanded edition of her blockbuster book, The Hard Questions: 100 Essential Questions to Ask Before You Say ?I Do.? This book started out as a relationship tool for recently engaged couples, but it?s taken on a much broader life. You can use it if your long-term relationship has hit a snag, if you?ve recently broken up with someone and want to understand why, or if you?re single and just want to know yourself better. The book originally came out 20 years ago, but a lot has changed since then, so Susan has gone through and done a big rewrite.  In this conversation, we talk about: why hard questions are so key to building or rebuilding the foundation for a healthy relationship; the difference between love affairs and long-term relationships (and how failing to see the difference can tank your relationship); why breakups are rarely caused by lack of love, but instead by something else; and Susan will explore, from a Buddhist perspective, what happens when the boundaries between you and another person begin to dissolve ? and what to watch out for when this happens. Also, there?s (just barely!) still time to join us in our free Taming Anxiety Challenge. This ten-day meditation challenge will teach you how to understand your anxiety and give you practical tools for coping with the difficult thoughts and emotions that arise when you are anxious. And it?s also a great way to kickstart your meditation practice.  You can join the Taming Anxiety Challenge by downloading the Ten Percent Happier app: https://10percenthappier.app.link/install. You should be prompted to join the Challenge after registering your account. If you've already downloaded the app, just open it up or visit this link to join: https://10percenthappier.app.link/TamingAnxietyChallenge. Be sure to sign up by June 24! Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/susan-piver-359
2021-06-23
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#358: Buddhist Lessons on Anxiety | Leslie Booker

Taming Anxiety Series - Episode 4: Welcome to the final episode in our Taming Anxiety Series! Today's guest, Leslie Booker ? who goes by "Booker" ? is one of America?s leading dharma teachers. She began sharing the practice with vulnerable populations back in 2005 and is a graduate of three different training programs at Spirit Rock, including their four-year Retreat Teacher Training Program. In this conversation, Booker will make the case that one of the most important, even life-saving, tools when it comes to dealing with anxiety is our ability to connect with our communities. She also brings our attention to yet another Buddhist list ? the ?three characteristics.? And she explains how bringing awareness to our bodies can help settle us in our most anxious moments. This, I should say, is something she?s worked on with me personally. If you?d like to see that, you can actually do so, because we filmed it as part of our new Taming Anxiety Challenge, a ten-day meditation challenge which begins today over in the Ten Percent Happier app.  Booker is one of the core teachers in the Taming Anxiety Challenge, which features short videos and guided meditations about how to live with anxiety more intentionally. In the app, you?ll see her share strategies with me ? and you ? for putting into practice everything we talk about on the podcast today ? including ways to normalize the experience of anxiety in your community. In fact, by joining the Taming Anxiety Challenge, you'll be part of a community of thousands of meditators learning to cope with anxiety. You can even invite your friends or family to join you in the Challenge ? for free! You'll get a notification each time they meditate, so you can be accountable to and supportive of each other.  You can join the Taming Anxiety Challenge by downloading the Ten Percent Happier app: https://10percenthappier.app.link/install. You should be prompted to join the Challenge after registering your account. If you've already downloaded the app, just open it up or visit this link to join: https://10percenthappier.app.link/TamingAnxietyChallenge. Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/leslie-booker-358
2021-06-21
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#357: Strategies for Social Anxiety | Ellen Hendriksen

Taming Anxiety Series - Episode 3: As we move into summer and more and more vaccines go into arms, your town or city (or state or country) may soon be opening back up, if it hasn?t already. Some of us are ecstatic. A lot of us are anxious. (And by the way, those are not mutually exclusive. It?s totally possible to be both.) If the thought of large crowds or even small dinner parties makes your palms sweat, don?t worry. You?re not alone. (And if this was true for you even before the pandemic, you?re not alone there, either.) Our guest today is here to help.  Ellen Hendriksen is a clinical psychologist who specializes in anxiety and social anxiety and serves on the faculty at Boston University's Center for Anxiety and Related Disorders. She is the author of How to Be Yourself: Quiet Your Inner Critic and Rise Above Social Anxiety. In today?s episode she explains how to increase your tolerance for uncertainty; how and why social anxiety has gotten worse since the start of the pandemic; and, what you can do to face your own anxiety around social interactions, especially if you?re in a place that is reopening. She?ll also answer some questions from you, our listeners. In addition to this series on the podcast, we are launching a free Taming Anxiety Meditation Challenge in the Ten Percent Happier app, to help you practice what you?re learning. In this brand-new ten-day meditation challenge, we?ll be pairing a leading anxiety expert and a top-notch meditation teacher together to help you practice what we?re talking about on the show.  The free Taming Anxiety Challenge begins on Monday, June 21, and will run for ten days. Each day, you'll receive a video and you'll complete a short meditation. You'll also receive daily reminders to help keep you on track, and you can even invite your friends to join you. Join the Taming Anxiety Challenge by downloading the Ten Percent Happier app: https://10percenthappier.app.link/install. You should be prompted to join the Challenge after registering your account. If you've already downloaded the app, just open it up or visit this link to join: https://10percenthappier.app.link/TamingAnxietyChallenge. Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/ellen-hendriksen-357
2021-06-18
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#356: Anxiety, Explained | Luana Marques

Taming Anxiety Series - Episode 2: Anxiety is very common -- but also commonly misunderstood. So today we?re doing a show that you might think of as: Everything You Wanted to Know About Anxiety (But Were Afraid to Ask). This is the second episode in a four-part series we?re calling ?Taming Anxiety.? (By the way, if you missed the first episode, with pop-star/Broadway star/sitcom-star Sara Bareilles, I strongly recommend checking that out.)  Today, though, we are diving into the science of anxiety with Dr. Luana Marques. Luana is an Associate Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, President of the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, and the author of Almost Anxious: Is My (or My Loved One?s) Worry or Distress a Problem? You might also recognize her from this show, because she was also our very first guest on the topic of Covid, way back in March of 2020, in an episode titled ?How to Handle Coronavirus Anxiety.? In this episode, Luana will explain, from a scientific perspective, what anxiety actually is; why it isn?t actually a problem in and of itself ? instead, it?s our relationship to it that?s (often) a problem; what the "TEB Cycle" is, and how to work with it; the short-term benefits of avoiding things that cause us anxiety ? and the long-term consequences of that avoidance; and how to handle anxiety-induced phobias, including, in my case, a pronounced fear of elevators. Plus, we?ll take some voicemails that you, our listeners, have submitted. You can also learn how to actually practice everything we'll talk about in today?s episode by participating in our free Taming Anxiety Challenge over in the Ten Percent Happier app, which kicks off next Monday, June 21. Join the Taming Anxiety Challenge by downloading the Ten Percent Happier app: https://10percenthappier.app.link/install. You will be prompted to join the Challenge after registering your account. If you've already downloaded the app, just open it up or visit this link to join: https://10percenthappier.app.link/TamingAnxietyChallenge. Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/luana-marques-356
2021-06-16
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#355: Sara Bareilles: Anxiety, Anger, and Art

Taming Anxiety Series - Episode 1: Today is a big day here on the podcast, both because we have a fantastic new episode, and because this episode is actually kicking off a series we have been wanting to produce for a long time, called ?Taming Anxiety.?   Anxiety is a massive issue in our society. Even before the pandemic, it was on the rise. Now, the situation is even worse. Chances are it has afflicted you or someone you love at some point, on some level: maybe you?ve received an actual diagnosis, like generalized anxiety disorder, or maybe you?re prone to symptoms closer to panic, or perhaps you?re just susceptible to a bit too much garden-variety worrying. Maybe your kids are increasingly anxious. Or maybe, like me, you?ve got a few different items on the menu?some low-level professional freakouts here, some panic attacks in elevators (or on live TV) over there?   Anyway, the bad news is that anxiety is unlikely to disappear overnight. But the good news is that you can change your relationship to it. Hence this two week series we?re launching today. We?ve got two episodes with scientists and one episode with a meditation expert on deck to help you learn to tame your anxiety. And we?ve even got a free meditation challenge over in the Ten Percent Happier app to help you bring these lessons into your practice.   But before we get to that, let me introduce today?s guest. We?re kicking things off with a personal story. Sara Bareilles is a fearsome polymath: a singer, songwriter, composer, actor? the list goes on. She earned Tony and Grammy Award nominations for the Broadway musical Waitress, she?s got a new album out called Amidst the Chaos: Live from the Hollywood Bowl, and she stars in the new Tina Fey-produced series Girls5eva, which is streaming right now on Peacock.    Behind all this artistic and professional success is a meditator who is deliberately open and public about her struggles with anxiety and depression. In this conversation, she talks about: her history of anxiety and depression; the relationship between suffering and art, and whether meditation might defang someone?s creativity; how she works with anger; her relationship to social media; and we get an intimate glimpse into the back-stories behind some of her hit songs.   This is the first episode in our new ?Taming Anxiety? series, and there will be an accompanying meditation challenge over in the Ten Percent Happier app. It?s also called ?Taming Anxiety,? and it launches next week, on Monday, June 21st. The idea here is that you will be able to use the challenge to integrate everything you?ve learned in the podcast series into your neurons.    Join the Taming Anxiety Challenge by downloading the Ten Percent Happier app: https://10percenthappier.app.link/install. You should be prompted to join the Challenge after registering your account. If you've already downloaded the app, just open it up or visit this link to join: https://10percenthappier.app.link/TamingAnxietyChallenge.    Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/sara-bareilles-355
2021-06-14
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A Strategy for the Toughest Emotions | Bonus Meditation with Sharon Salzberg

Bring wisdom and compassion alongside difficult emotions by first calming your body & mind and then opening to the feels with acceptance. About Sharon Salzberg: A towering figure in the meditation world, Sharon Salzberg co-founded the Insight Meditation Society (IMS) alongside Joseph Goldstein and Jack Kornfield. She is a New York Times best-selling author whose books include Lovingkindness, Real Happiness, Real Love, and Real Change. Sharon lives in New York City and teaches around the world. To find this meditation in the Ten Percent Happier app, you can search for ?Letting Tough Emotions Be,? or click here: https://10percenthappier.app.link/content?meditation=2649944e-3c86-4237-9232-ddb9a2437925. Excited about the Taming Anxiety Challenge? Download the Ten Percent Happier app today to get ready: https://10percenthappier.app.link/install
2021-06-11
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#354: The Surprising Upsides of Self-Deception | Shankar Vedantam

Anyone with a passing familiarity with Buddhism will know that ?delusion? is rarely, if ever, mentioned in a positive way. In fact, the Buddha included delusion (aka: confusion about the way things really are) on his list of ?the three poisons.? The whole point of meditation, per the Buddha, is to uproot delusion -- along with greed and hatred. Only then can you be enlightened.  My guest today is here to valiantly make the case that delusion -- or self-deception -- has an upside. Many upsides, in fact. While he concedes that self-deception can, of course, be massively harmful, he argues that it also plays a vital role in our success and wellbeing, and that it holds together friendships, marriages, and nations. Understanding this, he says, can make you happier, more effective, and -- crucially -- more empathetic with people with whom you disagree. Shankar Vedantam is the host of the popular podcast and radio show Hidden Brain. His new book is called Useful Delusions: The Power and Paradox of the Self-Deceiving Brain. In this conversation, we talk about: the many ways our brains filter and alter our perception of reality; why we evolved for a robust capacity to lie to ourselves; and how his research on delusions has colored his view of the chaos and confusion of our modern world. Are you excited about the upcoming Taming Anxiety Challenge? If so, you can download the Ten Percent Happier app today to get ready: https://10percenthappier.app.link/install Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/shankar-vedantam-354
2021-06-09
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#353: Chris Bosh: Making Your Inner Voice Your Ally

One of the more surprising lessons I?ve learned as an ambitious person is that perhaps the best recipe for success is... keeping your ego in check. For a long time, I subconsciously believed that you needed to be unremittingly selfish to ?make it.? But after life delivered me repeated beat-downs, I finally got the message: sometimes what?s best for me is to focus on greater good -- on the team. It?s enlightened self-interest. (For the record, I am not perfect at this.) My guest today has also learned this lesson the hard way.  Chris Bosh is an 11-time NBA All-Star, an Olympic gold medalist, and he was just recently inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame. He says his proudest moments as a player came from defeating his own ego, and you?ll hear him explain how he learned to do this. You?ll also hear him talk about something that anyone who?s ever been born needs to learn how to do (given that we live in a universe where impermanence is a nonnegotiable fact): letting go. In 2016, Chris nearly died from a blood clotting illness that sidelined him. He spent the next couple of years trying to make his way back to the NBA before retiring in 2019. He?s just written a new book, in which he tells his story and compiles some hard-won wisdom. It?s called Letters to a Young Athlete. But you don?t have to be an athlete to benefit; it?s really for anyone who?s interested in excellence.  In this conversation, Chris and I talk about the difficult process of letting go of something you love; the in?s and out?s of his journey with his own ego, both during and after his playing career; how to set aside the inner chatter in your mind in order to be in the present moment; and how to play every game?whatever that might mean to you?like it?s your last. Before we dive in, I also want to let you know about a special series of episodes we?ll be launching next week here on the podcast. It?s called ?Taming Anxiety.? It will feature interviews with top anxiety researchers and a dynamite meditation teacher. And, as is our wont here in TPH-land, we?ll be launching a free companion meditation challenge on the Ten Percent Happier app to help you put everything you learn in the podcast series into practice in your daily life -- to integrate it into your neurons, as I like to say.  Get ready to join the free challenge on June 21 by downloading the Ten Percent Happier app today: https://10percenthappier.app.link/install Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/chris-bosh-353
2021-06-07
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Dan Tells A Meditative Story

In this episode from the excellent podcast Meditative Story, recorded a couple of years ago, Dan shares a candid look at his attempts to connect more with his son, Alexander, on their first father-son trip.    Meditative Story combines human stories with meditation prompts embedded into the storylines ? all surrounded by breathtaking music. You can learn more about it here: https://meditativestory.com/, and listen here: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/id1472106563.
2021-06-04
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#352: Why You?re Burning Out -- And How to Fix It | Leah Weiss

Covid appears to have brought on a spike in burnout, especially among women, millions of whom have exited the workplace since the pandemic began. So what is burnout, exactly? How do you know if you qualify? How do you fix it? And can meditation help? That?s what we?re tackling today with Leah Weiss, who despite being a longtime meditator herself, has experienced burnout firsthand.  Leah is a researcher and author. She was a founding faculty member of the Compassion Institute at Stanford University, and she?s the co-founder of Skylyte - a company that specializes in using the latest science to help organizations prevent burnout. She?s written two books. The most relevant for our purposes is called: How We Work: Live Your Purpose, Reclaim Your Sanity, and Embrace the Daily Grind. In this conversation, we cover: the differences between anxiety, depression, and burnout; how to detect burnout; how burnout runs along a spectrum, and is a ?full body experience;? why meditation can help but also make some people more susceptible to burnout; what can be done to protect women in the workplace; and her argument that burnout isn?t just a personal problem, but also a systemic one.  Also: If you don't already have the Ten Percent Happier app, you can download it for free here: https://www.tenpercent.com/?_branch_match_id=888540266380716858, or wherever you get your apps. Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/leah-weiss-352
2021-06-02
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#351: A Buddhist Approach to Patience | Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche

These are not hospitable times for the mental skill of patience. Instant gratification has never been more thoroughly scaled. You can order food, taxis, and shampoo from your phone. Streaming services autoplay the next episode of whatever show you?re binging. You can ask Siri or Alexa for the weather, the latest sports scores, or the dating history of Paul Rudd. And on a deeper level, of course, global tumult is trying our patience -- with the pandemic, political polarization, climate disruption, and cultural divides over race, gender, and more.  My guest today comes armed with great tools we can all use to exercise a muscle that, for many, is badly atrophied. As you?ll hear him explain, the Buddhist approach to patience goes way beyond grin and bear it; instead it?s about developing a mind that can work positively with whatever is bothering us. Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche grew up in a monastic environment in Northern India. His father was said to be the third incarnation of a great Tibetan master. His mother was his first teacher -- a renowned practitioner who completed thirteen years of solitary retreat before she got married. Rinpoche now lives in the U.S. -- in southern Colorado, where he has a mountain retreat center called Longchen Jigme Samten Ling. His students include former guests on this show, such as Pema Chödrön, the best-selling Buddhist author, and Elizabeth Mattis-Namgyel, a teacher and author who is also his wife. Rinpoche has a new book out called Peaceful Heart: The Buddhist Practice of Patience. In this interview we talk about: how to define patience from the Buddhist lens; what practices he suggests for getting better at patience; the difference between patience and passivity; the challenges he still faces in the patience arena; and the role of patience in eating and in enduring physical pain.  Also: We're offering 40% off the price of a year-long subscription for the Ten Percent Happier app until June 1st. Visit https://www.tenpercent.com/may to sign up today. Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/dzigar-kongtrul-rinpoche-351
2021-05-31
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Strong Back, Soft Front | Bonus Meditation with Roshi Joan Halifax

Returning to the practice of equanimity keeps you both grounded and receptive, especially during times of turmoil and uncertainty. About Roshi Joan Halifax: Roshi Joan Halifax is a Buddhist teacher, Zen priest, anthropologist, and pioneer in the field of end-of-life care. She is Founder, Abbot, and Head Teacher of Upaya Institute and Zen Center in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Her most recent book is Standing at the Edge: Finding Freedom Where Fear and Courage Meet. To find this meditation in the Ten Percent Happier app, you can search for ?Strong Back, Soft Front,? or click here: https://10percenthappier.app.link/content?meditation=4cfcfe2d-f5fb-4142-9bd0-3fb6b2041324.
2021-05-28
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#350: How to Be Courageous | Stacy McClendon

Many of us know that meditation can confer benefits such as self-awareness, calm, and compassion, but what about courage? My guest today says, yes. Meditation can boost your courage quotient. And she will talk about exactly how. Her name is Stacy McClendon. She is a teacher at the Common Ground Meditation Center in Minneapolis. She also has a background in social work. This is the second episode in our weeklong series marking the one year anniversary of the murder of George Floyd. Stacy has been organizing and hosting weekly Truth and Justice Vigils online, available to anyone, during and after the trials of the men charged with murdering George Floyd. In this conversation, we talk about: a Buddhist list called the Ten Paramis, and how those qualities can support courage; how white people can step up and be courageous; how compassion is not a weakness; and how to be what she calls a ?compassionate agitator.? One technical note, you might hear a little background noise, including church bells, birds, and Stacy?s 20 year old cat, Rain, who happened to share some opinions. We're offering 40% off the price of a year-long subscription for the Ten Percent Happier app until June 1st. Visit www.tenpercent.com/may to sign up today. Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/stacy-mcclendon-350 
2021-05-26
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#349: Meditation is Not Just a Solo Endeavor | Pamela Ayo Yetunde

There?s a meditation pitfall that?s pretty easy to fall into. In fact, I?ve fallen into it many times. It?s this idea, which we can hold consciously or subconsciously, that meditation is a solo endeavor. ?I?m doing it to reduce my stress, or boost my focus, or... make myself ten percent happier.? All of that is fine. It?s actually great. But in my experience, the deeper you go into this thing, the more you see that the self is less stable and more porous than you previously imagined. And you also see that it?s really impossible to be happy in a vacuum; your happiness depends on the well-being of the people around you. We?re going to explore this notion of meditation as a team sport today with Pamela Ayo Yetunde. She?s the co-editor of Black & Buddhist: What Buddhism Can Teach Us About Race, Resilience, Transformation & Freedom, which just won the Nautilus book award. She?s got a law degree from Indiana University and a theology degree from Columbia Theological Seminary. She also founded something called Buddhist Justice Reporter: The George Floyd Trials, which you will hear her discuss in this conversation. This is the first of two conversations we?re posting this week to mark the one-year anniversary of the murder of George Floyd. In this chat with Ayo, which is the name she prefers to be addressed by, we cover: a concept she calls "shock protection"; living nobly in a time of ignobility; how we can move toward civility; various interpretations of the Buddhist concept of no-self, including viewing no self as inter-dependence; and how white people in particular can maintain their focus on issues of race, even when we have the option of looking away. Also, one order of business: We're offering 40% off the price of a year-long subscription to the Ten Percent Happier app until June 1st. Visit https://www.tenpercent.com/may to sign up today. Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/pamela-ayo-yetunde-349
2021-05-24
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Concentration 101 | Bonus Meditation with Jeff Warren

Concentration is the backbone of meditation. Strengthen your ability to return to the present with this basic, but essential, technique. About Jeff Warren: Jeff is an incredibly gifted meditation teacher. He's trained in multiple traditions, including with renowned teacher Shinzen Young. Jeff is the co-author of NY Times Bestseller "Meditation for Fidgety Skeptics," and the founder of the Consciousness Explorers Club, a meditation adventure group in Toronto.  He has a knack for surfacing the exact meditation that will help everyone he meets. "I have a meditation for that" is regularly heard from Jeff, so we've dubbed him the "Meditation MacGyver." To find this meditation in the Ten Percent Happier app, you can search for ?Concentration 101,? or click here: https://10percenthappier.app.link/content?meditation=9da8efcf-5948-4235-bd95-4c719ef5d964. We want to deeply thank and recognize mental health professionals for your support. For a year's FREE access to the app and hundreds of meditations and resources visit: https://www.tenpercent.com/mentalhealth.
2021-05-21
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#348: How to Focus | Shaila Catherine

Living as we do in an era that has been called the info blitzkrieg, staying focused can be extremely difficult for many of us. This can be true when we?re working and trying to stay on task. It can also be true in meditation, when we might find our minds flitting all over the place. My guest today is an Olympic-level concentrator and she has tons of tips for staying focused. We also talk about one of my favorite meditation subjects: the altered states of consciousness called ?the jhanas? that are apparently available to advanced meditators who can attain super-deep states of concentration. (I say ?apparently? because I clearly have never been in these altered states.) Shaila Catherine is the founder of Insight Meditation South Bay, a meditation group in Silicon Valley. She has been practicing meditation since 1980, with more than nine years of accumulated silent retreat experience. She?s the author of Focused and Fearless: A Meditator?s Guide to States of Deep Joy, Calm, and Clarity. In this conversation, we cover: the basic building blocks of concentration in meditation practice; cultivating the ?right attitude? for meditation; the difference between concentration and mindfulness and how they support each other; and whether the jhana states are attainable for regular people. We also want to deeply thank and recognize mental health professionals for everything you do. For a year's FREE access to the app and hundreds of meditations and resources, visit: https://www.tenpercent.com/mentalhealth. Finally, there's an online event tomorrow you might want to check out. It's called "Well-Being Is a Skill," and it's being led by Dr. Richard Davidson at the New York Insight Meditation Center. More info can be found here: https://www.nyimc.org/event/well-being-is-a-skill/. Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/shaila-catherine-348
2021-05-19
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#347: What You Can Learn About Your Relationships from a Former Neo-Nazi | Shannon Foley Martinez

We?ve got a provocative but deeply practical episode today. All of us have people in our lives ? whether it be our personal lives, our professional lives, or even just people we see on TV ? with whom we disagree. So how can we coexist, or even reach a state of mutual understanding, with these people? It?s not an overstatement to say that your personal happiness, as well as the future of the planet, may rest in part in our collective ability to hone these skills.  My guest today has done this work in some of the most extreme ways imaginable. She is a reformed neo-Nazi by the name of Shannon Foley Martinez who now works to deradicalize extremists. She?s also a consultant at American University?s Polarization and Extremism Research and Innovation Lab. In this conversation, we talk about how she got into the white power movement, how she got out of it, her methods for de-radicalizing people who are still in the movement, how she applies those methods to more mundane conversations across the many lines of differences that run through our society?and how you can, too. Just a quick note - you?ll hear some background noise, from a lawnmower and a barking dog? but that?s just the reality of recording podcasts in the middle of a pandemic. Also, as you might imagine, we hit on some pretty sensitive material here, including discussions of hate-fueled violence, racism, sexual assault, and homophobia.  We also want to deeply thank and recognize mental health professionals for your support. For a year's FREE access to the app and hundreds of meditations and resources visit: tenpercent.com/mentalhealth Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/shannon-foley-martinez-347
2021-05-17
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The Four Most Important Habits in Life | Bonus Talk with Jeff Warren

Practices like meditation help us cultivate habits that help instead of hurt. Here are four of them. About Jeff Warren: Jeff is an incredibly gifted meditation teacher. He's trained in multiple traditions, including with renowned teacher Shinzen Young. Jeff is the co-author of NY Times Bestseller "Meditation for Fidgety Skeptics," and the founder of the Consciousness Explorers Club, a meditation adventure group in Toronto. He has a knack for surfacing the exact meditation that will help everyone he meets. "I have a meditation for that" is regularly heard from Jeff, so we've dubbed him the "Meditation MacGyver." To find this talk in the Ten Percent Happier app, you can search for ?The Four Most Important Habits in Life,? or click here: https://10percenthappier.app.link/content?meditation=6748a2ec-017c-4176-8de6-545df0792793. We want to deeply thank and recognize mental health professionals for your support. For a year's FREE access to the app and hundreds of meditations and resources visit: tenpercent.com/mentalhealth
2021-05-14
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#346: The Gospel of Adequacy | Miguel Sancho & Felicia Morton

Often on the show, we bring on incredibly accomplished meditation practitioners or influential researchers who have deep things to teach us, based on their personal experience or professional pursuits. And while many of these people talk openly about their personal deficiencies, they are nonetheless speaking to us from the mountaintop, as it were. Today we are doing something entirely different. Over the years, we?ve had many requests to bring on ?normal people.? That?s what you?re getting today. Normal people who survived something extreme, with the help of meditation and other modalities, and are here to talk about it in extraordinarily raw and honest terms. Miguel Sancho is the author of a new book called More Than You Can Handle: A Rare Disease, A Family in Crisis, and the Cutting Edge Medicine That Cured the Incurable. We?ve all heard stories about parents of children with serious, and possibly fatal, illness. Often in those stories, the parents come off as saintly. Miguel takes a very different route. His book is both vulnerable and hilarious. His son?s illness forces him to wrestle with his personal demons, his marital difficulties, and his volcanic temper. He even tells us about getting evicted from the Ronald McDonald House. In the end, he lands on what he calls ?the gospel of adequacy.? Full disclosure: Miguel is an old friend of mine. We worked together for many years at ABC News, where he was a senior producer at 20/20. Together, we covered stories about Scientology, self-help gurus, and fundamentalist Mormons. Also joining us for this interview is Miguel?s wife, Felicia Morton, who is the president of her own full-service public relations firm. We start with Miguel solo and talk for quite a while, then take a quick break and come back with both Miguel and Felicia. We talk about: the benefits ? and limits ?of meditation, what they learned about creating a healthy marriage, finding meaning in suffering, and letting go of ego and control. TPH Mental Health Awareness: We want to deeply thank and recognize mental health professionals for your support. For a year's FREE access to the app and hundreds of meditations and resources visit: tenpercent.com/mentalhealth Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/miguel-sancho-felicia-morton-346
2021-05-12
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#345: How to Change Your Habits | Katy Milkman

To state the blazingly obvious, creating healthy habits can be infernally difficult. But why? And what are the best strategies for getting around this? My guest today has spent nearly two decades researching these questions. Her name is Katy Milkman. She is a behavioral scientist and professor at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. She hosts a podcast called Choiceology and has written a new book called, How to Change. In this conversation, we talk about why willpower is such an unreliable inner resource, why making habit change fun is such a powerful technique, and key strategies such as ?the fresh start effect,? ?temptation bundling,? ?commitment devices,? ?piggybacking,? and giving yourself a Mulligan. We also talk about the potentially sensitive subject of getting other people to change.  Are you interested in teaching mindfulness to teens? Looking to carve your own path and share this practice in a way that feels real, authentic, and relevant in today?s world? Our friends at iBme are accepting applications for their Mindfulness Teacher Training program - catered towards working with teens and young adults. The last round of applications are due May 15th and scholarships are available. For more information and to apply, check out: https://ibme.com/mindfulness-teacher-training/. We also want to deeply thank and recognize mental health professionals for your support. For a year's FREE access to the app and hundreds of meditations and resources visit: https://www.tenpercent.com/mentalhealth. We have one final item of business, and it is an invitation for you to participate in this show. In June, we?ll be launching a special series of podcast episodes focusing on anxiety ? something I?m sure we?re all too familiar with. In this series, you?ll become intimately familiar with the mechanics of anxiety: how and why it shows up and what you may be doing to feed it.  And this is where you come in. We?d love to hear from you with your questions about anxiety that experts will answer during our anxiety series on the podcast. So whether you?re struggling with social anxiety, anxiety about re-entering the world post-Covid, or have any other questions about anxiety - we want to hear from you. To submit a question or share a reflection call (646) 883-8326 and leave us a voicemail. If you?re outside the United States, you can email us a voice memo file in mp3 format to [email protected] The deadline for submissions is Wednesday, May 12th.  Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/katy-milkman-345
2021-05-10
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A Non-Obvious Way to Relax | Bonus Meditation with Anushka Fernandopulle

Using the practice of gratitude, you can learn to relax your body and settle your mind. About Anushka Fernandopulle: Anushka teaches meditation, works as an organizational consultant, and does leadership coaching with individuals and teams. She has practiced meditation for over 25 years, including four years in full-time intensive training in monasteries and retreat centers in the US, India and Sri Lanka. Her work is informed by a BA in anthropology/religion from Harvard University, an MBA from Yale focused on leadership and organizational behavior, and certification in coaching from the Coaches Training Institute. To find this meditation in the Ten Percent Happier app, you can search for ?Unwind with Gratitude,? or click here: https://10percenthappier.app.link/content?meditation=be9f6e9c-3b3b-4a1b-bdd5-5ef516879189. We want to deeply thank and recognize mental health professionals for your support. For a year's FREE access to the app and hundreds of meditations and resources visit: https://www.tenpercent.com/mentalhealth.
2021-05-07
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#344: How to Handle Anger, Uncertainty, and Self-Loathing | Mushim Patricia Ikeda

When somebody wrongs you, what is the wise way to handle your anger? Is forgiveness possible? What about friendliness? My guest today has a lot of thoughts about how to handle anger and how to respond to people who mean you harm. It might surprise you to hear from a Buddhist teacher who actually isn?t utterly disparaging of anger. In fact, she is proud (somewhat facetiously) of having been called ?the original Angry Asian Buddhist.? Her name is Mushim Patricia Ikeda, and she is my kind of Buddhist. She self-describes as ?snarky,? and, as you will hear, she loves to laugh. She has doable, down-to-earth strategies, and she makes a compelling, if counterintuitive, case for the pragmatism of sending goodwill to people who want to harm you.  Mushim is a core teacher at the East Bay Meditation Center. She is a writer, activist, and diversity consultant. She has trained for decades as both a lay and monastic Buddhist. Aside from anger, we also discuss how to handle uncertainty, and what Mushim calls a ?pandemic of self-loathing? in our culture. But we begin with some candid talk about the trauma of being an Asian-American during a time of rising violence against the AAPI community.  This is the second in a two-part series on the uptick in anti-Asian violence -- a trend that should be particularly worrisome for this audience, given the Asian roots of meditation and many of the other happiness-producing modalities we talk about on this show. If you missed it, go check out Monday?s episode, where we explore the history of anti-Buddhist and anti-Asian violence in America (which started decades before the pandemic), and the hurt felt by many Asian-American Buddhists about how they can be overlooked by other American Buddhists, including, sometimes, me. Two other items of business: first, are you interested in teaching mindfulness to teens? Looking to carve your own path and share this practice in a way that feels real, authentic, and relevant in today?s world? Our friends at iBme are accepting applications for their Mindfulness Teacher Training program - catered towards working with teens and young adults. The last round of applications are due May 15th and scholarships are available. For more information and to apply, check out: https://ibme.com/mindfulness-teacher-training/. And second, we want to recognize and deeply thank mental health professionals for all you do. For a year's FREE access to the app and hundreds of meditations and resources, visit: https://www.tenpercent.com/mentalhealth. Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/mushim-patricia-ikeda-344
2021-05-05
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#343: What Everyone Who Meditates Should Know | Chenxing Han and Duncan Ry?ken Williams

If you meditate (or do yoga, for that matter), you may have been taught by a Westerner, but you owe a gigantic debt of gratitude to the giants and geniuses in Asia who developed these practices. This fact can be overlooked or downplayed -- intentionally or otherwise -- by Western practitioners, including, sometimes, me. However, in the midst of a spike of anti-Asian violence, now seems like a very good time to learn more about where these practices came from, and why many Asian-American Buddhists sometimes feel erased. Not only is this the right thing to do, but it can also add depth and perspective and freshness to your practice. In this episode, we have two fascinating guests who will talk about what it?s been like for them to be Asian American Buddhists in the midst of this spate of hate crimes, and walk us through the long and ugly history of anti-Buddhist violence in America. We also talk about: how all meditators (not just people in vulnerable communities) can learn resiliency through meditation; the connection between karma and reparations; and whether it?s possible, or advisable, to generate goodwill towards people who hate you. We also have a frank conversation about how some of my own messaging about Buddhism in America has missed the mark.  My guests are: Chenxing Han, who is the author of Be the Refuge: Raising the Voices of Asian American Buddhists. She holds a BA from Stanford and an MA in Buddhist Studies from the Graduate Theological Union. And, Duncan Ry?ken Williams, who is the author of American Sutra: A Story of Faith and Freedom in the Second World War. He has a B.A. in Religious Studies from Reed and a Ph.D. in Religion from Harvard. He is currently a professor at the University of Southern California. He?s also a Zen priest. Both Duncan and Chenxing are helping to organize a national ceremony -- which will take place the day after we post this interview -- on the 49-day anniversary of the Atlanta spa shootings that took the lives of several Asians and Asian-Americans. (For more on that ceremony, click here: https://www.maywegather.org/) One thing to say before we dive in: we are dedicating this whole week to the spike in hate crimes against members of the AAPI community. On Wednesday, we?ll talk to Mushim Ikeda, a Buddhist teacher, about how all of us can use meditation to deal with anger, uncertainty, and self-loathing.  And two more items of business: first, are you interested in teaching mindfulness to teens? Looking to carve your own path and share this practice in a way that feels real, authentic, and relevant in today?s world? Our friends at iBme are accepting applications for their Mindfulness Teacher Training program - catered towards working with teens and young adults. The last round of applications are due May 15th and scholarships are available. For more information and to apply, check out: https://ibme.com/mindfulness-teacher-training/ And second, we want to deeply thank and recognize mental health professionals for your support. For a year's FREE access to the app and hundreds of meditations and resources visit: https://www.tenpercent.com/mentalhealth Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/chenxing-han-duncan-ryuken-williams-343
2021-05-03
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A Deep Hack for Dealing with Family | Bonus Meditation with Anushka Fernandopulle

Develop the skill and sensibility of kindness, warmth, and goodwill by bringing your loved ones to mind. About Anushka Fernandopulle: Anushka teaches meditation, works as an organizational consultant, and does leadership coaching with individuals and teams. She has practiced meditation for over 25 years, including four years in full-time intensive training in monasteries and retreat centers in the US, India and Sri Lanka. Her work is informed by a BA in anthropology/religion from Harvard University, an MBA from Yale focused on leadership and organizational behavior, and certification in coaching from the Coaches Training Institute. To find this meditation in the Ten Percent Happier app, you can search for ?Kindness for Loved Ones,? or click here: https://10percenthappier.app.link/content?meditation=302c268c-6239-492d-8a2b-7c4154d22c20 If you don't already have the Ten Percent Happier app, you can download it for free wherever you get your apps: https://10percenthappier.app.link/download-app
2021-04-30
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#342: The Science of Building Better Relationships | Marissa King

The idea of networking can be fraught. For some people, it might, at times, seem either icky or pathetic to deliberately try to make friends, either in a personal or professional context -- especially since so many of us may be feeling a bit socially awkward anyway, after months of Covid restrictions. However, my guest today will argue that there are profound health benefits to building positive relationships, and she has advice about how to actually do it, based on neuroscience and psychology. Marissa King is a Professor of Organizational Behavior at the Yale School of Management, where she studies social networks, social influence, and team dynamics. She is also the author of a recently-released book, called Social Chemistry: Decoding the Patterns of Human Connection. In this conversation, we talk about: how your social networks impact your mental health; how, when it comes to social networks, quality and structure are more important than quantity; why you?re not as bad at being social as you may think; the importance of humor; how status and privilege play into networking; the benefits of calling up old friends you haven?t spoken to in a while; and she will ask you to consider whether you are a convener, a broker, or an expansionist. This is actually part two of a two-part series that we're running this week about the hard science and soft skills of social connection. If you missed it on Monday, we had an amazing interview with a researcher named Barbara Fredrickson from UNC Chapel Hill. She has a lot of fascinating things to say about what love actually is and takes a pretty broad view of the concept of love. You don't have to listen to that in order to understand this episode, but I think they work great in concert.  One more item of business, and it is an invitation for you to participate in this show. In June, we?ll be launching a special series of podcast episodes focusing on anxiety, something I?m sure we?re all too familiar with. In this series, you?ll learn the mechanics of anxiety: how and why it shows up and what you may be doing to feed it.  And this is where you come in. We?d love to hear from you with your questions about anxiety that experts will answer during our anxiety series on the podcast. So whether you?re struggling with social anxiety, anxiety about re-entering the world post-Covid, or have any other questions about anxiety - we want to hear from you. To submit a question or share a reflection call (646) 883-8326 and leave us a voicemail. If you?re outside the United States, you can email us a voice memo file in mp3 format to [email protected] The deadline for submissions is Wednesday, May 12th.  And if you don't already have the Ten Percent Happier app, you can download it for free wherever you get your apps or by clicking here: https://www.tenpercent.com/?_branch_match_id=888540266380716858. Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/marissa-king-342
2021-04-28
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#341 The Art and Science of the World?s Gooiest Cliche | Barbara Fredrickson

One of our primary missions on this show is to rescue vital ideas that have lapsed into cliches. There are so many important concepts out there that many of us might be tempted to dismiss because they are encrusted with cultural baggage or have been reduced to potentially annoying or sappy slogans. So, for example, we?ve talked a lot on this podcast about things like: hope, gratitude, and ?listening to your body.? All of which can sound like the type of empty bromide that your spin instructor yells at you while encouraging you to pedal faster. But, in fact, these are all incredibly important operating principles for a healthy life. And, not for nothing, they are all backed up by hard science. So today we?re going to tackle what may be the oldest and gooieset cliche of them all: love. The word has been ruined, in many ways, by Hollywood and pop songs. For many of us, the mere mention of the word conjures images of Tom Cruise, with tears in his eyes, while the string music swells, declaring, ?You complete me.?  But in my view, and in the view of my guest today, love needs to be usefully defined down. In other words, we need to knock love off its plinth, and apply it to a much wider range of human interactions. We also need to think of love not as something magical that requires luck or money or looks, but instead as a trainable skill -- one with profound implications for our health.  Barbara Fredrickson is the Kenan Distinguished Professor in the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She has written two books: one is called Positivity, the other is called Love 2.0. In this interview, we talk about how she defines love, based on her research; how meditation can help build this skill; how taking a few extra minutes to chat with people, even if you feel busy, can have psychological, physiological, and even professional benefits; and how to manage social anxiety as we emerge from our Covid cocoons.  This episode is actually part one of a two-part series running this week on social connection. Coming up on Wednesday, we?ll hear from Marissa King, a professor at Yale who studies how to create social networks, even when it feels uncomfortable. And by social network, I don't mean something like Facebook. I mean actual networks of actual human beings that you see in person. She?s got a lot of practical and actionable advice about how to do that, even within the context of Covid. So be sure to listen in on Wednesday. One more item of business, and it is an invitation for you to participate in this show. In June, we?ll be launching a special series of podcast episodes focusing on anxiety, something I?m sure we?re all too familiar with. In this series, you?ll become intimately familiar with the mechanics of anxiety: how and why it shows up, and what you may be doing to feed it.  And this is where you come in. We?d love to hear from you with your questions about anxiety that experts will answer during our anxiety series on the podcast. So whether you?re struggling with social anxiety, anxiety about re-entering the world post-Covid, or have any other questions about anxiety - we want to hear from you. To submit a question or share a reflection call (646) 883-8326 and leave us a voicemail with your name and phone number. If you?re outside the United States, you can email us a voice memo file in mp3 format to [email protected] The deadline for submissions is Wednesday, May 12th.  And if you don't already have the Ten Percent Happier app, download it for free wherever you get your apps or by clicking here: https://www.tenpercent.com/?_branch_match_id=888540266380716858. Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/barbara-fredrickson-341
2021-04-26
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What?s Good | Bonus Meditation with Oren Jay Sofer

Counteract negativity bias by appreciating the goodness in life: simple acts of kindness, moments of beauty, and even your own good efforts. About Oren Jay Sofer: Oren Jay Sofer teaches mindfulness, meditation and Nonviolent Communication. He has practiced meditation since 1997, beginning his studies in Bodh Gaya, India and is a long-time student of Joseph Goldstein, Michele McDonald, and Ajahn Sucitto, and is a graduate of the IMS/Spirit Rock Teacher Training program. Oren teaches retreats across the country and works as Senior Program Developer at Mindful Schools, teaching and developing curricula for one of the international leaders of mindfulness in education.
2021-04-23
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#340: The Science of Hope | Jacqueline Mattis

Today we?re talking to a renowned psychologist who has come up with five strategies for cultivating hope. Dr. Jacqueline Mattis is a clinical psychologist from Rutgers University, where she is also a Dean of Faculty. As you will hear, she did not start her career wanting to study hope. She started out studying spirituality and religiosity, specifically doing lots of field work and interviews in African American and AfriCaribbean urban communities. She wanted to know why people living under high-stress conditions so often choose to be good and compassionate. That research eventually led her to hope.  This the final interview in our two-week series on hope. The three previous guests approached the topic from a Buddhist perspective. Today, Dr. Mattis will talk about hope from a scientific perspective. How does hope work? And what are the benefits? What she does have in common with our previous guests is that she sees hope as a skill, not as a complacent state of unfounded optimism.  If, after this interview, you find yourself wanting to put hope to work in your own life, and you?ve got the Ten Percent Happier app, then make sure to check out our new talks and meditations from some of our finest teachers about how to cultivate hope as a skill. Click here: https://10percenthappier.app.link/HopeIsASkill, or tap on the ?Singles? and ?Talks? tabs in the app to check them out. And if you don?t have the app, you can try it for free today. Just download the Ten Percent Happier app wherever you get your apps, or click here: https://www.tenpercent.com/?_branch_match_id=888540266380716858. Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/jacqueline-mattis-340
2021-04-21
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#339: Why Buddhism Is Inherently Hopeful (Despite All the Talk of Suffering) | Oren Jay Sofer

Buddhism can get a bad rap as being hopelessly pessimistic -- in no small measure because one of the Buddha?s first principal pronouncements was, ?Life is suffering.? But if you listen to the rest of his spiel, you will hear that the Buddha acknowledges that life can be hard, but then goes on to say that we can make it better. He then spells out a bunch of practical techniques for doing so, which makes Buddhism essentially hopeful. We?re now in week two of our two-week series on hope, where we?ve been positing that hope isn?t just some vague, rosy state of mind -- it is, in fact, a skill.  Today?s guest is Oren Jay Sofer, a Buddhist teacher who has been meditating for nearly a quarter century. He holds a degree in Comparative Religion from Columbia University and is the author of Say What You Mean: A Mindful Approach to Nonviolent Communication. Oren?s view of hope starts with the Buddhist notion of impermanence. Everything is changing all the time. That doesn?t necessarily mean things are always guaranteed to get better. That brand of hope, Oren says, can lead to a sort of grasping that pulls us out of the present and ultimately feeds our suffering. Instead, Oren makes the counter-intuitive argument that in order to hope effectively, we have to detach from results and outcomes. Oren is also lending his expertise to our Hope is a Skill series in the Ten Percent Happier app. If you?re already a subscriber, make sure to check out our new meditations to hone your hope skills ? including some from Oren. You can find them in the ?Hope is a Skill? topic in the Singles tab, or by clicking here: https://10percenthappier.app.link/HopeIsASkill.  And if you?re not yet a subscriber and want to check out Oren?s new meditations in our app, now is a great time to give it a go. You can download the Ten Percent Happier app here: https://www.tenpercent.com/ (or wherever you get your apps). Once you subscribe, you?ll have access to all the great resources in the Hope is a Skill series, as well as tons of content ? meditations, talks, full-on courses ? all designed to help you wherever you are on your meditation journey. Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/oren-jay-sofer-339
2021-04-19
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How to See Hope in the Everyday | Bonus Meditation with Sebene Selassie

Learning to trust life moment-to-moment is a powerful practice. Check it out. About Sebene Selassie: Growing up, Sebene felt like a big weirdo. Born in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and raised in white neighborhoods in Washington, D.C., she was a tomboy Black girl who loved Monty Python and UB40. She never believed she belonged. Thirty years ago, she began studying Buddhism as an undergraduate at McGill University where she majored in Comparative Religious Studies. Now, Sebene is a teacher, author, and speaker who teaches that meditation can help us remember our inherent sense of belonging, that our individual freedom affects absolutely everyone and everything, and that our collective freedom depends on each and every one of us. Sebene is a three-time cancer survivor of Stage III and IV cancer.
2021-04-16
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#338: Discomfort: A Counterintuitive Source of Hope | Sebene Selassie

As you may know, we are in the midst of a two-week series on hope ? a concept we are trying to rescue from the realm of rote cliche and empty bromides. Our belief is that hope, when properly understood and practiced, is not baseless optimism or naivete, but a powerful skill.  Today?s guest, Sebene Selassie, has earned her capacity to hope the hard way, surviving multiple rounds of advanced cancer. She is also the author of an excellent book called You Belong, and is one of the most popular teachers on the Ten Percent Happier meditation app. And as part of the work we are doing to train people in the skill of hope right now, she has recorded some brand new meditations for the app. If you?re a subscriber, tap on the ?Singles? tab in the app to check those out, or click here: https://10percenthappier.app.link/HopeIsASkill. You?ll also find a variety of other new meditations and talks ? all of which revolve around the theme of hope as a skill. In this interview, Seb talks about: hope as it relates to Buddhist concepts such as karma, impermanence, and the Eightfold Path; what it means to not be in contention with reality; the difference between ?let it be? and ?let it go;? and what hope means in the context of the climate crisis. We also talk about a private conversation that she and I recently had that was very challenging for both of us, but also gave us both cause for hope.  If you enjoy hearing from Sebene and want to try her meditations on the Ten Percent Happier app, but you?re not yet a subscriber, now?s the time! In addition to getting immediate access to Sebene?s meditations in the ?Hope is a Skill? topic, there are tons of resources for starting, rebooting, or going deeper into your personal meditation practice. Just click here to get started https://www.tenpercent.com/, or download the Ten Percent Happier app today, for free, wherever you get your apps. Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/sebene-selassie-338
2021-04-14
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#337: Hope Is a Skill | George Mumford

Spring is here. Vaccines are entering arms. But for many of us, hope can feel slippery and fleeting. Even with the pandemic seeming to abate, there's still a lot of uncertainty and suffering. That?s why, starting today, we?re launching a special two-week series on hope: what it is, what it isn?t, and how and why to cultivate it. The word ?hope? might feel vague, or gauzy?or even, given the current state of the world, misguided. And if you?re using the commonly understood definition of hope, that might be true.  Many of us think about hope as wishing for some specific outcome or result: a raise, a promotion, a romantic entanglement, or a return to an exact replica of pre-pandemic living. We can get attached to these outcomes?and then get disappointed when they (inevitably) don?t work out exactly as we?d hoped. But there is a way to hope wisely. And over the next two weeks, both here on the podcast and in the Ten Percent Happier app, we?re going to teach you how. We?ve enlisted an all-star slate of Buddhist teachers, mindfulness experts, and scientists, who will make the case that hope is a skill. One you can get better at.  Today on the podcast, we?ve got the perfect guest to kick off our series. George Mumford is a personal friend and a much-loved contributor to the Ten Percent Happier app. Years ago, he overcame a heroin habit to become one of the nation?s leading mindfulness teachers. He?s worked with some of the world?s top athletes, including Michael Jordan and the late Kobe Bryant. In today?s episode, he?s going to talk about his own tumultuous path towards hope, how it relates to the Buddhist idea of right action, and also a list he calls the Four A?s. A quick heads up: in our conversation, George talks frankly about his aforementioned substance abuse, which might be a sensitive topic for some listeners. If you?re a subscriber to the Ten Percent Happier app, you're going to want to check out our exclusive new "Hope is a Skill" content. We?ve got fresh meditations and talks on the subject -- just tap on the ?Singles? and ?Talks? tabs in the app to check them out, or click here (https://10percenthappier.app.link/HopeIsASkill). If you?re not a subscriber, now?s the time. In addition to the ?Hope is a Skill? meditations, there are tons of resources for starting, rebooting, or deepening your meditation practice. Just download the Ten Percent Happier app today, for free, wherever you get your apps to get started: https://10percenthappier.app.link/download-app. Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/george-mumford-337
2021-04-12
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How to Handle Restlessness | Bonus Meditation with Joseph Goldstein

In this guided meditation, Joseph unpacks what restless energy is all about, showing you how to go from restless to restful. About Joseph Goldstein: Joseph is one of the most respected meditation teachers in the world -- a key architect of the rise of mindfulness in our modern society -- with a sense of humor to boot. In the 1970's, he co-founded the Insight Meditation Society (IMS) alongside Sharon Salzberg and Jack Kornfield. Since its founding, thousands of people from around the world have come to IMS to learn mindfulness from leaders in the field. Joseph has been a teacher there since its founding and continues as the resident guiding teacher.
2021-04-09
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Three Mindfulness Strategies from Joseph Goldstein

To inject a little sunshine, perspective, and wisdom, we thought it might make sense to repost one of our favorite conversations of the last year. This is a straight up meat-and-potatoes meditation talk from the one and only Joseph Goldstein. In this chat, we explore three profoundly useful meditation strategies: mindfulness of thinking, awareness of rushing (a deeply ingrained habit for many of us), and the genuine insight that can emerge from everyday activities. For the uninitiated, Joseph is one of the founding teachers on the Ten Percent Happier app. He's a co-founder of the Insight Meditation Society, and is the author of several books, including the recently reissued The Experience of Insight: A Simple and Direct Guide to Buddhist Meditation.  Also: Next Monday, April 12, we're launching a two-week series about hope. As we head into spring and vaccines go into arms, we?re going to argue that hope is a skill ? one you can get better at. And not only are we exploring hope on the podcast, we will also have bespoke meditations from our podcast guests dropping in the Ten Percent Happier app so that you can actually practice hope as a skill. If you don't already have it, get the app now. Download the Ten Percent Happier app, for free, wherever you get your apps to get started. Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/joseph-goldstein-repost
2021-04-07
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#336: How Your Emotions Are Made | Lisa Feldman Barrett

Today?s guest is at the forefront of understanding human emotions: what they are, why humans evolved to have them, how they?re different from feelings, and what science says about how to manage them (rather than get yanked around by them all the time). Dr. Lisa Feldman-Barrett is a University Distinguished Professor of Psychology at Northeastern University, with appointments at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital. She?s written several books, including How Emotions are Made: The Secret Life of the Brain and Seven and a Half Lessons about the Brain. In this conversation, we talk about how we can ?deconstruct? our own emotions, and the overlap between her research findings and Buddhism. And one more order of business: Next Monday, April 12, we're launching a two-week series about hope. Hope was perhaps one of the cruelest casualties of the coronavirus pandemic. As we start to inch our way into a vaccinated world, there are ways we can skillfully engage with hope without setting ourselves up for disappointment. And not only are we exploring hope on the podcast, but we also have new bespoke meditations from our podcast guests and teachers dropping in the Ten Percent Happier app so that you can actually practice hope as a skill. If you don't already have it, get the app now so that you're ready to practice. To get started, download the Ten Percent Happier app, for free, wherever you get your apps. Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/lisa-feldman-barrett-336
2021-04-05
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