Embracing Anxiety with Karla McLaren

Karla McLaren is a social science researcher and award-winning author of Embracing Anxiety: How to Access the Genius of This Vital Emotion and The Language of Emotions: What Your Feelings Are Trying to Tell You. Karla is a pioneer in the study of empathy whose trailblazing approaches and unifying theory of emotions – including the Dynamic Emotional Integration and Six Essential Aspects of Empathy – open new pathways to self-awareness, communication, and empathy.  In addition to her research on empathy, Karla is also the CEO and Founder of Emotion Dynamics and developer of the Empathy Academy online learning community.

Karla joins me today to discuss the genius that comes with emotions, the lessons they try to teach us, and how to work with them. She explores how we can embrace anxiety and illustrates how we can treat it as our friend instead of a problem. She discusses the 17 emotions and the four families they belong to and explains how the belief that there are positive and negative emotions impact our emotional skills. She also shares mindfulness practices to work with emotions, such as conscious complaining and resourcing, and describes society’s tendency to “veilance” emotions.

“Anxiety is the emotion that helps you complete your tasks and get things done. It has a lot of energy and a lot of work to do.” – Karla McLaren

This week on The School for Good Living Podcast:

  • Emotions as skills for survival
  • Karla’s beginnings in emotion research and how childhood abuse can turn-up empathy
  • What emotions are, why we have them, and their role in humanity’s survival
  • Why the idea that there are only four emotions hampers people’s emotional skills
  • The anger family of emotions and how it helps a person to work with boundaries
  • Emotions related to the sadness family and what it means to have suicidal urges
  • What the emotions of the fear family teach us about intuition and instinct
  • What it means to “unveilance” emotions
  • The definition of fundamental attribution error and how to channel emotions
  • Accessing and working the intelligence and genius behind emotions
  • How anxiety works with other emotions and why they feel so negative
  • The difference between task-oriented and deadline oriented-people
  • The backlash effect of positive affirmations on people with lower self-esteem
  • The art of conscious complaining and resourcing
  • Karla’s writing process, routines, habits, and the biggest influences on her writing

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Thanks for tuning into this week’s episode of the School for Good Living Podcast, with your host, Bryan Miller. If you enjoyed this episode, please head over to Apple Podcasts to subscribe and leave us a rating and review.

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Touching the Jaguar with John Perkins

John Perkins is a speaker, activist, and author of Touching the Jaguar: Transforming Fear Into Action to Change Your Life and the World and Confessions of an Economic Hitman. In addition to having worked as Chief Economist who advised the IMF, World Bank, and the United Nations, John worked with many shamans from six different continents, studying with them as their apprentice. John draws from this diverse experience in economics and shamanistic work to build the foundations of his writing. He is also the Founder and Board Member of Dream Change and Co-Founder of Pachamama Alliance, two non-profit organizations dedicated to creating a better world for the next generation.

John joins me today to share the wisdom and the lessons he learned from his journey in shamanism and his work in economics. He defines what the death economy is and differentiates it from the life economy and explains how we can help the world move toward the latter. He shares his experience as a shaman’s apprentice and illustrates how shamans are similar to psychotherapists. He also explains how our perception creates the world around us and demonstrates how we can confront the fears that hinder us from becoming the people we want to be.

“The jaguar represents fear. If you run away, it hounds you. But if you touch it, you can take its energy, courage, and wisdom.”  – John Perkins

This week on The School for Good Living Podcast:

  • John’s background in economics and his experience as a shaman’s apprentice
  • How Touching the Jaguar bridges John’s work in economics and shamanism
  • What the death economy is and how it contrasts to the life economy
  • How perception molds our reality as human beings
  • What John learned in his journey in shamanism and being a shaman’s apprentice
  • Why GDP is a lousy measure of a nation’s wealth and prosperity
  • Humanity’s indigenous roots and why we lost our connection to nature
  • How shamans are similar to the psychotherapists of western culture
  • What ayahuasca is and how people tend to abuse it
  • John’s advice to people who want to meaningfully contribute to the planet
  • What we can learn from William Shakespeare’s Macbeth
  • The challenges and difficulties John finds in writing and what he learned from working with editors
  • How 39 publishers declined Confession of an Economic Hitman and how John persisted through the rejections
  • John’s writing process and his words of encouragement for people who are pursuing, or want to pursue, their creative projects

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Thanks for tuning into this week’s episode of the School for Good Living Podcast, with your host, Bryan Miller. If you enjoyed this episode, please head over to Apple Podcasts to subscribe and leave us a rating and review.

Don’t forget to visit our website, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. And be sure to share your favorite episodes with your friends and colleagues on social media to inspire others to improve their lives and reach their full potential.

Happier with Tal Ben-Shahar

Tal Ben-Shahar is the best-selling author of Happier: Learn the Secrets to Daily Joy and Lasting Fulfillment, Being Happy: You Don’t Have to Be Perfect to Lead a Richer, Happier Life, and other books which have been translated to 25 languages. He is also the Co-founder and Chief Learning Officer of the Happiness Studies Academy. Tal is a leading expert in happiness studies who taught two of the most popular classes in Harvard University’s history: Positive Psychology and The Psychology of Leadership. As a speaker, lecturer, and consultant, Tal delivers lectures worldwide to people of all walks of life, from the executives of multi-national corporations to vulnerable populations.

Tal joins me today to discuss the lessons he learned about happiness and how we can be happier. He shares his experiences as a squash player and illustrates how winning the Israeli National Championship led him to pursue happiness studies. He describes how we can grow and learn from traumatic experiences and explains why anxiety and depression continue to rise in today’s society. He also shares his “hamburger model” of happiness and reveals the five elements that constitute true and sustainable happiness.

” Happiness is not binary; it resides in a continuum. It’s not about reaching a finite point but a lifelong journey.” – Tal Ben-Shahar

This week on The School for Good Living Podcast:

  • The importance of playing squash in Tal’s life and how it helped him develop his philosophy
  • How Tal learned the importance of hard work, failure, and teamwork from playing squash
  • How winning his first Israeli National Championships led Tal to find lasting happiness
  • What ‘learned helplessness’ is and why anxiety, depression, and suicide are on the rise
  • The arrival fallacy and why successful people are not necessarily the happiest
  • Tal’s ‘hamburger model’ and why happiness is not binary
  • The five elements of happiness and how to cultivate them
  • The two levels of suffering and how embracing unhappiness can lead to true happiness
  • How to stop procrastinating and using the ABCs of psychology to create lasting and sustainable behavioral change
  • Cultivating writing habits and why good writers are good readers
  • Tal’s process in finding, using, and organizing quotations and research for his books
  • Tal’s advice on marketing and selling books

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Thanks for tuning into this week’s episode of the School for Good Living Podcast, with your host, Bryan Miller. If you enjoyed this episode, please head over to Apple Podcasts to subscribe and leave us a rating and review.

Don’t forget to visit our website, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. And be sure to share your favorite episodes with your friends and colleagues on social media to inspire others to improve their lives and reach their full potential.

Imagine It Forward with Beth Comstock

Beth Comstock is the author of Imagine It Forward: Courage, Creativity, and the Power of Change. Beth served as NBC Universal’s President for Integrated Media as well as the General Electric Company’s Vice-Chair and Chief Marketing Officer, where she led efforts to promote growth and innovation. In her book, Imagine it Forward, Beth draws lessons from her 30-year career as a change-maker and offers her wisdom on cultivating courage, resilience, and creativity to spark innovation.

Beth joins me today to share her insights and wisdom on fostering creativity, innovation, and connection in an organization. She explains why she wrote her book and illustrate the process and challenges she experienced while writing it. She defines what social courage means and describes how she cultivated it. She explains what an agitated inquiry is and how you can use conflict and opposing perspectives to nurture innovation. She also discusses how fear prevents people from writing a book and shares her advice on promoting your work.

“People want to take different paths. To innovate, use that tension to get better ideas and a better view of the future.” – Beth Comstock

This week on The School for Good Living Podcast:

  • The inspiration behind her book, Imagine it Forward, and the challenges she encountered in writing it
  • Why Beth turned down Steve Jobs twice
  • The impact of drafting press releases as if they had already been announced
  • What social courage is and the micro-challenges Beth made to cultivate it
  • The risks Beth took in her career and why she invited herself to meetings she wasn’t part of
  • The meaning of agitated inquiry and how conflict can be leveraged to spark innovation
  • How Beth has always had coaches and the qualities of an effective coach
  • The importance of giving ourselves permission
  • What stops people from starting their book and the importance of knowing why you want to write a book
  • Beth’s writing rituals and how she planned the structure of her book
  • Beth’s advice on book promotions and why she recommends reading your book out loud before getting it published

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Thanks for tuning into this week’s episode of the School for Good Living Podcast, with your host, Bryan Miller. If you enjoyed this episode, please head over to Apple Podcasts to subscribe and leave us a rating and review.

Don’t forget to visit our website, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. And be sure to share your favorite episodes with your friends and colleagues on social media to inspire others to improve their lives and reach their full potential.

Steve Pavlina: Personal Development for Smart People

Steve Pavlina is an entrepreneur, motivational speaker, and the author of Personal Development for Smart People: The Conscious Pursuit of Personal Growth. After an arrest on charges of grand theft auto in 1991, Steve made a conscious decision to turn his life around. He founded Dexterity Software, a computer game development company that focused on nonviolent puzzle games. He has served as Vice President and later President, of the Association of Software Professionals. Seeing himself as an explorer and perpetual student, Steve closed his software company and started a personal development blog and website to create more meaningful ripples in the world. Steve has blogged over 2 million words of content and released the copyright encouraging people to take his work and merge it with their own. As a result he is co-author of at least 200 books.

Steve joins me today to talk about how he gets his ideas for his blog posts. We talk about his many personal experiments and passions including polyphasic sleep, vegetarianism, veganism, even 30 consecutive days at Disneyland, and a 40-day water fast. We also talk about a conscious growth club he runs and a time when he realized he could work fewer hours and get better results. A free thinker testing the conventional paths, he says the smarter we are, the faster we grow.

I decided what I really wanted to do was create a bigger growth-oriented community. And the goal is we all come together and we encourage the heck out of each other. We all help each other grow. We work together as a team. We actually get to know each other and we care about each other. We cooperate.”  – Steve Pavlina

This week on The School for Good Living Podcast:

  • Twelve years in Catholic school where all the answers were given to you
  • A seminar with speaker Wayne Dyer changes Steve’s life
  • A dream for his twenties ran its course but it wasn’t meaningful enough
  • 2 million words on Steve’s blog and it’s all in the public domain
  • Writing for specific people
  • A long history of being connected with customers and readers of his blog
  • Steve’s process of asking the universe for writing inspiration, where it feels like a meditation
  • The accidental vegetarian (then vegan) – a 30-day experiment that just kept going
  • 30-day trial: Spending 30 consecutive days at Disneyland…voluntarily. What would it do to a person?
  • Steve created a group called Conscious Growth Club in 2017 and has now over 150 members
  • Find out how to connect to people – your tribe – of like-minded people aligned and interested in personal growth
  • What Steve finds many people struggle with is consistency and what that means
  • Finding that purpose you want to invest in for 20 years or more
  • 40-day trial: Water fasting
  • The toughest part of fasting is longer for women than men
  • Steve records every day of his fasting experience on his YouTube channel along  with a  personal growth lesson
  • The risks in fasting for long periods of time – it’s not what you might imagine
  • Experiments that are not worth doing
  • The benefits of group challenges
  • What there may be not-to-like about the personal growth field
  • Steven’s travel tips and why
  • The exercise that Americans don’t get enough of
  • What are you willing to say ‘Yes’ to?
  • Can you be wealthy without money? Holding wealth in the form of social goodwill
  • Steve’s favorite TV show and what it’s taught him
  • Social goals vs. Individual goals
  • The benefits of not holding grudges
  • The downfalls to focusing on individual success vs. investing in social bonds
  • Blocks to our more heart-centered paths
  • How being broke is an invitation to thinking about life differently

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Thanks for tuning into this week’s episode of the School for Good Living Podcast, with your host, Bryan Miller. If you enjoyed this episode, please head over to Apple Podcasts to subscribe and leave us a rating and review.

Don’t forget to visit our website, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. And be sure to share your favorite episodes with your friends and colleagues on social media to inspire others to improve their lives and reach their full potential.




Gita: A Timeless Guide For Our Time with Isaac Bentwich

Isaac Bentwich is a practitioner and teacher of yoga and meditation, and the author of Gita: A Timeless Guide For Our Time, a poetic translation of the Bhagavad Gita. A medical doctor by training and entrepreneur by profession, Isaac has founded several tech companies, including Quris Technologies, Ripples Technologies, and CropX LTD, each leading disruptive revolutions in the fields of medicine, genomics, and environmental conservation. At the core of Isaac’s life work is his inner spiritual journey – touched by the teachings of the Bhagavad Gita’s wisdom and his mission to share it with people.

Isaac joins me today to share his journey in writing Gita: A Timeless Guide For Our Time. He explains what the Bhagavad Gita is and illustrates how it’s a guide to help us define the meaning of life. He discusses the poetic nature of the Bhagavad Gita and shares some verses that impacted him. He also shares his thoughts on the creative process of writing a book as well as the joys he finds in meditation retreats.

“The Bhagavad Gita beckons you to listen to the inner wisdom of your soul.” – Isaac Bentwich

This week on The School for Good Living Podcast:

  • What’s life about for Isaac and how his spiritual journey underpins his profession
  • Isaac’s first encounter with the Bhagavad Gita and what compelled him to write a translation
  • How Isaac has made his translation of the Bhagavad Gita accessible while preserving its poetic and meditative nature
  • What the Bhagavad Gita is, its history, its teachings, and how it defines the meaning of life
  • Isaac’s journey through yoga and the interconnection between his practice as a medical doctor and the Bhagavad Gita
  • The use of battle as a setting in the Bhagavad Gita and an excerpt that completely drew Isaac in
  • The people the Bhagavad Gita has impacted and how it inspired them
  • Why the Bhagavad Gita is a handbook on mindfulness and a guide on everyday living
  • How mastering the mind can help us create and write a book
  • Isaac’s experiences with months-long meditative retreats

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Thanks for tuning into this week’s episode of the School for Good Living Podcast, with your host, Bryan Miller. If you enjoyed this episode, please head over to Apple Podcasts to subscribe and leave us a rating and review.

Don’t forget to visit our website, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. And be sure to share your favorite episodes with your friends and colleagues on social media to inspire others to improve their lives and reach their full potential.

Unwavering Focus with Dandapani

Dandapani is a Hindu priest and creator of the Unwavering Focus and Introduction to Meditation courses, as well as the Dandapani: Learn to Focus app. Before spending ten years of his life as a monk under the tutelage of the guru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami, Dandapani graduated from university with a degree in Electrical Engineering. In addition to his priesthood, Dandapani is an entrepreneur who has worked with athletes and organizations such as the Commonwealth Bank of Australia and Nike. Additionally, he is also a speaker whose TEDx Talk, Unwavering Focus, has garnered over 3 million views on YouTube. Dandapani empowers people all over the world by teaching them how to cultivate focus and concentration through the techniques that have been used by Hindu monks for thousands of years.

Dandapani joins me today to discuss the power of focus and concentration. He explains how concentration is something everyone is told to do but not taught how to do and underscores the importance of understanding the mind. He shares the story of how he became a monk and describes his mission to build a botanical garden in Costa Rica. He also enumerates the differences between the mind and awareness, as well as reveals how you can experience the divinity within yourself through the act of writing.

“Concentration is the first fundamental step to change.” – Dandapani

This week on The School for Good Living Podcast:

  • Why Dandapani has dedicated his life to teaching people to develop their focus and concentration
  • The importance of understanding the mind, how concentration can be taught, and why concentration comes before meditation
  • The guru that inspired Dandapani to live ten years in a monastery as a monk
  • The purpose of Dandapani’s botanical garden project in Costa Rica
  • Finding a philosophy you can commit to, and the fear of people over getting associated with a religion or spirituality
  • Why Dandapani recommends reading Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa Yogananda
  • The difference between the mind and awareness, and how learning to control your awareness impacts the mind
  • The path of the householder and why there’s nothing wrong with making money
  • The power of writing as a creative tool to eradicate unresolved emotions

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Thanks for tuning into this week’s episode of the School for Good Living Podcast, with your host, Bryan Miller. If you enjoyed this episode, please head over to Apple Podcasts to subscribe and leave us a rating and review.

Don’t forget to visit our website, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. And be sure to share your favorite episodes with your friends and colleagues on social media to inspire others to improve their lives and reach their full potential.

The Reading Brain with Maryanne Wolf

Maryanne Wolf is the author of Reader, Come Home: The Reading Brain in a Digital World, Proust and the Squid: The Story and Science of the Reading Brain, Tales of Literacy for the 21st Century, Dyslexia, Fluency, and the Brain as well as over 160 scientific articles. She is a scholar, teacher, and Director of the newly-created Center for Dyslexia, Diverse Learners, and Social Justice at UCLA. Maryanne began her work in Cognitive Neuroscience and Psycholinguistics at the Department of Human Development and Psychology at Harvard University, where she also completed her doctorate. A staunch advocate for children and global literacy, Maryanne designed the Rave-O, reading intervention for children with dyslexia and co-founded Curious Learning, a global literacy initiative.

Maryanne joins me today to discuss the neuroscience of reading. She explains how the act of reading creates circuits in our brains and allow us to gain a deeper perspective and cultivate empathy. She illustrates how the modern reader’s tendency to skim through reading mediums impacts their memory and democracy. She also underscores the need for every teacher to understand the science of reading and how reading helps children realize their fullest potential as human beings.


“Deep reading is the ability to bear all of our best and most sophisticated intellectual processes: the discernment and evaluation of truth, beauty, and ‘other’.” – Maryanne Wolf

This week on The School for Good Living Podcast:

  • Maryanne’s experience while teaching in Hawaii and how she was inspired to study neuroscience
  • How reading helps children achieve their fullest potential as human beings
  • The evolution and neuroscience of reading, and how we create circuits in our brain through the act of reading
  • The brain on processing different languages and how reading on a screen affects neuroplasticity
  • The definition of deep reading and how it helps us widen our perspectives and cultivate empathy
  • Linda Stone’s ‘continuous partial attention,’ and the sharp decline of empathy in our generation
  • How distraction affects memory, empathy, and democracy
  • Reading as a form of magic and how language helps create a bridge to the highest aspect of our being

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Thanks for tuning into this week’s episode of the School for Good Living Podcast, with your host, Bryan Miller. If you enjoyed this episode, please head over to Apple Podcasts to subscribe and leave us a rating and review.

Don’t forget to visit our website, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. And be sure to share your favorite episodes with your friends and colleagues on social media to inspire others to improve their lives and reach their full potential.

Improving Employee Recognition with Dr. Bob Nelson

Dr. Bob Nelson is the bestselling author of multiple business management and employee engagement books, including 1,001 Ways to Engage Employees, Recognizing & Engaging Employees for Dummies, and 1,001 Ways to Reward Employees. He is the world’s leading expert on employee recognition, motivation, and engagement and has sold over 5-Million copies of his books, which have been translated into over 30 languages. Bob is a long-time collaborator and confidante of Dr. Ken Blanchard, the co-author of The One Minute Manager. He has earned notable recognition and awards, including the 2019 Top 20 Global Management Guru Award by Global Gurus. He has presented keynote speeches, webinars, and presentations on topics related to employee recognition, management, motivation, and engagement and has been featured in mainstream media publications, including The New York Times, CNN, 60 Minutes, Inc. Magazine, Fortune Magazine, and BusinessWeek.

Dr. Bob Nelson joins me today to discuss what it was like having Peter Drucker as a mentor and teacher. He explains what it really means to recognize your employees and shares tips and ideas on how employers can make employee recognition and engagement part of their daily management routine. We discuss what is required to create a great workplace culture and why accountability matters. We discuss strategies for giving effective feedback to your team and how to effectively acknowledge our colleagues, co-workers, and employees. We also discuss what ‘management’ truly means in the workplace and strategies managers can use to become more effective leaders.

“Don’t do stuff just to be nice. Do stuff to rally around performance that matters at the individual and group basis and organizational basis.” – Dr. Bob Nelson

This week on The School for Good Living Podcast:

  • Dr. Bob’s upbringing and his journey to becoming the world’s leading authority on employee recognition, motivation, and engagement
  • Dr. Bob’s experiences and the lessons he learned from Peter Drucker
  • How he helps organizations improve employee engagement and recognition
  • The importance of making employee recognition and engagement a top priority within your organization
  • Effective strategies you can use to increase their employee engagement
  • How to hire, train, and evaluate leaders and employees
  • The characteristics of a great leader and the importance of being a good role model for future leaders within your organization
  • How to address poor-performing employees, the concept of a ‘human relations bank account,’ and strategies to reward good performance
  • Managing employee expectations by being straight-forward and sincere
  • The importance of focusing employee recognition on their performance instead of their presence

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Thanks for tuning into this week’s episode of the School for Good Living Podcast, with your host, Bryan Miller. If you enjoyed this episode, please head over to Apple Podcasts to subscribe and leave us a rating and review.

Don’t forget to visit our website, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. And be sure to share your favorite episodes with your friends and colleagues on social media to inspire others to improve their lives and reach their full potential.

Happiness Is A Choice with John Leland Part 2

John Leland is the author of Happiness Is a Choice You Make: Lessons From a Year Among the Oldest Old, Hip: The History and Why Kerouac Matters: The Lessons of “On the Road” (They’re Not What You Think). John is also a public speaker and an award-winning journalist for the New York Times, where he writes features for the Sunday Metropolitan section. Before his work at the New York Times, John served as a senior editor for Newsweek and worked at other publications, including Details, Newsday, and Spin.

John joins me today to discuss why older people may be happier than younger people and the benefit of being selective with who you surround yourself with. He shares what it truly means to be storyteller, how to know if your story is worth telling, and how to bring your work to completion. John also highlights where the strength of a sentence lies and the power of truth-telling as a writer.

“Getting older is another way of living. Aging and living are the same thing.”  – John Leland

This week on The School for Good Living Podcast:

  • Why there may be a relationship between happiness and age
  • How John has shifted his perspective on aging to live a better life
  • The two people who have had the most notable influence on John as a writer
  • Why John sees a significant distinction between his work as a journalist and as an author
  • How John defines storytelling and how he knows when a book is worth writing
  • John’s experiences with writer’s block and how to effectively address it
  • A peek into John’s writing process and aspects of his routine
  • How distancing yourself from your stories can provide a useful perspective
  • John’s insight into effectively pitching and selling a book and the importance of connecting with your audience

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Thanks for tuning into this week’s episode of the School for Good Living Podcast, with your host, Bryan Miller. If you enjoyed this episode, please head over to Apple Podcasts to subscribe and leave us a rating and review.

Don’t forget to visit our website, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. And be sure to share your favorite episodes with your friends and colleagues on social media to inspire others to improve their lives and reach their full potential.