Write your own eulogy to shape your future

In Western culture, death is scary. Death is sad. Death is an uncontrollable event which puts an end to all events. This is why we mostly avoid thinking about it. And this is why many cultures and religions have the concept of an afterlife. But thinking about death can be empowering. And one of the …

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Time anxiety: is it too late?

I have always struggled with one thought. The kind of recurring thought that never really leaves you: “It’s too late.” Too late to publish a book, too late to start a company, too late to learn a new language. This is called time anxiety. The number of skills I haven’t acquired and the opportunities I …

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The neuroscience of ikigai

I lived in Japan for seven months when I was younger. For all of the challenges I faced there as a woman and a foreigner, I still was fascinated by the culture. Because Japan experienced a long period of relative isolation from the outside world—caused by sakoku (“closed country”), the isolationist foreign policy of the …

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Habits, routines, rituals

As much as we wish for each day to be different, the cycle of repeating the same actions day after day is pretty common. Habits and routines are an important part of our lives. Making your bed in the morning, that first cup of coffee, grabbing a croissant on your way to work, listening to …

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Stop looking for The One

“What do you want to be when you grow up?” This is almost an automatic question adults ask when chatting with a kid. Maybe it’s a way to connect through a topic that speaks to us, or because it’s often endearing to hear their answers. But why do we insist so much on kids having …

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Don’t choose between your personal and professional growth

“I’ve decided to take it a bit easy this year too, and relax more and focus on personal growth rather than career.” This is from an email I received this morning in response to my newsletter, where I mentioned that I wanted to slow down and focus on a few core aspects of my life, …

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