Living The Big Stuff: An Interview with Kristine Carlson

I finished my training in psychotherapy, and promptly realized I had a thorough education in what is wrong with people.  I was far less clear about what is right with people — how people bounce back, thrive, and grow through all of life’s challenges.

This began a search for me, to educate myself on how to help people to thrive.  But my first project was (and is) myself.  Along the way, I stumbled upon Richard Carlson, author of the Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff series.  I dug deeper and found a deeper pool in the thinking behind the popular series.

This was my first immersion into the ideas about thoughts and how thoughts weave our reality.  I learned that my thoughts are simply that:  thoughts.  Simple, but revolutionary, when we generally confuse thought and reality.

Kristine CarlsonTragically, Richard died in December of 2006.  His wife and co-author, Kristine Carlson, carried on their efforts to bring joy and peace to many.  It is fitting that almost exactly eight years later, I got the opportunity to interview Kris.  Since I had been following her during these past years, I knew she had much to offer on her own.  She shared in Richard’s thoughts and understandings.  But her grief over his loss taught her even deeper lessons.

Today, Kristine shares her lessons with us:  how she moved through grief to a deeper understanding of life, how we can stop sweating the small stuff and live through the big stuff, how we can get out of our own way and get in touch with a deeper essence, how to be more and more present.

This is a rich interview, and one you will want to listen through a couple of times, to make sure you take it all in.

If you would like to connect with Kristine, her Facebook page is HERE.

And you can find her at

4 Strategies For Moving From Struggle To Thriving: #47 Thriveology Podcast

Move from Struggle To ThrivingEvery person has circumstances that knock them down.

A Japanese proverb says,

Fall down seven times, get up eight.

We can’t stop the circumstances.  They just happen.  You don’t have to seek them out.  They will come.

Illness, job loss, relationships ending, business loss, deaths, and any other life circumstances happen.  That is the nature of life.

A thriving life is not about what happens to you, but how you respond.

Do you grow through the struggles or do you shrink from it?  Do you rise up, or do you stay down?  Do you grow, or do you flee?

Yes, we all have grief from the losses.  No question, we feel the grief.  The question is, what do you do after the grief?  How do you take on the struggles, make them challenges, and learn to triumph?

In today’s podcast, I give you 4 strategies to help you shift from victim to victor, and move from struggle to triumph.


5 Steps To Overcoming Inertia: Physics and Being Stuck

Don't stay stuck.  Overcome your inertia.Inertia.  Being stuck.  We all find ourselves there at one point or another.

The question is whether we stay stuck or get moving.  The choice is whether to let inertia continue or overcome it.

Some days, we can feel like Sisyphus, repeatedly trying to push that rock up the hill.  Often, we find ourselves behind the rock, not even sure how to start pushing.

Or maybe we just believe it is too hard to even start.

Enter Newton’s 1st law of motion: “Objects in motion tend to remain in motion; objects at rest tend to remain at rest — until acted upon by an outside force.”

YOU are that outside force for issues in your life:  health, relationships, work, etc.  YOU are the force that can overcome the inertia in these areas.

Discover the 5 ways to overcome inertia in this week’s podcast.  Listen below, then tell me what you think in the comments area!


What Martin Taught Me About Gratitude

GratitudeI met Martin toward the end of his life.  He was a double-amputee, with much of an arm also missing.  And he suffered from emphysema.

Oh, and Martin taught me a lesson I needed to learn:  gratitude.  He gave thanks for his life, in spite of having lost two children, his wife, his siblings, and his parents — all rather tragically.

Martin blessed me with a lesson I still struggle to learn every day.

How’s your gratitude?

Let me tell you how I exercise my “gratitude muscle” this time of year — and every day!

3 Tools for Dealing With Your Anger: #44 Thriveology Podcast

Anger is the external emotion of the internal emotion of hurt.  Anger.

It can be frightening.

It can push you away.  It can push others away.

And expressing anger does little to resolve anger.  In fact, it often only feeds the anger, stoking the fire until it is dangerously out of control.

Anger is a misunderstood emotion.  In fact, it is in not the true emotion.  Anger is the outer expression of the inner emotion of hurt.

When we are hurt, we can feel vulnerable, scared, and hesitant.  So, we don’t express the hurt.  We erupt in anger.

The anger serves to push the source of the hurt away, but does nothing to soothe the hurt.

We shouldn’t be surprised, then, that the hurt persists and the anger grows.  Resentment takes root, creating more destruction and damage.

Is there another way?

In this week’s podcast, I provide you with 3 simple tools that will help you resolve the anger, once-and-for-all.

Join me for this podcast.

Then let me know what you think below!


Get Unstuck From Your Story: Interview with Kim Ades — #43

Every day, things happen to us.  Circumstances interrupt our lives.  Sometimes, we cause them.  Sometimes, life is just happening to us.

TheStoryYouTellSmallThen, we start telling ourselves stories about those events.  The events are one layer.  And they can be painful.

But much more damaging, and much more trapping, are the stories we tell ourselves about what happened to us.

Have you ever notice how some people keep saying the same things:  “Nobody likes me,” “Life isn’t fair,” “I never catch a break,” “It’s not my fault,” and other “stuck” stories?

Others tell stories of success, “I can’t believe how lucky I am,” “Something great just happened to me,” and other stories of good luck or success.

The difference between the two is rarely about the life events.  Good stuff and bad stuff happen to everyone.

The difference is in the narrative, the story of life, people tell themselves and others.

Kim AdesOn today’s Thriveology Podcast, I interview Kim Ades.  Kim is the president and chief coach of Frame Of Mind Coaching.  Kim helps people who are ready to really get to the top of their game/life get there.  She helps people discover the stories they tell themselves, and then change it!

Kim is responsible for helping many people transform their lives.

Listen in as Kim and I discuss how these stories grow in our lives — what causes them, why they stay around, and what to do about it.

In fact, Kim and I talk about some strategies you can use RIGHT NOW to start shifting your own story away from being stuck.

If you resonate with our conversation, you can connect with Kim at her website, Frame Of Mind Coaching (CLICK HERE).

This Moment Matters: Interview with Shawn Ellis, #42 Thriveology Podcast

Shawn-400x600We fill every day up.  In fact, we often fill every moment of every day up.

And the moments pass.  The days pass.

We move from crisis to crisis, event to event.

We try to do multiple things at the same time, and pretend it is a skill.

In the process, we miss out on the richness of this moment.  We miss out on being truly engaged in the world.

Today, I have a special guest, Shawn Ellis.

Shawn offers a different perspective.  What if THIS moment (and this one, and this one. . . ) matters?

To be more clear, what if WE realize that this moment matters?

Shawn, like me, is always learning and growing.  One day, he realized the moments were passing him by in a blur.  An entrepreneur, business owner, husband, and father, Shawn was pulled in all directions — defaulting to the myth of multi-tasking.

One day, he realized that life was passing him by, even as Shawn was trying to live.

What Shawn discovered is something he is now sharing with people and companies all over:  This Moment Matters.

After listening to our discussion, you can visit Shawn at This Moment Matters (


Bad Habits? Change Them! (An Interview with Josh Matthews-Morgan): #41

Our brains can work for us or against us.  We can live, stuck in the loops of poor habits.  Or we can create rituals (habits of choice) and transform ourselves.

Bad habits are often habits that worked at one time, but no longer serve us.  Unfortunately, they are wired into our brains.  And we likely go there automatically.

Josh Matthews-MorganBut what if you want to be in peak performance?  How can you make some simple (very small) shifts that not only break old habits, but create new ones — rituals of choice?

Today, I interview Josh Matthews-Morgan.  Josh is a trainer, speaker, author and coach.  Along with his partner, Josh offers training internationally, helping teams and individuals shift to peak performance.

Josh and I cover some pretty amazing stuff, helping you shift your life to a thriving space, aimed at peak performance.

Learn how to break those pesky habits.  Learn how to create better ways of thriving in your life.

And learn how to master your fears that keep you from moving forward!

If you want to learn more about Josh and his work, please watch the free video training he is providing to the Thrive Nation.

You can find the videos here:


3 Steps to Dealing With Doubt: 40 Thriveology Podcast

Dealing with doubt.That tiny little voice whispers to us:  “Don’t do it.  Don’t try it.  You can’t do it.  You won’t make it.”

That little voice of doubt.

Do you have it?

You do.

How do I know?

We ALL have it.  We all believe we are the only ones suffering from those feelings of doubt.

But those doubts are universal.  Nobody is immune.

When you look at someone and see confidence, you might believe differently.

That confidence is the outward emotion.  It doesn’t mean the internal feeling is of self-doubt and fear.

The very talented and famous actor, Sir Laurence Olivier, suffered from stage fright.  Yet his performances sparkled.  His great acting was not because he had no doubt, no fear.  It was in spite of his fears and doubts.

Sometimes, we find it easier to give in to the fears and doubts.  We decide to “play it small,” to avoid the challenge.  And in the end, we allow the self-doubt to win.

In this week’s podcast, I offer a 3 step process to stop self-doubt in its tracks.  Don’t let self-doubt keep you stuck!

Finding Your Hero Within: #39 Thriveology Podcast

Tony Edgell PicDo you believe there is something heroic within you?  Is there a place of bravery within you, calling you to a higher purpose and a place of meaning?

My guest today is speaker and auther, Tony Edgell.  Tony is a self-described “former bully.”  Tony told me he was a bully in school — an extension of the treatment he received himself at home.

Then, Tony graduated to bar fights.  Still, Tony was responding to the hurt from his past.  Tony was still caught by the hurt in his own life, completely disconnected from his heart.

One day, Tony says he took a long look “at the man in the mirror,” and realized he needed to change.  Tony stopped believing the world required him to respond in angry ways.  Tony found he no longer had to defend himself from threats that were never there.

It was then that Tony came to understand Gandhi’s famous quote,

Be the change you wish to see in the world.

The Hero Inside You coverSoon, Tony was discovering a new path for himself.  Tony found himself called to help the rest of the world move from injury and hurt to growth and bravery.

According to Tony, this is the path of discovering your internal hero, the hero within.

Join me as Tony and I discuss the hurts of life and how they leave us limping, and how we often work from our place of hurt.  But more importantly, Tony and I discuss how to work from your place of “heart.”

Discover your hero within, find your purpose and power, and become the person you were meant to be!

Visit Tony Edgell at his website and grab his free video.

Find his book, The Hero Inside You at Amazon.