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What lies around the bend

My mother was always optimistic. But, my father was not always as optimistic Sometimes, like my father, I slip toward the dark side and see the glass as half-empty and cover myself with depression. And, then, sometimes, I can talk to myself and convince myself that it is so much more pleasant to follow my […]

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Carry your own weather

I’m ready for summer. It has been rainy, cloudy, cool for days. Sometimes I let the weather affect my mood. And, sometimes, I let stormy relationships with the people around me depress me. “Carry your own weather,” advises Todd Davis in his book Get Better—15 Proven Practices to Build Effective Relationships at Work. I have […]

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Life is too short

I am reading Convictions by Marcus Borg, who always makes me stop and think. One day recently when I was feeling a bit cranky, one of Borg’s statements was especially meaningful. “Life is too short to spend even an hour feeling preoccupied or grumpy or out of sorts,” Borg wrote. –Joy

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Exercise makes me feel better

Even when I think I’d rather roll over and sleep some more instead of getting up and taking my morning walk, I know from experience that I’ll feel better after I my dog and I get some exercise. Dr. John Ratey affirms my conclusion and explains exactly why exercise makes changes in my brain that […]

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Melancholy, not depression

Abraham Lincoln had bouts of melancholy, not depression, says Doris Kearns Goodwin, author of Team of Rivals. “Unlike depression, melancholy does not have a specific cause,” she writes. “It is an aspect of temperament, perhaps genetically based.” The root of Lincoln’s melancholy was his empathy, Goodwin believes, “derived in large part from an acute sensitivity […]

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Adhere to your purpose

Abraham Lincoln sometimes suffered from melancholy. However, even during the worst days of the Civil War, he “refused to surrender to the gloom of defeat,” writes Doris Kearns Goodwin in her book Team of Rivals. Goodwin says that Lincoln once wrote to the son of his wife’s cousin when the young man was miserable at […]

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