Archives for the month of: February, 2017


I love myself

I love myself

I love myself

We are so happy to be alive

I love my life

Our lives are great

We love ourselves

We love being alive    

“I Love My Life” ~ Song & lyrics by my special friend Zachary Miles Lefkowitz, age 4 1/2, September, 2013

When at a wake recently with my 14-year-old nephew, I recalled to him the time he was about to turn four and I asked if he was excited about his upcoming birthday. He began to cry hysterically saying he didn’t want to have any birthdays. This was because he spent a lot of time around my ailing grandmother who had just passed away in her 80’s and he made the very astute observation that getting older means you are one step closer to dying.

I asked now what it was about death that bothered him most.  He did not hesitate for even a second and simply, and very seriously, said “Because you won’t have the exhilarating feeling of being alive.” 

I thought this was a profound answer as folks around us were suffering with the loss of our loved one; Jake homed right in on the crux of the matter: We are alive, and we should experience and treasure every moment that aliveness brings us. 

Over the weekend I had my first massage in over two years, and it really brought home to me these conversations in the most basic and visceral of ways.  Being alive means we are here, in a very physical body in a very physical world. Our body is our vehicle to experience all that life has to offer, so we need to love, appreciate, and take care of it – and, we are also here with other human beings we are meant to love, appreciate, and take care of in a physical way.

Most of us tend to live in our heads and are quite disconnected from our bodies and/or emotions.  Getting a massage – whether by a therapist or having a friend or family member give you a little hands-on tender loving care – affirms our beingness, our aliveness, and our connection to and need for one another.  Numerous studies have documented the necessity of touch, especially for newborns and the elderly; it is literally what keeps them alive and determines their health and longevity.

Diana Ross famously sang, Reach out and touch somebody’s hand / Make this world a better place, if you can.”  If you’re lucky, you have close relationships where you can exchange physical, affectionate touch on a regular basis.  If not, there are lots of alternatives like hugs  and various forms of bodywork you can receive from others in appropriate ways and settings.

And sometimes the most special touch can come from a stranger , like from the tourist in Bryant Park over the summer who, while having her photo taken nearby sensed/saw me distraught and crying (even though I thought I was incognito with my sunglasses, hair covering my face and downward glance!), and in one of the most generous, kind moments I have ever experienced, gently put her reassuring, healing hand on my shoulder for a few seconds as she walked by, saying with that one gesture,   “I see you, I feel your pain; I don’t know you, speak your language or know why you are upset, but I am here to offer you what comfort I can as a fellow human being.”

So as we go further down this technological highway with its isolating side effects and embark upon the holiday season with the increasing commercial madness it brings, remember the basics:  you are here, we are here, let’s love our lives and love one another, and demonstrate that love and compassion in the most tangible and meaningful ways possible.

Not quite sure how? Give me a buzz, because like Robin Thicke reminds us: I got it. You got it. We got the magic touch. 

Read, like, share and comment on this post via Medium  

(Today’s PGG was originally published on December 3, 2013)

***CLICK HERE TO REGISTER FOR UPCOMING VISIONING WORKSHOP on 2/26*** Sign-up by 2/18 for discount 🙂


If you like what I write, you’ll love what I have to say in person!   Click on above links for info about my coaching and speaking services and contact me today. 

Read over thirty 5-star “Yelp” style reviews here

Join Mailing List
Like me on Facebook  Follow me on Twitter

Read more about me and my work in these past PGG’s:

All Roads, Same Place | And Now, A Word from Our Sponsor | Strong Medicine | 10,000 Hours | Express Yourself

Special note: With these changing and extraordinary times, my writing might seem to be getting more political (and longer) than usual (even though to me it’s more about the bigger scope of our democracy and humanity in general, as I am a nonpartisan person), and this PGG reflects some of my personal views.  If it’s not your cup of tea, have no fear, regular PGG’s will be back next week, and essays like these will only occasionally pop up.  You can now also read me on Medium, so be sure to follow me there, where you can like, comment and share!


Friday, January 20, 2017, was a rough day. I chose not to ignore but to face head-on everything that had happened since November 8 – after having fully subjected myself to both sides of the presidential campaign for the better part of a year – and by the end of an entire day of exposure to the inaugural events (the finale and final date of a marathon during which I kept hoping that perhaps the Titanic would not actually sink), I needed to take a steam bath to detox it all. After sweating out what I absorbed, I share with you what emerged.

The technicalities of how we got here in the end belong to a man with the initials VP, whose manipulations took advantage of and exacerbated our weaknesses; he didn’t cause them. Besides the virulent last hurrah of racism and sexism, and the imperial karma we have collectively incurred as a nation, along with capitalism run amok, the deeper material of what this is about – beyond red states/blue states, liberals/conservatives, black/white/Muslim/Mexican, etc. – is the obsession with shiny objects and our quick-fix syndrome; the backlash against the “other” and glorification of hyper-masculinity; and our unresolved daddy issues.

Most Americans want someone to blame for, fix their problems or, as we see now, both. We live in a culture that tells us we need to have instant envy and that something is inherently lacking in us; that a pill, lotion, clothing, gadgets will make us feel good and have a fabulous life. That we have to be assertive and desperately grab these things at any cost, both monetarily and socially, instead of being receptive and attracting authentic prosperity in its many forms by our own value, effort and trust (then we find out we don’t need most of what is being sold to us anyway), and that if we don’t achieve a certain fabricated version of success it’s someone else’s’ fault or issue to deal with.

Blinded and lured by glitz, special effects, selfies, a reduced attention span and taking the easy way out, technology has only magnified and monetized our trend toward total superficiality and increasingly addictive behaviors.

People think, “Oh he looks good, his family looks good, he’s done well, etc. …” They are projecting a glamorous image of what they think a “successful businessman” is without knowing, of course, the corrupt and unscrupulous ways he has succeeded. The new POTUS and his brood are the Stepford Family of America, a group of people seemingly put together from central casting to make a supersize Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous, and they now have the most powerful seat in the world.

Then there is our laziness, combined with anxiety about our own existence and shadow selves, which we project onto and then fear “the other,” as in any person, group, place or thing that is unfamiliar or takes us out of our comfy zone. This is a way of anesthetizing ourselves to the outside world and the broader perspective, wisdom and experience that often come as result of our interaction with it. Instead we would rather retreat into “other” words via our remote control, binge-watching TV series, playing virtual video games or seeing IMAX movies of superheroes divided into good and evil, killing each other and blowing stuff up and saving the day (again the daddy, savior complex, and the hyper-masculinity – even women heroes are portrayed in a masculine way). As a result, we avoid confronting real-world multifaceted and nuanced situations that require patience, understanding and compassion, and the many shades of gray that comprise human interaction.

We are a society that is emotionally constipated. Our culture has become filled with emotional porn (i.e., extreme/gratuitous violence, actual porn, real housewives/girls behaving badly, and/or overusing exclamatory words in a disproportionate/inappropriate way to get your attention, as in “This is EVERYTHING!!”), which is used as a laxative to get things moving around inside.Then when things are backed up so badly and reality becomes too real, we have verbal diarrhea and tantrums at the least, and physical violence at the worst. This is also the root of our addictions in all their many forms.

The backlash against Obama was because he was emotionally mature and thoughtful, and he embodied a feminine approach to his worldview, which includes dialogue and inclusivity. (I always said from day one that if Bill Clinton was our first “black” president, then Obama was our first “female” one.) And if he is a leader, by definition, people look to him as an example, and that’s what should be emulated and encouraged. In fact, in Obama’s first inauguration speech he talked about “the time has come to set aside childish things.” But apparently Americans didn’t want to grow up.

Hence, with Trump, we now have the opposite, as in, “Don’t worry, we have a big, strong man like Daddy (or God via POTUS and/or a narrowly defined Jesus, or a classically abusive husband) who’s going to protect you from the big bad world and take care of everything and make our country great again.” As long as you flatter him profusely, stay in line, be loyal and don’t piss him off, he will get you whatever you want and keep you “safe.”

The bigger, perhaps more urgent, issue is that humans, especially Americans who subscribe (consciously or not) to mainstream culture and consumerism, are resistant to allowing for real inner growth and maturity and taking responsibility for their own lives and happiness.

The cold, hard truth is that at the end of the day you are still going to be miserable until you assume control over your own life – taking into consideration and acknowledging outside circumstances, but working around and with them to the best of your ability; being creative and exercising new skills and growing in the process; and having faith in that process and the very nature of Nature itself.

My philosophy has always been that personal transformation is the key to social transformation. We are living in the most tumultuous times in our country’s and the planet’s history, and the grass-roots efforts we need to make are internal as well as external.

It’s up to us as individuals to find security in ourselves and navigate these waters until we find some terra firma once again.

It’s up to you* to figure out what your talents are and the best way to utilize them now in order to create some kind of living for yourself in the economy of shifting sands in which we find ourselves – mostly due to the ubiquitous, ominous nonpartisan phenomenon called technology, not the outsourcing of jobs overseas – and not blame any one person, group or thing for your current situation. (*Or enlist the help of someone like yours truly to help you do so …)

It’s up to you to create an atmosphere of peace and safety by not militarizing your posture and being antagonistic, but instead by connecting and building bridges and applying the Golden Rule. The bad apples will always be there, but there are fewer than you think and that IS what law enforcement is there to take care of. Just make sure the enemies are real and not imagined, projected or scapegoated.

It’s up to you to filter and synthesize a broad swath of perspectives ……

Continue reading on Medium


If you like what I write, you’ll love what I have to say in person!   Click on above links for info about my coaching and speaking services and contact me today. 

Read over thirty 5-star “Yelp” style reviews here

Join Mailing List
Like me on Facebook  Follow me on Twitter

Read more about me and my work in these past PGG’s:

All Roads, Same Place | And Now, A Word from Our Sponsor | Strong Medicine | 10,000 Hours | Express Yourself

Humanity with all its fears,

With all its hopes of future years,

Is hanging breathless on thy fate.

~ Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Those words may seem a little dramatic, but many of you know my philosophy is that personal transformation is the key to social transformation.  And as I also always say,we are living in extraordinary times.

There is a reason why you are born in the year and place you were, with the characteristics – physical, mental and emotional, every circumstance, that you alone possess

Our country and our world is in the midst of an identity crisis which brings with it some tough growing pains. Things are shifting and reaching their breaking point on every level – whether being fed up with racial injustice, fighting for a government and economy that works without legislating by greed or medieval definitions of morality, having the courage to speak up for what it means to be comfortable in your own skin regardless of the gender you appear to be vs. what you know you are and your rights to your sexual orientation; the Earth crying out for healing with earthquakes and extreme weather, and the subsequent destruction and crisis’ that force us to work together; or even collectively lamenting the end of an era with Dave and Jon’s exit from their late night posts – the Universe is pushing us to our limits and asking us to stretch our ultimate acceptance of each other as part of the same human family.

Change brings with it the unknown, which makes most of people kind of bonkers. Perhaps you or a loved one is going through a health crisis, experiencing a breakup or loss, recovering from a natural disaster, transitioning from male to female, or are in between jobs or graduating into the “real” world.  Not knowing what’s next, or realizing that what once was can no longer be is unsettling to say the least when we don’t have the tools and perspective to cope.

One antidote to this anxiety is remembering that everyone has a gift to offer, and when you both discover and use that gift in the present, it is much easier to trust what may come tomorrow. 

If you want to heal others, you don’t even have to be a doctor or a nurse; you can be like the 23 year old young man who so lovingly, respectfully and skillfully transports extremely vulnerable patients from their hospital bed to their procedures; making their day just a little less stressful, and provides much comfort and ease to help alleviate the fear such a situation entails.

You can connect and find common ground with, or event protest for, the rights of someone who is seemingly different from you. You can send a text to see how your friend is doing. You can write a song or book or paint a picture that brings even just a few moments of joy and upliftment to someone in the midst of a challenging situation.  Dr. Christianne Northrup talks about how the greatest gift you can give to the world is your own healed life.

Maybe you do have the big, profound idea that will literally change the way we live, or save millions of lives, but maybe you just allow yourself to be who you are and pursue your highest calling, no matter what that is or what it looks like, or how different it may be than everyone currently around you, knowing that someone will benefit from your efforts should you have the courage to walk that path.

You matter. Everyone has a part to play in the healing of our planet, regardless how big or small. We are all trying to survive and thrive the best we can.  We must resist the tendency for technology to make us robots and feel disconnected to others; we can all do something everyday that is of service to someone else or expresses gratitude for the service someone has offered us.

Life matters. What we do right now determines how we will live tomorrow.  As the poet Mary Oliver says, “The patterns of our lives reveal us. Our habits measure us. Our battles with our habits speak of dreams yet to become real.”   We are here to heal the wounds of our world and to lend our voice, talent, passion, money and action to leave it a better place with our having existed. What kind of presence – not wishful thinking – are you giving to today, knowing that it will make a better tomorrow?

Not quite sure what your part in the future is? I’m no Disney-fied version of George Clooney, but can nevertheless inspire you to make the most of today, and if not, assure you like a little orphan named Annie, that the sun will always come out, because tomorrow is only a day away..

Today’s PGG was originally published on May 5, 2015


If you like what I write, you’ll love what I have to say in person!   Click on above links for info about my coaching and speaking services and contact me today. 

Read over thirty 5-star “Yelp” style reviews here

Join Mailing List
Like me on Facebook  Follow me on Twitter

Read more about me and my work in these past PGG’s:

All Roads, Same Place | And Now, A Word from Our Sponsor | Strong Medicine | 10,000 Hours | Express Yourself

%d bloggers like this: