Tools for Living: Peak Experience Essential Oils

When a talented perfumer I know let slip that he bought some of his base scents from Eden Botanicals, I went to the website immediately. The descriptions of essential oils were much like good wine writing, with notes about terroir and nuances of specific geographies, cultivation methods and fragrance notes. The offerings are a far cry from vin ordinaire essential oils I’d been accustomed to using for relaxation and healing: an order of magnitude more pleasurable, effective, illuminating…

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Advice for Giving Advice

I was dismayed to see MYSELF in the brilliant, funny New Yorker piece “Wait but have you tried?” about the advice-giving that is everywhere. It pulled me up short and got me wondering what an antidote for this rampant habit might be?

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Reasons for Not Doing the Thing Today (Madeleine Dore, Maya Angelou, Louise Bourgeois)

The other day, a newsletter arrived in my inbox with a list that made me instantly relax. “Some reasonable reasons you didn’t do the thing today” was from Madeleine Dore, author of Extraordinary Routines, which explores “how we navigate the pendulum swings of our days”, i.e. how to live with meaning and creativity and unleash our productivity. Her brilliant list grew out of her realization that there is no secret to productivity, and that the very notion is deeply awry.

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Caring for Our Nervous Systems on Covid

The most helpful 50 minutes I’ve spent recently was listening to What’s Happening in Our Nervous Systems, a podcast from On Being with Krista Tippet. Clinical psychologist Christine Runyan discusses the physiological effects of the past years of pandemic and the profound changes its wrought in daily life. Knowing “what’s been happening on a creaturely level”, I’ve felt better, more grounded, despite the escalation of a new variant.

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Microdosing Well-Being + A Meditation of Well Wishes

What if the future of well-being is about “tipping the scales in the world away from fear and toward love”? asks On Being’s Krista Tippett in The Future of Well-Being. This simple premise feels like a guidepost for navigating the extraordinary elevation of fear the past years have brought, wrought by the pandemic, politics fueled by animosity, climate change. We were particularly struck by the idea of “microdosing of well-being”.

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This Certificate Grants You Permission

Recently, several friends described themselves as unproductive in the saddest and most judgmental tones. How did it happen that we have learned to value only obvious tangibles and define our worth by them, to savage ourselves with opinions? I view THAT as a hyper-charged product of the Plague Years we are in. And I’m here to offer an respite.

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How to Keep Cooler and Use Less AC

This simple lesson we learned from an expert in ventilation helped us cool down the fierce summers in our hot top floor apartment, and lessened our air conditioner use and costs. Some days we even glimpse the feeling that illustrator Monica Ramos evokes in so many of her artworks…

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Thoughts on Miracles (Charlie Allenson, Walt Whitman, Mary Oliver, Cosmos)

A while back, we posted “Let’s Save Charlie’s Life”, about our friend Charlie Allenson who needed a kidney transplant to save his life, Charlie got his transplant through an anonymous donor touched by one of the messages asking for help that Charlie’s many friends and colleagues sent out via social media. It got us thinking about miracles, and we found insight from Whitman, Mary Oliver, and Charlie himself.

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