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Jan 22, 2015

The Cause of Addiction May Be Very Different Than What You Think

There is no question that there is a problem with addiction in our societies. Alcohol, drug, gambling, sex and other obsessions affect a lot of people. But what really causes someone to become an addict? Is it the power of the chemicals? Or could it be a need to connect to something, a need the addict has not been able to fulfill in a healthy way?

Some of the most interesting life stories, to me, are those of people who've battled addictions and found recovery.

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Jan 21, 2015

Writing Your Life Story Can Improve Your Happiness

I've seen more than one article about the benefit of life writing narratives or keeping a journal.

An article published on The New York Times (Writing Your Way to Happiness by Tara Parker-Pope) brings up the subject again. The author makes the point that writing about your life, and then (importantly) going back and revising it, helps you look more honestly at situations, challenges and experiences. And it can add to your well-being, positive outlook and even make you happier.

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Jan 13, 2015

Your Perspective Frames Your Memoir

One of the definitions of perspective is "a particular attitude toward or way of regarding something; a point of view". When it comes to crafting a life story perspective is critical. Your point of view frames your memoir.

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Jan 10, 2015

Perception of You

Here's looking at you. A new year often brings fresh starts and thoughts of how to improve and change our lives.

I am making a commitment at the start of 2015 to look more at what helps us tell our life stories. One of the things I believe is essential is a driving purpose.

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Jan 02, 2015

Your-Life-Your-Story - My Life Story Blog Archives, December, 2014

An archive of previous My Life Story blog entries from December, 2014 regarding personal history, life story writing and more.

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Jan 01, 2015

The Optimism of Looking Forward Here and Now

Welcome to the New Year. The start of every year always brings to mind thoughts of optimism and hope. I typically reflect in the final days of a year about how my life is going. The journey is really the deal.

How do we bring into focus a forward looking gaze centered in the now but filled with hope? This is much of what drives me in my personal history work and in my own writing.

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Dec 31, 2014

How Neuroscience Explains Strong Holiday Memories

For the last blog entry of the year I thought it appropriate to post a link to an article I read recently about the Neuroscience of Nostalgia. The article states that our brain stores sad, glad and bittersweet recollections in a certain way. Intuitively I know this to be true. Around the holidays, and certainly at the end of the year when I do a fair amount of reminiscing, I've noted there are memories stronger than others.

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Dec 30, 2014

Poetic Personal History

Poetry can state in a few and often beautiful phrases deep and powerful thoughts and ideas. Not many people will try to preserve memories in verse, but that is exactly what Margaret Hasse did with her poem Truant. In it she beautifully captures a time from high school that landed her in hot water with the principal.

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Dec 24, 2014

The Take 5 Technique for Life Writing.

Life story writing can be hard work. Well, truth be told, any kind of writing can be a challenge. I encounter that all the time, both in my own writing, and in teaching others.

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Dec 21, 2014

21 Bell Salute for the Winter Solstsice

Today is the Winter Solstice, the shortest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere. After today we begin to get more light each day, albeit incrementally by a minute or two each day.

The solstice can be a time of celebration. Many cultures observe it as something special, even sacred.

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