A coffee riddle

December 17 2013

Which costs more? Coffee #1 Before you reach the counter, a wide grin flashes at the sight of your arrival. You’re greeted, “Hello! How are you, sister?”  and asked if you’ll have your usual order — black coffee with sugar, no milk. As your coffee is prepared, you settle in at the table overlooking the outdoor […]


What’s next

December 10 2013

Some exciting things are around the corner for Project Exponential. Think: community, growth, and meaningful conversation. And, of course, the art of the dinner party. Join our list to be the first to hear about what is happening next. Stay tuned…


Two kinds of people

December 03 2013

You’re feeling dissatisfied, unsettled. You want better than what life is presenting to you. You want to provide for yourself and your family. Maybe you’d describe yourself as unhappy. No matter where I’ve gone in the world (or who I’ve worked with: students, prisoners, corporate executives, entrepreneurs, monks), I’ve seen two typical responses to this […]


Traits of true leaders

November 26 2013

From small projects to antiquated institutions, organized groups benefit greatly from strong, reliable leadership. Yet despite the undeniable need for talented management, the skills and traits of effective leaders aren’t necessarily easy to find. I’ve watched organizations as varied as religious institutions (think monasteries and churches), start-ups, small companies, government entities, and educational programs struggle […]


Searching for simple

November 19 2013

Here in Nepal, I’ve found the best moments are often the simple ones: quiet street corners, afternoon coffee, morning walks to the monastery, sunsets on mountain peaks, smiles exchanged with neighbors, the look on a student’s face when they understand. I can’t help but wonder what America would be like if more people embraced simple. […]


Write a research paper: a lesson in empathy

November 12 2013

During the past week, I’ve taught my most advanced students how to write a research paper (for more about my time in Nepal, visit here and here). The sixteen- and seventeen-year-old monks have never heard the term research before, and words such as “references,” “introduction,” “outline,” and “conclusion” are new additions to their vocabulary. When […]


On risk

November 05 2013

Risk frightens some people. It paralyzes others. Risk has stopped many people from doing incredible things. Risk has also failed to prevent others from wholeheartedly chasing their dreams. It might be worth asking whether risk is your fear dressed in disguise. If risk wasn’t an issue, would your decisions change?


Why you should quit

October 29 2013

Before traveling to Nepal, I did some major quitting: I quit my job, quit a relationship, quit where I was living, and quit some hard held beliefs about the way life should be lived. At the time, I couldn’t put my finger on what it was. The pieces were there, but the puzzle wasn’t coming […]


Be here now.

October 22 2013

Chances are high you’re doing your best to complete several different tasks as you read these words. Would would happen if, for today alone, you commit to performing each responsibility individually and mindfully? Slowing our actions can bring forth surprising new perspectives on performance and efficiency. More is not always best.


Find some place quiet.

October 15 2013

And sit. When you feel like moving, stay. Give yourself the gift of stillness. Simply, listen.