13 Dec Twelve Good Things 2022
Each year I use an issue of the Just One Thing newsletter to offer Twelve Good Things that I think are really wonderful and worth your attention.
May you and those you love and, in fact, the whole wide world be truly well, truly happy, and truly at peace.
- This year the Global Compassion Coalition launched with a mission to build a world based on compassion and justice by changing the way we conduct politics, business and the economy, healthcare, and science. Join the movement to inspire, celebrate, educate, influence, and most importantly – spark change.
- BRITE Initiative remains an organization near and dear to my heart. Their school in Haiti for kindergarten through 8th grade serves children who would not otherwise get a decent education. They have about 120 students who still need support for this school year, and you might like to join me in sponsoring one of them.
- Sangha Live offers a variety of free resources including Daily Meditation Sits, Sunday Sangha, Days of Practice and the Sangha Live Connect – so you can connect with others, meditate, and hear the teachings of the dharma.
- Launch the new year with a challenge that will calm your mind and nourish your spirit. The Mindfulness Daily Plus New Year’s Meditation Challenge with Tara Brach & Jack Kornfield is a powerful 40-day experience designed to help you develop a lasting meditation practice in less than 15 minutes a day.
- The Greater Good Science Center remains my go-to for research-based stories, tips, and tools for a happier life and a more compassionate society. I especially like their Happiness Podcast and their annual list of favorite books.
- I read some great books this year. For deep transformative practice, with crystal clear and heartfelt writing, I thoroughly recommend: Trust in Awakening by Stephen Snyder, China Root by David Hinton, and The Heart of Who We Are by Caverly Morgan. For a brilliant and practical book about stress and well-being written for women – which I got a lot out of myself – see We by Gillian Anderson and Jennifer Nadel (also Chair of the Global Compassion Coalition). For fiction, I’m always reading something (even while brushing my teeth, which my wife routinely teases me about). Elizabeth Hardwick’s classic Sleepless Nights blew me away. The Arkady Renko novels by Martin Cruz Smith, about a police detective in Moscow, offer both thrilling writing and timely insights into Russia’s history and culture. And I’ve revisited some favorite series, including Iain Banks’ Culture novels, the funny and formidable Raylan Givens from Elmore Leanord, and Sheriff Walt Longmire from Craig Johnson.
- Many kinds of videos entertained and/or inspired me this year. I hope that you and everyone will see Molly Kawahata in the extraordinary The Scale of Hope about the climate crisis, mountaineering, and bipolar disorder. Depending on your tastes, you might also like the British crime series Endeavour, the documentary about Richard Branson, Joni Mitchell coming back with Circle Game, Eddie Berman and Laura Marling singing “Like a Rolling Stone,” and anything from two of my favorite bands: Angus and Julia Stone and Oh Wonder.
- We face challenges every day. My new Foundations of Well-Being 2.0 is a step-by-step journey in 2023 where you’ll be building up new inner strengths each week so you can face whatever obstacles are thrown your way with confidence, joy, and ease. If you sign up by December 23, you can save 40%.
- It’s been an up-and-down year – though what year isn’t? – and here’s some good news to end it:
1) the S. Mint launched 5 Women Quarters, the first time women have appeared on our 25c coins;
2) ten nations have created a network of marine conservation areas to work towards the goal of protecting 30% of the oceans by 2030;
3) electric cars made great gains this year, but the solar-powered car is now on the horizon, with the first one in production this year from a Dutch company.
- Help a hurting earth with your contribution: the World Wildlife Fund helps endangered species; Giving Green is a fund that contributes to a spectrum of climate initiatives; Cool Earth protects rain forests by advocating for the end of deforestation; the Union of Concerned Scientists fights for a safer and healthier world through scientific innovation. Also, 8 Billion Trees is a tree planting and wildlife conservation organization working to offset the 100 million tons of carbon dioxide dumped into the air each day from human activity. They have a free carbon footprint calculator, carbon offset programs, plus articles, tips, and products for leaning towards a more carbon-neutral life.
- Ukrainian Olha Samborska uses the HEAL method with refugee children traumatized by the war. Read about the important work she’s undertaking here.
- My new book Making Great Relationships gives you 50 simple, powerful practices for solving conflicts, building connection, and fostering love. You can preorder it now and get a bonus worksheet for preparing for difficult conversations.
Twelve times warm wishes to you,
P.S. For a baker’s dozen, I highly highly recommend the Being Well podcast hosted by Forrest Hanson alongside a recurring mystery guest (me!). The podcast has been downloaded 10 million times and we’ve explored topics like how to improve our relationships, deal with anxiety, heal from trauma, break old patterns, motivate ourselves, and more. I know you’ll like it!