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The World’s Best Food Trucks

Last week I wrote about restaurants, this week it's food trucks. I must be hungry, unsurprising perhaps since I did spend the week prior on a juice fast. Nonetheless, since food is something we can all so easily relate to, it simply makes for a bounty of irresistible metaphorical uses. And thanks to the recent food truck revolution (especially here in Austin), what I'm about to say about human beings, using food trucks as a metaphor, will hopefully quickly resonate as true with you.

Being the Shore: The Ins & Outs of Emotional Closeness

People are always changing, flowing through shifting emotional states. As we morph throughout time, one of the things that fluctuates is our desire for emotional--and physical--closeness. This phenomenon can really complicate relationships! Your partner might not want to cuddle or have sex or share a meaningful conversation at the exact moment you do, or vice versa. You might want to feel closer to someone who doesn't want closeness, or want more distance from someone who seeks greater closeness from you. An important question then arises: What's the best way to manage these ever-shifting desires for closeness and distance? Here's what I tell clients.

Creating a World without Assholes

People can be real jerks. They can be rude, condescending, insulting. They can be greedy, selfish, egotistical. They can be stubborn, narrow-minded, hard-headed, and sometimes just plain mean. You probably know a few people like this, people you avoid as much as possible, those sundry unpleasant sorts you've come to regard as, well, assholes.

Hidden Wisdom from the TV Show Chopped

Life lessons can be found in the most unexpected places sometimes. This particular one comes from a cooking show on The Food Network called Chopped. In each episode, four chefs compete with one another to impress a panel of judges. At the start of each of the three timed rounds that will ultimately determine a winner (appetizer, entrée, dessert), the chefs are given a basket containing four “mystery ingredients”. Once the clock starts, the chefs open their baskets to see, for the first time, which—usually quite peculiar—ingredients they must somehow include in their dishes. Thus the culinary improvisation begins, as time steadily dwindles.

That’s Just a Thought: Keeping Things in Perspective

Our internal friendship is a reflection of our self-image, the opinion we have about ourselves. If we do not like someone, we are not likely to have a very close relationship with them. Why would we want to? Similarly, if we do not like ourselves, we are not likely to have a strong and vibrant internal friendship. “How we think about ourselves” (our self-image) is really no different from “how we speak to ourselves”. Our internal communication is what constructs our self-image. Communication is what forges relationships. That is why the way we speak to ourselves is so important. Our internal language is always effecting our internal friendship.

Permission in Parenting

You might wonder how the art of giving permission relates to parenting, especially towards young children. After all, are you expected to give permission for your son to play with a set of steak knives or for your daughter to jump on top of a friend’s dining room table while you’re stopping by for a visit? Are you really expected to give permission to everything? Someday, I'll write an entire book explaining this important topic, but for now, I’ll just say a few words. In general, let’s call this parenting style “Permissive Parenting”. And, no, it’s not about letting your children simply do whatever they want. That would be irresponsible, an approach that could very well lead to serious injury, both emotional and physical alike. So, if it’s not that, then what is it? What is Permissive Parenting?