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Release what everyone else thinks. Figure out who you are at your core & let your freak fly.

Lissa Rankin's Blog

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A Call For Greater Compassion

Compassion

A few weeks ago, I posted a video on Facebook which shared the message of a famous spiritual teacher. Many were touched by and shared the video, but a few wrote disparaging remarks about the video, claiming that the spiritual teacher couldn’t be trusted because he struggled with alcoholism, as if we could never trust anything we might learn about spirituality from an alcoholic.

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Who Are The Friends Of Your Soul?

soul friends

I used to think that friends were the people who unconditionally comforted you when you felt wronged, showed up for you when you felt needy and insecure, joined you in righteous indignation when you felt angry, and validated you when life isn’t going your way. I thought friends would be unconditional cheerleaders, and you would always feel better after being with a friend. But lately, I’ve realized that my most valuable friends are the ones who stand for my soul, even when that means saying something my ego doesn’t want to hear.

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Two Simple Steps To Radical Compassion

compassion

In my personal life, I keep dancing around the concept of heart protection. Living an open-hearted life comes with so many gifts that it seems worth making the heart vulnerable. But how do we live open-hearted lives without being at risk of feeling hurt or disappointed all the time? Are we supposed to keep the heart open at all costs, knowing that getting hurt or disappointed is simply a side effect of living an open-hearted human life? Or are we meant to protect the heart exactly because it is so vulnerable without armor?

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7 Stories To Make You Believe In Miracles

believe

His neurosurgery success rates were impeccable. In spite of how life-threatening his surgeries were, his patients never seemed to die. But this neurosurgeon kept getting migraines, and treatment wasn’t working, so he went to see psychologist Elizabeth Lloyd Mayer, author of Extraordinary Knowing. She helped him pinpoint exactly when the headaches began, and it turns out they started right when he stopped teaching medical students and residents at the hospital, which he loved doing. She wondered why did he stop teaching. He was reluctant to tell her.

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A Lesson In Empathy

empathy

The woman in front of you in the grocery store line just lost her mother after a nine year battle with cancer.

Your boss just found out his wife is having an affair.

The other mother you ran into in the schoolyard just found out her daughter has a brain tumor.

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10 Alternative Careers For Doctors

doctor

As a disillusioned physician who felt like I was selling my soul in order to keep the stability of a job within the insurance-based US health care system that demanded that I see 40 patients a day, I longed for a different life. As a young woman, I thought medicine was my calling. For me, medicine was a spiritual practice. You practice medicine like you practice yoga or meditation, like you won’t ever fully master it. As a doctor, I felt grateful to have the opportunity to have a front row seat on life, and as an OB/GYN, I felt particularly blessed to have the opportunity to greet the newly incarnated souls right as they entered the world.

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10 Tips For Receiving Criticism With Grace

criticism

Because I put myself out there in public ways, I’m subjected to a LOT of criticism, both on the internet and in person.  Some of it is the kind of vicious, violent hating that cowards love to spout amidst the safety of being anonymous on the internet. Some of it is pure projection. People don’t like what they see of themselves in the mirror I hold up. Some of it is totally valid constructive criticism delivered in a respectful, helpful, balanced way.

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A Love Letter To Aspiring Medical Students

Aspiring Medical Student

On my PBS tour, I had lunch with health blogger James Clear, who is studying for his MCATs and wants to go to medical school. James and I have been talking about his desire to go to medical school for a while. As a successful entrepreneur with a strong sense of self and a calling to medicine, James once asked me whether I thought it was possible to go through medical training without getting your spirit broken.  I told him I think it’s possible. It’s hard. But possible. As I wrote about here, it’s easy to wind up with PTSD after your medical training. But if anyone has the mettle to survive medical training unbroken, it’s James.

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Are You Overriding Your Soul With "Should?"

soul

For many years, my soul was trying to guide me, but I wasn’t paying attention. Even when my soul tried to communicate with big glaring WARNING signs or GO HERE billboards, I disregarded the signs. Thinking back to the year 2000, I have to laugh when I think about how my former husband and I stood in line for three hours at the courthouse to get our marriage certificate. And finally, when we were at the very front of the line, belly up to the courthouse clerk, there was a bomb threat. A BOMB THREAT! I literally turned to my fiancé and said, “Is it a sign?”

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Are You A Cognitive Validator Or A Flaming Mystic?

Validator or Mystic

When I went through the spiritual experience I wrote about here, a part of me simply couldn’t handle it. Some of the events that unfolded in the wake of The Experience made absolutely no sense to my cognitive mind, which I have come to trust. How can you dissolve clouds with your intention? How can you telepathically communicate with people and animals? How can objects speak to you? How is it possible that sand was moving around us when nothing in the sand was moving? How is it that I can suddenly stay underwater without breathing three times longer than I could a month ago? How did my perfectly cognitive scientist friend Dennis suddenly become psychic?

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