Thursday, November 9, 2017

Stern: A short-short story about people's veneer

People often judge us merely on appearance. After all, after age 30 or certainly 40,  our face reflects our emotional lifetime. But so much resides beneath our veneer. My contribution today offers a short-short story on this.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017


We've become inured to hype and it hurts us more than we may realize. I explore in my article today.

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Seven Pleasures They've Wrested From Us

Life is not easy. More may be expected from us at work. In relationships, we may be expected to do it all, as the jingle went, “Bring home the bacon, fry it up in a pan....”  We’re told we’re not saving the zillion dollars we’ll need for the ever more absurd cost of college, let alone for retirement.

We’re hamsters on an ever faster-spinning wheel, like when the faster Lucy boxed the chocolates, the faster the conveyer belt went until she just couldn't do it all.

Indeed that’s what’s happening. Many people are breaking. Some drop out and become homeless while others anesthetize with alcohol or drugs. I believe that’s part of the national impetus to legalize marijuana despite it being more dangerous, physically and mentally than the Big Tobacco-driven messaging would have us believe.

Not surprisingly, the U.S. suicide rate is at a 30-year high  And it’s epidemic among middle-aged white men: NBC News cites the Centers for Disease Control findings: “Victims of death by suicide are overwhelmingly white (7 out of 10), male, and between the ages of 45 and 65. “

At the same time, many of life’s soothers have been wrested from us. My article today offers seven examples. It argues that their loss is an underdiscussed cause of modern-day stress.

'I'd Rather Retire But.... Advice for Older Job Seekers

My article today offers advice to older job seekers. 

Friday, October 27, 2017

Saving the Best for Last?

At some point, people’s awareness of their mortality grows, maybe even dominates one’s thoughts.

For the hedonistic, that triggers more desire to travel and otherwise have fun. Doable.

For the relational, it means wanting to spend more time with friends, grandkids, and other relatives. Doable.

For the work-centric, it’s more difficult. As we get older, we’re increasingly passed over for the opportunity to do significant work. It’s often believed that our experience is outweighed by lack of currency, our decreased physical vigor as proxy for decreased intellectual vigor.

My article today offers some relatively accessible ways for the work-centric to have a last hurrah or three.

Thursday, October 26, 2017


As my post today, I offer a poem that doesn't rhyme but attempts to distill best advice and radical honesty about responding to disappointment.

Monday, October 23, 2017


We speak of income inequality gaps too symptomatically: We may speak of an achievement gap, income gap,  and digital divide.

But there’s a more foundational gap that society must first address if it expects to close the others: the efficacy gap.

There's consensus that ever more repetitive jobs will be automated, and that ever more of the remaining decent-paying jobs will require technical chops, people skills, and emotional solidity strong enough to handle the accelerating pace of change, not to mention life's timeless slings and arrows. Alas, too many people cannot be expected to solidly possess that amalgam.

What to do? I offer an approach in my article today.


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