How To Micro-Cize Your Life

It always takes me by surprise. When I give my presentation on “how to get a mental six-pack,” I ask the audience, so what’s your biggest takeaway? In my mind, I’m thinking it’ll be something like “I didn’t realize we have to master our biology in order to change” or “now I have a model for mapping out the stress factors in my office dynamics.” But no. The single most popular takeaway is that we have to set “micro goals: […]

[PODCAST] Flow Mastery (Not Hacking), with Jiro Taylor

Download Listen in a New Window iTunes Stitcher SoundCloud Leave a Review Clammr It Subscribe via RSS Subscribe on Android Back in August 2008, Jiro Taylor was, in his words “fat, unfulfilled and full of fears.” As a headhunter for hedge funds and investment banks in Hong Kong, he “sat alongside a team of hustlers in suits and tie, on the 36th floor of a skyscraper, and talked shit all day long.” For awhile, the life of a deal-maker — […]

Are You Tolerating Too Much?

Wait, Renita, what are you talking about? Don’t you always say we have to get comfortable being uncomfortable? Well, let’s make a distinction between two kinds of uncomfortable: there’s the discomfort of going into the unknown, the unfamiliar, taking action when we don’t know how it’ll play out. And then there’s the discomfort where we put up with some very familiar aspect of our lives that serves no greater purpose — a lack of challenge at work, an unethical boss, […]

How I’m Breaking My Emotional Addiction

Standing at the crowded coffee bar, I waited patiently to catch the attention of the server frantically busy filling orders. A tall German woman strode up next to me and, with no hesitation, called out her order for two cappuccinos. I looked at her, incredulous, feeling the urge to slap her arm and say: “Are you serious?! Do you not see the rest of us waiting here?” The thing is, I wasn’t in New York, where a moment of indignant […]

Are We Less Evolved Than We Think?

See the presentation on My last year of high school brought two momentous developments. One, I got contact lenses. And two, I decided I was tired of being a nerdy bookworm and wanted to be on the tennis team. My mom (who was making huge sacrifices so I could pursue music) said okay, as long as it didn’t affect my piano studies. So I’d finish class mid-afternoon, train with the tennis team for a few hours, come home and practice […]

How To Stop Worrying About Getting It Wrong

Last week, I co-presented a live workshop here in New York City with rock star coach and founder of Six-Figure Start Caroline Ceniza-Levine on how to handle high stakes performance situations (a client negotiation, funding request or performance review, for example). The participants were smart, accomplished and asked insightful questions. What I realized, however, is how often we look for black-and-white answers. We want to know exactly what to say and do when a particular thing — when we’re intimidated […]

How To Outsmart Your Fight-Or-Flight Reaction

A few months ago, around the holiday season, a friend and I walked into a wine bar on the Upper West Side. (Sounds like a bad joke.) Sitting there at the bar, with a Britney Spears song blaring on the loudspeakers, struggling to read the menu in the dim light and pressured by the overly attentive bartender coming over every 90 seconds to see if we were ready to order, I felt a wave of panic and an overwhelming urge to leave. Fortunately, I […]

How a Pink Duck With a ‘Fro Helps Me Practice a Different Kind of Self-Talk

“How dare they cancel at the last minute? They’re supposed to give you 24 hours notice. Your time is valuable. How dare they waste your time, you could have scheduled 10 different things instead, your time is valuable, you know…” Aargh, that’s what the yammering voice in my head sounds like when it gets on a roll. Around and around it goes in this endless loop luring me with the promise that eventually it’ll come to some kind of conclusion. […]

Why You Choke Under Pressure – And How To Avoid It, Part I

Blowing a high-stakes presentation, flubbing a chance conversation with a senior partner in the elevator, bombing the exam you studied months for – choking under pressure is one, really painful and two, usually means lost opportunities. What’s funny is that while it was our brainpower that’s instrumental in getting us to that point of achievement, it’s also the culprit that sabotages our performance. (Okay, it’s not that funny.) The good news is you can train your brain to help, not […]