DIY Conflict Resolution provides practical and actionable advice readers can use to resolve conflict and improve their life. Why was this an important book for you to write?
Even before the pandemic, too many people around me were hurting, and too often the hurt was exacerbated by their own doing. This is not to blame the victim, but to empower the survivor.
I have been one of those people stuck in a cycle of hurt and self-limitation. I was reminded of this as recently as Sunday, while finally going through some personal items from my late mother’s house. Tucked in a book was a letter from a friend I often wrote while he was playing hockey in Hungary. He gently told me how negative I usually was and how I needed to focus on gratitude. It probably hurt my feelings at the time, but I must have kept that letter because I knew he was right.
It’s hard for me to recognize that version of myself at this stage of my life, and I am so glad! It has taken a lot of work, but I have created healthier brain patterns and taken more productive actions. These have given me a far better life than I had back then. I want that for everyone who’s interested. A book seemed a good way to get them some tools to help them start creating better lives with small, easy-to-take steps they can take immediately.
What is your professional experience and how has that helped you write this book?
I’ve been practicing law in New York City since February 2002. I started my own practice in June 2003, as a result of a “last straw” conflict with an employer I had been very loyal to. That turned out to be a blessing in disguise.
I had begun my legal career litigating, mostly personal injury and workers compensation cases. Occasionally, I went to small claims and criminal court. A few times, I had been in family and surrogate’s courts, including the special part for mental hygiene cases. Regardless of the forum, there seemed to be a huge disconnect between the ideals sought by the parties and the results produced. I had seen this as a plaintiff, too, in my own lawsuit against a prior employer. I was confused by the results because I knew how effective mediation and alternative dispute resolution (ADR) could be. Yet I rarely saw parties opting for them. So, I did what I normally do when I’m looking for answers. I went on a knowledge quest.
I got certified in mediation by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the International Center for Ethno-Religious Mediation (ICERM). I served two years as ICERM’s Main Representative to the United Nations. I completed the Curriculum for Living at Landmark Worldwide and coached Landmark’s Self-Expression and Leadership Program. I committed to continuous self-improvement, so that I could better serve the people around me.
This all came in quite handy after I was violently assaulted on my walk home from Landmark in January 2014. (I tell that story in the book.) Thank goodness I was no longer who my friend wrote to from Hungary in 1997! Instead of treading water from the tears of my sad story (like I would have before), I was able to look more objectively at the situation and more compassionately at the 14-year-old boy who injured me. I found courage to consider what was best for me, him, his family, the courts, and more. I also found the motivation to finally write a book—something I had wanted to do since I was at least 12 years old.
I wasn’t expecting the defining moment of my “writing career” to come with a body slam to the sidewalk, multiple injuries, and post-traumatic stress disorder. Perhaps I wrote the book because I don’t want others to wait for a traumatic experience to remind them to live. I want them to have tools now, and I want us all to have less trauma.
What were some ideas that were important for you to explore in this book?
The most important message I want readers to get is that they can build skill in resolving their own conflicts, and this will improve how they see and feel about their lives. This causes exponential improvement over time. I’m not the most patient person either and I would prefer a more immediate solution. Yet I can see how much easier it is to take small steps consistently toward lasting change. This book is written to keep us all taking those actions, even when we aren’t sure what’s next. As Dr. David J. Schwartz wrote in The Magic of Thinking Big, “Action cures fear.” I hope this will help readers get back in action.
What is a common misconception you find people have about conflict resolution?
People often think conflict resolution is when someone else tells you who is right, who is wrong, and who gets what. There is a place for that process, but the majority of us want more of a say in our lives. We just need to help figuring out how to express ourselves effectively and take effective actions despite our fears, concerns, frustrations, boredom, and doubt. We are all a lot more powerful than we realize, especially when emotions get high.
In DIY Conflict Resolution, Nance L. Schick, Esq. draws from her proprietary conflict mediation process to create an invaluable step-by-step guide to workplace conflict resolution. Informed by Schick’s extensive experience as an employment attorney, diversity trainer, and conflict resolution coach, this groundbreaking guide to listening effectively in the workplace teaches you how to become a compassionate listener and instructs you in resolving conflicts at work on your own. Schick shows you how to navigate your past experiences with conflict and discover practical solutions to define the dispute, understand the interest of each individual involved, and find a satisfactory outcome through specific, measurable actions.Whether you are a leader struggling to adapt to diversifying workforces or just interested in becoming a better listener, troubleshooter, or influencer, DIY Conflict Resolution offers simple mediation techniques for work that will ultimately show you how to listen and lead without fear.
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Hidden Unknown Truth is a guide to consciousness, spiritual awakening, and helps readers discover the joy of living. Why was this an important book for you to write?
For most of my childhood and young adult life I struggled with fear. This fear caused anxiety which was at times quite overwhelming. It stopped me from living as my true self. I did whatever I could to fit in and gain approval and acceptance from others. I would compromise my integrity just to feel accepted. It stopped me from taking healthy risks and from many opportunities. This fear eventually brought me to a place of despair by the time I was 30. With a child on the way I decided that I needed to find a solution. I began seeking. I found that seeking a solution to my ever chatting and fearful mind was actually the solution itself. When I focused my attention on hope that there was a solution to my fear, I had already begun to set in motion the manifestation of the solution. The road that I found myself on was practicing Cognitive Behavioural Therapy to challenge my thoughts and help me with seeing the truth about any irrational fear.. This eventually brought me to meditation which has enabled me to contact something within me that is void of fear. A neutral state of being that brings relief and fresh perspective. From here I had questions, a lot of questions which lead me to seeking spiritual guidance. I experimented with contemplative and selfless prayer, gratitude journaling, and giving of myself to help other people. I found that when I focused on meeting the needs of other people, I was not focused on my own fear or unquenchable thirst to feel content. This was the turning point. This is when I realized that I only have a problem when I think I have a problem. To the degree that I try to contribute to life, are my own struggles taken care of, seemingly without my intervention.
The reason it was important for me to write this book is due to a decision I had made, that if I ever found out how to have peace of mind, that I would share it with anybody who was seeking it.
What do you feel is a common misconception people have about spiritual enlightenment?
It seems to me that society has the idea that spiritual enlightenment is reserved for the mystics. That we can only achieve enlightenment after we have solved our outer worldly problems or after years of intense spiritual teaching and practice. I believe wholeheartedly that spiritual awakening or enlightenment is available to us all now, if we seek it.
What were some ideas that were important for you to focus on in this book?
I hoped to produce a complete spiritual guide laid out in a step-by-step fashion using everyday language, so that anybody can make contact with their own conception of a higher power, that will solve any difficulty they face and give them purpose and direction.
Another important idea is that when we focus on a solution, it becomes bigger. When we focus on a problem, it becomes bigger. When we do what we think is good, we attract good. When we do what we think is bad, we attract bad. If we have any problem, the key is to stop thinking about it and focus on what you believe is good. Whenever the problem arises is your thinking, again, stop thinking about it and focus your attention on what is good, such as your higher power. Eventually, your problem will be taken care of if you are persistent with this powerful technique.
Our mind is the creator of our daily struggles. We create our own problems. When we live in fear, we react in fear and this sets us on a path of unconsciously creating our own self-fulfilling prophecy. When we live in faith, we respond in faith, and unconsciously create peace and emanate love.
What is one thing that you hope readers take away from your book?
The most important idea that I wanted to impart was to watch our thoughts. As soon as we become aware that we are thinking about something, we are no longer controlled by that thought pattern. We have a choice let it go or not. Our thoughts lose all power when we bring them into the light of awareness. They are just thoughts. This one practice will change how we think, feel, and act. We do not have to act on any thought that enters our mind, ever, provided we are aware of the thought.
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The BreakAway Girl: Secrets of a Tantric Yogi is a memoir about your life and how you found peace through hard times. What was the inspiration that made you want to put your story into a book?
Great question. As I mention in the book I’ve been blessed over the years to have the privilege of teaching yoga to so many remarkable students. As a result, in many ways the book is a response to questions I’ve been asked over time. I also believe it’s important that as a teacher you’re seen as a human being. Who can be just as frightened at times, unaware at times, and who may have struggled with insecurities just like the person next to you on the mat, or in front of you at the grocery check-out. It’s all part of this human embodiment.
What I enjoyed was that you didn’t shy away from retelling the difficult moments in your life. Was there anything that was difficult for you to write about?
Ha – yes! Quite honestly revealing all of my human fragility was difficult. It’s not easy to rip open your heart and expose your vulnerabilities so intimately. Knowing that most likely there will be judgement and commentary. Yet, as a writer it’s how I make sense of my world. I teach the whole of yoga, not simply poses. So, for me it’s a way that I’ve learned how to not spiritually by-pass and one way to be self-accountable. By doing that I’ve also learned, that in the right context, you allow others to see that they are not alone in the messiness that is life. And hopefully they feel more accepting of their own cracks and breakaways.
Writing a memoir forces you to look back and analyze life choices. Do you see things in your life differently now that you’ve written about it?
I love this question. I could write a lot about this, but one main analysis is that I’m more forgiving of myself. I realize that I was doing the best I could at the time. However mis-guided it might look like in retrospect. Plus, I’m even more grateful that I finally found my way to the path of yoga that continues every day to help me step more fully into my own essence.
This book is inspirational as well as functional in that you give some yoga pose instruction in the back of your book. What do you hope readers take away from The BreakAway Girl?
I hope that readers are inspired by my story of self-reflection, and ultimately as I see it, redemption. If they recognize themselves in any small way, I hope that my story might provide insight and motivation into their own breakaways. And to never give up on themselves. Also, if a reader is searching for a tool or a modality that might move them forward perhaps it is yoga – the myths, meditation, mantra, or asana might just be that something that will support their spiritual growth and personal transformation.
Paulette Bodeman is a certified integrative life coach and an Anusara® certified yoga teacher and trainer. When Paulette’s students asked her if she’d always “had it all together”, The BreakAway Girl – Secrets of a Tantric Yogi, was born. Through self-reflection, a sacred yogic practice, Paulette realized that she’d had many significant “breakaway moments” – moments when she made conscious decisions to change her life. Throughout her 20+ years of study, Paulette moved through many phases overcoming numerous personal challenges.
The BreakAway Girl is divided into sections that she named for the Hindu Goddesses – Kali, Saraswati and Lakshmi. Only through introspection was Paulette able to understand the meaning the goddesses brought to her life, and how their energetic archetypes supported her personal growth and transformation. In keeping with a relatively new breed of contemporary writing, part memoir – part self-help, Ms. Bodeman reveals with raw honesty and humor the secrets that held her hostage and the secrets that helped to set her spirit free. While she writes with fearless determination from the trenches of personal experience the author’s ultimate message is not only universal, but life-affirming.
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Life is filled with challenges and for people with crippling anxiety it is worse. That anxiety feeds depression, and the two together can define and break a person down, or they can adapt, find ways to manage it and thrive in life. The BreakAway: Girl Secrets of a Tantric Yogi by Paulette Bodeman is Paulette’s memoir’s. Her story ranges from early in life to after her child is grown and an adult himself. This collection of her memories works like the human brain, it isn’t linier, rather the memories flow back and forth leaving imprints on the reader. Throughout the book Paulette slowly discovers yoga in a variety of forms before finding her place, at the end of this book she shares her knowledge with information on how to mediate, yoga poses, and how to embrace your own BreakAway moments in life, be them big or small.
Paulette Bodeman decided when she started writing this book that she was not going to just include all the good points or put a happy twist on her life moments. She promised herself to include all the ugly moments, all the hard memories, from addiction, divorce, depression and loss. They were not written with caveats that ‘oh this made me a better person for living through it’. Instead it is just raw emotions. It is real life and despite the jumping from one memory to another often not in chronological order, it is captivating to the reader. Some people will be frustrated by the lack of cohesion from one memory to the next; but I found it relatable and it gave me a better understanding of her. When I think back in time to my own memories it is a jumbled road, and those pieces all fit together in my own broken puzzle, that is what this book reminds me of. You don’t put a puzzle together left to right, you fit them together as you find them and once done you have a complete picture.
Much of the book focuses on her finding herself though her experiences and how they all led her to where she is now. But written in her style that path isn’t clear. In the last part of the book she explains her views on BreakAway moments, big and small. She talks about how they are the defining moments in your life that you may or may not even reorganize as being a defining moment. This last part pulls together everything she wrote. The inclusion of mediation suggestions, yoga poses, and spiritual healing ideas just completes the book. You start reading about her chaotic and disjointed life and end with a guide on how to find your own path through your own chaos.
This is not your traditional yoga book, it is not your traditional book on finding inspiration in life or how to better yourself. It is not a self-help book you pick up and read step by step to find your perfect balance. It is a book that will inspire you, give you bits and pieces you can relate to and give you suggestions on finding your own inner peace at your own pace and discovering your own BreakAway moments and how they have defined you.
Pages: 226 | ASIN: B079NCH83G
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Humans are on a constant quest for self-actualization. We have a deep need to live in genuine serenity, to discover selves. People always seek to have full control of their mental faculties such that they can meditate without struggling too much.
Anam Cara: Your Soul Friend and Bridge to Enlightenment and Creativity will get one on the right path. To open the floodgates of creativity, one needs to have peace of mind and be free of emotional baggage. This audio book is a road map to using the soul friend to achieve these. The soul friend is a non-judgmental confidante who helps an individual live to their full God-given potential. The book urges the importance of the body in accessing the mind. The science of breathing is used as an example of how one can access their mind. By breathing properly, one relaxes and eventually accesses the deepest parts of their mind. The science of breathing is often used in meditation. One may argue that the soul friend would best be a therapist or religious leader but that defeats the purpose. The point of anam cara is candor and intimacy.
This book also guides the reader through the 42 confessions to the soul, these are essential in spiritual growth. Among the most important aspects of self-empowerment is selfless service. Glenville Ashby talks about being completely used up by the time of death. Giving oneself to the society with no expectations by doing the simplest of things like offering comfort to a troubled friend. Mr. Ashby also talks about thoughts creating reality. God would not punish his own creations by blessing some and leaving others in anguish. Humans are meant to create their own blessings through hard work. This is a very interesting point of view. It makes a lot of sense upon reflection. To further affirm his stand, Glenville talks about Hellen Keller and Stephen Hawking. Their outstanding positivity and contributions to the world are awe-inspiring. The author also introduces the master keys that unlock the portal to the soul. First on the list is gratitude. This is a testament to the adage; no man is an island. The responsibility to be genuinely grateful awakens a flame within humans.
Glenville Ashby has not written this book to malign other therapies but rather to give a counterproductive approach to enlightenment and creativity. The ideas in this book, supported by views from Buddhist principles and Christianity, will force readers to do a thorough audit of their lives. It calls for a shift in practice and thought. The book is well written and inspiring. It is a useful tool for one who seeks to put themselves on a path to true happiness and fulfillment. To live authentically and unencumbered by travelling back and experiencing the magic of humans’ true essence, the soul.
Quality of life is dependent on the choices one makes and the things they focus their energies on. Achieving self-actualization is a great place to start in seeking to live the best life possible. Anam Cara: Your Soul Friend and Bridge to Enlightenment and Creativity is a necessary audio book.
Listening Length: 2 hours and 27 minutes | ASIN: B01DCHO3XW
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Anam Cara is a Celtic term meaning, “soul friend”. In the days of the Druids, an Anam Cara served as a confidante, an advisor, and confessor. This book reintroduces the power of having a “soul friend”. Today, we can enjoy this spiritual benefit. A soul friend listens, understands, and is never judgmental. By clearing one’s conscience, learning to let go, forgive, and atone, we experience the magical power of our soul. We are reborn and begin to realize our potential. This book teaches us how we can transform our lives by following simple but powerful teachings. Ashby offers the listeners minor and major keys to unlock their fullest potential. Minor keys include meditation and journaling, while some of the major keys are atonement and forgiveness. Eric Ober, media consultant and former president of CBS News, said, “This is a truly inspirational book on overcoming inhibitions and roadblocks in order that we maximize our creativity and quality of life.” University lecturer Dr. Jerome Teelucksingh said, “This unique publication will benefit persons who seek to rid themselves of emotional baggage and attain a peaceful mind.”
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The LGBTQ Meditation Journal offers contemplative spiritual adventures to enhance confidence and tranquility. Why was this an important book for you to write?
Your question necessitates a brief history of the Meditation Journal genesis.
Mary Sheldon originated The Meditation Journal concept, back in the mid-1990s. By the end of that decade, three highly successful books of guided meditations had been published, namely, The Meditation Journal, Meditations for the Twenty-first Century, and Meditations on Relationships.
Our first three volumes flew out of Costco and Target stores nationwide, as well as traditional bookstores. We were surprised by their immediate success. For a while, we considered a fourth volume, Meditations for Teenagers, but for various reasons, the book never happened.
Five years ago, Christopher signed on with Laura Baumbach’s MLR Press, a publisher of primarily LGBTQ fiction, and he has subsequently written three novels and four short stories for the Press.
Ever since becoming an MLR Press author, I have thought about an LGBTQ Meditation Journal. In the summer of 2016, at Mary Sheldon’s housewarming party, I asked my non-LGBTQ co-author, if she would write it with me. She said, “Yes!” and soon thereafter, I pitched the book to Laura Baumbach. The publisher greenlighted the project and then blessed us with her amazing Executive Editor, Kris Jacen, as our editor.
When trying to improve any area of our lives, Mary Sheldon and I turn to the real and eternal, namely the spiritual, rather than to the erroneous and temporal, to wit, the material. So, for the both of us, it is organic to improve all of the conditions of our lives with the metaphysical discipline of meditation.
So, it follows that it was important for us to help others help themselves by using the same spiritual approach that we use effectively in our own lives.
But even though the LGBTQ Community was our focus, we were determined to write guided meditation adventures that could benefit everyone, LGBTQ, or not.
I felt that there was a focus on self-love and acceptance in this book. What were some themes you tried to capture while writing?
Yes, self-acceptance and self-love are essentials for healthy, successful living. We both believe that everything made by the Creator originated spiritually and perfectly. And so, Christopher and I ask readers to employ a spiritual perspective when using our meditation adventures. We ask everyone to think of themselves as the perfect, spiritually-created, externalized ideas of the Creator’s making, and not as the flawed material beings reflected in the mirror. Our point of view reflects Divine Science rather than Earth’s limited material sciences.
And, regardless of the current conditions in their lives, we want everyone to know they have value and worth; quite simply, they matter.
After reading this book I felt that my open-mindedness of the world was reinforced. What do you hope readers take away from this book?
We hope readers will open their minds and hearts, and come to an understanding that self-acceptance, love, peace, pride, and dignity are essential. And we want them to know that if these qualities are now in short supply, our guided meditation adventures are one excellent method of enhancing them.
What is the next book that you are writing and when will it be available?
Christopher and I would like to write The Children’s Meditation Journal.
Of course, winning a contract for such a book is largely contingent on the current book being successful.
Right now, Christopher is in edits with the second volume in his series of Minnow Saint James Metaphysical Adventures novels. It is named The Coming of Beth, and it will be MLR Press published in the first half of next year.
For the fourth in their highly successful series of guided meditations books, Christopher Stone and Mary Sheldon focus upon the LGBTQ Community, offering a month’s worth of contemplative spiritual adventures to enhance confidence and tranquility while inspiring self-acceptance, love, peace, pride, and dignity. Edited by Kris Jacen, the book explains the process of focused attention known as meditation and it offers a simple relaxation technique to induce a meditative state of mind.
Editor’s Note for eBook readers: For those that do look at page counts between print and ebook files, there is a big discrepancy between the print and ebook editions of this journal in PDF format. Don’t worry, you are not missing any content. The difference is that the print version of the book contains space to note several months observations for each meditation.
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Project Bodi focuses on Google Health and the impact that artificial intelligence has on the future of work. What was your inspiration for this book and why was it important for you to write it?
One day I was driving to San Diego and I had an idea – what if mindfulness meditation can enhance creativity and innovation? Mindfulness is very popular right now with apps like Headspace, 10% Happier, etc. It occurred to me that mindfulness was a way to tap into the subconscious mind and solve the challenges in our lives. I decided to write this book on that drive to San Diego, and I used the same techniques for harnessing innovation to write the book itself, which is why I wrote the book in only 8 weeks. Mindfulness really does enhance innovation, and I have this book to prove it.
Beth and Austin are interesting and well developed characters. What was your inspiration for their relationship?
It’s based on my own experiences in the corporate world. In many companies, the younger, entry-level employees are often ignored and they fall into a void of obsolescence. But in fact companies do best when engage their young employees and set high expectations for them. So the relationship between Beth and Austin is something quite common in the work force in my opinion.
This book has some scary parallels with our current world? Is there anything that worries you about our current level of AI or do you have a positive outlook?
A.I. has the potential to be a bright, powerful force for humanity that can enhance our lives, but there’s no denying the dark potential as well. It will depend on the motivations of our leaders, as described at the end of the book.
What is the next book that you are writing and when will it be available?
It will happen when the idea comes to me. You can’t force innovation; just like Austin learned, you should let your subconscious mind bring the brilliant ideas to you. Just be patient and it will arrive on its own.
In 2029, Google is the most dominant company in the world. Dr. Bethany Andrews heads the company’s Artificial Intelligence Department and leads Project Bodi, the world’s most advanced Augmented Reality smartglasses that will one day revolutionize the tech space. Her lead programmer is Austin Sanders, a 26-year-old psychonaut who loves Burning Man and electronic dance music. Together they embark on a life-changing journey to design the product of the decade, and along the way they discover the mind’s inner source of insight and innovation.
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