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It’s hard to know what to say these days.

Heck, it’s hard for most of us to know how to feel.

So it is no surprise that our normal ways of communicating are being tested, much like all the “normal ways” of life B.Co. (Before Coronavirus/COVID-19).

One of those normal ways of communicating is the passing greeting and salutations we send, often without thinking, in emails and texts.

I did this recently, popping off an email to an acquaintance, ending with my regular “Hope all is good in your world!” commentary. The statement made me pause.

How would such a…

Corona typewriter on table with crumpled pieces of paper beside it, a white sofa and yellow blanket behind, and a coffee mug.
Corona typewriter on table with crumpled pieces of paper beside it, a white sofa and yellow blanket behind, and a coffee mug.
Photo Credit: Kristin Hardwick on

It is a difficult time to be a human in the world right now.

Not insurmountable, but there are challenges. Aside from a sweeping global pandemic virus that currently has no cure, there is the social distancing and isolation, abrupt changes to schedules and lifestyles, fear for health and financial futures, worry about family and friends … the list goes on and on and could really be an entire piece in and of itself.

But you know the circumstances of your current existence, and probably don’t need me rehashing them for your mind to start spinning on.

Instead, we’re going…

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“What you’re supposed to do when you don’t like a thing is change it. If you can’t change it, change the way you think about it.” ― Maya Angelou, Wouldn’t Take Nothing for My Journey Now

Stop me if you’ve heard this before (and by heard, I mean uttered it out loud or whispered it to yourself.)

“I’ll write more when X happens.”

Usually it is something like “I’ll write more when the kids are older.” Or “I’ll write more when I get more money, and have more time to focus on that.” Or “I’ll write more when I get…

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“I’m convinced that empathy is more powerful than hate and that our lives should be dedicated to making it go viral.” ― Zak Ebrahim, The Terrorist’s Son: A Story of Choice.

I’ve had a few opportunities in the past couple of years to “go viral” on Twitter.

It’s supposed to be something we all strive for. To suddenly see your tweet amass hundreds or even thousands (or, ultimate virality, hundreds of thousands) of likes and retweets and comments.

So many people on one social network, reading your words and ideas.

But here’s the thing …

Not once has it been…

“Food is everything we are. It’s an extension of nationalist feeling, ethnic feeling, your personal history, your province, your region, your tribe, your grandma. It’s inseparable from those from the get-go.” ― Anthony Bourdain

This post is in honor of Anthony Bourdain’s birthday on June 25th.

In recent years there has been a complaint making the rounds from a few prominent writers and marketers, in varied forms, which made me wonder if I was missing some big story somewhere.

People take to social media or even write full-out essays to call out cooking sites and food bloggers for including backstories…

“…although I do not suppose that either of us knows anything really beautiful and good, I am better off than he is — for he knows nothing, and thinks that he knows. I neither know nor think that I know.” ― Socrates (v. Plato in Apology)

Ok, so Socrates may or may not have said this quote.

It is hard to know exactly what Socrates shared, as most of what we have are transcriptions from the lessons and talks he gave to eager listeners in the agora (open-air market) of Athens. …

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“Sometimes you need to scorch everything to the ground, and start over. After the burning the soil is richer, and new things can grow. People are like that, too. They start over. They find a way.” ― Celeste Ng, Little Fires Everywhere

There’s a quote that has been tossed around the past few years, as a reminder of our strengths and limitations:

“If you’re the smartest person in the room, you’re in the wrong room.”

In the world of writing, that statement seems almost laughable. …

“One thing is for sure — you will make mistakes. Learn to learn from them. Learn to forgive yourself. Learn to laugh when everything falls apart because, sometimes, it will.”―Vironika Tugaleva, The Art of Talking to Yourself

Perhaps you are one of those people who have had to go on a diet, or watch what you are eating, at some point in your life (blessings upon your beautiful soul if you are not!).

At some point in the process, you will encounter some setback.

Sometimes it is huge, like gaining back 10 pounds in the week after a holiday meal…

Photo by Sam Balye on Unsplash

“When great trees fall,
rocks on distant hills shudder,
lions hunker down
in tall grasses,
and even elephants
lumber after safety.” — Maya Angelou,
“When Great Trees Fall”

I heard a story (parable, fable … whatever you want to call it!) the other day that I had never heard before.

Searching it out on Google to find a written version, I found that it is a theory from NYU psychologist Jonathan Haidt. It was made even more popular after being featured in Dan and Chip Heath’s book Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard.

It is the story…

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“Anyhow, the older I get, the less impressed I become with originality. These days, I’m far more moved by authenticity. Attempts at originality can often feel forced and precious, but authenticity has quiet resonance that never fails to stir me.” ― Elizabeth Gilbert, Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear

How many times have you struggled to get something written?

I’m not talking about those times when you are dragging your feet and decide to do dishes instead of wrapping up a piece.

I’m talking about those times that it feels like your creative well has 100% absolutely and completely run…

Elisa Doucette

I’m a writer & editor who helps you make your own words even better. Travel the world for great stories to share. Love language is GIFs

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