“No-Fail” Friday: Ever in your favor


Would you rather listen to today’s post? Well, be my guest, right below:

If you’re a regular reader of this blog, especially on Mondays, you know I love me some good quotes. One of my favorites is from the author Paolo Coehlo, from his famous book, The Alchemist. When the hero, Santiago, travels along his journey in search of his treasure, he eventually realizes that, “…when you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.” That may be hard to believe sometimes, because we all have moments when we desperately want something that just doesn’t materialize (we’ve talked about that before), but usually, the power of hindsight helps you see that path wasn’t for you, and that by staying the course, the universe actually moved you closer to your purpose via another route.

The point is, when we begin to discover what it is we are meant to do, and use our gifts to act in that direction, momentum starts to build. We saw evidence of that earlier this week.  Read More

Real Mindful: Catherine Aranda (MBA ’18)

Ricardo Almeida ©

Last week, we celebrated MindfulMBA’s second birthday, and I promised you some new things would be in store around here in year three. We’re only a week in, and I couldn’t be more excited to introduce you to “Real Mindful,” a new feature that will connect you – and me! – to cool people doing interesting things in impressive places. They’re amazing in many ways, but, they’re also real people out there in the business school space who are using mindfulness and stress management to survive, and thrive.

Or, at the very least, that’s the intention, right? ;-)

Catherine Aranda

Catherine Aranda, Darden MBA ’18

For our inaugural post in the “Real Mindful” series, I’m delighted to introduce you to Catherine Aranda, a member of the Class of 2018 at the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business.

Catherine knows the challenges of balancing stress management with the competing – and often contrary – priorities of rigorous classes, career planning, campus leadership, and a social life, including a long-term but also long-distance relationship. She grew up in El Paso, Texas, but came to Darden after many years in the San Francisco Bay Area. She’s an accomplished musician, proud auntie, and by the time her second year at Darden had barely started, she had already been awarded for her distinguished service to the campus community.

As you’ll hear, she’ll be the first to tell you she isn’t perfect, though. Which is fine by me, because perfect, you know, actually doesn’t exist.

Singing at Darden

Catherine performing at Darden

Despite having all this on her plate already, Catherine’s passion for well-being motivated her to become the driving student force behind “Resilience Week,” the first-ever awareness week for issues pertaining to mental health and wellness at Darden, happening next week from October 23 – 27.


Catherine and her mom, Marylou

I hope you’ll take a few minutes to listen to our conversation (below), including the roots of her passion for well-being in her personal story, and some of her tips for keeping it up despite the frantic pace of MBA student life.

The struggle for balance is definitely still real, but fortunately, so is Catherine. I know you’re going to love getting to know her!

Know someone working with mindfulness on campus or in the workplace? Let me know, and they could be our next “Real Mindful” feature!

Header photo credit: Antonio

Monday Moment: Low visibility

J Campbell Clear Path quote w tag_Marcus Spiske

Heeeeeey, Monday…how are ya? If you’re easing your way into this one, you’re not alone. Slow and steady is actually a great way to stay present, which is always the goal around here. The present is actually exactly where you need to be, because it’s the only place you truly can be.

If what lies ahead seems unclear, then you could say that your eyes are actually open. The future is unclear, especially when it’s your own. There’s a saying that the obstacles we encounter don’t block the path, they are the path. We need every moment of challenge we face, because overcoming it makes us who we are, and in turn, writes the next section of the path ahead for us.

You can guess, plan, hypothesize and strategize all day and all night, and there’s a time and place for all of that. But, if you show up for every present moment of your life as it happens, you’ll find you’re always exactly where you need to be.

Photo credit: Markus Spiske