I guilt tripped my son last week. Then cruelty, and I said the same thing. I've definitely had moments in my parenting where I haven't been the kindest. Well, yes, I've definitely led with my ego before in my life, and I could count on one hand and in under five seconds ways of doing that. While I wouldn't sexually abuse a child, I had done these other things. If you haven't figured out how to do that yet, you can't help them do it. Lamenting the world's moral fiber does not inspire your children; Morality is an inside job, not an outside job. To look outside oneself for spiritual growth is to struggle. People who struggle look for excuses to explain their struggle. Excuses co-exist with blame: blaming this or that person, this or that group, or this or that nation for the spirituality they feel is missing in them. Spirituality doesn't come from blame; You live a moral life by living as you hope others will. No one can force you to be a moral person, nor can you force morality on others. You can only demonstrate a person living a moral life, and hope that others follow. Focus on the side of you this person brings out, because that's who you'll be whenever you're with them. SECTION 2 GETTING OUT THERE How to Avoid the Pitfalls of Online Dating I once swiped left on Scott on Tinder. I told you how I met him--in college and then years later at the Google shuttle stop.

What I neglected to mention is that before he started tutoring me, I saw him on Tinder. I flipped through his photos and then rejected him. It was 2014, and I was heading home from work on the shuttle bus, stuck in San Francisco's dreary traffic, when Tinder served up a photo of a guy who looked vaguely familiar. We had enough friends in common that I knew we must have gone to the same college. Backward baseball hat. That's what is so difficult for people, because they look at the behavior, they want to say, I would never do that. In Dr Ewers's mirror exercise, the idea is the perpetrator who hurt you is actually a teacher. They're showing you the personality traits that you dislike, hate, or despise in yourself. It doesn't mean that you are exhibiting them the same way or that you ever would. It's certainly not giving them a pass for what they did to you either. It's showing you what it feels like to be on both sides, and it gives you the opportunity to be more mindful about your behaviors. You get to feel, Oh, this is what it feels like to be on the receiving end when I do it, and then you get to say, I'm going to be watchful of that in myself now, and I'm going to change that behavior,' said Dr Ewers. It's making peace with ourselves for how we've shown up and treated others in the world--including how we've treated ourselves--and then it's making the conscious decision to act differently. How incredible is it that this kind of awakening comes from one of the darkest experiences in our lives? Walking through Grief to Reach Forgiveness Love is an instinct that lives within; How successfully your beliefs work for you depends on the love you feel from having them. You are not enriched by beliefs that encourage blame or make you feel guilty. You are not enriched by beliefs that create sadness, elitism, or stagnancy; To the contrary, you are enriched by beliefs that encourage self-respect, tolerance, inclusion, unconditional love, freedom, and release.

Beliefs that limit your ability to feel these emotions are not going to work. If you hope that your theology enriches your children's lives, show them how it enriches yours. Well, if you see someone being shunned for having a different theology, this is your chance to remind your children that love is love regardless of where it comes from or how a person finds it. Then you become a person your children want to emulate. All souls are here in the human experience to overcome the limitations that stymied them in the past. Unsmiling eyes squinting harshly into the sun. He looked like a bro. Not my type. I swiped left. Why did I reject this person--someone who has made me very happy--when I saw him online? How did I come to such an inaccurate conclusion about him? I thought I knew what I wanted and what would make me happy in a long-term relationship. And I believed I could accurately evaluate someone based on a few photos. I was wrong on both counts. I'm not the only one prone to these kinds of errors. Dr Joan Rosenberg, a professor of graduate psychology at Pepperdine University, talked about how just saying I forgive doesn't work with individual and collective trauma. We have to make sense of how the experience impacted and changed our lives. This is true whether we survived a childhood or recent collective trauma. To get to forgiveness, Dr Rosenberg said that we need to grieve and that many of us live with disguised grief, where we've never allowed ourselves to feel, mourn, and move through the loss of something caused by an experience. Dr Rosenberg said there are signal words that she watches for that tell her disguised grief lies within someone, and they include indications of feeling bitter, resentful, cynical, pessimistic, and holding grudges.

When we have these emotions swirling, we're living in a nonforgiving emotional state that doesn't allow us to lead a more loving, free, kind, or fuller life. To reach forgiveness, we have to allow ourselves to grieve in different forms. Let's look at some of the expressions of grief. Grieving over what you've gotten and didn't deserve. Think of all the bad stuff--the chaotic family home, alcoholic or drug-addicted parents, feeling in danger, physical assault or abuse, domestic violence, sexual assault, sexual violence, sexual abuse, emotional abuse. Reassure your children that love is not a religion, but a feeling inside the hearts of those who practice their religion. Children investigate whatever you say is worthy. After all, they joined you in the belief that your influence would encourage more growth in them. Think logically. Do your beliefs bring you joy? Because, if they don't, why would your children find them appealing? Children are looking for love. Are you demonstrating the powerful use of love through your religion? If you aren't, why would your children follow your lead? Words are noises coming out of your mouth; Many of my clients have everything going for them--great personalities, friends, hobbies, and so on--but remain perpetually single. They're dating wrong. It's not their fault, and it's not yours. We can often blame it on the apps. According to research by Stanford sociology professor Michael J.

Rosenfeld, met online is the most common way romantic partners connect today, followed by met in a bar or restaurant and then met through friends. In the last twenty years, digital dating has exploded: Rosenfeld found that while only 2 percent of couples met online in 1995, 39 percent now meet that way. And as more couples connect digitally, fewer meet through social connections--like friends, family, and work--or through communities like school and church. Much like we've seen with all social media giants, while apps create many thriving relationships, they can also perpetuate harmful cognitive biases among their users. Since so many people are meeting this way--and even people who don't use the apps often go out with people who do--app makers have a subtle but astonishing amount of power over our love lives. All of these kinds of abuse are neglect and would fall into the category of grieving over what we got and didn't deserve. Grieving over what never was, and what we deserved and didn't get. This is about the missed opportunities and what we never received. It's the praise and the encouragement, the support, love, and affection in our early years. It's the job well done when we come home with good grades, the encouragement to go out and try something new even if it didn't turn out well, or somebody showing up for ball games or piano recitals. It's what the trauma derailed or left out from our lives. It's what our lives look like today. It's facing the facts of our lives and acknowledging that maybe we're not exactly where we want to be or who we want to be. Grieving over what may never be or someone who may never show up for us the way we longed for. This is about coming to grips with unfulfilled expectations and unmet needs and realizing that someone important to you--a parent, a spouse, a sibling--wasn't there for you or in the way you needed them to be at some time, and that may always be the case. Millions of faiths have existed in humanness, and none of them is wiser, better, or more desirable than another set of beliefs. And you won't miss anything important simply because you're involved in yours. Only one thing is happening in all of them: loving hearts are finding other loving hearts. If you miss that connection where you are, you'll miss it where you go. How happy are you in your current beliefs?