Join me in exploring the scientific principles of success in life and leadership. I'm Hitendra Wadhwa, Professor of Practice at Columbia Business School and Founder at Mentora Institute and Mentora Foundation. I strive to bring a mathematician’s rigor and a truth-seeker’s spirit to some of today’s most vexing questions about authenticity, success, leadership and human potential. Intersections Podcast seeks to dissolve boundaries -- between science and spirituality, profit and purpose, East and West, inner and outer, work and home -- so we can realize our full potential in life and leadership.
Leah Goldstein on Living a Life with No Limits
Is there a method to achieving excellence in every chapter of our lives? How can we bypass the distractions and imperfections of the world, break away from stereotypical belief systems that may be percolating around us, and live every moment with inspiration, discipline and commitment to our chosen purpose? What actions can we take to bounce back from our biggest adversities, and build ourselves from the ground up, against all odds? And how can we best honor the gift of life, and seek to live with no limits?
Listen to the extraordinary story of Leah Goldstein—a story of her indomitable will to succeed, persevere and overcome adversities repeatedly through every chapter of her life—in an exclusive conversation with Dr. Hitendra Wadhwa on Intersections Podcast.
Leah Goldstein is an internationally-renowned ultra endurance athlete and professional cyclist. She is the first female in the 40-year history of Race Across America (RAAM) to win first place overall in the solo division, one of the toughest endurance sports events in the world. As a teenager, Leah became a national TaeKwonDo and World Kickboxing champion. Having a deep desire to serve in the military, Leah enlisted in the Israeli Defense Force early in her life, becoming the first female Elite Commando instructor and subsequently transitioned into a special-forces unit, combating terrorism and violent crimes. Leah is also a coach, speaker and co-founder of No Finish Line Living, which provides customizable keynotes and retreats dedicated to moving others into a healthy, purposeful life, and has also published her memoir, No Limits.
In this episode, Leah reveals:
The mindset of a world champion, the formula for excellence and how to break away from stereotypical belief systems that may be percolating around us and limiting us
A powerful method for bouncing back from our biggest adversities, and building ourselves from the ground up, against all odds
How to honor the gift of life and use every moment to live with inspiration, discipline and commitment to our purpose
The joy of giving, and how it activates the best in ourselves and others around us, in life and in leadership
Elissa Epel on Mastering Stress in Epic and Everyday Moments
How is ancient wisdom influencing and advancing modern science to improve public health and happiness? How are scientists being able to tell that stress accelerates the aging process, cutting short the deeply purposeful lives we were meant to live? How can we bring more grace in not just our epic moments but in our everyday moments of stress as well?
Listen to some powerful insights on how to master stress and cultivate more joy in our lives, and how this impacts our present and our future, from renowned health psychologist, Elissa Epel, in an exclusive conversation with Dr. Hitendra Wadhwa on Intersections Podcast.
Elissa Epel is a renowned health psychologist, and an international expert on stress, well-being, and optimal aging. She is a Professor in the Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences at the University of California, San Francisco, where she is Vice Chair of Psychology and directs the Aging Metabolism Emotions Center. She studies the environmental, psychological, behavioral, and social factors that impact cellular aging (such as telomeres, inflammation, and mitochondria), and how self-care practices such as meditation and positive stress can promote psychological and physiological thriving. She uses science as a north star, guiding us in the context of other sources of contemplative wisdom.
Elissa co-wrote the New York Times best-seller The Telomere Effect with Nobel Laureate Elizabeth Blackburn (translated into 30 languages) and recently also released her new book, The Stress Prescription. Her research has been featured in venues such as TEDMED, 60 minutes, National Public Radio, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and science documentaries.
In this episode, Elissa reveals:
Some fundamental truths about joy, health and happiness, as derived from ancient wisdom and validated by modern science
How chronic stress leads to accelerated aging, impairing our ability to deeply connect with our own selves and the world around us and to live with meaning and purpose
How to be more graceful in not just epic moments of stress, but in everyday moments
The relationship between joy and suffering, and the antidote to chronic stress
The capacity of the human spirit to recalibrate and renew itself in every moment of life
Arthur Brooks on the Happiness Plan for the Second Half of Life
When we imagine a happy and successful life, the portrait that’s often painted before us includes someone who is dynamic, engaged and achieves success upon success. And yet, in a time like today when lifespans continue to lengthen, there’s a whole period to life that goes beyond our peak performance days, far from the limelight we once had, unnoticed and forgotten.
What then is the definition of success and happiness in this second half of life? Do people get happier or unhappier as they age? What happens when our professional decline sets in earlier than expected, and what self-correcting mechanisms can we put in place to avoid its negative consequences? Does happiness take care of itself or is there a formula we can use to maximize our flourishing, in not just the second half, but in every chapter of our lives?
Listen to some powerful insights from decades of happiness research and from Arthur Brook’s own luminous life journey, in an exclusive conversation with Prof. Hitendra Wadhwa on Intersections Podcast.
Arthur C. Brooks is the William Henry Bloomberg Professor of the Practice of Public Leadership at the Harvard Kennedy School and Professor of Management Practice at the Harvard Business School. Before joining the Harvard faculty, he served for ten years as president of the Washington, D.C.-based American Enterprise Institute, one of the world’s leading think tanks. Arthur is the author of 12 books, including the #1 New York Times bestseller From Strength to Strength, and national bestsellers Love Your Enemies and The Conservative Heart. He is also a columnist for The Atlantic, host of the podcast How to Build a Happy Life with Arthur Brooks, and subject of the 2019 documentary film The Pursuit, which Variety named as one of the “Best Documentaries on Netflix” in August 2019. Arthur gives more than 100 speeches per year around the U.S., Europe, and Asia; has been selected as one of Fortune Magazine’s “50 World’s Greatest Leaders,” and was awarded six honorary doctorates.
In this Intersections episode, Arthur reveals:
Why happiness doesn’t take care of itself and how to craft a 401K happiness plan for the rest of our lives
Two key reasons why our professional decline starts earlier than we think and the self-correcting mechanisms we can put in place now to avoid its negative consequences
Why faith and reason are not mutually exclusive, and how to integrate multiple viewpoints and ideas to arrive at our own truth
The wrong and the right formula for happiness in seven words
And many inspiring stories and timeless wisdom drawn from both eastern and western cultures that illustrate the human capacity for transformation
Dr. Mario Livio on Dissolving Boundaries in Our Hyper Specialized World
In a world that celebrates specialization, what can we gain by dissolving boundaries between disciplines and exploring multitudes? What do extraordinarily creative people have in common, and what tools do they use to access breakthrough ideas and insights? What lessons can we draw from the blunders made by some of the pioneering scientists from history to pursue our own professional quests? And can these same lessons be used to reduce polarization and create a more unified world?
Listen to some powerful insights on the power of dissolving boundaries from Dr. Mario Livio, in an exclusive conversation with Dr. Hitendra Wadhwa, on Intersections Podcast.
Dr. Mario Livio is an internationally known astrophysicist, bestselling author, popular speaker, and a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Dr. Livio has published more than 500 scientific articles, made significant theoretical contributions to topics ranging from cosmology, supernova explosions, and black holes to extrasolar planets and the emergence of life in the universe. His popular books include The Golden Ratio, Is God A Mathematician? that inspired the NOVA program “The Great Math Mystery,” which was nominated for an EMMY in 2016, Brilliant Blunders and more recently, Galileo and the Science Deniers. Dr. Livio’s work is frequently featured in leading media including The Daily Show, 60 Minutes and On Being; is the former Science Advisor to the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, and has presented science-related topics in a number of their concerts; and has also collaborated with composer Paola Prestini in the creation of the Hubble Cantata, which was inspired by Hubble images and discoveries.
In this Intersections episode, Dr. Livio reveals:
The power of dissolving boundaries between disciplines and exploring multitudes
What some of the world’s most extraordinarily creative people have in common, and the tools they use to access breakthrough ideas and insights
The lessons we can draw from the blunders made by some of the pioneering scientists from history, and how we can apply them in our own professional quests
The benefits and relevance of being a polymath in a hyper specialized world
And the best remedy for fear in our painfully polarized society
Dr. Dan Siegel on Breaking the Illusion of the Self
Modern culture has influenced many of us to view the self—the seat of human experience—purely by the boundaries of the body and the mind, creating a fundamental sense of separateness from the rest of existence. And yet, the pandemic shattered the illusion of the separate solo self in many ways. Could it be that despite our best intentions, we have a misunderstanding of who we really are? And could it be that the illusion of the self may be standing in the way of us realizing our full potential?
Drawing from the intersection of modern science and ancient wisdom, Dr. Dan Siegel offers some remarkable stories and insights about the true nature of the self in an exclusive conversation with Dr. Hitendra Wadhwa, on Intersections Podcast. And gain some life-changing tools you can use to integrate all facets of your identity and serve yourself, others and the world from a place of pure awareness.
Dr. Dan Siegel is a clinical professor of psychiatry at the UCLA School of Medicine, founding co-director of the Mindful Awareness Research Center at UCLA, and Executive Director of the Mindsight Institute that offers online learning and in-person seminars on how the development of mindsight in individuals, families and communities can be enhanced by examining the interface of human relationships and basic biological processes. An award-winning educator, he is a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association and recipient of several honorary fellowships. Dr. Siegel has written six New York Times bestsellers including Mind: A Journey to the Heart of Being Human, and Aware: The Science and Practice of Presence. His most recent book, IntraConnected: MWe (Me + We) as the Integration of Self, Identity, and Belonging, is now out in bookstores and is also the topic of conversation for this episode.
In this episode, Dr. Siegel reveals:
Why the common understanding of the “self” is a constructed illusion
Two life-changing tools to deepen our perception of the self, break out of this illusion and take action that not only serves us, but everyone and everything around us
And how to live joyfully even when the world rejects your vision and your ideas
Ethan Kross on Recruiting Our Mind to Perform at Our Best
Oftentimes, it is our inner voice that gives us clarity and power — or then takes it all away without notice, leading us to tumble and fall from grace, into the rabbit hole of rumination and worry.
How can we master the silent conversations we have with ourselves, and turn our inner voice from a critic to a coach? Why is empathic leadership much more than just creating the space for sharing and listening with intent? What can we do to covertly support others in managing their inner voice better without taking away their agency or shining a spotlight on their vulnerabilities?
Listen to some cutting-edge scientific insights from Ethan Kross on how to tame our inner world, in an exclusive conversation with Prof. Hitendra Wadhwa, on Intersections Podcast.
Ethan Kross is one of the world’s leading experts on controlling the conscious mind. An award-winning professor and bestselling author in the University of Michigan’s top ranked Psychology Department and its Ross School of Business, he has founded the Emotion & Self Control Laboratory and studies how the conversations people have with themselves impact their health, performance, decisions and relationships. Ethan is the author of the National Bestseller CHATTER: The Voice in Our Head, Why it Matters and How to Harness It, scheduled to be translated into 35+ languages. His research has been featured in leading platforms including Science, The New England Journal of Medicine, CBS Evening News, The New Yorker, Harvard Business Review, The Economist, The Atlantic, Forbes, and Time.
In this Intersections episode, Ethan reveals:
How our life’s three most important domains can be severely compromised by our own inner voice
Two ways our internal chatter can lead to disastrous interpersonal outcomes, and push those away who genuinely care about us
How we can recruit our minds to solve our problems at hand without falling down the rabbit hole of rumination and worry
Two key principles of empathic leadership that can help us curate a support network of people, both at work and in life
Three ways to offer invisible chatter support to others without taking away their agency or shining a spotlight on their vulnerabilities
Two powerful tools that can help us become our own chatter coach, in both everyday and high-stakes situations
Loved the aesthetics of joy episode. Will listen to more
As a business owner I’ve gained a lot of new insights into how to better respond to difficult situations
This podcast is a game changer for me
I found this at a perfect time when I needed it the most. Thank you