232 episodes

The Think Act Be podcast features conversations about finding happiness, peace, and connection. Each week your host, psychologist Seth Gillihan, talks with his guests about effective ways to face life’s challenges: What thoughts serve us well? What actions promote well-being? How can we practice mindful presence? Guests from a wide range of backgrounds share their expertise on ways to nourish our minds, bodies, and spirits.

Think Act Be Podcast Seth J. Gillihan

    • Health & Fitness
    • 4.8 • 123 Ratings

The Think Act Be podcast features conversations about finding happiness, peace, and connection. Each week your host, psychologist Seth Gillihan, talks with his guests about effective ways to face life’s challenges: What thoughts serve us well? What actions promote well-being? How can we practice mindful presence? Guests from a wide range of backgrounds share their expertise on ways to nourish our minds, bodies, and spirits.

    Ethan Nichtern — Mindful Awareness 5. A Better Way of Working with the Mind You Have

    Ethan Nichtern — Mindful Awareness 5. A Better Way of Working with the Mind You Have

    My guest this week for part 5 of our series on mindful awareness is Ethan Nichtern, author of a new book called Confidence: Holding Your Seat Through Life’s Eight Worldly Winds (affiliate link).
    Topics we discussed included:
    Confidence as trusting we can navigate our own minds Making friends with our inner experience Equanimity as realizing that everything affects you The eight worldly winds or forces: Pleasure/pain Praise/blame Influence/insignificance Success/failure Showing up and working with whatever happens to us Mindfulness leading one to feel more but suffer less The first arrow/second arrow metaphor from Buddhism Not pretending something painful is not painful The normalness of reacting to the eight worldly winds Being willing to admit that we’re having an experience we’re having Why hope can be a trap just as much fear is The stress that comes with the possibility of good things The longing to be OK … in every way … forever The incredible power in just knowing what our mind is doing Mindfulness as a good way to practice working with the mind Ethan Nichtern is a renowned contemporary Buddhist teacher and the author of The Dharma of the Princess Bride, One City, and the widely acclaimed The Road Home (affiliate link).
    Since 2002, Ethan has taught meditation and Buddhist psychology classes and workshops in New York City and around North America. 
    He has lectured at meditation/yoga centers, conferences, and universities including Brown, Yale, and NYU.
    Ethan has been featured by CNN, NPR, the New York Times, Vogue, and Business Insider, and has written for the Huffington Post, Beliefnet, Lion’s Roar, Tricycle, Buddhadharma, and more. He lives in Brooklyn.
    Find Ethan online at his website and find his courses at Dharma Moon.

    • 44 min
    Ep. 229: Amanda Knox — Mindful Awareness 4. What If There Is Nothing Between You and Your Well-Being?

    Ep. 229: Amanda Knox — Mindful Awareness 4. What If There Is Nothing Between You and Your Well-Being?

    My guest this week is Amanda Knox, author of the New York Times bestselling book Waiting to be Heard (affiliate link). Amanda’s name is probably familiar to you because she was in the news a lot over a decade ago when she was tried for murder in Italy. Even though she was convicted, it turned out the charges were completely false, and eventually she was fully exonerated.
    Topics we discussed included:
    Amanda’s history of being falsely accused of murder The power of the anchoring bias in maintaining false impressions My guest’s feelings toward the prosecutor on her case Letting go of the need for other people to believe certain things about us The fundamental insight that there is nothing between you and your well-being Figuring out what we can give or take action on, instead of waiting for others to give us what we need Deciding not to be the victim Discovering what no one can take away from you The inherent opportunity in any kind of experience The deep empathy that comes from Amanda’s experience Grieving the loss of the life that could have been The freedom of recognizing that everything is in flux all the time Realizing that this actually is my life, and choosing intentionally to live it Tolerating anything for short bouts of time (with reference to The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt) My guest’s relationship with comedy “Hurt Feelings” by Flight of the Conchords Laughing at the absurdity of our self-seriousness Amanda Knox is an exoneree, journalist, public speaker, and co-host, with her partner Christopher Robinson, of the podcast Labyrinths.
    Between 2007 and 2015, she spent nearly four years in an Italian prison and eight years on trial for a murder she didn’t commit.
    She has since become an advocate for criminal justice reform and media ethics.
    She sits on the board of the Frederick Douglass Project for Justice.

    Find Amanda online on X/Twitter and Instagram and on her website, and check out her excellent podcast Labyrinths that she co-hosts with Christopher Robinson.

    • 54 min
    Ep. 228: Brett Larkin — Mindful Awareness 3. How Yoga Can Elevate Every Part of Your Life

    Ep. 228: Brett Larkin — Mindful Awareness 3. How Yoga Can Elevate Every Part of Your Life

    My guest this week is Brett Larkin, yoga instructor and author of Yoga Life: : Habits, Poses, and Breathwork to Channel Joy Amidst the Chaos (affiliate link).
    Topics we discussed included:
    Practicing yoga with awareness The appeal of yoga for helping us remember that we’re more than our minds and brains Yoga as a “science laboratory” to observe what’s happening internally and how one responds to life The moment my guest discovered what yoga can teach us about ourselves How to distinguish our highest Self from the inner strategist that keeps us in unhelpful patterns Looking for opportunities to move through life in a new way Crafting a yoga practice to offer you what you need 20 minutes as a thoroughly adequate length of yoga practice Self-care and being one’s own parents The complementary energies of the masculine (Shiva) and feminine (Shakti) Balancing acceptance and change, as in Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) Prioritizing the breath in yoga as a means to awareness The non-optimal inhibited breathing we often get trapped in A brief guided experience in healthy breathing Discovering through yoga that there is a healthier way to live Brett Larkin is the founder of Uplifted Yoga and the author of Yoga Life.
    She has trained thousands of yoga teachers, and her training has set the standard for quality online certification since 2015.
    Brett’s award-winning YouTube channel has with over half a million subscribers, and her Uplifed Yoga Podcast empowers listeners to actively design their lives using yoga’s ancient wisdom.
    Yoga enthusiasts love her courses on Kundalini, Prenatal Yoga, and the Uplifted Yoga Academy.
    Learn more about Brett and her practice at her website.

    • 52 min
    Dr. Steve Taylor — Mindful Awareness 2. Cultivating the Conditions for Spiritual Awakening

    Dr. Steve Taylor — Mindful Awareness 2. Cultivating the Conditions for Spiritual Awakening

    My guest this week is psychologist Dr. Steve Taylor, author of the new book, The Adventure: A Practical Guide to Spiritual Awakening (affiliate link).
    Topics we discussed included:
    The practical components of “enlightenment” or “spiritual awakening” Commonalities across different spiritual traditions The unease and anxiety created by a sense of separateness from the world and others The fundamental background unease humans tend to feel The hijacking of spiritual awakening by the ego Aligning yourself with the organic impulse toward growth and greater awareness The process of waking up and transforming through intense suffering The naturalness of waking up, which often happens spontaneously Disidentification with the thought mind as the first step in spiritual awakening The difference between identifying vs. deidentifying with a worry The power of emptying one’s mind The relative amount of time spent in absorption, abstraction, and awareness A “gentle mental nudge” to spend more time in awareness Accepting your non-acceptance and embracing your imperfections Steve Taylor, PhD, is the author of many bestselling books.
    He’s senior lecturer in psychology at Leeds Beckett University and the chair of the Transpersonal Psychology Section of the British Psychological Society. 
    Steve’s articles and essays have been published in over 100 academic journals, magazines, and newspapers.
    He blogs for Scientific American and Psychology Today.
    Visit him online at his website. 

    • 38 min
    Dr. Beth Kurland — Mindful Awareness 1. Finding Peace of Mind When Life Is Difficult

    Dr. Beth Kurland — Mindful Awareness 1. Finding Peace of Mind When Life Is Difficult

    My guest this week is psychologist Dr. Beth Kurland, author of the new book, You Don’t Have to Change to Change Everything: Six Ways to Shift Your Vantage Point, Stop Striving for Happy, and Find True Well-Being (affiliate link). We begin with a calming guided meditation that Beth led.
    Topics we discussed included:
    The assumption that not feeling at ease is a personal failure Being with our distress without being swallowed up by it Cultivating well-being in the absence of happiness The role of self-compassion in well-being Recognizing and connecting with a deeper part of ourselves, whether we call is Self, spirit, or soul Seeing the world from our Wise Self Living from our head vs. being more connected to and aware of the body Contraction vs. expansion in the area around the heart Why we don’t habitually run toward our body and wise Self as refuges A simple practice for coming back into one’s body Proper breathing for calming the nervous system Beth Kurland, PhD, is a clinical psychologist with three decades of experience.
    She is also a TEDx and public speaker, a mind-body coach, and an author of three award-winning books: Dancing on The Tightrope; The Transformative Power of Ten Minutes; and Gifts of the Rain Puddle. 
    Beth blogs for Psychology Today and is the creator of the Well-Being Toolkit online program. She lives in the Boston area.
    For more, visit her website.
     

    • 46 min
    Dr. Peter Levine — The Transformative Power of Healing from Trauma

    Dr. Peter Levine — The Transformative Power of Healing from Trauma

    My guest this week is Dr. Peter Levine, who is well-known for being the developer of Somatic Experiencing. He’s also the author of a new book: An Autobiography of Trauma: A Healing Journey (affiliate link), which we focused on in this very enjoyable and meaningful discussion.
    Peter shared about how his own wounds from early in life were a big part of what led him into the field of trauma therapy. We explored how the healing continues, even now in Peter’s ninth decade.
    Topics we discussed included:
    What Peter means when he describes himself as a modern “Chiron” Using our own wounds in life as we’re working to help others Getting to trauma memories and healing through embodiment in somatic experiencing The horrific trauma Peter experienced early in his life The dream that led Peter to share this book rather than writing it only for his own healing The significance of dreams for waking life Learning to attend to the promptings of the unconscious mind The relation between somatic experiencing and an approach like cognitive behavioral therapy The role of the vagus nerve in the trauma response and in healing Using the body to encounter our traumas in a healing way Why a union of the body and mind tends to reduce anxiety The disconnection we so often experience between our minds and bodies Peter’s reaction to a meditation workshop several decades ago The idea of “living your dying” Connections between death and the divine The promises and pitfalls of psychedelics Peter Levine, PhD, is the renowned developer of Somatic Experiencing.
    He holds a doctorate in medical and biological Physics from the University of California at Berkeley and a doctorate in psychology from International University.
    The recipient of four lifetime achievement awards, he is the author of several books, including Waking the Tiger, which has now been printed in 33 countries and has sold over a million copies.
    Learn more about:
    Peter Levine Somatic Experiencing An Autobiography of Trauma

    • 55 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
123 Ratings

123 Ratings

Coach-ND ,

Think Act Be - listen!

Seth has a fantastic way of creating calm in his interviews whilst getting deep every time. Powerful.

Whrifnrjkd ,

Wonderful insightful podcast

Love the thoughtful insights Seth and his guests share. He knows just how to ask the questions that are on our minds without losing my attention. The format and length are perfect to binge!

J-Sto14 ,

Terrific psychology podcast

Seth is a really thoughtful interviewer. If you like psychology you’ll love Think Act Be.

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