I grew up in a conservative family. When I went off to Stanford for college, most of my friends and teachers were liberal. I loved my family and how they saw things. I loved my friends and teachers and how they saw things. I was struck by the paradox that good, smart people could come to see the world so differently, particularly when it comes to politics and religion.
That led me to my first mission, which crystallized in my mid-20s, while I was doing an Economics Ph.D. at George Mason University under Tyler Cowen. My first mission was trying to build better democracies - more peaceful, productive, adaptive democracies - by institutionally amplifying the trust between two opposing leaders.
But I let the “importance” of the mission justify bad or dumb behaviors in my personal life. Not being present as a husband or father. Not taking care of myself. Using my intelligence to shift blame and responsibility away from myself. Over time, this cost me my marriage.
Which was devastating. And also the best thing that ever happened to me.
A broken heart can be an open heart. A heart that welcomes wisdom. A heart that offers tenderness and compassion for others. A heart that knows what is important. And knows what is true. Or, a heart that is open to being wrong. Which is the first step on the path to truth.
Since then I’ve been on a recovery journey, of a sort. A journey to recover more heartful living, more heartful expression. My music and Thrive Circle are each off-shoots of that.