Affectionately known as "America's #1 Success Coach," Jack Canfield is the originator of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series and a leading authority in the areas of self-esteem, achievement motivation, and peak performance. [www.jackcanfield.com]
Arianna Huffington is the co-founder and Editor in Chief of the Huffington Post and the author of twelve books. [www.huffingtonpost.com]
Seth Godin is a prominent author, blogger and speaker. [www.squidoo.com/linchpin]
Krishna Kaur is the founder of YOGA for Youth, a program that takes yoga, meditation, and stimulating discussions on the philosophy of yoga to urban youth. [www.yogaforyouth.org]
Norman Lear has enjoyed a long career in television and film. He is also a political and social activist and philanthropist. [www.normanlear.com]
Leilani Münter is a professional race car driver and an environmental activist who uses her voice in the number one spectator sport in America as a catalyst for change. [www.leilanimunter.com]
By going undercover to meet slaves and slaveholders, Kevin Bales exposed modern slavery's penetration into the global economy. He co-founded Free the Slaves, which has helped to liberate thousands of slaves. [www.freetheslaves.net]
Sophie Chiche, lifebyme.com founder and curator, enjoys asking deep questions and living a life of meaning. Today she's launching Shape House, an urban sweat lodge, a place to melt away fears and fat. [www.shapehousela.com]
Entrepreneur and writer Mastin Kipp founded TheDailyLove.com, which merges pop culture with inspiration, and co-founded The Love Yourself Company, an apparel company that has started a global self-esteem movement. [www.TheDailyLove.com]
Liz Phair is an American singer-songwriter and guitarist. [www.lizphair.com]
Archbishop Desmond Tutu is Chairman of The Elders, a group of world leaders who address some of the world's most pressing problems. He works energetically for human-rights and in his ministry. [www.tutu.org]
Zainab Salbi is the founder and CEO of Women for Women International, a group dedicated to helping women survivors of war rebuild their lives. [www.womenforwomen.org]
Despite his physical challenges, Sean Stephenson has taken a stand for a quality of life that has inspired millions of people around the world. He's a professional speaker, psychotherapist, and author. [www.timetostand.com]
Kia Miller teaches Yoga at Yoga Works in Los Angeles, leads teacher trainings, and runs retreats and workshops on meditation, chakras, pranayam, and mantras, and other practices. [www.kiamiller.com]
Simon Mainwaring is an ex-Nike/Wieden creative, former Worldwide Creative Director at Motorola/Ogilvy, branding/advertising writer, author/speaker/blogger, Australian, idea geek. [www.simonmainwaring.com]
Shannon Bindler is a style editor, life coach, and the co-founder of Get Up Girl, an empowerment company that inspires women to shine. [www.getupgirl.com]
Grammy-nominated art director/designer/photographer Mathieu Bitton has designed over 450 CDs and movie posters. He's a renowned collector of and authority on black films and their soundtracks. [www.candytangerine.com]
Opus Reps founder and agent-producer Jorge Perez travels the world producing photo shoots with great photographers and celebrities. He's also very involved with Meals on Wheels in Los Angeles. www.opusreps.com
love in all
When I was eight, I had an experience that transformed me. I went to Nicaragua with my mother, who was a public health nurse serving in an orphanage in very adverse conditions during the war there. We shared a military cot and I remember waking up in that foreign land and being incredibly scared about what was going on. During those nights, I discovered something deep inside myself that comforted me. I was able to translate that comfort through the pen – I had a little sketchbook and my mother gave me a pen that wrote in different colors.
I processed my experience by making doodles, writing down thoughts, or telling the story of the day. The creative act of writing and making art allowed the scared child I was to find some resolve and peace.
My mother’s purpose in taking me to Nicaragua was not to put me in jeopardy, but to open my eyes to the way other people in the world live and to show me how it’s possible to serve people in need. Taking me with her to Nicaragua was one of the greatest gifts my mother gave me.
I’m a student of how my own transformation can serve the transformation of the world and how the power of creativity can be applied to social and environmental issues. The more I apply my creative gifts in the arts and music, as a communicator and educator, the more I feel like I’m changing the world in a positive way.
I’m interested in how my own personal experiences can be an example for creating the kind of world I want to live in, and I’m excited about the results I’m getting. The more I meditate and devote myself to integrity, the more I value life and service, the more I put the principles I’m passionate about to work in my own life – the more change I see in my community, my state, my country, and the world.
I’m continuously humbled and amazed by how challenging and powerful it can be to activate one’s own empowerment and self-knowledge. Maintaining a steady practice of music, writing, yoga, and meditation helps me maintain a clear perspective about why I’m doing what I’m doing.
Having a good sense of humor is important. I try to not take things too seriously, even in crazy, serious situations. It’s easy to get caught up in the drama of everything right now, but if you’re centered and have a clear perspective, you’re invincible – even in a war zone.
– Aaron Ableman
Explore More Meaning
heart doctor. resilient dad. lesson seeker.
Dr. Terry Gordon, a Cleveland Clinictrained cardiologist who's nationally recognized in matters of the heart, practiced within mainstream medicine for over two decades. In 2002, he was named the American Heart Association's National Physician of the Year. [www.drterrygordon.com]