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
A series of events started in 2005 which led me to explore my beliefs and way of being. I was as contracted then as I’ve ever been – a professional burnout at the age of 30. I wanted to be present as a wife, mother, and business-owner, so I did a lot of work (and play!) to figure out how. It’s still a moment by moment practice.
Due to various tragedies and circumstances, I’ve learned to be and to love right where I am. Sometimes that means forgiving. Sometimes it means unplugging and coloring with my little girl. Often, it means looking for solutions that can’t be found in a state of contraction. I have a choice in every moment to shift into an awareness that opens space for creativity, for expansion and new ideas, and for opportunities to emerge.
I still get stuck at times. When I do, to get back on track I often get up and move – I walk, dance, or jump on my trampoline. I practice conscious breathing and gratitude for what’s going on.
I see many people dwelling in the past, worrying about the future, and sitting in fear. I still have my moments, but the time I spend in fear, worry, or feeling wronged has decreased significantly. To me, that’s a sign that I’m on the right path.
I want to spend even less time and energy on things and situations that aren’t taking me directly into greater expansion. I want an even better understanding of how to access everything I want in life. I’m looking for ways to expand into my own creativity while helping and inspiring others to do the same. I’m on a lifelong quest for wisdom.
I believe there’s good in everything, even if we can’t see it immediately. Look at what’s in front of you right now. Be grateful for what you have. And pursue your creative expression – whether through a meal you’re cooking, a project you want to get out into the world, or in conversations with your family. Take time, every day, to nurture your creative expression. It moves mountains.
– Anney Smith
Explore More Meaning
authors. citizens. peacemakers.
Gerda Weissman Klein and Alysa Ullman co-founded Citizenship Counts to promote the importance of multigenerational citizen programs. Alysa is an author and the Executive Director of Citizenship Counts. Gerda is an author, Academy Award winner, Holocaust survivor, and human rights activist. [www.citizenshipcounts.org]