Jack Canfield Jack Canfield author. speaker. motivator.

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 Arianna Huffington political powerhouse. media mogul. author.

Arianna Huffington is the co-founder and Editor in Chief of the Huffington Post and the author of twelve books. [www.huffingtonpost.com]

 
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Krishna Kaur Krishna Kaur yogi. philanthropist. dynamic teacher.

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Norman Lear Norman Lear producer. philanthropist. tv legend.

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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]

 
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Mastin Kipp Mastin Kipp Writer. Entrepreneur. Daily Lover.

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Liz Phair Liz Phair singer. musician. crier.

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Desmond Tutu Desmond Tutu archbishop. author. peaceful leader.

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Zainab Salbi Zainab Salbi author. ceo. humanitarian.

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]

 
Sean Stephenson Sean Stephenson speaker. psychotherapist. life embracer.

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 Kia Miller yogi. meditator. teacher.

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Simon Mainwaring Simon Mainwaring creator. writer. idea geek.

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Shannon Bindler Shannon Bindler Strategist. Writer. Life Coach.

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]

 
Mathieu Bitton Mathieu Bitton Designer. Art Director. Passionate Creator.

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Jorge Perez Jorge Perez Agent. Producer. Photography Enthusiast.

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surrender

Susan Pohlman Susan Pohlman writer. teacher. expert relocator.

Susan Pohlman is a freelance writer based in Scottsdale, Arizona. She's an award-winning author, published essayist, and short film wordsmith. [www.susanpohlman.com]

PostPOHLMAN2

Surrender is a loaded word, conjuring up images of defeat. Growing up with five brothers, I learned early on that only the strong survive. Life was about winning. Our days were a series of board games, contests, and secret clubs in the attic where we had to prove our worth to belong. Surrender was unthinkable unless we were being dangled by our feet over the third floor stairwell, and even then we did it with our fingers crossed behind our backs. Surrender was for sissies.

This philosophy framed my thinking as I ventured out into the world. I would win at life, too. I knew the rules. I knew how to be nice to others and work hard. Winning was fantastic! That is, until I started losing. Losing sleep, losing interest, losing a sense of real meaning and purpose to life amidst all the frenetic activity and endless repetition that filled my days. Something important was missing.

My marriage and family began to fall apart, and I along with it. I was so tired of competing that I wanted to fling the game board across the room and turn my head so I didn’t see where the pieces of my life scattered. One bleak day, I raised my white flag and did the unthinkable. I gave up. I put my future in God’s hands. When I look back now, I see that it had nothing to do with weakness.

Surrendering was the strongest moment of my life.

Choosing surrender as a lifestyle is about letting go of shoulds and musts and embracing life as it unfolds. It’s about living in the present and accepting ambiguity as part of a divine process. Trusting in a greater power to teach, guide, and reveal opportunity for good works when the time is right. Accepting that each of us is a Helper Bee, not the Queen. The moment I stopped controlling outcomes and threw away the almighty checklist was the moment magic, grace, and profound peace found their way back into my days.

It’s difficult to let go of cultural expectations. From a very young age we’re taught, consciously and subconsciously, what happiness is supposed to look like. Surrender demands that we push our hand, palm out and fingers spread wide, against the seductive pull of a materialistic culture that promises a deep, lasting peace it cannot provide. Letting go of these limiting cultural myths and norms allows us the freedom to reach within ourselves and find out who we’re meant to be.

– Susan Pohlman

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