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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]

 
Seth Godin Seth Godin author. speaker. linchpin.

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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 Norman Lear producer. philanthropist. tv legend.

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Leilani Münter Leilani Münter race car driver. activist. carbon free girl.

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]

 
Kevin Bales Kevin Bales Freedom Fighter. Philanthropist. Game Changer.

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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]

 
Mastin Kipp Mastin Kipp Writer. Entrepreneur. Daily Lover.

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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.

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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.

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]

 
Jorge Perez Jorge Perez Agent. Producer. Photography Enthusiast.

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

 

deep

Abby Seixas Abby Seixas psychotherapist. author. life balancer

Abby Seixas is a psychotherapist, author, speaker, mother, calligrapher, gardener, life-long spiritual seeker, and work-in-progress. [www.deepriverwithin.com]

I slept well until I had children. I’ve tried many ways of dealing with being awake when I don’t want to be, from counting backward as I breathe deeply to taking prescription sleep medication. During wakeful times, my mind often spins anxiously forward to everything I need to do in the coming day and how tired I’ll feel if I can’t get back to sleep. For obvious reasons, that train of thought doesn’t soothe me back into a deep and restful sleep.

But occasionally I have a very different experience in the middle of the night. I get out of bed, go downstairs, wrap a blanket around myself, and sit on the living room couch. As I surrender to being awake, heavy eyelids and all, something shifts inside me. I find I’m no longer fighting myself or fighting the night. I relax and begin to notice how quiet it is. In that stillness, my body softens and I breathe more deeply. I feel as though I’m dropping down into myself, greeting an old, dear, trusted friend. Sometimes I think about my life, but more often I just feel grateful for having a life, for being alive. And sometimes I have an experience that’s not easy to describe. It feels as if I’m finding myself again, coming home to myself. I tap into a sense of fullness and wholeness that makes not getting enough sleep seem like a much smaller issue than it was an hour before. Whether or not I go back to sleep, I’m deeply renewed.

When I drop down into myself in those quiet hours of the night, it feels as though I’ve tapped into a deep river running strongly beneath the busyness of daily life. When I allow myself to fully experience that deep river within, I connect not only with myself and what matters most to me but also with a powerful stream of silence, mystery, clarity, aliveness – a universal source of deep nourishment that provides a healing balm when life on the surface is too much. That’s where meaning lies for me.

If I’m disconnected from myself and from that inner source, I can go through the motions of life, but there’s a sense of dryness and emptiness. When I tap down into the deep river realm and let those nourishing waters replenish me, I get more clear about how I do – and don’t –want to spend my time, and, in almost any activity I choose to do, including the ordinary everyday stuff, I experience more meaning and joy.

– Abby Seixas

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