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]

 
Seth Godin Seth Godin author. speaker. linchpin.

Seth Godin is a prominent author, blogger and speaker. [www.squidoo.com/linchpin]

 
Krishna Kaur Krishna Kaur yogi. philanthropist. dynamic teacher.

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.

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 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.

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 Sophie Chiche mom. big dreamer. lady in red.

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.

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 Liz Phair singer. musician. crier.

Liz Phair is an American singer-songwriter and guitarist. [www.lizphair.com]

 
Desmond Tutu Desmond Tutu archbishop. author. peaceful leader.

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 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.

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 Simon Mainwaring creator. writer. idea geek.

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 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

 

music

Gabe Morgan Gabe Morgan melody maker. peanuts appreciator. energy seeker.

Gabe Morgan, music and business student at CSU Northridge, is a musician, songwriter, lyricist, and producer. He is a 2004 graduate of Teen Insight and our featured contributor for Giving Tuesday. [www.givingtuesday.org/partner-detail/insight-university]

There are many things that I can identify as great joys in my life: family, friends, spirituality, my girlfriend, athletics, and so many more. Oddly enough, music incorporates all of these joyous qualities. With music I truly feel one with myself, my environment, and all levels of my consciousness. Not many things can compare to that.

I was born into a musical family so it has been easy to be thankful for the music in my life. It has played a pivotal role in my growth as a human being.

When I was in the seventh grade, easily the hardest and most depressing year of my life, I lost faith in pretty much everything. I had no friends, and worse, many enemies, purely because I was an individual amongst a lost group of conforming pre-teens. Between the verbal and physical abuse and occasional psychotic episodes, including an attempt at suicide, I was truly lost. My brother, Jeff, gave me a Radiohead CD called The Bends. I listened all the way through, and felt like someone was out there that could empathize with me. I questioned why, with all the people who were concerned about me, it took a melancholy band to reach me. It was because the music, between the instruments and lyrics, connected to me on a deeper level than any person had been able to reach.

I get disconnected at times, and, when I do, music brings me back. I sit down at the piano and play Vince Guaraldi tunes from the old Peanuts cartoons. Sometimes I’ll write a song. Sometimes I’ll play something I wrote in the past. Sometimes I’ll play a Beach Boys song. The luxury of being in the business of what I am most grateful for is that it is very hard to forget what it is that keeps me going. I practice, perform or listen to it every day.

I see people accepting routines and practices to fulfill some strange obligations they or others have put on them. A wise man once told me: “I love horses, but it wasn’t fun to take care of them. I love old cars, but they weren’t fun to maintain. I love motorcycles, period. Out of the three, motorcycle riding was the only that gave me energy rather than took it from me.” Find what gives you energy and gets you going and do it.

– Gabe Morgan

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