How to Argue Better!

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Life in 2016 is fraught with controversy. Politics are growing more and more polarized, casual racism and microaggressions are becoming less socially acceptable, and traditional gender roles are being challenged. No matter where you stand on the issues (or if you have yet to form an opinion), chances are, you’ve got someone yelling at you on either side. This makes staying cool, respectful, and rational all the more difficult. Here are some tips on how to share your opinions on controversial topics in a way that is most likely to get your point across without any hard feelings: Continue reading

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Ways to Make America Great (Besides Voting)

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These day, election coverage is unescapable. While I am thrilled that some of our front-runners are making “YUGE” gains in raising awareness about the struggles faced by oft-neglected demographic groups and issues, many of the articles and memes don’t capture the full story. Since our news feed is already fully saturated with stories about how candidate X will boost the economy, candidate Y will improve the U.S.’s international standing, and candidate Z  is possibly the Zodiac killer (really?), I thought I would focus today on some real talk: What can you do to make America greater in your everyday life? Continue reading

Why and How to Forgive

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No matter who you are, chances are you have some kind of emotional baggage weighing you down. Maybe it makes you nervous and upset whenever you think about a bridge you’ve burned with someone you care about, maybe fear of losing face and admitting wrongdoing is preventing you from reviving relationships or partnerships that could otherwise improve your life, or maybe you still haven’t forgiven yourself enough to pick up where you left off. Whatever is holding you back, the fall season is a great time to make peace with others and yourself, and start afresh. Continue reading

The Secret to Being a Kinder Person

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If only it were as simple as putting on a bunny costume.

Everyone wants to think of themselves as a good person, but actually doing the right thing, or even knowing the right thing to do, is not easy. However, there is one simple thing you can do that, once you start doing it, will almost immediately make you a better person: It’s called trying. Like any other achievement, being a better person starts with simply putting in a little effort. Here are a few things to try: Continue reading

Gaming for Good – Charity at GenCon 2015!

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I neglected to take a picture of the panel, so instead, enjoy this picture of an octopus made out of balloons.

This weekend while I was enjoying the geek heaven that is GenCon, I had a chance to learn about how gaming is not only a great way to have fun, learn skills, and connect with other people – it can also be used to raise money and spread the word about worthy causes in your community. I was lucky enough to participate in a panel with lovely, purpose-driven gamers Andrew Christopher Enriquez and JR Honeycutt of DFW Nerd Night, Oliver Wojtyna of Extra Life Indy Guild, Tiffany Ralph, Dan Patriss of Gamers for Cures, and Adrienne and Jim Jones of Great Big Table and Baby Toolkit. The whole team gave some wonderful tips for organizing charity gaming events and supporting charity through geeky pursuits. Here are some of the tips they shared and lessons I learned: Continue reading

Give to Charity, Not Scams

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News broke this week that four cancer charities were charged with fraud for raising over $187 million in donations through deceptive means. This is awful news for the nonprofit sector, which already struggles with debunking myths and misperceptions (including the much talked about Overhead Myth). Many would-be donors struggle with how to give to charity without worrying about their donations falling into the wrong hands. My advice: don’t let a few bad apples stand between you and the causes you care about, but do learn your lesson about checking a charity’s legitimacy before you give. Here’s how: Continue reading

Businesses with Standards: What is The B Impact Assessment?

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I’ve recently discussed the way that social good is quickly becoming far more measurable, but many of us (myself included) are still trying to wrap our heads around what it means for a business to be truly ethical, and how that can be measured. Today I had the chance to talk to Dan Osusky, Standards Development Manager at B Lab, who gave me some insight into what the B Impact Assessment can tell us, not only about a company’s values, but about the real, measurable impact that they are having on our community and environment.

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Tips for Partying with a Purpose

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Being kind isn’t easy, but sometimes it can be a lot of fun! One of the best ways to have fun and help others at the same time is to host a “Party with a Purpose” – in other words, a party that raises awareness and/or funds for a charity or cause. You can throw a high-end party or throw one together easily and cheaply. You can incorporate giving into a major life event (like a wedding or birthday), or you can throw for the sole purpose of supporting your cause. The possibilities are endless! Continue reading

Be Good at Being Charitable

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If you are looking to make a positive impact in the world, giving to charity is one of the most direct ways that you can contribute. But, with over 1.5 million different nonprofits in the United States alone, figuring out how to give in a meaningful, impactful way can be an incredibly daunting task. Here are some ways for you to narrow down the causes and charities that will be most meaningful for you:

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