Life Stages


21Jun 2010

Reflections on Father's Day — From A Variety of Perspectives

This past Father’s Day was the first, as far as I can remember, since my oldest children (twins) were born 27 years ago that I was away from all of my children. I am on a business trip that carried over the weekend, so I am away from my family. On one hand, it was weird and lonely. On the

15Apr 2010

Lessons Learned (for Daily Life) from 20 Years of Testing Students

Traveling a few weeks ago, I was reflecting on one of the professional activities I have done for over 20 years — testing students of various ages for possible learning difficulties (ADD/ADHD, dyslexia, learning disabilities). I realized I have learned a lot of lessons from the process — interviewing parents; testing students from 5 years old through elementary school, high

22Jan 2010

Healthy Extended Families — They Do Actually Exist

In the past several weeks, I have had the opportunity to interact with a few large extended families — both at a personal and professional level. And I have been impressed with some common characteristics I observed across these families, whom I view to be relatively healthy and functional. Given the bashing that extended families take in TV shows and

09Jan 2010

A Tribute: To a Man of Great Character

Unfortunately, when the issue of “character” is in the news today, the focus is usually on character failures — lack of integrity, marital unfaithfulness, greed and dishonesty. So to be able to talk about a man of good character is a privilege. When thinking about the title of this entry, I was indecisive about whether it should be “To a

28Dec 2009

The Problem with Trying to Be "Fair" With Your Children

In my role as a family coach for wealthy families, one of the common issues that arises is the parents’ desire to be “fair” with their children and grandchildren. (I put “fair” in quotation marks because it really is an unusual term that is defined differently by many people and is almost totally based on perception.) For whatever reason, and

17Dec 2009

Creating New Family Traditions Around the Holidays

A “new tradition” is sort of an oxymoron. By definition, (“a long-established, inherited way of thinking or acting”), a tradition is some action that you have been doing for a while. But I believe it is both possible and helpful to intentionally create new traditions for your family. We need to recognize that families go through a variety of life

15Nov 2009

Mentoring — Transferring Information & Experience to the Next Generation

I started reading a good book this week — A Game Plan for Life: The Power of Mentoring by John Wooden and Don Yaeger. It was recommended to me by a good friend, and I always try to pass on worthwhile reading to others. The first part of the book covers the seven mentors that influenced Coach Wooden (for those

31Oct 2009

Managing College & Career Anxiety — for Parents

This past week I had the opportunity to speak to about 70 parents at a private college prep high school.  The anxiety level in the room was moderately high because these parents were there to hear answers about how to get their students to take seriously the process of finding a career path and choosing a college to attend. Earlier

13Sep 2009

Father & Sons — Some Observations

Most of the work I do is with families — family-owned businesses, families who work together, families who have sold businesses and now manage the resulting assets together, and just plain families. And in my everyday life I have the opportunity to interact with and observe families of all configurations. Add my own personal life, of being a son, and

02Sep 2009

Keys to a Long Term Relationship — Reflecting on 30 Years of Marriage

This week my wife and I celebrated our 30th wedding anniversary.  Neither she nor I can believe we have been married that long — part of it is that we just don’t feel that “old”! (To keep the edge of reality a bit less sharp, we usually comment that we were only 12 when we got married.) But as we

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