Five Good Things

Collage of five good things

First a book by a client.

Then two other clienty notes.

And two more things to read.

That’s what I have for you today. 

First a book by a client.

I had the joy of working with Annie Särnblad this year—first on her website, then on book illustration and design, and even on book editing and marketing. 

Annie is a microexpressions expert, strategic advisor, speaker, and all around lovely human. She teaches people to read facial expressions to help with their business and personal relationships.

Annie’s book comes out this week: Diary of a Human Lie Detector: Facial Expressions in Love, Lust, and Lies. Join me in relishing in her words and celebrating her publication day!

Beyond microexpressions, the emotional lessons in Annie’s book are incredibly powerful. She shows through her personal reflections the gift of loving your work, how to care well for others, and how to tend to your complex inner world. 

These are just a few of many snippets from Annie’s book that made all my nerve endings buzz with recognition of their truth:

“I made a conscious commitment to myself to allow my feelings free range of my body. That, ironically, seemed to be the only way to deny them permanent infiltration. To stop pain from building a nest inside me.”
— “About Myself, He Said” from Diary of a Human Lie Detector by Annie Särnblad
“Our culture sometimes makes it difficult for men to be vulnerable with each other. I wish this were easier. I wish we were all kinder and softer with each other and better at understanding each other’s perspectives and neediness. I often get asked what most surprised me after learning to read the emotions on people’s faces. That’s an easy question for me to answer: Almost everyone is struggling and needy.”
— “It's Funny” from Diary of a Human Lie Detector by Annie Särnblad
“Helping someone when they are especially needy for the help is remembered for a very long time. It often serves as the foundation of a solid, lasting relationship. But the opposite is true as well, not showing up to help or simply taking advantage of someone because you can ... well that’s not often forgotten either.”
— “The Needy Client” from Diary of a Human Lie Detector by Annie Särnblad

Another buzzy lesson that Annie’s book taught me is how much easier it is to learn something when the teaching is cloaked in fun. This book is a collection of raw, juicy, honest poetry and stories … with details about facial expressions and a glossary of expression photographs thrown in.

I mean, don’t we all wish we could read someone else’s diary? 

Then two other clienty notes.

I often work with Tierra Plan to design map tools for everything from water data portals to location-based museum exhibits. Have an interest in maps or planning or communities or data? Come follow along on LinkedIn where we’re hoping to share more about what we’re doing and learning. 

Amy Wright is a content marketing pro that I highly recommend to clients looking to up their search engine marketing game. Her recent advice: give your Google business profile some love. You can create and edit your business profile at Google’s tools let you “add updates” that show in your business profile sidebar (these remove the competitive “also search” links). You can also create a link that you can give clients to ask for reviews. 

And two more things to read.

Do you need another Substack to follow? This one’s at the top of my list. Valkyrie writes about living an open-hearted, simple, authentic life on a homestead. Each of her articles makes something inside me say, “Yes, yes, yes!” Here’s one line picked at random: “Happiness lives in the not wanting but it also lives in the not having and it lives openly, right in front of you and it looks a bit (if we are to judge by the standards of society) like losing.” 

I had an opportunity to write about the experience of having a knowledge of Buddhist philosophy but then having more understanding after a concrete struggle. My response is here. If you’re interested in such things, keep an eye on Within Magazine, a new source for mental health views that are radically different from those within the legacy system.

That’s what I have for you today.

That and all my wishes for peace in your world.


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