Pope Francis Says ‘No Whining’

pope francis 2

‘Pope Francis has earned a lot of love and criticism for taking the Catholic Church in a bold, new, progressive direction. He has spoken out about climate change, the gender pay gap, inequality in capitalist societies, and even endorsed gay marriage. But last week, he made a move that was downright old school. He hung a sign outside of his office at Casa Santa Marta in the Vatican that says “no whiners” in Italian.’

To read more click, “The sanction is doubled if the offense is committed in the presence of children.”

Covey Cowan, Mill Valley, California

The Science of Raising Kinder, Less Entitled Kids

entitled kids

‘Nearly all of us have bang-our-head-against-the-wall stories about our kids acting entitled. We’ve tried what feels like everything to stop it, and we still feel as if we’re not quite getting it right.

But there’s a young and fascinating field of research called behavioral economics that explores the sometimes irrational ways we all make decisions and think about the world. Maybe if we understand a little more about the instinctive, irrational quirks of our kids’ minds, we’ll be better equipped to raise kinder, less-entitled kids.’

To read more click, ‘We never get to do anything!’


Covey Cowan, Mill Valley, California

Story Telling That Goes to the Gut

Stories are told in the body.

It doesn’t seem that way. We tend to think of stories as emerging from consciousness—from dreams or fantasies—and traveling through words or images to other minds. We see them outside of us, on paper or on screen, never under the skin.  But we do feel stories. We know in our gut when we’re hearing a good one—and science is starting to explain why.’

To read more click, ‘A paper published last year found that witnessing acts of altruism and heroism in films led to more giving in real life.’


Covey Cowan, Mill Valley, California

Kids Learning to Forgive


‘If your child is hurt by a sibling or a bully, it is critical that the hurt party is protected and the perpetrator is disciplined appropriately. But, assuming the offense is dealt with justly, when a child feels lingering anger and hurt, forgiving is what will help them recover—from that hurt, and maybe others as well.’

To read more click, “Bitterness is like cancer.  It eats upon the host. It doesn’t do anything to the object of its displeasure.” – Maya Angelou


Covey Cowan, Mill Valley, California

Helping Prisoners and Victims Alike

restorative justice

‘A dozen men sit in a circle. Some are old and some are young. A facilitator asks each one to check in with the group about how they are feeling emotionally, physically, or spiritually. Sometimes a man tears up with emotion as he talks. The others listen, offering nods of support or asking clarifying questions.

It sounds like a typical men’s support group—until you know these men are all prisoners incarcerated at San Quentin Prison.

Restorative justice models have come about because of a growing recognition that the criminal justice system is warehousing large numbers of people—disproportionately, African Americans, Hispanics, and the poor—and tearing apart communities while failing to make them safer. Not only does restorative justice offer deeper levels of engagement and rehabilitation, many argue it’s more cost effective, produces less recidivism, and is more satisfying to victims of crime than the current model.’

To read more click, ‘Hurt people hurt people,’


Covey Cowan, Mill Valley, California

Is ‘Mom Brain’ Part of the Plan?


mother and baby 2

‘My fellow mothers will recognize the symptoms of so-called “mom brain”—that feeling of fuzzy forgetfulness that seems to strike many moms as we juggle diapers and dirty dishes. But does this condition have any basis in science?

new study in Nature Neuroscience suggests the answer is yes. Pregnancy does seem to change a woman’s brain—perhaps permanently—so that she can better connect with other people.’

To read more click, ‘The more gray matter lost, the more positive the mothers felt about interactions with their baby.”


Covey Cowan, Mill Valley, California