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Doing What Works Profile

Doing What Works

English, Health / Medicine, 1 seasons, 38 episodes, 1 day 1 hour 12 minutes
Doing What Works is a nationally-syndicated radio talk show that helps you fix what you don't like about your life.
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Are you setting your sights high enough?

As a cub reporter for a small radio station, I wanted to interview Bobby Knight when he was head coach of the Indiana Hoosiers. He not only agreed, but changed my idea of what’s possible. Katie drew me out about the experience in this edition of Doing What Works.Here are your show notes…A Season on the Brink chronicles the 1985-86 season of the Hoosiers.Vince Staten, Maureen’s favorite professor, says you can make things happen with a good letter.The waiting is the hardest part!<a href="" target
28/11/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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Do you put your best face forward?

Katie’s face is her canvas. In this edition of Doing What Works she talks about how it started, why she isn’t a makeup artist by trade, and how it gives her practice accepting compliments. Even before she added rhinestones to the mix, Katie’s look has been a playground for increasing self-confidence.Here are your show notes…Katie’s makeup is a study in positive externality.
21/11/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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How do you show your true colors?

Come on. We dare you. Get through a conversation -- heck, get through a paragraph of conversation -- without using an idiom. In this edition of Doing What Works you’ll not only learn the origin of some of your most-fallen-back-on expressions but might just be inspired to up your game (oops!) conversationally.Here are your show notes…An idiom is a phrase you can’t decipher the meaning of from its individual words, and if overused becomes a cliché.Here are some idioms and their meanings.Here are some more idioms and their meanings.<a href="" target="_blank" rel="nore
14/11/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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How do you know if you’re in a rut?

The same routine can keep you from having to make the same decisions, but the same routine can also mean you’re in a rut. The examples we cite in this edition of Doing What Works might make you laugh in recognition as you clutter bust your daily grind.Here are your show notes…Dr. Nick Morgan advises public speakers to invite people in the audience to move to the front: “The energy in the room will change.”Have you heard the one about the motivational speaker Jack Canfield and the yellow notebook? Jerry Seinfeld says older men dress
07/11/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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Can you hone your adaptability?

“We’ll figure it out” is our family motto. That’s one reason Katie and I consider ourselves adaptable, because we take that motto so much to heart. In this edition of Doing What Works we hope to inspire a belief that the best is yet to be.Here are your show notes…Have you heard of wu wei?The harder you work, the luckier you get.Mel Robbins suggests you ask yourself, “What if it all works out?”<a href=";qid=&amp;sr=" target="_blank" rel="noreferrer noop
31/10/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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Why do you love what you love?

The big city. The bike. The journal and the tablet. These are a few of Katie’s favorite things, and in this edition of Doing What Works she so eloquently describes why she loves them I couldn’t help but be inspired. I think you will be, too!Here are your show notes…In Good Company inspired Katie’s desire to go to college in New York City.New York City’s Summer Streets inspired Katie to start biking.Like Katie, Tim Urban draws stick figures.The Far Side’s Gary Larson<
24/10/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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What do you notice about what you love?

Things that hold other things, and a store that sells them. A store that sells those things but also groceries! Tiny things. And drawing people out about all the things. You can learn a lot about what you value by examining what you love, the way Katie helped me do in this edition of Doing What Works.Here are your show notes…Marie Kondo suggests you keep only what’s beautiful or useful.The Container Store is my favorite!Sarah Susanka is a fan of better, not bigger, spaces.Barbara Sher said horses run because they love it, and suggested you do things for the same rea
17/10/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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Do you need a proxy for your feelings?

I felt really bad when Aaron Rodgers tore his Achilles tendon four plays into the 2023 season, and then I felt bad about that. It isn’t as if I know him personally, after all. That was the week Katie pulled further ahead of me in our Wordle competition than she had in months, and I took the setback with all the composure of a five-year-old. We’ll tell you what’s going on in this edition of Doing What Works.Here are your show notes… Testosterone levels rise in fans of winning teams.Have you seen the video of a little kid imitating his father while they’re watching a football game? What does Taylor Swift have in common with the NFL? <a href="http
10/10/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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What does geography mean to you?

A sneaky sad part of life is returning somewhere that was once important to you, then realizing it isn’t the same because you’re not the same. When Katie shared that observation in this edition of Doing What Works I was sad. At first. Then she taught me a new word, palimpsest, applied it to geography -- and inspired me to be more intentional about how I file my memories.Here are your show notes…George Carlin says an artist has an obligation to be en route.A palimpsest is “a manuscript page, either from a scroll or a book, from which the text has been scraped or washed off in preparation for reuse, in the form of another document.”
03/10/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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How can you help someone who’s hurting?

Sometimes the way to help people feel better is to encourage them to feel even worse. For a while, at least. They can’t process their sadness, after all, without being sad. This edition of Doing What Works is one of our favorites, because we don’t pretend it’s easy -- but we do show our work. Here are your show notes… Staying the Course: A Runner’s Toughest Race taught me what it means to be a writer. Donna Mills says aging is not for sissies! Phil Stutz says he doesn’t think about his Parkinson’s so much as all the work he still wants to do.
26/09/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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Can you accept unearned grace?

If you find it difficult to ask for help, we can help. In this edition of Doing What Works we remind you how good it feels to be needed, and invite you to extend that opportunity to others. Here are your show notes… That feeling when a friend tells you you’re worthy of immediate attention. The most important metric to track is personal energy. In Blue Like Jazz, Donald Miller explores the idea of unearned grace.
19/09/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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Are you willing to shift your outlook?

The kind of week you have might depend on whether you ask yourself what you’re dreading, or what you’re looking forward to. This edition of Doing What Works is an invitation to change your mind(set). Here are your show notes… Dr. Daniel Amen suggests you challenge ants. No, not those. These! Automatic negative thoughts. The Untethered Soul’s Michael Singer says the voice inside your head is like an obnoxious roommate who will not shut up. Lollipop moments create ripples forever. Donald Miller’s <a href="" target="_blank" rel
12/09/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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What is your motivation for speaking?

Someone stumbles on a word and you jump in with a correction. Are you being helpful or obnoxious? In this edition of Doing What Works we examine boo-boos like “Pacific” when it’s “specific,” and whether corrections are kind or cruel. We also make a case against pointing out an unzipped zipper -- and how, while youth isn’t necessarily wasted on the young, feedback might be! Here are your show notes… “Casually cruel in the name of being honest” is a Taylor Swift lyric.
05/09/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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Are you up for an experiment?

What do oranges, façades, butterflies, and dolls have in common? You’ll find out if you listen to this edition of Doing What Works. But bring your childlike self, because this is an experiment in random (with a dollop of whimsy).Here are your show notes…What are tapas?What’s the squiggle under the C in façade?What’s the precise definition of façade?We all have a face that we hide away forever.Would you like to see <a href="" target="_blank" rel="noref
29/08/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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Are you too quick to label things?

Your next job. Your relationship. The apartment you want. Even if it doesn’t bother you to be vague about those plans or circumstances, the people in your orbit might pressure you to label them. Now what? That’s what we tackle in this edition of Doing What Works. Wish us luck!Here are your show notes…Casting director Jane Brody trusts her first impression at least in part because that’s how the audience decides whether to pay attention.Katie was in Business Professionals of America in high school.
22/08/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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Does your ego run the show?

Katie and I fancy ourselves the enlightened sort, who only occasionally let our egos get in the way of doing the right thing. When really, those egos get in the way constantly. Now what? Katie thinks I did a great job of answering that question in this edition of Doing What Works, but we’ll let you be the judge!Here are your show notes…We contain multitudes.The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.The capacity for joy directly related to capacity for pain.
16/08/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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Can you make your later years your best?

Who’s your role model for aging? Dennis Welch is one of mine. The publicist-turned-musician joins us for a special edition of Doing What Works. Dennis would never dream of getting to a point in life where he says, “Well, I guess this is it. I guess it’s all downhill from here.” Give him an hour and he’ll give you new hope for the next few decades of your life.Here are your show notes…If I Live to Be a Hundred is Dennis Welch’s latest.Steve Martin says turning sixty means your long-term goals are now short-term.Steven Pressfield says the time to start your next project is the day you finish the last one. </
07/08/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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How does something go from farm to fork?

Quick. What do you think of when you hear about the farm bill? Handouts to farmers, right? That’s what I thought, and I should know better. Our show’s producer, Darrell Anderson, has been hosting a daily farm feature for almost thirty years. In this edition of Doing What Works I learn what I should’ve learned long ago. You might find it enlightening, too!Here are your show notes…Scientist invents lab-grown beef only to realize cows exist.Interested in a book about climate change misconceptions? Here you go! Farm to Fork airs on mo
01/08/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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Do you waste energy racing through life?

You see how fast you can get to work, empty your inbox, make it to the meeting, get back from lunch, finish your work, get to the gym, get home, and meal prep so you can have…twenty more minutes than you would have otherwise, to sit on the couch before going to bed. If this sounds familiar, you’ll feel less alone for listening to this edition of Doing What Works.Here are your show notes…A wait of indeterminate length will feel longer than a finite wait.Derek Sivers was once struck by how little he gained by going all out on his bike versus riding at a more relaxed pace.
25/07/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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Do you really understand your feelings?

Empathy isn’t walking in someone else’s shoes. It’s listening to people tell their stories, and it’s believing them even when you can’t relate. Human connection is a lot of work, as we talk about in this edition of Doing What Works, and that’s one reason it’s so meaningful.Here are your show notes…Tim Urban has a few thoughts on fatherhood.Atlas of the Heart will help you understand the language of human experience.Doing something narcissistic doesn’t make you a narcissist.
18/07/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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What makes a great story?

Something happens, then something else happens, and then still something else. That’s a series of events, but it isn’t a story. A story has stakes, motivation, gaps between what people expect and what they get. This edition of Doing What Works is a primer on story structure that just might help you live a better story.Here are your show notes…Story, by Robert McKee, is a book about screenwriting.Steven Pressfield is famous for, among other things, inspiring writers.A Million Miles in a Thousand Years, by Donald Miller, is another book about story that Katie and I both lo
11/07/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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What’s your version of date night?

Darrell and I have date night every morning. We chat before the days descend on us, and in this edition of Doing What Works we explain why that beats the more traditional (and expectation-laden) alternative. Katie talks about what makes a great date in general, and encourages you to enjoy the life-changing magic of your own company.Here are your show notes…How to choose a life partner!
04/07/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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What’s your happy place?

Are you feeding your soul enough variety? Are you taking regular breaks from your day job to get out in nature and let yourself be awestruck by that wonder? The ideal hobby will capitalize on skills you wouldn’t otherwise get a chance to use, and in this edition of Doing What Works we’ll inspire you to find it.Here are your show notes…Don’t be intimidated by the word “callings,” suggests the man who wrote the book.Do you commit to the bit?
27/06/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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Do you honor your boundaries?

There’s a wonderful expression that goes something like, “We only touch but in spots.” Better to admit there are certain discussion topics best left off the table for now (and maybe forever) than to threaten the relationship by addressing them. Respecting that limitation is strangely freeing, and Katie and I are Exhibit A in this edition of Doing What Works.Here are your show notes…Terri Cole is an expert on boundaries.The bystander effect keeps people from helping sometimes.By following her interests, Katie accidentally built the perfect resume for her
20/06/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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Can you ever go home again?

Your time is finite, and so is the number of friendships you can maintain. So why go back into your past to rekindle a relationship? Because it might be worth the risk of it not going well, that’s why. We’ll help you assess that risk in this edition of Doing What Works.Here are your show notes…Once you open a can of worms, the only way to put them back is to use a larger can.“To forget a friend is sad. Not everyone has had a friend.”Not sure whether to get in touch with someone from your past? You have to be ready for it to not turn out well.
13/06/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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How do you navigate the gray areas?

A banana peel is biodegradable, eventually. And it’s the “eventually” part that’s ripe for discussion in this edition of Doing What Works. Is that banana peel litter? Is the parent who walks away from a grocery cart with a kid inside putting that child’s life in danger? Should you honk or yell or otherwise berate a driver not paying enough attention to cyclists and pedestrians? We don’t have all (or really any) of the answers, but you might be inspired by the questions!Here are your show notes…If you want a copy of the advice column Katie brought up at the start of this show, let me know.You might love Michael Schur’s How to Be Perfect as much as Katie did!
06/06/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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What’s so great about waiting in line?

Remember that person who budged in line at the coffee shop? It’s not the kind of thing you’d write to an advice columnist about, granted. But I bet you regaled your sweetheart with quite the tale of indignation! Katie and I think waiting in line is a fascinating study in human behavior, and if you don’t agree you haven’t listened to this encore edition of Doing What Works. Maybe you could partake the next time you’re waiting in line.Here are your show notes…Our Minnesota is showing when we call it budging! So says How Not to Be Wrong author Jordan Ellenberg.There’s a science to this.Are you in heavy traffic that’s merging from two lanes to one? Do the zipper! And, yes. <a href="
30/05/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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Do you match your energy to the task?

You’ll probably never look forward to chores, but you’ll look forward to them even less if you wait until you’re tired. We take a break from the standard fare in this edition of Doing What Works to share life hacks -- don’t you hate that phrase? -- that (you guessed it) work.Here are your show notes…Answering 911, by Caroline Burau, will get you thinking about how many words you have at your disposal as the day wears on.If you haven’t tried compartmentalizing -- Katie’s a fan! -- you might find it as life-changing as she does.<a href="
23/05/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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Have you had a quarter-life crisis yet?

If you feel like you should have X,Y, and Z going by the time you’re a certain age you’re bound to be disappointed. If you’re anything like Katie, you might head off perceived disappointment on the part of others with self-deprecation. In this edition of Doing What Works we give you permission (not that you need it!) to own a transition, even if there’s nothing particularly unique about it.Here are your show notes…Executive coach Marshall Goldsmith hopes you won’t fall prey to the “I’ll be happy when this happens” mindset.“Comparison is the thief of joy.” ~ Katie’s boss, and others!“If you compare yourself with others you may become vain or bitter, for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.” ~ <a href="https://www
16/05/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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Do you believe in miracles?

If you didn’t catch it the first time we hope you won’t miss it this time, my interview with Katie about the greatest adventure of her life. Thanks for listening to this encore edition of Doing What Works!No show notes this time!
09/05/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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Do you worry too much or just enough?

“Notice I’m tensing up, decide that can’t be good, tense up even more.” If that describes you as perfectly as it does us, you’ll enjoy the line we walk in this edition of Doing What Works. How do you share something important with a worrier that might worry that person more?Here are your show notes…Dumb Ways to Die!
02/05/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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What’s the finish line?

Have you ever caught yourself racing through one part of your day in order to get to a supposedly better part? I did that only hours ago, eating a salad. Why was I in such a hurry? Was a mastodon going to sneak up from behind and snatch it away? I mean, really. Slow down, as we suggest in this edition of Doing What Works, or you might miss your life.Here are your show notes…Barbara Sher used to say the passage of time drives you crazy when you know you’re not using it right.Elizabeth Perkins played a kindergarten teacher in About Last Night and talked about parallel play.“All money gets you is a nicer place to watch TV.” That’s Maureen’s mom.“Is today the day I die?” A question Morrie from <a href="
24/04/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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Do you spend enough time doing nothing?

Don’t take your phone into the bathroom with you. Don’t feel like you have to be productive all the time. Make appointments to do nothing and keep them. In this edition of Doing What Works you’ll get more suggestions like these. If you try even one? You may decide doing nothing is a worthwhile way to spend your time.Here are your show notes…The not-so-typical item on Maureen’s bucket list! The Doodle Revolution might inspire you to look at doodling as deep thinking in disguise.
18/04/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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When’s the last time you touched a crab?

When you micromanage your child’s experience at a science fair or museum visit they’ll learn a lot, but probably not what you hoped. It’s much better to step back and watch the thrill of the unfolding, and we encourage you to keep the “fun” in “functions” in this edition of Doing What Works.Here are your show notes…Would you like an entertaining discussion of whether schools kill creativity?Why do you call someone crabby when they’re grumpy?
10/04/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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How do you celebrate your 500th date?

Just when I thought I knew my daughter, she surprises me -- but not as much as she surprised a recent date. We’re talking party hats, noisemakers, even a certificate that’s signed and dated. Listen to this edition of Doing What Works to find out if there will be date #2 with Date #500.No show notes this time!
04/04/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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Want to rate and review the show?

You can hardly do anything these days without being asked to rate the experience. So add us to the list! In this edition of Doing What Works we ask you to consider rating the show and/or reviewing it and/or sharing it with others. But wait. There’s more! We also wrestle with how difficult we sometimes find it to ask for what we need. Maybe you can relate.Here are your show notes…Staying the Course: A Runner’s Toughest Race is the memoir of former marathon champion Dick Beardsley.The War of Art is a book of encouragement for creatives.Papyrus is a greet
28/03/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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Do you experiment with your life?

As a kid, when Katie had difficulty falling asleep, she used to get out from under the covers and move her pillow aside for a few minutes. She found that once she put that bedding back it was easier to revel in the sudden comfort and fall asleep after all. Maureen’s been finishing off her hot showers with blasts of cold water. Get comfortable being uncomfortable, as we suggest in this edition of Doing What Works, and worst case you can be proud of yourself for the reaching.Here are your show notes…Cryotherapy is Maureen’s latest experiment, inspired by someone in the comments section of a recent “Writing Wednesdays” post by Steven Pressfield.
21/03/202339 minutes 50 seconds
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Do you say yes often enough?

You don’t know what’s going to make you happy until you try it. The job or the relationship that looks good on paper may not feel so great at, say, ten o’clock on a Tuesday. That’s one reason to say yes to more things, so you can get a better feel for more things. Saying yes is a habit and a mindset. If you practice saying yes to smaller things with low stakes, you might find yourself more willing to take bigger risks. That’s what we hope to inspire in this edition of Doing What Works. Here are your show notes…Irresistible author Adam Alter [] was one of Katie’s professors at NYU Stern and “say yes” was his advice.“I wish I might go back and do the little things you asked me to” is from a poem by Alice E. Chase [] entitled “To My Grown-Up Son.”<b
28/12/202039 minutes 8 seconds