Feeling stressed? Join the crowd. No matter your viewpoint on what’s going on in the world, the reality is that you have burdens a little closer to home — as parents, leaders, students, or simply as adults who need to pay bills and navigate the complexity of your environment.

Yep, stress can suck. It wreaks havoc with both your mental and physical health, to say nothing of your peace of mind.

This is about the time to remind yourself that stress is timeless. Life has always been hard. People got sick, survived wars, endured famines, and raised teenagers. …


The self-help industry is a booming business. It’s made celebrities out of people with minor talent but a major understanding of how to capitalize on the problems of others. God knows from under which rock some of these people come, but their good fortune is the product of a growing interest in personal development.

Reader beware, however, because most of the hack advice out there is bloated puffs of nothing. Trite words of inspiration at best, and a shallow path to healing at worst.

Typical well-being articles and books are not able to help you deal with the root of…


As a new agent, right out of the FBI Academy, I felt as though I could conquer any roadblock or setback thrown my way because I’d spent 4 months learning how to prepare to make arrests, interrogate suspects, and gather evidence.

So, it was a bit of a surprise that, when I attended my first squad meeting to plan the arrest of a terrorist that had been identified, the case agent laid out the basic plan and then asked each one of us to find holes in it.

What could go wrong? He asked.

To me, it seemed straightforward—knock and…


Chances are good that, at some point in your life, you tried to change your behavior. You probably relied on willpower to stay focused, and chances are also good that you failed and ended up back where you started.

If you are unlucky, you blamed yourself which only produces shame—and that is a rabbit hole with no end in sight.

There’s lots of advice out there on how to build better habits and be more productive, which implies that we’ll also become more successful. Success is usually measured in terms of money, prestige, or power. …


Everybody wants to be a success. Or a hero. Or famous…or something. Some of our dreams are juvenile while others propel us toward a life of value and meaning.

When I was six, I wanted to be Daniel Boone. Biology, among other considerations, prevented me from being a tall man in the wilderness who was strong enough to defend the weak during the onset of the American Revolution.

My dream changed and matured over the years and I decided the best way for me to defend the weak and victimized in my world was to become an FBI agent. For…


Show me someone who has never made a mistake and I will show you someone who has never accomplished anything meaningful in their life. They are losers, people who are generally timid and lazy — and usually selfish because it’s all about their precious feelings.

They prefer to stay in a safe, albeit boring, comfort zone and rely on others to create the circumstances around which they live their life. And then bitch about it when their needs aren’t met or they feel slighted in some way. …


Image by Getty

There’s something positive and uplifting about our circumstances now that the COVID pandemic promises to be a distant, albeit bad, memory. It’s especially poignant because those same memories resemble a scaled-down version of the apocalypse. New beginnings are an opportunity to revisit our cherished notions of how things “ought” to be in the future.

But when I took a closer look at the word apocalyptic, I found that it’s a Greek word meaning “unveiling.” …


I’m a firm believer that jerks are not born; they are made the old-fashioned way — from the ground up, by adults who never outgrew their selfish behavior. Jerks are groomed by people who live by crappy values and tend to be awful human beings.

You know the ones I mean; people who tether their goals in life to money, greed, and power. They’re the ones who die bitter and pissed off that they can’t take their possessions with them.

If you’ve been a jerk in life, believe me, someone’s therapist knows all about you. While your words and actions…


When people meet me, they expect me to have the kind of bravado that is portrayed by FBI agents on TV and in movies-confident with no signs of weakness or vulnerability. Nothing could be further from the truth!

It’s true that the most successful agents I worked alongside were brave, but it wasn’t the bluster that shoves people out of their way or abuses power. Nor was it the detachment that keeps emotions on a tight leash.

The best leaders are those who have the courage to be themselves. They have the courage to be transparent and vulnerable. To many…


2020 was about staying alive. Everything else was fluff.

This summed up an email I received from one of my readers. She still has her job but it feels like hell because so many of her friends lost their job. She’s healthy but that feels like crap, too, because she’s lost two family members to COVID.

On the plus side, no one has broken her heart because she’s no longer looking for love. She’s saving money because there’s no reason to buy anything except food and other essentials. …

LaRae Quy

Former counterintelligence FBI agent | Mental Toughness Center | Consultant | Speaker | Author: Secrets of A Strong Mind, & Mental Toughness for Women Leaders

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