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CAUTION, the statements I am about to make are general assumptions that are not at all open-minded or entirely true. Think of the beginning text below as a comedic skit or dialogue that exaggerates to get a point across “for viewers like you, thank you!” 


There are two types of people, 

TYPE 1: Those that always encourage the group to first read the directions or manual when taking on a task that has it. And have the catch phrase “Check the manual or directions again!” when stuck on a problem. 

TYPE 2: Those that walk directly past the front door sign at a store that says, “CASH ONLY” and still try paying with a card. Or students that run past the yellow caution sign in the hall and end up slipping on a freshly mopped floor. 

So dear reader, what type do you most relate with? 

[end of comedic dialogue]


Whether you choose a side or not, as we emphasize in our Session 2 presentation it is best to not jump to conclusions and instead be… “OPEN MINDED!”  If you believe reading is not “your thing” I have options for both the bookworms and book skeptics. First is a small selection of podcasts for the skeptics. Before deciding if you officially dislike podcasts, I request you at least browse a few, even if it is not the ones I recommend. Most podcasts have intriguing stories and are paired with music or sound effects.  They also present various perspectives and points of view from licensed experts, authors, professors, well-known figures, or unique individuals. The last great pro of podcasts is that you can easily listen to it when you are doing mundane work like taking a walk, folding clothes or waiting for your ride. Convenient right? Before moving onto the list, it is important to note that these specific books and podcasts were chosen because they focus on positive thinking and mental strength. So sit back, relax, and continue reading with a hot cup of soothing tea or water, up to you. I can’t see you anyways.

1.The Happiness Lab with Dr. Laurie Santos

Starting off with one of my favorite podcasts and speakers is The Happiness Lab with Dr. Laurie Santos. Dr. Santos is a professor of Psychology at Yale who started this podcast and dedicated her studies to the science of happiness. In her discussions with guest speakers, listeners learn to identify factors that do or do not contribute to our overall well-being. identify the factors that do or do not contribute to our happiness. Skills like understanding our emotions and interpersonal relationships show more improvement in well-being than having more money or more followers on social media. You can find The Happiness Lab on several platforms such as Spotify, Youtube,  and Google Podcasts. Be sure to check out the link above for the website which has all their linked platforms.

Suggested Episodes: 

How to Adopt a Growth Mindset

“How Do I Stop Negative Self-talk?”

Laurie Gets a Fun-tervention (Part One)

2.  Ted Talks Daily

Some of you may already recognize the picture above or name alone. To clarify, yes it is the same TED Talks you most likely heard in the classroom or on Youtube. TED Talks Daily podcast is the audio recordings of the videos found on Youtube, great for those who do not care to watch the video and much rather prefer listening. Since TED Talks are diverse, there are numerous topics to explore and learn about, great for beating boredom. You never know, listening to different speakers can spark a potential career interest or innovative idea. From this year’s podcast episodes I chose two of the shorter ones for interested students taking a ten minute break. 

Suggested Episodes: 

The future will be shaped by optimists by Kevin Kelly (March 24, 2022)

Why having fun is the secret to a healthier life by Catherine Price (July 21, 2022)

3. Everything’s Cherry

Everything’s Cherry is a Guam-based podcast hosted by Ruzelle Almonds and CJ Ochoco that frames their discussions around all things related to mental health. Taking to the mic many mental health topics our culture or households on Guam may consider taboo. The episode I recommend for students is titled “Under Pressure.” In the episode the hosts discuss their own teenage pressures and that of teens today. Show some local support and listen to their podcast to see if you relate. 

4. Kwik Brain with Jim Kwik

Do you like Marvel or superheroes? Do you wish you had superpowers like them?  Well I would like to introduce to you someone who works to teach people how to feel like superheroes by activating their brain to superhuman heights, Jim Kwik. Now it may seem like I am exaggerating but in one of his presentations Kwik began by asking the audience to give him random numbers to memorize. After about fifteen or more random numbers, single and double digit, he swiftly memorized and repeated the numbers back to the audience in order. In episode “250: A Kwik Confidence Boost,”  he shares with the audience some of the trials he had growing up as well as how he ended up teaching Marvel actors like Hugh Jackman, Jennifer Lawrence, Elliot Page, Patrick Steward, and James McAvory.  If you listen to his podcast for one segment I have to say the opening intro gets me all the time.  Moreover, almost all of the episodes are only 16 to 20 minutes long, “a fast paced show designed to help busy people learn and achieve anything in a fraction of the time!” (cited from Kwik’s opening introduction) I hope you learn from him abilities and ideas that make you feel “superhuman” like I have. 

Suggested episodes: 

250:  A Kwik Confidence Boost

272: Strategies to Taking Notes You’ll Remember

271: Activate Your Brain for Greater Physical & Mental Strength with Anat Baniel

5. Born a Crime by Trevor Noah

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Born A Crime is the memoir of comedian Trevor Noah who grew up in South Africa. Despite the many adversities Noah faces, the book continues with a brilliant dynamic between humorous and in-depth anecdotes that show his unique coming of age tale. Within the first chapter Noah and his mother jump out from a moving vehicle to escape their suspicious driver, sounds like a James Bond/spy movie right? For the bookworms, this novel may serve as an intriguing and light-hearted quick read that could easily be finished in about an hour or two. If you are unable to purchase a copy at the bookstore, try checking your local library to see if you can borrow it temporarily.

6. The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch


As you can already tell I am a very extroverted individual, my social intelligence is number five on my list. For those who have not taken the survey yet, that means it is one of my strongest character strengths, like top 5 out of 24. For me I enjoy being social and define it as  learning about others by hearing their unique stories, so you now understand why I keep recommending memoirs or autobiographies. The Last Lecture was a book recommended by my Lead Trainer when I first started at Todu Guam Foundation. The author, Randy Pausch is a computer science professor at Carnegie Mellon University who was 47 when he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and told he only had several months to live. Instead of living in regret or despair he decides to do one last lecture as a way to teach his kids and students what lessons he won’t be able to tell them in the future. Inspirational right? 

Hopefully this post connects you with resources that encourage or motivate you to be positive and resilient. Watch out for more book recommendations in the future and let us know what you think by sending us a message on the website or on our Facebook and Instagram profiles. Thank you for your time and don’t forget to always have… KINDER DAYS AHEAD!!!