How A Panic Attack On National TV Led To Meditation As The Path To Happiness

The Rich Roll Podcast

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How A Panic Attack On National TV Led To Meditation As The Path To Happiness

The Rich Roll Podcast

Everyone loves a good transformation story.

We like it even better when it’s super dramatic. Preferably framed to appear like it all went down like some kind of overnight miracle. Bonus points for million dollar paydays, instantaneous cures, extreme but effortless weight loss and age reversal.

But that’s just not how this stuff works, people.

Growth and change are hard. And never overnight. It’s a process. 2, 3, 5 even 10 steps backwards for every single step in the right direction. Rinse & repeat, generally in obscurity. It requires dedication, faith, time, toil and pain — because getting out of your comfort zone is just that: uncomfortable. It means taking an honest look in the mirror and objectively evaluating your unpleasantries, missteps and weaknesses. Shedding light on blind spots. And grappling with demons, hardwired patterns and deeply ingrained perspectives on ourselves and our place in the world.

But change is also simple. It begins with a basic a decision to do (or not do) something; anything. A decision generally followed by tiny — sometimes almost imperceptible — changes in behavior made consistently over extended periods of time.

In other words, the trite annoying adage is true. Baby steps do move mountains.

True, sustainable personal growth rarely comes about by changing everything overnight. Instead, it’s about exploring and ultimately developing some level of mastery over just a few small yet important shifts – or even just one aspect of how you spend your time each day. Adopt this approach – a slight shift in perspective and behavior – and you just might be amazed at how impactful this can be on your life experience. How you see, feel about and ultimately interact with yourself, others and the world at large.

Do this — and like today's guest — you just might find yourself 10% Happier*.

Dan Harris.

This guy is impressive. Young and ambitious, Dan joined ABC News in 2000 and quickly rose through the ranks under the mentorship of broadcasting legends Peter Jennings and Diane Sawyer. Today he balances duties as co-anchor of ABC News' Nightline and co-anchor of the weekend edition of Good Morning America on top of filing reports and filling in on air throughout the week on various ABC News programs.

Along the way, Dan has covered some huge stories. He reported on the mass shootings in Newtown, Connecticut, Aurora, Colorado and Tucson, Arizona, and anchored natural disasters from Haiti to Myanmar to Hurricane Katrina. He has also covered combat in Afghanistan, Israel, Gaza and the West Bank, including six visits to war-torn Iraq.

The job is a relentless pressure cooker. The stress mounted, compounded by multiple tours as an embedded journalist in conflict ridden areas of the Middle East. Depression ensued, followed by self-medicating with recreational use of cocaine and ecstasy. Ultimately, these factors conspired to take a serious toll on Dan's mental and physical health. And it's here that things get interesting.

In June 2004, it all caught up with Dan (as these things are wont to do), ultimately manifesting in a very public panic attack on national TV – on Good Morning America of all shows – in front of 5 million people.

He wasn’t sure what was wrong with him, only that he knew he had to make some changes. Around this time,

See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

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Everyone loves a good transformation story.

We like it even better when it’s super dramatic. Preferably framed to appear like it all went down like some kind of overnight miracle. Bonus points for million dollar paydays, instantaneous cures, extreme but effortless weight loss and age reversal.

But that’s just not how this stuff works, people.

Growth and change are hard. And never overnight. It’s a process. 2, 3, 5 even 10 steps backwards for every single step in the right direction. Rinse & repeat, generally in obscurity. It requires dedication, faith, time, toil and pain — because getting out of your comfort zone is just that: uncomfortable. It means taking an honest look in the mirror and objectively evaluating your unpleasantries, missteps and weaknesses. Shedding light on blind spots. And grappling with demons, hardwired patterns and deeply ingrained perspectives on ourselves and our place in the world.

But change is also simple. It begins with a basic a decision to do (or not do) something; anything. A decision generally followed by tiny — sometimes almost imperceptible — changes in behavior made consistently over extended periods of time.

In other words, the trite annoying adage is true. Baby steps do move mountains.

True, sustainable personal growth rarely comes about by changing everything overnight. Instead, it’s about exploring and ultimately developing some level of mastery over just a few small yet important shifts – or even just one aspect of how you spend your time each day. Adopt this approach – a slight shift in perspective and behavior – and you just might be amazed at how impactful this can be on your life experience. How you see, feel about and ultimately interact with yourself, others and the world at large.

Do this — and like today's guest — you just might find yourself 10% Happier*.

Dan Harris.

This guy is impressive. Young and ambitious, Dan joined ABC News in 2000 and quickly rose through the ranks under the mentorship of broadcasting legends Peter Jennings and Diane Sawyer. Today he balances duties as co-anchor of ABC News' Nightline and co-anchor of the weekend edition of Good Morning America on top of filing reports and filling in on air throughout the week on various ABC News programs.

Along the way, Dan has covered some huge stories. He reported on the mass shootings in Newtown, Connecticut, Aurora, Colorado and Tucson, Arizona, and anchored natural disasters from Haiti to Myanmar to Hurricane Katrina. He has also covered combat in Afghanistan, Israel, Gaza and the West Bank, including six visits to war-torn Iraq.

The job is a relentless pressure cooker. The stress mounted, compounded by multiple tours as an embedded journalist in conflict ridden areas of the Middle East. Depression ensued, followed by self-medicating with recreational use of cocaine and ecstasy. Ultimately, these factors conspired to take a serious toll on Dan's mental and physical health. And it's here that things get interesting.

In June 2004, it all caught up with Dan (as these things are wont to do), ultimately manifesting in a very public panic attack on national TV – on Good Morning America of all shows – in front of 5 million people.

He wasn’t sure what was wrong with him, only that he knew he had to make some changes. Around this time,

See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

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