FOCUS: Thriving in Harmony

Shared vision, team learning, personal mastery, mental models

“Creating an enlightened society where inner awareness
empowers people to thrive in harmony”
-Krishna Pendyala

The idea of people not just living in harmony, but thriving in harmony stirs my soul. It also reminds me of the description I heard recently of a Baha’i village high in the mountains of Vanuatu, an island state in the South Pacific. You may know Vanuatu from the Happy Planet Index, which measures happiness, life expectancy and damage to the planet. Vanuatu came out #1 in the world. Add to this already happy place the fact that a central tenet of the Baha’i Faith is unity or harmony, and my friend who visited there said you could positively feel the harmonic vibrations among the people, who were literally thriving in harmony.

            Krishna Pendyala is a friend of mine and the quote above describes his life purpose. For more than ten years this brilliant student of life has worked to tame his own ego, and to find a psychological or spiritual path to his own and others’ peaceful, productive living. This year he published a book, Beyond the PIG and the APE: Realizing SUCCESS and true HAPPINESS, in which he describes the path he’s discovered to build awareness. There have been many books espousing awareness as the key to growth and change. Krishna tells us how. Some have called it the How To Book for Eckhart Tolle’s ideas. Awareness empowers people to thrive in harmony.

            Here’s the very short version. The pursuit of instant gratification (PIG) and the avoidance of painful experiences (APE) often run our lives, without our even knowing it. Then our smaller self (the egoic self) fueled by fear, doubt, pain, and all the negative emotions, calls the shots. The small self (the ego) insures that we are full of anxiety, conflict and drama, which keeps our bigger self from enjoying its natural state of peace, joy, contentment. But it doesn’t have to be that way! Awareness is the key and is within reach.

            The book, which was written with Mike Vargo’s help, is an easy and often amusing read, and includes many riveting stories that illustrate levels of awareness. You can buy the book from Amazon via Krishna’s website,, or you can read many of the stories there without buying anything.

In the spirit of full disclosure, you should know that this book is dedicated to my husband, in this way, “To Hal, the happiest man I know.” And a story about Hal and a story from me are also in the book. But the compelling reason to read the book is that in this day when it is so easy to be bogged down with our own and other people’s pain and darkness, the goal of “creating an enlightened society where inner awareness empowers people to thrive in harmony” is worthy of our keenest attention and best effort. 

Coaching Questions

  1. How much of last week did you spend thriving in harmony?

  2. What has your PIG (pursuit of instant gratification) been up to today?

  3. How has your APE (avoidance of painful experience) shown its face this week?

  4. How much of what you are worrying about is the work of your ego?


  • Please join me for a 45-minute telegathering to explore the ins and outs of thriving in harmony. Call Wednesday, Sept. 7, 2011, at noon Eastern (11:00 a.m. Central, 10:00 a.m. MT, 9:00 a.m. Pacific) 1-218-862-1300 PIN 276583. No need to register…just call at that time!

Read an excerpt from Liberating Greatness, the Whole Brain Guide to an Extraordinary Life, the book Hal and I wrote, at

Reach me: 1-888-907-HOPE (4673)or e-mail I am a personal and executive coach and would be happy to offer you a complimentary coaching session by phone. Each month FRESH VIEWS focuses on a single topic, relates it to one of the five disciplines of a learning community, and offers a coaching tip and a follow-up telegathering. Please forward it to friends and colleagues. My purpose in writing FRESH VIEWS is to nurture, prod and encourage readers to think and talk about these topics with their families, friends and colleagues. Mine is only one view. Multiple conversations may deliver us to insights only hinted at here. Such a process sustains the vitality of learning relationships, learning families, learning organizations and learning communities.

Sharon Eakes | 720 Maple Lane | Sewickley, PA 15143

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