The Artist is Returned

Kelly EckertLifeLeave a Comment

In another (metaphorical) life, I was a professional artist under the pseudonym of Ana Kelly. I created paintings, sculptures, installation pieces, and short films. The last piece I created was … Read More

The Government Shutdown’s Spirit Animal is a Fox

Kelly EckertLife, Spirit AnimalsLeave a Comment

Most people in politics seem to spout their own opinions without concern for understanding other people. Further, they want desperately to be understood, but they don’t actually change how they communicate in order to be understood. When they aren’t understood, they simply repeat the exact same thing in the exact same way, implying that the listener was too stupid to understand them the first time.

That is not Fox.

Fear is Fatal—My Father’s Suicide

Kelly EckertLifeLeave a Comment

My dad spent most of his life following his fear rather than following his heart. When I was growing up, I watched him drag himself—miserable—to work every day. He always told *me* to pick a career I loved. He also told me, “Do as I say, not as I do.” Because what he was modeling was taking a job for money, not for love—caving to the pressures of family and reputation, giving in to society’s definition of success, not his own.

Pittsburgh’s Spirit Animal is a 40-Foot Rubber Duck

Kelly EckertLife, Spirit Animals2 Comments

During the month of October, Pittsburgh has the pleasure of hosting artist Florentijn Hofman’s “Rubber Duck.” From the moment of its arrival on September 27th, the 40-foot tall inflatable duck has sparked smiles and inspired joy. It seems no one can resist the happy yellow or the almost Mona Lisa smile of this floating animal totem.

Why Are You Here?

Kelly EckertLife, RandomLeave a Comment

I see scores of people sharing articles, quotes and Facebook memes reminding you that your purpose for being alive is to serve other people.

The problem

My problem is that it’s not true. At least, it’s not true for everyone.


Kelly EckertLife, RandomLeave a Comment

As human animals, fear is hardwired into our brains. Fear of the unknown, fear of the dark, fear of big snarling carnivores all helped our ancestors survive—and pass on their genes—in the African savannah. Fear of heights, fear of snakes, fear of crowds can all continue to contribute to our survival even today.

6 Tips for Handling Embarrassment

Kelly EckertLife, RandomLeave a Comment

If you’ve been following my work on the 7 primary fears, you may remember that my primary fear is vulnerability, which translates into the fear of being criticized or ridiculed. When fear of vulnerability is your top primary fear, you end up with plenty of opportunities to make yourself vulnerable, to be criticized and to be ridiculed. It may seem ironic—the thing you most want to avoid is the thing that you attract.