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Mike O'Mary is founder of the Note Project, a campaign to make the world a million times better by inspiring 1 million people to share notes of appreciation. He is also owner and publisher at Dream of Things, a book publisher and online retailer. In addition, Mike is author of The Note, a book about the power of appreciation, and Wise Men and Other Stories, a collection of holiday-related essays.

In his career, Mike has written essays, fiction, drama and sketch comedy. He has published stories and essays in the Sunday magazines of the Chicago Tribune, Denver Post, Baltimore Sun, Cleveland Plain Dealer and Detroit Free Press.

Mike has also written and produced sketch comedy in Chicago, and he was a commentator on WNIJ – Northern Illinois Public Radio, doing weekly commentaries as part of the local segment of National Public Radio’s Morning Edition program.

Mike is a graduate of Knox College (BA in Economics and English-Writing), the University of Montana (MFA in Creative Writing, MA in English Literature), and the Second City Comedy Writing Program.

In addition to his creative work, Mike has more than 20 years of experience in corporate communications, producing speeches, annual reports and other executive communications for the CEOs of Fortune 500 companies.

Mike's daughter, Kathleen, is an artist based in Chicago, Illinois. Mike is engaged to be married to Kathy Hayevsky, a Montessori teacher, in June 2011. They live in a 140-year-old house in Downers Grove, Illinois, along with several very noisy little birds.

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Finding Solid Ground

Maurice Sendak once said, "There must be more to life than having everything." There is. And the secret to finding it is to seek meaning in your life, not control. Many people spend their lives seeking control... of money, real estate, jobs, careers, other people... you name it, somebody wants to control it. But control is an illusory thing. It's like running side-hill on loose gravel. The terrain is always changing, so to maintain "control," you have to keep moving. In the end, people are much happier when they stop pursuing control and start seeking meaning. At that point, you…

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