About The Notes



A short daily post to help us move the world forward.



Workshops to help narrow the divide between where you are and where you want to be. 



And then there's me, the Noter-in-Chief. 




The Lightning Notes is a short daily post to help us move the world forward. It features great ideas and striking stories to remind us that we matter and that improving the world is our matter.

If I do my job right, you can read a Note in 1 to 2 minutes with your morning coffee or tea and leave feeling a little bit better about yourself and the world. 

Looking for a place to start? Here are Notes on the antidote to shame, how to be immortal, and the way to win anything. Or these interviews with Sherman Alexie on creativity, Krista Tippett on living meaningfully, and George Saunders on the purpose of art.

Like what you see? Get The Notes in your inbox daily or weekly -they're free and flashy.

Want an in-person Lightning Notes experience? I take these Notes off the page and into the world with workshops on narrowing the divide between where we are and where we want to be. Click here to learn more!

I'm Caitie Whelan. I come from Maine. I studied cultural anthropology at Brown University, co-founded a school in India with a community of lower caste musicians, raised pigs in Italy, and went to the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies

Before The Lightning Notes, I was a Senior Foreign Policy Advisor in Congress. It was a great position. But I wanted to contribute to the world in a different way. After a whole lot of discernment, I left my job to build the business I wanted to give to the world. And on April 21, 2015, I launched The Lightning Notes. 

I live in beautiful Maine. I'm on the board of the Treehouse Institute and sit on the Brown University Women's Leadership Council. I'm a Truman Scholar and a lover of public libraries and underdogs. It's a treat to run The Lightning Notes, and it's an honor to share it with you. 

Just one more thing about these Notes. They are offered free. There are no ads or paywalls. I don't like those, and I wouldn't invite you to my house to eat cake I wouldn't want to eat. If anything in the Notes strikes you, I’d be grateful if you’d consider contributing. Every bit helps to keep the lightning striking.

Thanks for coming by! It's just wonderful to have you here.