16 Ways to Dial Back When You Are Overextended

I wanted to die.

Looking back, the situation was not all that bad…

But at the time it seemed terrible. I was working, going to school, and doing who knows what else. I was was too busy. I was sleeping 4 hours a night. I drank coffee by the pot. I probably was training for my first half-marathon. And I was looking for love in all the wrong places.

The thing about it was that being sleep deprived, emotional turbulent, and stressed out caused me to not be thinking straight.

Fortunately for us, now I am better equipped to handle things when I realize I am overextended. I have learned how to handle my emotions better. One by admitting I have them…. Two by being more aware of my thoughts and how this happened you’ll see below.

One thing you may have noticed is that I haven’t posted for quite sometime.

About 10 days.

To me, being that I did this daily for quite some time, seems long. But I guess it is all relative.

When looking for an example to explain what I am talking about I found this video by Quan Worthwealth:

When this guy goes up to the red box he is curious about it. He looks at it. Walks around it. Then discovers he can’t really do anything with it. And ultimately it is just a distraction. The thing is that I often get distracted by things and sidetracked and then as a result get overextended.

I find these distractions sometimes tend to be objects that are immovable and not helping me get done what I need to get done. Other times, it is not distractions that are causing me to have to much to do, but rather it is curiosity and ambition. I like to take on all sorts of things.

One time I was going to learn Greek.

Yeah that didn’t exactly happen.

I started. Learned a very little. And then moved on to the next thing that piqued my interest.

This isn’t such a bad thing. But when I “hit” on many things that I like and want to keep doing them I soon turn around and am involved in way too much!

That is why I decided I needed to come up with ideas on how to dial back things when I was overextended.


Here are 10 ways I’ve found help me dial back when things get to be too much:

1 Go to bed a little earlier and get up earlier

These extra few minutes can turn a rushed morning into a little bit more relaxed. I have some breathing room so in case I spill my coffee all over myself, which I do too often, or anything else doesn’t go “just right” I will be okay.

Getting to bed a bit sooner allows me to relax into sleep and not feel that I have to “get to sleep” as soon as my head hits the pillow. Which never happens for me…

These little bits help me turn down the stress levels just a little, maybe say 1 or 2 degrees, but that can make the difference in a day.

2 Spend a few minutes reading, relaxing or playing a game

Again this might not fix everything, but a few minutes here and there can improve overall quality of life and get me going again. To spend a few minutes doing something I enjoy can be motivating and reinvigorating.

3 Identify an activity/task I do every day that takes a good amount of time and find ways to make that task easier and less time consuming

One example is cooking simpler meals with less ingredients. I love eating and have a taste for the finer things in life.

But an every day dinner does not have to be gourmet.

The thing I always like to remember is that this is just one meal out of thousands that I will be eating in my lifetime. So if it isn’t all that amazing, that’s okay.

4 Choose 1 to 2 of the most important extra curricular activities in your life right now and do those, for everything else, write it down to look at doing later.

Establishing priorities helps me scale back when things get to be too much. One way I can do this is by writing them down and looking at the list when deciding on future commitments.

I can see the things I want to get around to doing and see the things that I think are the most important tasks or activities that I want to spend time doing.

Then I put on hold everything else.

Some things I come back to, some I don’t. Like the Greek. But I don’t know the future so maybe I will pick it up again…

5 Declutter life

The less I have, the less I have to organize, upkeep, clean. One way to help with this though is not to spend too much time all at once on decluttering. Or this can be a thing in itself that takes up more time. Instead I can go day by day or room by room and identify and get rid of a little at a time.

Ultimately this is something that I put off or at the end of my list often.

But when I do it, I enjoy the results.

6 Say “No” more often

Making fewer commitments from the start can help distress my life.

This may seem obvious, but I need to be reminded to actually follow through in doing this. The payoff too is that when making fewer commitments, it can allow me to have an increased commitment to something else that I find to be more important.

7 Exercise less


I used to spend up to an hour exercising.

Then I found out about a program that has 30 minute exercise videos. I love it and it has gotten me into great shape. But I am not selling this program so I’ll leave it at that.

The thing is I’ve been so busy lately that I haven’t been exercising much at all. Then I start feeling bad physically. To help me get back into it I have been turning on the video and “doing my best and forgetting the rest”.

I’ve actually started listening to this tip and so sometimes I just skip the moves I don’t like. Or stop early.

Sometimes I end up only doing about 20 minutes.

Now this isn’t great for all exercise needs, but here and there this helps and is better than doing nothing at all…

8 Change perspective

“Wants” become “needs” when I want them bad enough. The trick is that I have to stop and really identify what it is that I am doing. Why am I doing “X”? Was it because I had to do it or because I wanted to do it?

Changing the way I see things helps me determine if I am overextended or think I am overextended.

Sometimes that is part of the deal right there. I don’t have too much to do, I just think I do.

Or I might have the time, but I am procrastinating, leading to the need for…

9 Discernment

Getting discernment through prayer and accountability helps me get that perspective in line. Sometimes I can be blinded by my own ambition. I am trying to do things to do them and don’t really know why or if I should be doing them.

Prayer and meditation allows for a quiet reflection.

Having accountability with a second pair of eyes helps me determine if I am on track or need to make a change.

10 Manage commitments better

When it is time to make a change I need to manage my commitments better. Sometimes this means humbling myself and getting help from someone with more experience or anyone who will lend a helping hand.

Or taking a break from a task, like I mentioned above.

Scheduling also helps keep things in order. Using the calendar app in my phone has helped me know when I can or can’t commit to things and reconsider saying “yes” without a better plan.

Also it is the best way for me to spend time with those I care about. Making a plan works.

11 Get uncomfortable

Finding imaginative solutions for minimizing current commitments is another thing I do from time to time. While it is not the number one go to choice, breaking commitments is a way to get some control back in my life. It may disappoint someone, or I may reschedule. But sometimes at the moment, I just have to call the whole thing off to catch my breath.

Finding ways for to soften the blow helps if it is a commitment that involves other groups of people. For instance, I can consider how I could be replaced or phased out of something to minimize the impact my decision has on the group.

12 Become intentional about my energy

I have wasted enough time on trivial pursuits. Not the game. Things that don’t improve my life. Things Mark Ford has called “zombie tasks”. When I kinda zone out watching TV or clicking around Facebook for no reason. Then I realize I have spent more time than I intended and have not done what it is that I meant to do.

The choice to be intentional with my energy gives me back some illusions of control.

This works best when I…

13 Stay focused

I’ve written before on the dirty “M” word.


This is thrown about as a good thing. Or a thing people in my generation are “comfortable” with. I don’t think this is good.
Doing things distracted and haphazardly makes them take longer and usually ends with poorer quality work.

This is bad for everyone.

14 Loosen up

I am working on not considering relaxing as laziness.

This mindset of productivity has been programmed into me. I feel that I have to be productive and that means being busy or doing something of value. Having some pleasure in life is good. Relaxation relieves stress, lets me enjoy the moment and it can help me have a better focus on what is important.

Nowadays I take a nap when I am tired. Sometimes. Breathe deeply when I am stressed. Meditate when I can find the time.

No one ever died thinking “I wish I spent more time being busy…”.

15 Know when to hold them

I have found that I have my more productive times early in the morning. I could stay up and work for two hours and only write a paragraph or two. Or go to bed and wake up and write this whole post.

It really comes down to knowing what times work best for me and then finding ways to do things that are important to me during those times.

16 Disregard it

If something is bad for my I try to quit doing it. Getting rid of bad habits or negative behaviors frees up time, money, and allows me to enjoy the good things more. Sometimes I try to hold on to things that are destructive because I think I like them. Then when I think about it, I am only doing it because it is “supposed to be” fun or enjoyable.

When things don’t suit me I stop it.

I like that Quan Worthwealth is doing his own thing as a filmmaker, YouTuber, actor, writer, direct, and produce of his own projects.


This guy does it all!

Check him out on YouTube and on Instagram. He is currently working a new upcoming comedy series called the “Huckle Buckle Hillbillies”so sign up to follow him so you can check it out when it drops.

So even though I wanted to do less, I still want to do more…

I guess it comes down to being more balanced.


If you have been thinking about using Lyft for a ride or driving for Lyft please use my link: https://www.lyft.com/drivers/MICHAEL454040 and we will both reap the benefits of $500!



I wanted to share with you this interesting website I found: http://paralign.me.

It has a good message that: “You’re Not Alone. It’s healthy to talk about your problems.”


Check them out today!


P.S. Want more about my journey?

Conspire to Inspire will tell how I put together a dream team of virtual mentors and why you should care.

CTI THUMBNAIL_IMAGE——————————————————

Go to sarahpaine.com for more great perspectives to rethink life!



Check out Claudia Altucher’s book Become An Idea Machine: Because Ideas Are The Currency Of The 21st Century:


Becca primarily blogs in French so if Vous parlez Français?
Check out her blog FLEUR DE FOI.



Deutsch Gesprochen?
Check out my friend Malchus’ blog Anders-Unternehmen.


Need stress relief? Color! Adult Coloring Book: Stress Relieving Patterns

10 Ways to Achieve Stress Relief

I was sure this was it.

This was how my life was going to end.

My emotions were reeling. My feelings were raw. Then anger raged.

The roller coaster of life had taken another severe drop that I wasn’t ready for…

What could I do to calm down?

Unfortunately the above story did not just happen once in my life. It was something that until I learned to better manage my emotions, happened again and again. I am not perfect now, but I am much less messy. Through the trials I have learned a few tips, tricks, and skills on how to cope with stress and anxiety.

Perhaps you can learn from my mistakes and take something away that is helpful for you. Or maybe you don’t really deal with anxiety…. I don’t know.

For Day 113 of Claudia Altucher’s book Become An Idea Machine: Because Ideas Are The Currency Of The 21st Century: I get to share 10 Ways to Achieve Stress Relief or How Do I Cope With Anxiety.

Starting off simple:

1 Plan Ahead

Morning times can be super stressful. Especially when I stay up late the night before and then wake up late in the morning. Generally I plan to start my day early enough to have enough time so that I don’t rush around and get stressed out. However, sometimes I am in a rush and it is hard to pull everything together.

One thing you might not know about me is that I eat eggs for breakfast nearly everyday. And because I like variety I am always looking for new ways to eat them. Recently I have come across this 100% FDA-Approved Safety Silicone, BPA Free Egg Poacher. I can’t say that I have ever eaten poached eggs, but I think I might be ready to try them with this.


You know I think I talked myself into getting this…

But the main point is that planning ahead is a great way to reduce anxiety. You may not be in control of everything, but knowing what you want to do and expect to do helps to not be stressed out.

2 When Anxiety Strikes I Stop

One of the first things I try to do when I realize I am feeling stressed, worried or anxious is to stop.

If at all possible I physically get to a calm place.

This reminds me on how important body language is and then by extension your environment. It also reminds me of this Ted Talk with Amy Cuddy.

I don’t use these power pose techniques enough, but when I do, I feel better.

Coming to a stop allows me to take notice of what I was thinking and see where my thoughts went south. Many of this ideas and techniques are probably my own take on a great book I’ve read by Dale Carnegie entitled: How to Stop Worrying and Start Living. I highly recommend it. It is a bit older, but the human condition does not change much and the lessons are still applicable to today.

3 One Thing At A Time

Taking things one thing at a time is another thing I do to find stress relief. I stop and think. And then I realize what I can do in the present moment and what I can’t. If I am worrying about something in the future I see what I can do now to prepare for it (like idea number one). Otherwise I realize that some times there is nothing I can do at the moment.

Like when I finally get to bed at the end of the night.

The best thing I can do at that moment is focus on getting some good sleep. Or at least some sleep…

4 Small Victories

And falling to sleep is a small victory.

I like to set up small easily achievable goals to help build momentum before I face bigger challenges.

Taking the one thing at a time approach I get mental relief when I have a growing win column. I stack up the simple things that I can do and get them done. Silly things like taking care of chores quickly help me to not be distracted or stressed out as much.

Which is funny because sometimes to have less stress I…

5 Get Distracted

Another approach to getting relief from anxiety and stress is to get distracted.

Some of my favorite distractions are reading, going for a walk, listening to music, taking a nap or playing with my dogs.

The idea being that if something is overwhelming, it is best to put it aside a moment. Then once I am in a better mental state I can tackle the issue that got me into the mess to begin with.

Which ties into the next idea of…

6 Explore

It might be exploring the outdoors or maybe just going somewhere new.

I already touched on how environment can alter you mood. When I go exploring I find relief from anxiety because it forces my mind to focus on the moment. The new sights, sounds, or smells stimulates my brain in ways that take attention off of whatever was causing me the stress and allows me to enter into a place of interest.

Getting out of a daily routine can help make the time of you life not pass by so fast.

However, I know some people that going somewhere new causes more anxiety, so this might not work for everyone.

7 Get Social

Again, some folks anxiety goes through the roof when they are in social settings. I used to be so nervous in social situations that I would sweat profusely. One thing that helps is to have a friend go along so I have at least one person to talk with in the group setting.

At this point in my life I get stress relief by being around other people. Finding friendly places to go where people want to be nice to each other helps. The best lesson I have learned though with social situations is to not ruminate on what happened when I leave.

I do not replay what I could have done. Or what I could have said. I don’t wonder if I was slighted. Or made a fool of myself.

I just go on as if it was an insignificant occurrence that no one will remember.

Unless it was something important worth remembering.

Which reminds me that…

8 It’s Not All About Me

Remembering that I am one part of the many people who make up the world might be overwhelming in some instances. However it is always in a way comforting. I am not the main focus and sometimes I am not important to a event or situation. I am a background character that doesn’t even make the subplot of some people’s life.

And I am okay with that.

Realizing the weight of the world is not on my shoulders helps me reduce anxiety.

9 Get Outside Myself

A good way to remember it is not all about me is to get outside myself. Doing this through volunteering or helping someone else out with a problem helps me out too. I get to not navel gaze and instead do something productive.

This is just another variation of redirecting mental focus.

10 Never Lie

As simple and silly as this sounds, never telling lies is a great way to reduce stress and anxiety.

When I lie I have to wonder if I will be found out. I have to keep my story straight. I have to wonder who might talk to who and who might tell who what about what I might have lied about. The stress and anxiety is growing just thinking about dealing with the mess that can ensue.

If I always tell the truth (or as best and often as I can), then I keep my anxiety low. I build my own self confidence. I build my trustworthiness. The best part is when I make mistakes, which I do often, I just own up to them. I admit my shortcomings. Accept the consequences. Learn. Grow. And move forward with my life.


Hopefully now I am at a point that when everything comes crashing down around me, I have enough sense to cope with the stress and anxiety by using these skills and techniques that are battle tested. I might not use all of them or remember to at first, but with practice I am getting better.

I want to hear from you! What ways do you cope with anxiety or stress?

Ok. I can’t stop looking back at this Egg Poacher. After I finish this I plan to go get one. There are instructions on The secret of making a healthy Poached Egg to help newbies like me. It comes in a set of 3 and they are dishwasher, microwave and oven safe.



If you have been thinking about using Lyft for a ride or driving for Lyft please use my link: https://www.lyft.com/drivers/MICHAEL454040 and we will both reap the benefits of $500!



I wanted to share with you this interesting website I found: http://paralign.me.

It has a good message that: “You’re Not Alone. It’s healthy to talk about your problems.”


Check them out today!


P.S. Want more about my journey?

Conspire to Inspire is NOW ONLY $0.99!

When reading Conspire To Inspire, you will find out why I chose to feature Claudia Altucher along with eight other prominent people.

The story will tell how I discovered them, and why you should care.



Becca primarily blogs in French so if Vous parlez Français?
Check out her blog FLEUR DE FOI.



Deutsch Gesprochen?
Check out my friend Malchus’ blog Anders-Unternehmen.



Go to sarahpaine.com for more great perspectives to rethink life!


Need stress relief? Color! Adult Coloring Book: Stress Relieving Patterns

10 Ways Zoning Out Improved My Life +1 Opportunity for More


My armpits were pouring sweat.

This happened at this time everyday.

I sat in my desk terrified.

I was about to be called on to give my presentation in front of the class.

I had a fear of public speaking. My voice would quiver. My body would shake and I would kinda zone out as I hoped for the three minute speech to be over quickly. It wasn’t until I took an actual class about speech giving in high school that I got over my fear. Funny thing was it had nothing to do with the class and everything to do with the teacher.

Looking back now the teacher was a good lady.

At the time I was more afraid of her than I was of public speaking.

So I gave my speeches. Shake voice and all…

The act getting outside of my comfort zone is not difficult for me. But usually I don’t out of well…. comfort.

I have always been a little weird. Just ask anyone who knows me. On the way to school as a kid, when I wasn’t peeing my pants, I would be waving to strangers. I ate an assortment of leaves and berries along the way. And for a while I ate a lot of paper.

Mostly I don’t have trouble doing things. I just have to have a reason why and a purpose for them. Then I will try something new. For example check out 10 MOST UNUSUAL THINGS I came up with to get outside of your comfort zone.

In 13 WEIRD WAYS TO FIND BALANCE I had this to say about comfort zones:

“I want to know my limits so I can then break them. I want to find my edge. The ends of my comfort zones and then get uncomfortable. I want to grow. I want to change. I want to develop.

Mostly I just want to sleep.”

I read this blog by Paralign about getting outside of your comfort zone: “There is nothing holding you back from creating a better future other than your beliefs. If you don’t want your life to be determined by a star template, than you have to modify it yourself. This involves intense reprogramming where “stepping out of the comfort zone” would seem like an understatement.”

And to develop I need to come up with ideas…

As far as ideas go, Google wants to count calories in your Instagram food photos. I had a similar idea about that once.

“[Google] is reportedly developing a new artificial intelligence project which will identify pictures of food posted on Instagram, and will tell you the number of calories included in that meal.” This is great to a point. I could see someone using it to get things under control. My objections would be having to take all the pictures myself and essentially be entering the data. Also, come on, we all have an idea about the calories and nutritional value in our foods. Or can just look on the labels…

So where is the advantage of sharing everything on Instagram for Google to analyze? Sure it is interesting and might be fun to do a few times. But after that you are basically working for Google, albeit without pay. At least Amazon Mechanical Turk offers pennies for your time.


“If someone already created the course you want to create, that’s GOOD NEWS!

I know that’s counter intuitive, but bear with me…

When you come up with an online course idea that has NEVER been done before, that means one thing: there’s probably no one interested in buying it.


This is actually a good thing that I had an idea similar to Google. It is confidence building to know that the things I am thinking are actually worth doing by a big company.

You might be thinking that someone else carrying out my idea would cause despair, dissatisfaction of jealousy. Some people think they can own ideas or sell them (which is possible…). However, ideas are not exclusive. I think, similar to Mark Cuban, that patents are running innovation.

Intellectual property rights are a way for intellectual laziness.

It is a fear based move on protecting something (that wasn’t solely yours to begin with usually) and then trying to “milk it for all its worth” rather than being free and creative. The second way is more work. That is why most people don’t want to do it.

It is easier to say ideas are shit than it is to come up with 10 ideas a day. Let alone 10 good ideas. Let alone 10 really great ideas!

When I watch Shark Tank I wonder what these people who don’t get deals plan on doing. They usually seems to have gone “all in” on just one idea. They have often gone into great debt and not paid themselves. Sometimes for years. And then the go on the show and walk away with criticisms (which can be helpful) and no deal.

I feel like this is part of the false “American Dream” that we are all just one idea away from being rich. If only you had just one idea then you could make it. Sell it. Get rich. The truth is you would always have to do more anyways. The people who have made deals on Shark Tank would tell you that.

Whether it is making more products to add to your line or getting into new locations. There is always the next step to continue building. No great business every only had one product.

Which is why getting used to getting out of your comfort zone regularly is important. Pushing your personal limits allows for development and growth. Often in unexpected ways.

For Day 112 of Claudia Altucher’s book Become An Idea Machine: Because Ideas Are The Currency Of The 21st Century: I get to share 10 Crazy Things I Have Done That Were Completely Out Of My Comfort Zone and What I Learned From Them.

Some of these are not so much “crazy” just things outside my comfort zone.

1 Quitting my job… and then quitting the next job…

Here’s the deal. Long story short the first time I quit my job I did give a two weeks notice. But I had no plan where I would work. It took awhile but I found something else better.

In the in between time I worked a terrible job at a call center. I was making $100 dollars a week. My rent was $400 a month. This job sucked anyways and it wasn’t even gonna cover all my other living expenses. I just basically never showed up again. That happened a lot there.

I learned from that place that I am not willing to lie to make a sale. And that bills keep coming even if you don’t have income.

This lead to my next short gig where well…

2 I tried selling kitchen knives

This was uncomfortable in that I didn’t want to be a “door to door” salesman. I didn’t even want to be a “salesman”. But that changed in a way later after reading some influential books.

From trying this out of comfort zone experience I learned that my networking skills needed improving (they still do…). Selling “door to door” is a terrible waste. And be careful who you work for. The guys in charge where suspicious. Possibly drug dealers on the side. But that was just a hunch.

3 Over Stay My Welcome

Not what you are thinking…

This happened when I had a job interview. I was looking for a side gig at the time and had an interview at a big box retailer.

It was Target.

The guy didn’t really want to hire me. At the end of the interview I didn’t get up and leave. I was going out of my comfort zone and going to try to talk him into it anyways or at least make him give me a straight answer on why he wouldn’t hire me.

Eventually I left but without a satisfying answer. They had a stupid requirement and were inflexibility. I had a college degree and cashier experience (from the first job I quit) so there was no real reason not to hire me. But from that I learned that even when you “don’t take “no” for an answer” sometimes the answer is still “no”.

4 Recently I started being a driver for Lyft

This one is not entirely out of my comfort zone. However it keeps me from doing things that I want or rather do (i.e. being comfortable). So far it has been a great experience! If you want to sign up with this link: https://www.lyft.com/drivers/MICHAEL454040 you and I both could earn an extra $500.

Ultimately I included this as outside my comfort zone because it is giving up “free time” to earn some side money. I have had plenty of time to sit at home and watch TV. I want to be out there and make a change to my life so I can grow and develop beyond my current state of affairs.

Speaking of which, this is why I…

5 Have gone back to school to get my MBA

This is outside my zone because I said I wouldn’t do it. But as my wife has written about in her blog post, What happens when you throw caution to the wind?, sometimes we do things we never set out to do.

Again this is a instance of giving up the comfort of “doing nothing” and instead “doing something” about my future. Getting out of my zone is leading to growth and development.

Which reminds me of the other time in college where…

6 I walked out on my final exam

I was taking a huge risk. I didn’t even write an essay. And the final was to answer just one essay question.

It was for my World Literature class. I was supposed to analyze part of Dante’s Inferno. The part where it says “Abandon all hope ye who enter here”. And so I wrote, “Abandon all hope, and accept faith.” Then I wrote a P.S. I said that I was going on a road trip and leaving immediately.

I got up about 2 minutes after he passed out the test and writing that. I walked up front and handed it in and never looked back.

I felt like a bad ass.

From this I learned that it is not always important to follow “rules” and that not doing so can lead to adventure.

One sorta adventure outside my zone was when…

7 Went out on short road trips

The trip I left on that final exam day was one of a few I ended up going on that summer. I would pick a few destinations and map out the major highways to get there. This was before phones had GPS. And thing I would pack up some water and a few snacks and hit the road.

I wrote about one time I almost died in HOW UNLEARNING SAVED MY LIFE.

Mostly it was just me and my car and not staying in my comfort zone.

Speaking of cars…

8 I bit off more than I could chew

I have done minor car repairs before. I have replaced spark plugs, oil changes, alternators, and one time I diagnosed and repaired a problem with my EGR valve system. I find problem solving interesting.

Well one time I decided to replace my belts. I did the job ok. Or so I thought…

It turns out that job was a little outside my capabilities. I thought I could do it but was a little hesitant to try. I did anyways and in the process managed to strip a bolt which latter caused a bigger problem.

This ended up as a total failure.

From it I learned to get help if something is beyond your level. I could also have done well to have the right tools for the job.

As far as getting a job goes well…

9 Having a 12 person interview

This was an unplanned uncomfortable experience.

I went to a job interview. I had a typing test. The position was for a front desk job at a community college. Nothing too spectacular but I needed something more steady at the time.

Well after the typing part I got sent upstairs for the interview.

That’s when I walked into the bear trap.

There was a horseshoe setup of 12 people to interview me.


For a front desk clerk position!

Besides having no idea who to look at and direct my answers too, it was mostly a waste of everyone’s time. They asked pointless questions of just following the script. And then I didn’t get the job. Which I was okay with after that.

But from that I learned that if an interview needs 12 people, it better be for something really important, or else just turn around and walk out. Save you and everyone else the time and trouble…

10 Buying a house

This wasn’t uncomfortable because of the process. It was simple because my wife is awesome and we make quick decisions. We had great people help us with the process. We ended up only paying about $63 upfront to get it too! That is a story for later.

However, the thing is that I didn’t want to own a home. But it was my idea. I still don’t and we will be selling as soon as it makes sense to. It is really just a move in a bigger plan…

+1 Tomorrow I am getting outside my comfort zone again in a whole new way

I have an interview scheduled with Michele the Trainer. We will be discussing my recent blog on 10 WAYS TO CHOOSE YOURSELF ON PERISCOPE. I have never been interview that I can remember. I have worked on my middle school news paper where we wrote articles and then asked interviewees leading questions to fit what we already wrote…

But that is something different altogether.

Overall when it comes to comfort zones, for me…

I went from being sweat, shaky, and afraid to speak in front of my small high school speech class, to wanting to become a paid public speaker.

My have things changed…


I wanted to share with you this interesting website I found: http://paralign.me.

It has a good message that: “You’re Not Alone. It’s healthy to talk about your problems.”


Check them out today!


P.S. Want more ways to grow besides just being uncomfortable?

Conspire to Inspire is NOW ONLY $0.99!

When reading Conspire To Inspire, you will find out why I chose to feature Claudia Altucher along with eight other prominent people.

The story will tell how I discovered them, and why you should care.



Becca primarily blogs in French so if Vous parlez Français?
Check out her blog FLEUR DE FOI.



Deutsch Gesprochen?
Check out my friend Malchus’ blog Anders-Unternehmen.



Go to sarahpaine.com for more great perspectives to rethink life!



If you have been thinking about using Lyft for a ride or driving for Lyft please use my link: https://www.lyft.com/drivers/MICHAEL454040 and we will both reap the benefits!



10 Ways To Choose Yourself on Periscope


ICYMI: Periscope is Now Available for Android

But more on that in a moment.

First I want to share with you part of my Choose Yourself journey. If you’ve read any of my blog you know that I am working my way through Claudia Altucher’s book Become An Idea Machine: Because Ideas Are The Currency Of The 21st Century. I started off with a 99 day streak of blog posts which you can go back and read to see my progress and share my ideas.

But then the idea machine died!

No excuses. Just an explanation.

I do too much.

The logical thing to do? Do more things…

This past weekend I had listened to the Ask Altucher Podcast Ep 276: How to Make $25,000 in 90 Minutes. Greg Muender shared how he became successful through starting with driving with Lyft and Uber. However, Greg didn’t hit it big until he wrote an article on Medium comparing the two experiences. I was super inspired by Greg and signed up to become a driver with Lyft.

If you have been thinking about using Lyft for a ride or driving for Lyft please use my link: https://www.lyft.com/drivers/MICHAEL454040 and we will both reap the benefits!


So far I have had nothing but a positive experience with it. I have given 4 rides in my spare time and have enjoyed being able to help out people who need a ride and talk with some interesting people. The only draw back so far is that being in North Texas everything seems a long ways away.

You would think I would be used to it by now…

The real reason you are here:

Periscope is Now Available for Android and being an Android user I downloaded it.

And promptly found it was a bunch of people not doing much of anything…

So I thought up 10 Ways To Choose Yourself on Periscope:

1 Become a Review Machine

Periscope lends itself to being a great platform for showing interesting things. So next time you decided to try something new, do a product review. Live. While it is happening. This can be combined with products you have affiliate links for and then will be able to generate a source of income.

Some tips or suggestions would be to have an announcement on Twitter that you will be hosting a review to help build an audience. Also doing a review on a set time or day (i.e. consistency) will keep you from talking to yourself…

These ideas could work with any of the rest as well.

2 Become an Interview Machine

People love hearing from interesting people. Find experts that will agree to sit down with you for interviews. You can build yourself by building up others. Prepare good questions ahead of time so you have an order to the flow of your conversations. Make sure you show more than just the two of you sitting there.

Have a product to demo or a cool skyline in the background.

Another alternative is to have the interviewee on Skype. In that case there might be some video lag but I am sure more tech savy CYers could figure this out.

3 Become a Teaching Machine

Periscope blows YouTube out of the water on this aspect because it is INTERACTIVE. These video lessons can be endless in the subject matter and content areas they cover. You could do cooking lessons, interactive learning sessions at museums or in nature, “How To” change an air filter, do origami, make jewelry, teach yoga, tutorials/tutoring…

The possibilities are limitless.

You could schedule them, as suggested above, or do them random until you build a following.

I would suggest you do some research first to have more than enough to say. I’ve seen countless YouTube videos where half the time or more the “teacher” isn’t even talking.

Also consider having someone else hold the phone as they record you so it is better framed and zooming in on crucial points is easier than doing it alone.

4 Become a Promotion Machine

Similar to product reviews, however the promotion machine has an aim more towards marketing. If you are part of a music group/ band you can have special live performances for your fans.

If you are a business that is about to have a “Grand Opening”, a Periscope of the event will help show off and build hype. I would recommend “Story Boarding” what you plan to do at the event to prevent it from becoming just another bad home video…

Think of what you want to say and perhaps even make an outline of a “script” to stick to. This will help the video flow and keep watcher from clicking off and disengaging.

5 Become a Travel and Tour Machine

Taking a trip to some place remarkable?

Take Periscope with you.

Be the guide book.

Have interesting facts and things to say. Or else read them at least…

6 Become a Social Group Machine

Are book clubs still a thing? They can be and more interesting too if they are on Periscope. Any RPG (role-playing game) fans? Start a Periscope club that gets together once a week to share the latest news and events that make your world awesome!

I am sure there are many more groups that could benefit from this?

What group would you suggest meet on Periscope?

Choose Yourself anyone….

7 Become a Q&A / AMA Machine

Here is your chance to self-promote. Show off. Be an expert. Try to label your video appropriately so that people tuning in and turning on can quickly know what is going on in your Periscope.

A live video AMA would give fans/followers a chance to see their fearless leader’s facial reactions and body language that often times communicates way more than words ever will.

8 Become a Live Action Movie Machine

Here is your chance to direct the next big action movie of the summer!

No film school needed.

However much planning would make it more worth watching. Perhaps you make a serialization of the film instead of having it be just one long feature…

Have a good cast of friends and a preset story to follow to build suspense, tension, action, or whatever angle you choose to explore.

9 Become the next Saturday Night Live

If you are funny or part of a comedy trope, then Periscope is your new platform for bringing the funny…

Start a show that blows SNL away!

10 Become a Periscope Gig Coordinator Machine

This is the idea that started it all. I was reading 100 ways to make a quick $100 and saw something called Gigwalk (#51) that I haven’t heard of before. This made me think of an idea of combining the service of Gigwalk and the like with Periscope. Almost Lyft like.

Someone logs on to the Coordinator service and selects a Gig they want to see on Periscope. Someone takes the Gig, say a walking tour of Paris, and hits accept. The Gig buyer gets to see a live Periscope of Paris. The Gig performer gets paid for doing something simple around town.

Build it.

Hopefully these 10 ideas will give you a place to start to help Periscope be more than just a video selfie…


P.S. Want more inspiration on Choosing Yourself?

Conspire to Inspire is NOW ONLY $0.99!

When reading Conspire To Inspire, you will find out why I chose to feature Claudia Altucher along with eight other prominent people.

The story will tell how I discovered them, and why you should care.



Looking for other books to read? Check out my eBay listings!


Need a Ghostwriter? Check me out on Fiverr.


Add an ad at the end of my blog via my Fiverr gig like these great websites:

Need an idea of what theme to write ideas about?

Go to http://ideas-a-day.com/ for thousands of themes for ideas!


Want to know more about Sarah?
Go to sarahpaine.com for more great perspectives to rethink life!


Parle Français?
Check out my friend Becca’s blog FLEUR DE FOI.


Deutsch Gesprochen?
Check out my friend Malchus’ blog Anders-Unternehmen.



Check out Claudia Altucher’s book Become An Idea Machine: Because Ideas Are The Currency Of The 21st Century:

How Unlearning Saved My Life


“The most necessary part of learning is unlearning our errors.” — Zeno

I was hot, sweaty, and sure I was about to die.

Generally on long drives I don’t get a sense of fatigue until the third or fourth hour of driving and even then it’s only minor.

It isn’t until the ninth or tenth hour until things start getting really strange.

On my way from Dallas out to Big Bend Ranch State Park in west Texas, a little over 10 hour drive, things got weird in the desert night. It began when I had hallucinations of rain hitting me on my face on the inside of my vehicle. Not cool man.

Step one: periodically slap myself in the face.

Nothing extreme there, but because of the tame nature of that act, I had little results, other than a more sore face.

I tried the whole open the window bit and hold a dollar bill out. You are supposed to stay awake more because of the concern of losing the dollar. Only problem was that I didn’t even have a dollar bill, so it was more like feel the rush of desert night air on your hand and hope that helps.

It didn’t.

And then there is the remnant of a small cigar burn on my window seal that needs an explanation.
The pastime of smoking cigarillos is a dirty habit I fell into for a few months at this period of my life. Knowing I was heading out on a long trip, I kept one in the middle console at the ready for when I needed a little extra kick. I never have smoked routinely. Mostly it was a waste of money and made things smell. I had tried some different kinds of cigarettes but found them to be too strong of a nicotine buzz. They made my head hurt so I quickly quit them.

The cigarillos, on the other hand, now those where slow burning and more flavorful (and smellier) and did not cause the brain to hurt.

In the middle of the desert night, while momentarily having hallucinated rain drops on my face from my tiredness, window open sans dollar, brain bending music playing, I reached into the center console and pulled out the last hope for alertness.

But this is not how I ended up hot, sweaty and almost dead.

This happened once I got to Big Bend Ranch State Park.

My first mistake was going to West Texas in the Summer. Not smart. My second error was not having the proper supplies for the trip. Carrying 12 bottles of water into the mountains is not the recommended method to stay hydrated. Lastly, I had absolutely no idea what I was doing.

If you can read topographic maps then this next image will make much more sense.


If not just look at the red dots. That was the path I took. I was supposed to go along the blue dots. But I missed from the start and then never made it to where I want to go. Probably for the best because I might have died out there…

This was one of several short road trips I’ve taken (and mentioned before).

I was “finding myself”.

Also I was having a “religious experience” and was having my wilderness moment. I had not long before came to be saved by Jesus Christ and was now seeking some clarity by getting away from the busyness of everyday life. I was on the side of a mountain with heavy water bottles in the summer.

Looking at the map and my current location I figured I had went the wrong way and needed to head back to the road.

And I realized that my self coming to faith was no good without community.

That the church mattered (more on that in a bit).

The other day I saw this video shared on Facebook: The Backwards Brain Bicycle.

I scrubbed the video without listening to the audio.

What I determined is that the guy had some special kind of bicycle that was unusual to ride, but I didn’t understand why because well TL/DW. Anyways I did turn on the sound near the end to hear an explanation and he was saying how he had to “unlearn” the regular way to ride a bike before he could ride this one.

The brain is a fascinating study.

Seriously when I was in Anatomy and Physiology we had to look at it in detail.

Things starting getting like Inception.

James said, “I told my kids, “You’re always complaining about school. If you don’t like school just don’t go. I don’t care at all.”” in How to Unschool Yourself!

I wish I would have had that option.

James goes on to outline 5 ways school gets it wrong and 6 things we can do about it.

Constant bombardment of facts…

Focus on perfection…


Don’t get me wrong. Without school my life would be different, but maybe in a good way! I have often come to think that most anything I know or remember from school was things I read myself and “taught” myself.

“Education consists mainly in what we have unlearned.” — Mark Twain

Anyways, for Day 109 of Claudia Altucher’s book Become An Idea Machine: Because Ideas Are The Currency Of The 21st Century: I get to share 10 things I learned from an amazing teacher.

I have had to up to here with learning.

Hence the focus on unlearning.


My list today is 10 things I have come to unlearn over the years and how they have changed my life for the better.

1) I can’t do that / That’s never gonna happen

For most of my life I have thought about things that “That’s never gonna happen”. Here are a few things from my wife that apply to me too.

What happens when you throw caution to the wind?

I never thought I would: own a dog, buy a house, or go back to school again.

I’ve done them all now…

Often times I would and do think “I can’t do that.” Again James has outlined about 10 Things I Learn From Richard Branson. What I want to highlight is the part number 8 “Richard Branson: “When most people think about taking a risk they associate it with negative connotations, when really they should view it as a positive opportunity. Believe in yourself and back yourself to come out on top. Whether that means studying a course to enable a change of direction, taking up an entry level position on a career ladder you want to be a part of, or starting your own business — you’ll never know if you don’t give it a try.””

James goes on:

Another example of how Branson would use “idea subtraction” to come up with tons of ideas.

For instance, sometimes people say, “If only I knew how to program I could do X”. Well, imagine you could program. Subtract that worry. Now what ideas would you implement?

You can always subtract a worry. Whether it’s putting up a sign (“$29 to get to Puerto Rico”) or, asBranson suggests above, taking an entry level position.

When I started my first successful company my job title was, “Jr. Programmer Analyst” at HBO andI had $0 in the bank.

I took an entry level job so I could move to NYC and start making connections. I stayed at that job for three years while building my network.

For more than half of those three years I had my first company on the side, building up.

I was afraid all the time I would get caught doing two jobs at the same time.

But I did learn that these almost insurmountable obstacles were the EXACT reason Ihad huge opportunities.

When people think a problem is impossible they value it at zero. Successful people buy ideas low (zero) and sell them high.

You ask “why can’t I?” as in the following quote from Branson:

“I’ve always had a soft spot for dreamers – not those who waste their time thinking ‘what if’ but the ones who look to the sky and say ‘why can’t I shoot for the moon?’”

Does he really mean the moon here? Or does that sound cliche? Let’s look.

When Branson was a teenager and started his first magazine devoted to music, I doubt he was thinking about shooting for the moon.

But who knows? Now his biggest investment is Virgin Galactic. That magazine (which he started despite severe dyslexia) literally turned into a company that is now shooting to land a ship on the moon.

Why not? Why not?

2) I don’t have the time

This excuse is everywhere. And the answer is too…

“Everyone has the same 24 hours each day…”.

Yeah but I’m busy!

Sure, but it comes down with planing, having goals, maybe even just a general direction of what you want to do. Mostly for me it comes down to “I do have the time, I just don’t want to do anything.” Once I swallow that hard truth, I gotta figure out how to get my butt in gear and do something.

3) Healthy food doesn’t taste good/ is too expensive

Healthy food tastes great! That is if you have an awesome wife who makes awesome food! Or sometimes I cook, but it comes down to having good recipes or spices to add. Fresh spices and herbs work best and less ingredients let flavors stand out more.

Getting good quality products is the key.

I also thought it was “too expensive” to eat healthy.

We spend an average of $3 to $4 a meal. The trade off is planning and cooking it ourself.

Try to eat out at that price…

Also the saying “you are what you eat” is true. Your body is made up of the nutrition of the intake. Better intake means a better life. Or the opposite “garbage in garbage out”…

Plus not taking care of yourself by eating healthy can lead to cancer, now which is more expensive?

4) I can’t be happy until I am out of debt


People struggle to be debt free.

I understand why because I have and do. However for me I have noticed it is just another thing I have been chasing to feel like my life is all together. Which I am not sure it can ever be in the way I might want because there is always uncertainty. For me it was an object of focus and attention and a major distraction.

I think we live in a different world than the minds that encourage us not to be in debt and being debt free will be harder each and every year. Unless we institute the Sabbath Year or even the Year of Jubilee.

We are born into debt. We live in debt. We die in debt.

Debt is life.

What happened?

More and more things are being financed. The question no longer is “will you be debt free” but rather “how best to manage your debts”.

Financing is here to stay.

People make too much money off of it to have it go away.

I do have fears, worries, and doubts… but I just find ways to work around them because the show must go on.

Or because what the hell else am I gonna do?

5) Christians are all hypocrites / All about rules

When I was a kid I thought Christians were all hypocrites. Some are. But mostly they are broken people who are trying to do the best they can in this messy world.

Some are all about rules. And they are wrong.

They missed the whole Romans 6:14 “For sin will not rule over you, because you are not under law but under grace.”

Bottom line is that I was letting other peoples short comings get in the way of my need for salvation.

Other people matter. More on that in a minute. But when it comes down to it, your life is between you and God.

6) College will lead to a job

College might open doors.

This comic sums up how I feel about it…. The Truth About College And Getting A Job. This Is Perfect.

I spent a lot of time in college doing nothing waiting for class.

But once I graduated and didn’t find a job I had to come to accept what I was fighting.

I thought that if I was smart enough and had enough credentials or merit, then I would get hired.

I didn’t want to believe “It is not what you know but who you know” that makes a difference.

Connections is how people get hired. If you weren’t head-hunted or referred, it’s hardly worth applying for that new job.

@MaxNisen writes:

“If you’re looking for a new job, skip the job boards and online applications. Start by reaching out to everyone you know.

Most new hires don’t come through the traditional application process, according to a new San Francisco Fed paper highlighted at The Wall Street Journal (paywall). The researchers found that about three quarters of people that get new jobs haven’t actively looked or applied for a job in the previous three months, meaning they were probably poached or referred.”

Bottom line: College might help, but it is no guarantee.

7) It’s okay as long as it doesn’t hurt others

In Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis, Book 3 addresses Christian Behaviour and in the part of “The Three Parts of Morality, Lewis shares the following example (emphasis added):

Now let us go a step further. There are two ways in which the human machine goes wrong. One is when human individuals drift apart from one another, or else collide with one another and do one another damage, by cheating or bullying. The other is when things go wrong inside the individual—when the different parts of him (his different faculties and desires and so on) either drift apart or interfere with one another. You can get the idea plain if you think of us as a fleet of ships sailing in formation. The voyage will be a success only, in the first place, if the ships do not collide and get in one another’s way; and, secondly, if each ship is seaworthy and has her engines in good order. As a matter of fact, you cannot have either of these two things without the other. If the ships keep on having collisions they will not remain seaworthy very long. On the other hand, if their steering gears are out of order they will not be able to avoid collisions. Or, if you like, think of humanity as a band playing a tune. To get a good result, you need two things. Each player’s individual instrument must be in tune and also each must come in at the right moment so as to combine with all the others.

But there is one thing we have not yet taken into account. We have not asked where the fleet is trying to get to, or what piece of music the band is trying to play. The instruments might be all in tune and might all come in at the right moment, but even so the performance would not be a success if they had been engaged to provide dance music and actually played nothing but Dead Marches. And however well the fleet sailed, its voyage would be a failure if it were meant to reach New York and actually arrived at Calcutta.

Morality, then, seems to be concerned with three things. Firstly, with fair play and harmony between individuals. Secondly, with what might be called tidying up or harmonising the things inside each individual. Thirdly, with the general purpose of human life as a whole: what man was made for: what course the whole fleet ought to be on: what tune the conductor of the band wants it to play.

You may have noticed that modern people are nearly always thinking about the first thing and forgetting the other two. When people say in the newspapers that we are striving for Christian moral standards, they usually mean that we are striving for kindness and fair play between nations, and classes, and individuals; that is, they are thinking only of the first thing. When a man says about something he wants to do, “It can’t be wrong because it doesn’t do anyone else any harm,” he is thinking only of the first thing. He is thinking it does not matter what his ship is like inside provided that he does not run into the next ship. And it is quite natural, when we start thinking about morality, to begin with the first thing, with social relations. For one thing, the results of bad morality in that sphere are so obvious and press on us every day: war and poverty and graft and lies and shoddy work. And also, as long as you stick to the first thing, there is very little disagreement about morality. Almost all people at all times have agreed (in theory) that human beings ought to be honest and kind and helpful to one another. But though it is natural to begin with all that, if our thinking about morality stops there, we might just as well not have thought at all. Unless we go on to the second thing—the tidying up inside each human being—we are only deceiving ourselves.

What is the good of telling the ships how to steer so as to avoid collisions if, in fact, they are such crazy old tubs that they cannot be steered at all? What is the good of drawing up, on paper, rules for social behaviour, if we know that, in fact, our greed, cowardice, ill temper, and self-conceit are going to prevent us from keeping them? I do not mean for a moment that we ought not to think, and think hard, about improvements in our social and economic system. What I do mean is that all that thinking will be mere moonshine unless we realise that nothing but the courage and unselfishness of individuals is ever going to make any system work properly. It is easy enough to remove the particular kinds of graft or bullying that go on under the present system: but as long as men are twisters or bullies they will find some new way of carrying on the old game under the new system. You cannot make men good by law: and without good men you cannot have a good society. That is why we must go on to think of the second thing: of morality inside the individual.

But I do not think we can stop there either. We are now getting to the point at which different beliefs about the universe lead to different behaviour. And it would seem, at first sight, very sensible to stop before we got there, and just carry on with those parts of morality that all sensible people agree about. But can we? Remember that religion involves a series of statements about facts, which must be either true or false. If they are true, one set of conclusions will follow about the right sailing of the human fleet: if they are false, quite a different set. For example, let us go back to the man who says that a thing cannot be wrong unless it hurts some other human being. He quite understands that he must not damage the other ships in the convoy, but he honestly thinks that what he does to his own ship is simply his own business. But does it not make a great difference whether his ship is his own property or not? Does it not make a great difference whether I am, so to speak, the landlord of my own mind and body, or only a tenant, responsible to the real landlord? If somebody else made me, for his own purposes, then I shall have a lot of duties which I should not have if I simply belonged to myself.

Again, Christianity asserts that every individual human being is going to live for ever, and this must be either true or false. Now there are a good many things which would not be worth bothering about if I were going to live only seventy years, but which I had better bother about very seriously if I am going to live for ever. Perhaps my bad temper or my jealousy are gradually getting worse —so gradually that the increase in seventy years will not be very noticeable. But it might be absolute hell in a million years: in fact, if Christianity is true, Hell is the precisely correct technical term for what it would be. And immortality makes this other difference, which, by the by, has a connection with the difference between totalitarianism and democracy. If individuals live only seventy years, then a state, or a nation, or a civilisation, which may last for a thousand years, is more important than an individual. But if Christianity is true, then the individual is not only more important but incomparably more important, for he is everlasting and the life of a state or a civilisation, compared with his, is only a moment.

It seems, then, that if we are to think about morality, we must think of all three departments: relations between man and man: things inside each man: and relations between man and the power that made him. We can all cooperate in the first one. Disagreements begin with the second and become serious with the third. It is in dealing with the third that the main differences between Christian and non-Christian morality come out. For the rest of this book I am going to assume the Christian point of view, and look at the whole picture as it will be if Christianity is true.

The rest can be found here for free:


So the next time someone says, “it’s my body, I can do what I want”, they probably will, but it is not good….

8) Resting is wrong

In my book Conspire To Inspire I talk about Stefan Sagmeister who I call “the sabbatical guy”.

From the book:

This is because of his TED Talk entitled “The power of time off”. From the description “Every seven years, designer Stefan Sagmeister closes his New York studio for a yearlong sabbatical to rejuvenate and refresh their creative outlook. He explains the often overlooked value of time off and shows the innovative projects inspired by his time in Bali.”

I have never been a huge fan of living to work. And I have always felt like the traditional story of retirement was not for me. We plan on not being able to work when we are older. Even though we live longer. We should plan on working longer. Stop being so lazy. Stop thinking of retirement as some final vacation or last world tour. Live now. Go places. Travel if that’s your thing. We can’t expect to live off our laurels for 20+ years as we medicate ourselves into the sunset. Take care of your mind and body so it is not so crappy now or in the future.

I like to take breaks.


I would love to get to a place where I could take an entire year off. Ever hear of Sabbath? A day of rest. Interesting as a Christian we are told in Exodus 20:8 “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy”. And Matthew Henry explains “they were to do no manner of work on this day in their callings or worldly business.”

Maybe this is something we all should consider more thoughtfully.

9) I don’t need others

Like I was saying earlier about coming to faith but thinking that the church was a bunch of hypocrites…

Then I realized that looking around me, that I didn’t make anything I had. I had bought it or someone else built it.

Turns out my views on the church were a bit skewed by my jaded teenage decisions. I am one of seven kids so you would think I knew that life is full of help from others… but I didn’t.

I was selfish.

For and through all sorts of life lessons I realized that I need others and that is okay. Good even.

We are interdependent and that makes life better.

10) You have to “be” something / have ONE job or even have a job…

As a kid I was always asked what to I want to be when I grew up.

I still don’t have an answer.

The point is that I am not going to “be” anything.

I am me.

I don’t have to have just one job for the rest of my life. I can have many. I can change my mind.

My work is not my identity.

And ultimately the thinking that I must have a job is now under investigation…

There are other ways to live and earn a living besides punching a clock for 40 hours a week.

So how did unlearning save my life?

That my friends is the story of my salvation in Jesus Christ. I thought I knew something about Christianity and what it was all about. I had to unlearn my misconceptions and prejudices before I could understand what it was really all about.

If this is something you’d like to know more about please ask.

Me. Someone you know. A neighbor.

Without Christ my life would be meaningless.

But now I have hope.


P.S. Want more inspiration?

Conspire to Inspire is NOW ONLY $0.99!

When reading Conspire To Inspire, you will find out why I chose to feature Claudia Altucher along with eight other prominent people.

The story will tell how I discovered them, and why you should care.



Looking for other books to read? Check out my eBay listings!


Need a Ghostwriter? Check me out on Fiverr.


Add an ad at the end of my blog via my Fiverr gig like these great websites:

Need an idea of what theme to write ideas about?

Go to http://ideas-a-day.com/ for thousands of themes for ideas!


Want to know more about Sarah?
Go to sarahpaine.com for more great perspectives to rethink life!


Parle Français?
Check out my friend Becca’s blog FLEUR DE FOI.


Deutsch Gesprochen?
Check out my friend Malchus’ blog Anders-Unternehmen.



Check out Claudia Altucher’s book Become An Idea Machine: Because Ideas Are The Currency Of The 21st Century:

Mad Men, Game of Thrones, and A Stroll Down Memory Lane


Can you believe how Mad Men ended?

I have no idea.

I’ve watched only about 20 minutes of the show once when it was on in the background of my in-laws house during a family gathering.

What about that scene in Game of Thrones?

Nope don’t know much about that either…

To figure out what has got the internet in a rumble, as if it wasn’t in perpetual spin cycle already, I hit the net to find out more.

From MEREDITH BLAKE (@MeredithBlake) on the La Times website:

“As frustrating as it is on one level, it’s an ending that also makes sense. When “Mad Men” began, Don was the handsome man in a gray flannel suit who superficially embodied the 1950s ideal. A decade later, he is in a place that epitomizes the indulgent touchy-feeliness and narcissism-masquerading-as-self-actualization of the “Me Decade” (and embracing the go-go capitalism of the Reagan era). If Don started as a character from a John Cheever story, he ends the series as someone out of a Paul Mazursky film.”

This gave me pause.

I think Meredith has a good point and description of what was going on. Her “touchy-feeliness and narcissism-masquerading-as-self-actualization of the “Me Decade” ” line made a lot of sense to me.

In fact in made me think about our current era and it’s derisive take on Millennials as being self-centered and narcissistic. Sure selfies are a bit about the “me” but then they are shared with friends. People have shown pictures to their friends and families since the beginning of photographs. That’s why people stood around to get their pictures taken, to share them with others…

Always with the Maslow’s hierarchy of needs…

Self-actualization seems so esoteric.

What generation is not the “Me Decade”?

But I don’t know where I am going with all of this…

Anyways for Day 108 of Claudia Altucher’s book Become An Idea Machine: Because Ideas Are The Currency Of The 21st Century: I get to find 10 email conversations from five years ago and then continue the conversation.

My first impressions are that this is gonna be weird, sentimental or just out right random.

First I had to go to my old email address on Hotmail.

Next I looked for emails by date and found I don’t have any 5 years old…

Must’ve had a different email before then or deleted them all.

So 4 years ago I have these emails:

1 My brother Joshua sent me an email about a job lead.

I was looking for a job at the time and appreciated the help with any possibilities. 2011 was 3 years our from college. And college didn’t turn out on the job front as I was told it would my whole life. In fact I used to think that graduating in 2008 ruined my life and future.

Now I am thankful for all the other aspects of life it has opened up my eyes to.

Plus instead of wasting my life like I planed in a mediocre way, now I am working to do more.

However, I am always thankful for any help and assistance.

Then or now.

2 and 3 Some Craigslist deal from a dude named Lynn and another about the same topic from Mir Ali.

Hey guys, the motorcycle helmets were available at the time but you never came and bought them. So we ended up selling them to someone else or just getting rid of them. I’m not sure. Oh my wife just said we sold them in a garage sale.

Better luck next time.

Yeah buying that motorcycle and the helmets and getting our M class license was fun and all but we totally didn’t think that one through.

Hope you are well.

4 From Mrs. McBride about a extended substitute teacher gig.

Mrs. McBride,

Thank you so much for allowing me to take over your classes for that extended period of time. We all had a blast and I was a “ringer” in that student vs teacher dodge ball game that our team won! It was one of the highlights of my substitute teaching career.

Your classes were great and I hope you continue to be successful.

Keep it Breezy!

5 There are a ton of receipts for orders….

6 Cindy about teaching Kids Sunday School

Hey Cindy!

We had a blast in Hi5 while it lasted. And the Lodge was great! I loved the festivals celebrating the LORD!

I saw you had some pics on Facebook of some great activities you had for Sunday school a few weeks ago.

I am sure things are going well and we all should get together again sometime soon.

Until then, take care.

7 Steve about a men’s discipler training.

Yeah that didn’t quite work out for us, huh Steve?

The communication broke down both ways for me and I was left wonder what to do next…

So I didn’t do anything.

I’m not saying it’s your fault, but I think it is a more systematic issue. It is a hard thing connecting people.

I’ve come up with an idea for a more organic approach to pairing disciplers with disciples. Have a bunch of men’s activities that men like to do. Guys get to know each other. Then at some point have one where the guys who want to get discipled have some sort of indicator on their name badge and disciplers another indicator.

Then once they find someone they get along with then they set up arrangements themselves that work for them.

Maybe this will work. Maybe this sounds too weird…

I don’t know try it and see.

8 From my sister Rebekah who 4 years ago today was her birthday!

We were all gonna get together for a party and iFratelli’s pizza. I sorta remember that and hope it was good.

Anyways hope you have a great birthday today and looking forward to your wedding!

9 A bunch of random emails from my dad.

Well Dad,

Things are looking a lot different now than they were four years ago. Boy how times change…


10 All throughout several bills and receipts… email the electronic trash heap…

11 An email from my sister Effie suggesting we might be COHs, Children of Hoarders.

While that may or may not be true, the good news is that we can take this opportunity to live a different life than the one of our childhood circumstances.

Everyday is a chance to get rid of something new!

In fact I am now excited to go get rid of something else. I was talking to Sarah the other day and said how cool it would be that next time we moved we could pack our whole house into just our two cars.

Trading you that desk is a great start!

It was for sure win-win!

12 A lot more of about the same emails already discussed…

Final thoughts:

I don’t use email for communication all that much.

I don’t like email all that much, which is a bit funny because I do like regular ole’ mail…

Now I think I’ll go have something real to drink…

And by that I mean water.


P.S. Want to save even more?

Conspire to Inspire is NOW ONLY $0.99!

When reading Conspire To Inspire, you will find out why I chose to feature Claudia Altucher along with eight other prominent people.

The story will tell how I discovered them, and why you should care.



Looking for other books to read? Check out my eBay listings!


Need a Ghostwriter? Check me out on Fiverr.


Add an ad at the end of my blog via my Fiverr gig like these great websites:

Need an idea of what theme to write ideas about?

Go to http://ideas-a-day.com/ for thousands of themes for ideas!


Want to know more about Sarah?
Go to sarahpaine.com for more great perspectives to rethink life!


Parle Français?
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Check out Claudia Altucher’s book Become An Idea Machine: Because Ideas Are The Currency Of The 21st Century:

How to Improve These 15 Exocitic Hotels

We want to have less stuff.

We like the outdoors.

We have a plan to make money.

We want to get some land and live in a yurt.


We saw it on TV.

The idea is to get enough land to have several yurts and rent out the ones we are not living in to people looking to get some time away from it all.

I’m thinking we need to get a sauna room.

Probably a dinning area. I think an all inclusive sort of place.

Low key. Relaxed.

We would do yoga, but not really “teach” a class. Just join in if you want.

We would have a garden so there would be fresh food. Help dig it if your into it.

Hopefully it would be in a forest area to roam around on a hike or bike or at least some where with some killer views.

Like this place:


Which brings me to Day 107 of Claudia Altucher’s book Become An Idea Machine: Because Ideas Are The Currency Of The 21st Century:

I get to come up with 10 ideas of Hotels I’d like to visit and why.

Here is the deal I’d live at the yurt lodge as explained above to help raise passive income and here are 9 Other Ideas for PASSIVE INCOME.

Then while thinking of ideas for this blog I found theses:

15 Weird Hotels Around the World

So what my idea was is to tell why I would or would visit them and one idea to improve them.

1. Solent Forts, No Man’s Fort, England


This place looks neat and would be fun to get to.

Until you realize that once you are there that’s pretty much it…

“With eight bedroom suites offering sea views, bar, sunbathing decks, restaurant, and even fire pits,” it has much to offer. But I am the type of person who likes to be active. Being stuck on an island wouldn’t work for me.

If they don’t already they could have a driving range into the water and also a lending library of classic literature to help pass the time.

2. Panda Hotel, China



I’m out on this one altogether.

However, if you are into the whole “Furry” scene then maybe this works for you. It could be enhanced with other animal characters walking around, but I think they are trying to stick with just pandas.

Having a part of the proceeds go to the protection of pandas might increase the number of people who choose to stay here.

Also the hotel chain could branch out to other locations with other animal themes.

3. Attrap’Reves Bubble Hotel, France


“The stylish bubbles, made from recyclable materials, are all located within a short walking distance from the nearest village and a main building.”

This place looks fun and I like the connection with the outdoors.

One drawback is the inherent lack of privacy. Which might not be a problem if you are spaced out away from everything enough. Or just don’t mind…

A way to improve the Bubble Hotel might be to provide for a way to shade or cover the bubble when you are trying to get some sleep. Also they could provide a small ATV or other motorized form of transportation to use as recreation and a means of navigating the property.

4. Faralda Crane Hotel, Netherlands


“Previously an industrial crane, the Faralda Crane Hotel is located in the former FDSM shipyard, at the edge of the river and the Amsterdam city center. Guests can stay in one of the three luxury hotel suites located in the crane’s old machine room.”

What I would do is multiply this concept to all major shipping ports around the would. Expansion would be the name of the game if I was going to improve this hotel. Yes the “wow” factor might wear low if there are tons of them, but they are still very unique and would stand out where ever you put one.

Also converting other equipment into hotels would be a good idea.

5. Treehotel, Sweden


Sarah would love this place! She is into tree houses and I think they are neat too!

So does that Treehouse Maters guy on Animal Planet.

I like that they have a variety of types of tree houses. I would include a type of outdoor activity that gave lessons on tree climbing. The kind with ropes and gear and all that good stuff.

This would make it an adventure!

6. Jumbo Stay Hostel, Sweden


Ah ha! Another conversion hotel.

I have an idea to take this concept to the limits. Have an actually usable airplane that was made into a hotel. Then have it go to various destinations like a cruise ship. I am stoked about this idea and will need to flesh it out more in the future.

7. Dog Bark Park Inn, Idaho


This is a “bed and breakfast shaped like a 30-foot-high beagle, named “Sweet Willy.” The inn offers two connected rooms, one in the body and one in the head of the dog. Both are decorated with canine-inspired furniture, such as a headboard featuring 26 carved dogs, according to the Inn’s official website.”

Easy idea is to expand with other types of dogs bed and breakfast rooms.

Another idea would be to have various animals. Perhaps even a zoo!

8. Kakslauttanen Hotel and Igloo Village, Finland


Interesting and fun looking, but I think it might be too close together to the other guest.

If you are into the chilly life style then go for it. They do have “ thermal glass walls and ceilings that insulate the interior to keep it warm and cozy at night”.

If they don’t provide a snowmobile service as a guest activity, they should.

9. Sextantio Le Grotte della Civita Cave Hotel, Italy


This one looks interesting and boring at the same time. If that is even possible.

Going into the earth caves of the grotto is neat. Until that is all there is to do…

I like the look and feel of a place like this, but would not be satisfied in my need for adventure.

Maybe additional cave exploration tours, spelunking, or the like would be in order.

Or maybe a good old fashioned treasure hunt… who knows.

10. Hang Nga ‘Crazy House,’ Vietnam


This crazy house makes my stomach start to turn.

I like things that are clean and in order, so I’d have to skip this fun house looking place.

If whimsy is your thing then this would be fun for you.

A way to improve this place could be to

11. Icehotel, Sweden


Ice Hotel?

I’m out. Too cold.

An idea would be to have an ice carving class on site to teach guest how to sculpt ice.

12. Marques de Riscal, Spain


This place was designed by famed architect Frank Gehry. The location and views are amazing. I am partial to the Spanish landscape.

There website greets you with a “Welcome to The City of Wine”. A wine tasting room on site would be good or tours to the local wineries should be in order.

13. Sunborn Gibraltar Yacht Hotel, Gibraltar


Just the mention of Gibraltar brings up images and ideas of strength and fortitude.

The Sunborn Gibraltar Yacht Hotel looks like a great way to stay in the area in style. It is permanently moored at the southern end of the Iberian Peninsula, but features 189 rooms with panoramic marina and sea views.

I am not sure how to up the game on the luxury get away.

Perhaps it is perfect as it is…

One day I hope to go there and find out.

14. Desert Lotus Hotel, China



This looks like some location from a movie. Also it reminds me of Treasure of Khan by Clive Cussler or at least from what I remember. One of his Dirk Pitt novels has a place similar to this…

I would provided exotic animal rides to guest. And by exotic I mean animals that Americans don’t usually ride like elephants, camels, and emus.

Other than that they seem to provide quite a lot of activities and attractions.

15. V8 Hotel, Germany


Not really my thing but I can see the appeal.

Perhaps a “gas pump” to sever drinks out of would be a cool addition in the dinning area. The obvious answer is a sponsorship or partnership with the V8 juice company.

Expansion opportunities abound along with many different cars to feature. Think Lamborghini, Ferrari, et al.


So where ever you go, you can find someplace fun to stay.

And when the Yurt Lodge is ready, please come stay with us!


P.S. Want to save even more?

Conspire to Inspire is NOW ONLY $0.99!

When reading Conspire To Inspire, you will find out why I chose to feature Claudia Altucher along with eight other prominent people.

The story will tell how I discovered them, and why you should care.



Looking for other books to read? Check out my eBay listings!


Need a Ghostwriter? Check me out on Fiverr.


Add an ad at the end of my blog via my Fiverr gig like these great websites:

Need an idea of what theme to write ideas about?

Go to http://ideas-a-day.com/ for thousands of themes for ideas!


Want to know more about Sarah?
Go to sarahpaine.com for more great perspectives to rethink life!


Parle Français?
Check out my friend Becca’s blog FLEUR DE FOI.