June 2010

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The 12 Best Smoothie Ingredients You can boost your brain, build muscle, burn fat, and help your heart in less than one minute: Just mix up a smoothie and slurp. It’s that simple—if you include these dozen add-ins that not only pack health benefits, but also make your shake taste even better.

Peanut ButterPacked with protein, manganese, and niacin, peanuts can help stave off heart disease and, when eaten in moderation, promote weight loss.

Fat-Free MilkAll the calcium and protein, none of the fat.

BlueberriesThe huge amounts of antioxidants, such as anthocyanins, in blueberries have been shown to slow brain decline and reverse memory loss.

Low-Fat Vanilla YogurtA cache of calcium and digestion-aiding probiotics in every scoop.

RaspberriesAn antioxidant powerhouse bursting with fiber, manganese, and vitamin C, these berries will keep your heart and brain in top shape.

Fat-Free Chocolate Frozen YogurtCalcium, phosphorus, and none of the guilt.

Pineapple-Orange JuiceOJ has vitamin C, and pineapples contain bromelain, a cancer-inhibiting, inflammation-reducing enzyme.

CherriesIn addition to their vitamin C and fiber content, cherries have been linked to reducing arthritis pain.

BananasHeavy on potassium, fiber, and vitamin B6, bananas do wonders for your heart and provide good carbs to keep you full and energized.

Whey ProteinIts essential amino acids help pack on the muscle—making whey the best friend of athletes and gym rats.

Frozen MangoesTo their stock of vitamins A and C, mangoes add a healthy dose of beta-carotene, which helps prevent cancer and promotes healthy skin.

Ice A little H2O never hurt anyone.

More from MensHealth.com
50+ Delicious Smoothies

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With the 2010 World Cup in full swing, many fans around the world are already celebrating their teams’ wins…and mourning their losses. But is losing the same as failing? Nick Vujicic doesn’t think so. Watch this week’s video to hear Nick’s message of hope regarding the 2010 World Cup.

What do you think of Nick’s message? Did it change your perception of failure at all? Do you have any thoughts to share about the World Cup? After watching the video be sure to share your comments below, and feel free to pass this video on to friends and family.

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br Parentfurther

A penny saved is a penny earned.
–Benjamin Franklin, one of the Founding Fathers of the United States

Too many kids spend all their money as soon as they get it. Only 20 percent save money and do it consistently every month. Help kids save their money–and teach them to save well. Here’s how.

Tips for . . .

all parents

  • Make learning about money fun.
  • Talk about how you save money.
  • Be honest about saving difficulties.

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parents with children ages birth to 5

  • Get your child one bank for saving and one for spending.
  • Don’t get in the habit of always buying.
  • Talk about saving in a positive way.

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parents with children ages 6 to 9

  • Give kids weekly allowances.
  • Help your child set savings goals.
  • Make goals short-term and attainable.

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parents with children ages 10 to 15

  • Talk about the importance of saving.
  • Discuss advertising with your kids.
  • Show how you save and spend.

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parents with children ages 16 to 18

  • Encourage your teen to slow down spending.
  • Help your child find ways to earn money.
  • Monitor how your teen handles money.

Read more

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by Men’s Health

Simpler is always better. Think about it: Would you rather have your job made simpler, or more complicated? How about your relationship? Your finances? Those instructions to assembling your new IKEA bookshelf? Simpler, right?
Okay, how about your diet? Wouldn’t you prefer to make your diet simpler as well? Especially if you knew that simpler was also healthier? Then why do so many of us insist on choosing the most complicated foods we can find, when the simplest foods are always better? Case in point: Let’s say you had a choice between two seemingly similar products. Both had about the same number of calories, and had similar tastes. Based on these ingredient lists, which would you choose?
Beverage #1: Water; high fructose corn syrup; concentrated juices of orange, tangerine, apple, lime and/or grapefruit; citric acid; ascorbic acid; beta-carotene; thiamin hydrochloride; natural flavors; modified food starch; canola oil; cellulose gum; xanthan gum; sodium hexametaphosphate; sodium benzoate; yellow dyes #5 and 6.
Beverage #2: Fresh-squeezed orange juice.
If you picked beverage #2, you’d be getting three times the vitamin C and about one-eighth the sodium, as well as a nice hit of calcium. But if you picked #1, then you’d be getting a nutritional cocktail made up primarily of water and high fructose corn syrup, with a variety of scary surprises. (Canola oil?!)
Yet many of us pick #1 on a regular basis—those are the ingredients for Sunny Delight original, by the way—because we seem dead-set on complicating our diets. And complicated is always bad. Simpler is always better. (Speaking of nutritionally empty drinks, watch out for these gut-busters with ingredients most of us could never, ever pronounce—this shocking list of the 20 Worst Drinks in America. Take them in even as a weekly treat and you could be adding an extra pound or two of belly fat a month.)
Check out the four popular processed foods below. Each violates the Eat This, Not That! cardinal rule—which is to say, they’re just too complicated. Wait till you discover some of the junk we found hiding in each.


150 calories
8 g fat (1.5 g saturated)
180 mg sodium

The concept is, well, sort of brilliant: Nachos and cheese without the hassle of a microwave. Or even a plate, for that matter. You just tear open the bag and start snarfing. And as a parting gift, Dorito’s leave your fingers sticky with something that looks like radioactive bee pollen. Now here’s the question: Do you have any clue what’s in that stuff? Here you go:

To create each Dorito, the Frito-Lay food scientists draw from a well of 39 different ingredients. How many does it take to make a regular tortilla chip? About three. That means some 36 ingredients wind up in that weird cheese fuzz. Of those 36, only two are ingredients you’d use to make nachos at home: Romano and cheddar cheeses. Alongside those are a cache of empty carbohydrate fillers like dextrin, maltodextrin, dextrose, flour, and corn syrup solids. Then come a rotating cast of oils. Depending on what bag you get, you might find any combination of corn oil, soybean oil, cottonseed oil, and sunflower oil. Some of those will be partially hydrogenated, meaning they give the chip a longer shelf life and spike your heart with a little shot of trans fat. (The reason you won’t see this on the nutrition label is that FDA guidelines allow food manufacturers to “round down” to zero.)

And then, after the fats and nutritionally empty starches, there’s a seasoning blend, which includes things like sugar, “artificial flavoring,” and a rather worrisome compound called monosodium glutamate. Monosodium glutamate, or MSG, is the flavor enhancer largely responsible for the chip’s addicting quality. The drawback is that it interferes with the production of an appetite-regulating hormone called leptin. A study of middle-aged Chinese people found a strong correlation between MSG consumption and body fat. What’s more, the FDA receives new complaints every year from people who react violently to MSG, suffering symptoms like nausea, headaches, burning sensation, numbness, chest pains, dizziness, and so on. Talk about radioactive bee pollen.

What’s Really In … SUBWAY 9-GRAIN WHEAT

210 calories
2 g fat (0.5 g saturated)
410 mg sodium

Okay, so you’re probably not in the habit of ordering a la carte bread loaves at Subway, but there’s a good chance you’ve eaten at least a few sandwiches built on this bread. The good news is that Subway actually delivers on the nine-grain promise. The bad news: Eight of those nine grains appear in miniscule amounts. If you look at a Subway ingredient statement, you’ll find every grain except wheat listed at the bottom of the list, just beneath the qualifier “contains 2% or less.” In fact, the primary ingredient in this bread is plain old white flour, and high-fructose corn syrup plays a more prominent role than any single whole grain. Essentially this is a white-wheat hybrid with trace amounts of other whole grains like oats, barley, and rye.

So outside of the nine grains, how many ingredients does Subway use to keep this bread together? Sixteen, including such far-from-simple ingredients as DATEM, sodium steroyl lactylate, calcium sulfate, and azodiacarbonamide. But here’s one that’s a little unnerving: ammonium sulfate. This compound is loaded with nitrogen, which is why it’s most common use is as fertilizer. You might have used it to nourish your plants at home. And Subway does the same thing; the ammonium sulfate nourishes the yeast and helps the bread turn brown. What, did you think that dark hue was the result of whole grains? Hardly. It’s a combination of the ammonium sulfate and the caramel coloring. Seems like Jarod might frown on that sort of subterfuge.

Of course, in terms of calories, Subway’s still one of your best allies in the sandwich game. But here’s an even better idea: Whip up one of these 25 best sandwiches in America at home in minutes. You’ll save calories, money and precious time.


250 calories
2.5 g fat (2.5 g saturated)
47 g sugars

They’re sweet, chewy, and brightly colored. Now, what are they? Well, the basic formula for each chewy neon orb is a gross mashup of sugar, corn syrup, and hydrogenated palm kernal oil. That explains why every gram of fat is saturated and each package has more sugar than two twin-wrapped packages of Peanut Butter Twix.

So those three ingredients plus a few extra fillers are basically all it takes to get the general consistency and flavor, but to achieve that color spectrum, Skittles brings in a whole new list of additives. When a Skittles ad tells you to “taste the rainbow,” what it’s really telling you to do is taste the laboratory-constructed amalgam of nine artificial colors, many of which have been linked to behavioral and attention-deficit problems in children. A few years ago the British journal Lancet published a study linking the artificial additives to hyperactivity and behavioral problems in children, which prompted the Center for Science in the Public Interest to petition the FDA for mandatory labels on artificially colored products. The FDA’s response: We need more tests.

In the meantime, there’s a very large-scale test going on all across the country, and every Skittles eater is an unwilling participant. And that doesn’t even factor in the blood-sugar roller coaster you go on when you ingest a Skittles’ bag worth of sugar.


540 calories
30 g fat (8 g saturated)
1,020 mg sodium

It’s Italian, it’s Mexican, it’s … well, it’s got a whopping 64 different ingredients, so it’s hard to tell just what exactly it is. On the face of it, this meal doesn’t look too bad. There are two pizza shells, ground beef, beans, pizza sauce, tomatoes, and three cheeses. Nothing alarming, right? Even the nutritional vital signs, while high, compare favorably to most fast-food pizzas. It only gets scary when you zoom in on what it takes to stitch those pieces together. That’s when you see all of those 64 smaller ingredients, including an astounding 24 in the ground beef alone. Yikes.

Now, some of those ingredients amount to little more than Mexican seasonings and spices, but there are also loads of complex compounds such as autolyzed yeast extract, maltodextrin, xanthan gum, calcium propionate, fumaric acid, and silicon dioxide. Any of those sound familiar? That last one might—if you’ve spent any time at the beach. But chances are you normally refer to it by its common name: sand.

That’s right, sand is made from fragmented granules of rock and mineral, and the most common of them is silicon dioxide, or silica. This is also the stuff that helps strengthen concrete and—when heated to extreme temperatures—that hardens to create glass bottles and windowpanes.

So why exactly does Taco Bell put sand in the Mexican Pizza? To make it taste like spring break in Cancun? Not quite. As it turns out, Taco Bell adds silica to the beef to prevent it from clumping together during shipping and processing. The restaurant uses the same anti-caking strategy with the chicken, shrimp, and rice.

Is it unusual to add silica to food? Yes. Is it dangerous? Probably not. The mineral actually occurs naturally in all sorts of foods like vegetables and milk.

Even so, you can save hundreds of calories if you just make your pizza at home, with this simple recipe from our latest book, Cook This, Not That! Kitchen Survival Guide.
In fact, learn how to cook restaurant meals at home–and save up to 3 pounds a week!–with these 15 simple and delicious meals that can help you lose weight . . . fast! Discover favorite foods that can whittle your middle in just minutes a day.

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By: Adam Bornstein and Abby Lerner

What does it take to be a UFC Champion? “A desire to turn your name into a legacy,” says Georges St. Pierre, UFC welterweight king. St. Pierre allowed us to follow him through his workout at Renzo Gracie Academy in New York to see how he’s preparing for his next title fight.







Tackle Your Warmup
Think about what you do before you lift weights. Hop on the treadmill for 5 minutes? A few light sets on the bench press? In the world of a UFC Champion, that’s a walk in the park.

St. Pierre begins his training with about 10 minutes of grappling. Today’s (un)lucky participant: Kenny Florian, fellow UFC fighter and finalist of the original The Ultimate Fighter.






The Lifter is Lifted
Grappling offers the perfect dynamic warmup for St. Pierre, as it improves blood flow, speeds up his heart rate, and loosens up his joints … even if it means being tossed around a bit.







Brace Your Core
A fighter is only as strong as his midsection. Here St. Pierre fine-tunes his core strength with Swiss-ball rollouts. If you don’t have a Swiss ball, load a barbell with a 10-pound plate on each side, affix collars, and grab the bar with an overhand, shoulder-width grip.







Jump to the Top
Immediately after finishing a set of abs exercises, St. Pierre continues his “warmup” circuit with medicine-ball skater hops. Hold a 10- to 15-pound ball and jump from side-to-side on one leg. When you land, lower your body into a partial squat.






This is a Stick Up
Shoulder health and mobility is important for more than just lifting heavy weights. It’s a vital component of wrestling, Muay Thai, and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu—three of St. Pierre’s fighting strengths. Here, St. Pierre uses “scapular wall slides” to activate and strengthen his lower trapezius, a muscle that helps control your shoulder blade and is often weak—whether you’re an average guy or a world-class athlete.






Lift Like an Olympian
Rumors that St. Pierre hopes to make the 2012 Canadian wrestling team are true—but that only means it’s one of his goals, not a certainty. Here, he kicks off his weight workout with an Olympic-lifting staple: barbell snatches.







The Setup
Pull the bar up to your waist, and prepare to take it above your head.








Pull Explosively!
Use your hips and glutes to generate force while you pull the bar upward with your upper-body muscles.








Total-Body Workout
Notice how the snatch incorporates almost every muscle in your body. The legs generate power to help you move the weight from your lower body to your upper body, while your shoulders, back, and arms help you finish the movement.







Squeeze It Out
At only 170 pounds, a 135-pound snatch provides the challenge needed for an intense workout. But the fun is just beginning for St. Pierre.







Move at a Breakneck Pace
St. Pierre builds neck strength between exercises by vigorously pressing his head into a pad on the wall. His face indicates the level of intensity exerted on this seemingly simple exercise.







Champion Abs
Meet a secret player to building rock-solid abs: core getups. This movement engages your six-pack muscles to raise your torso while the rest of your body lies motionless.

Add it to your workout: Lie face up with your legs straight. Extend both arms straight above your chest, and tighten your glutes to help stabilize your core. Without using momentum, raise your upper body, stop, and then slowly lower back to the starting position.





Old-School Training
Chinups are a staple in almost all of st. Pierre’s workouts. Only in this case, he holds a 60-pound weight between his legs to add resistance and significantly increase difficulty.







Don’t Cheat
Every rep is performed with maximum effort and as “clean” as possible. A perfect chinup is when you touch your collar bone to the bar by pulling your elbows down to your rib cage.







Dead Weight
See … we weren’t lying about the weight.








Take a Swing
Fifteen seconds of consecutive alternating ball slams is all it takes to rip your upper body and blast your abs.








Knock Out
The final impact you’d miss if you blink. Thank you, shutter speed.








A Bulletproof Chest
See those 225 pounds on the bar? They’re proof of St. Pierre’s overall fitness level. Just don’t insist that he’s all show and no go. Or else he might embarrass you in the gym … and then in the octagon.







Go Back to Basics
GSP shows that body-weight exercises are still popular, especially when performed immediately after a set of bench presses. But there’s a slight twist with this championship version.







… But Add a Twist
These are plyometric pushups. After you lower your body, explode up and off the ground with both your hands and your feet.







Ground Force
St. Pierre builds strength and power from the ground up.








Jump Around
Strength, speed, and endurance. That’s what it takes to fire through a series of alternating split jumps, which will leave your quads burning.







Let Me at ‘Em
st. Pierre trains his explosiveness with these band-resisted runs. On each rep, he’ll sprint toward his opponent and fling his body as he learns to generate more power. Just imagine what happens once the resistance is removed.







Get Low
Let’s just say this sequence didn’t end well for Florian. But he just kept on popping back up like a true fighter.








Knowledge is Power
Throughout the day, GSP discussed strategy with one of his coaches, John Donaher, and Florian. Despite his renowned success, GSP remains determined to continue learning. “I’ll only reach my goals if I keep on finding ways to become better than everyone else,” St. Pierre says.







Practice is a Pain . . . Literally
Even though the grappling was considered a “light” day, grimaces and tapouts were common.








A True Champion
Even after an hour of lifting and another hour of practice, St. Pierre was still kind enough to talk with fans and take a few pictures. “I want to represent my sport in the best way possible and show people the true meaning of being a fighter while still entertaining my fans,” St. Pierre says. In our case that meant waiting an extra 15 minutes to interview St. Pierre as he talked with every fan that watched him train. That might have been the best moment of the day.

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Here’s a great little video from the Gracie Family (love those folks) about making smoothies.

Now let me ask you…

WHY is a Gracie black belt doing a video about food?

Yes, that’s right….diet IS relevant to health, personal safety, and anything and almost everything under the martial arts sun.

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I love this way of thinking! This is exactaly the type of mindset that I want established in my schools. I think that we must work together to make sure that we push our kids a little harder to go a little further each and every day.

An entrepreneur since childhood, Cameron Herold wants parents and teachers to recognize — and foster — entrepreneurial talent in kids.

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by Samantha Chang

The Biggest Loser star Jillian Michaels may be the picture of good health now, but the 5’2″ fitness trainer was once a 175-pound couch potato!

Michaels, who stars on her own reality show, Losing It with Jillian, says a dysfunctional home life led her to an unhappy, sedentary youth of overeating and self-hatred.


Jillian, who describes herself as a “really disturbed kid,” began therapy at age 5.

“You know how kids have night terrors? Mine were really bad,” Michaels, 36, says in the July issue of Redbook.

She recounts: “I thought sharks were coming out of the drain in the bathtub. I couldn’t sleep at night, every night, waiting for aliens to come. I’m not kidding you: I. Was. Traumatized. And mom got me into therapy.”


Michaels, 36, says she began a rapid downward spiral into overeating and gaining weight at age 12, when her parents decided to split.

“Being big as a kid was pure hell,” says Jillian.  “I spent all of eighth grade in my classroom because God forbid I ever left. I was terrorized.”

Michaels was stunned when her mom kicked her out of her home when she was 17. “They were kind of midlife-crisis-ing, and I was sort of the afterthought,” Jillian recounts. “I became pretty angry — no one wanted to deal with me — so when I was 17, my mom was like, ‘You’re not living here.'”

Being on her own helped Michaels to become more independent and introspective.

“I learned a lot being on my own,” she says. “I grew up. I had to make money. I learned how to make decisions that are right for me.”


One of those “right decisions” was taking a martial arts class — something which literally changed her life.

“Karate saved my life,” she says. “It all stopped the day I broke two boards with a kick.”

Armed with a newfound self-confidence and a fitter physique, Jillian became a certified fitness trainer, and auditioned for The Biggest Loser. After starring on the hit reality TV show since 2004, Michaels branched out by writing fitness books, releasing her own fitness DVDs and starring in her own spinoff, Losing It With Jillian. [see slideshow below]

Michaels, who’s now helping other people transform their lives, confesses there are still lots of things she’d like to change about herself.

“I’m impatient,” she says. “I’m demanding. I’m neurotic. I’m high-stress. High-anxiety. Perfectionist to the point of impossibility. Nothing’s ever good enough. I’m never happy.”

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Little Jessica has the kind of self-esteem most adults would envy. She loves absolutely everything about herself, and she is not shy about sharing that with the world. Watch this video to hear Jessica’s daily affirmation and to witness her incredible self-actualization. Then I want you to think about how you too can start to build your own self talk to help improve your life. James Allen wrote, “As a man thinkith so shall he be” and that is so true. Is your self talk positive or negative? The great car inventor Henry ford said, Wether you think you can or you think you cant, your right. So what are you thinking?

What do you think of this video? Do you think Jessica is simply confident or is she full of herself? Is she sharing her pride or bragging about it? After watching the video be sure to share your comments below.

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Ego can be a crippling thing. Behind our ego lies a subtle intelligence; one, that, if sensing we are likely to fail at something, quietly offers up rationalization for why we shouldn’t even try. It guarantees that we never fail by not letting us attempt in the first place. Paying less attention to the voice of the ego is the first step in putting ourselves on a path to greater learning.My BJJ instructors, the Machado brothers, have a family credo that begs: ‘leave your ego at the door’. This is something that martial artists can find difficult to do but it is nevertheless a goal worth setting for ourselves. Our ego likes to be right, our ego likes to win and it will squirm and wiggle, plot and plan to avoid having to experience anything otherwise.

One of the most corrosive outgrowths of ego is that it will talk us out of doing things where there is a reasonable or high chance of failure. In this way, ego is probably the single biggest hurdle to overcome if we are to experience growth and learning as human beings. Some martial arts environments make it easy for the ego to remain intact, because the lack of serious tests or challenges, ensure that the ego is never really threatened. Some schools are very challenging for the ego; kickboxing or boxing gyms, BJJ or other grappling schools, etc ; in these kinds of places there are few hiding places and the ego is constantly assaulted. This is a good thing; ultimately it allows us to live in state of greater peace and with the sense of confidence that comes with real experience. 

What lies around the corner, no one can know. Whether we accept it or not, life is, and always will be, an exploratory journey. As is the case with all exploration, if the unfolding trek doesn’t succeed in killing us, it will almost certainly provide us with instruction. If we want to learn things that others do not know, we need to be willing to do the things that other people do not do.

The martial arts practise, in and of itself, is something that most people are not willing to do; so in some sense, we are already on the path to a kind of excellence that remains out of reach of many people. Extraordinary results are the consequence of extraordinary actions or decisions; and who would settle for anything less? Well, I’ll answer that question for you: nearly everybody! Look around, the world is full of the ordinary, the mundane, disease, unhappiness, suffering; do we really need to contribute more of the same. For myself, the answer is definitely not. I want to live an extraordinary life and this means that I need to do extraordinary things. I approach my martial arts training with this credo in mind and I think they day we begin to settle for the ordinary; then this is the day we should give up our martial arts practise.

Most combative disciplines have evolved under very specific sets of conditions. Some of these disciplines are more or less adaptive than others. In a constantly evolving and changing environment, like the world we live in, it is incumbent upon the martial arts professional to either accept the limitations of what they have to offer or open their minds to further learning. The basic underlying rule of evolution is adapt or perish. 

The martial arts are not immune to this universal principle. Each of us has adapted in a greater or lesser degree to the world in which we now live; a world that is very different from the world that existed ten, twenty or thirty years ago. None of us are in denial about the need to drive a car or use a mobile phone for example; but how many martial artists are in denial about the fact that the techniques and strategies that are on offer in the modern-day martial arts landscape are very highly evolved from where they were ten or twenty years ago. The is just so much great material out there and available now; so many effective and innovative training methods; and much of it with a proven track record; can we afford to ignore this fact? I do agree that the world needs some people who are willing to say, collect and preserve old stamps for historical reasons or perhaps out of personal interest; but just don’t try to post any letters with them. I think we need to make distinctions here; distinctions between what we are preserving for arts sake and what we need to practise for effective self-defence in today’s rapidly changing world.

Innovation is naturally driven by necessity and circumstance, and our capacity for creativity seems boundless; but it is when we are cut loose from the confines of familiarity that we can truly tap into our innovative potential. Becoming more innovative is more about familiarizing ourselves with risk, and less about staying with the tried and true. 

Ideas spread if they have survival value. In this sense, they are subject to evolutionary forces in a similar way to living things. Good ideas survive and propagate; bad ideas die a natural death. Ideas that other people have about us, also spread and propagate. What ideas these are, depends much on how we go about our work and how we live our lives. Building a solid reputation begins with making small promises and living up to them.
We become more innovative as we let our ego’s go. This takes us back to the first paragraph of this article. The less attached we are to having to win or needing to be right, or be comfortable, or be safe, then the more risks we will take and the more things we discover. It is a process that shouldn’t frighten anyone; there is great joy to be had in discovering things; even if some of these things highlight our shortcomings; perhaps even, especially if they do.

Best wishes
John B Will


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