Saturday, December 22, 2007

Getting Over A Cold

I don't get sick often. I used to get sick several times a year, but after I figured out that I got sick more from eating out often I cut that out, now I dine in and cook more of my own meals. Since doing this, I notice I get sick less. Also, I use a sanitary spray to clean my hands throughout the business day after shaking people's hands. This also helps reduce germs.

The best way to get over a cold, after all, is to avoid it in the first place.

According to the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases, Americans suffer about 1 billion colds a year. That's a lot of people getting sick. The Census Bureau now estimates the US population to be over 299,398,484 (Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2006 Population Estimates, Census 2000, 1990 Census). The combination of these statistics mean that each person in the US is getting sick 3 times a year, on average. Considering some people probably don't get sick very often, this means that others might catch as many as five colds a year. That's a seriously productivity problem that's nothing to sneeze at.

Have you ever noticed how much harder it is to work when you're sick? In some cases, it's downright impossible. I just experienced this the past two days, with a splitting headache, head cold (running nose), fever, and other conditions. For two days I was off the blog and unable to do much of anything. As soon as I feel good enough to type, I'm back writing to about getting over a cold, though.

Why? Because I know I can help people who are sick. I have a formula for getting over a nasty cold. It works pretty well, too. I provide it for entertainment purposes only; however, if you are sick and unsure of the symptoms, I always recommend you visit a doctor. I have a rule of thumb that if I am ever sick and it gets into my lungs or deep-sinus infection, that I visit the doc immediately. Also, if you're sick longer than two days, don't tough it out - go see a doctor! It's a good rule to live by. I just returned from the local Med-Stop office (the only doc around me open on a Saturday), and now have a prescription for antibiotics to help me overcome this cold -- if I need it. I'm not of the belief that I will need the antibiotic though. Read my cold remedies and you'll see why.

Scott's Cold Remedies: Ways to Quickly Get Over A Cold:

1. Take Emergen-C. Whenever I first start feeling like I might get sick, I take Emergen-C (Great deal at Amazon- less than Trader Joe's!) Here's an easy link to buy this BEFORE you need it from Amazon: Emergen-C 36 Pack.


What I love about Emergen-C is that this product contains all the antioxidants your body needs. Consider these ideas:

a. Instead of drinking soda, drink Emergen-C It tastes as good, and it is better for you.

b. Are you a boss? Consider buying a few boxes for your office. Rather than paying for sick time and lost productivity, you'll be paying for healthy employees.

c. Are you older? It can be harder for the elderly to keep their immune system active. Keep a stash of Emergen-C on hand and drink it any time you feel a little run-down. You'll get the boost you need.

d. On a budget but want to try it anyway? Visit Emergen-C's site and fill in a few details and they'll send you a free sample to try it out. I already know it works, so if you want my opinion, just get yourself a stash and keep it on hand all the time.

I just took two packets of Orange Emergen-C with Crystal Geyser water and I'm feeling more energized in just 30 minutes!

2. Get your sleep. If I feel like I'm getting sick, I get more sleep. I normally run on about 6-7 hours of sleep. But if there is one time you CANNOT cut corners on sleep it is when you're getting sick. Go to sleep earlier, wake up earlier, and you'll feel better sooner. If I'm already sick, I make sure to sleep between 8 - 10 hours per day. If you're pushing your body hard, this is one time you can't do that.


3. Get a little sunshine. Another healthy tip is to let your body get some sunshine as soon as possible. The sun, in small doses, helps our body and skin build up some natural energy to fight off colds. Today I was out in the sun for about 30 minutes, and it was healthy for me (certainly more healthy than that sneezy doc's office!).

4. Eat healthier, lighter meals and drink lots of water. While some people advocate starving a cold, I sure the heck don't. Why? Because if your body is trying to build up antibodies to fight off a virus, the last thing you want to do is starve your body. Essentially, by starving yourself you put yourself at cross-purposes with your body. It is wiser to eat regular, healthy meals. Lighter foods and fluids are wise choices when you are sick. Consider eggs, water, jello, soup, and things of this nature. Don't eat too much meat when you're sick, and avoid smoking and drinking alcohol. Yeah, I know, your Uncle Tom says a shot of Jack Daniels will cure a cold. But, then again, have you looked at Uncle Tom lately? Alcohol dehydrates you and doesn't put anything in your body to help it build immunity to infectious disease or a cold. Same thing with coffee and tea, which both dehydrate you. Better than dehydration is water - the only hydration method I know that gives your body oxygen the natural way. Not only that, but if you've had the flu, you'll need the water to re-balance your system.

5. Light exercise. I don't recommend that you go to the gym when you are sick. If you have to ask why, you're really not with it, are you?! Think of all the germs that get passed around at the gym! Door handles, machines, gym floors, locker-room benches, and more are all natural places for germs to build up and gather an assault on your unsuspecting body. Don't be part of the problem. When you feel like you're getting sick, or certainly if you already are sick, stay away from the gym. Instead, do some stretches, and some light workouts with barbells in your home. This will keep your body up and at the same time avoid getting others sick.

6. Don't eat out. If you're getting sick a lot, it could be a result of eating out often. Consider cooking more at home, with healthier choices of food in salads, stir fry, soups, and such. I've become healthier since I made this choice.

7. Quit smoking and drinking booze. People who smoke have lower immune systems and get sick more often than those who don't. Same thing with anyone who drinks more than 5 alcoholic beverages a week. If you want to improve your immunity, get rid of addictions that limit your health.

8. Avoid crowds during holidays. The holiday season is when the most flu bugs get passed around. The reason for this is because of the colder air and because people are gathered together. If you can avoid movie theatres during this season, you'll probably be healthier than if you go see a movie. Places people go that can foster getting sick during holidays include: airports, restaurants, theatres. If you are around crowds, carry an antibacterial lotion to wipe your hands with often.

9. Stay warm and humid, instead of cold and dry. If you've been around people who are sick, keep your environment warm and humid. This is the environment that colds struggle to live in and why it is rare to get sick in the summer.

10. Be careful with your hands! Also, make sure you don't touch your nose, eyes, and ears during this season. These are the three places most colds enter your body. If you don't touch them without first coating your hand with antibacterial lotion, you'll lessen the odds of getting sick. (Hint: this is the one thing I really blew this last week that I believe had a direct impact in why I got sick!)

11. Get rid of allergens. I used to get sick every Christmas until I figured out the biggest culprit to my winter health: the Christmas Tree! Yep, I was bummed to learn that the beloved Christmas tree is also a major problem for mold spores. Of course, a tree is also a fire hazard, too. Once I learned that the tree was a source of mold in my home, I got rid of it. Yes, I'd rather see a real tree than a fake tree, but after the first glance, nobody thinks twice about it. My body is healthier without the mold, too.

12. Keep your thoughts positive and create a plan to lower stress. If you get depressed or stressed-out, your odds of getting sick go up dramatically. People who have a healthy, positive mental outlook get sick less often than those who don't. So, smile, think positive thoughts, and keep your life balanced. Keep your finances in order, keep a regular sleep schedule, keep your exercise schedule, and keep your diet healthy. Have a little fun to balance all the hard work you do. And, most important, don't forget to schedule a vacation once a quarter or so. Americans don't vacation as often as they ought to. It is healthy to get away and recharge ourselves so that we're less stressed and more happy.

So, that's my list. Pretty simple, huh? Well, for some, yes, others, maybe not. I'll be writing some articles in the upcoming New Year on ADDICTIONS (how to get rid of and get over them).


If you find this article helpful to you in preventing and getting over a cold, why not share it with
your friends and family? Just remember to tell them you found it here at AspireNow!
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This article is written by Scott Andrews, Founder of AspireNow. Copyright 2007. All rights reserved. To get more articles like this, subscribe to the A-Blog.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Elissa Heyman, Psychic, on air now at Talkshoe!

Call in to ask Elissa questions - live online tonight (now) at AspireNow Radio show now for the next hour 6PM PST - 7PM PST. Questions about things to decide going into 2008 - what's in store for the NEW YEAR!

1. Dial (724) 444-7444
2. Enter 37792 # (Talkcast Show ID)
3. Enter: 1 # or your Talkshoe PIN

www.Talkshoe.com
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This article is written by Scott Andrews, Founder of AspireNow. Copyright 2007. All rights reserved.

You may republish this article only AS A COMPLETE WHOLE with ENTIRE LINKS and copyright messages attached. All rights reserved. To read more articles like this, subscribe to the A-Blog.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Top Money Management Issues

I'm working on a series of articles about Money Management Issues. This will be a 10-part series, where I'm going to drill down into each one of these issues with separate articles (posts) to help with insights into each:

Ten Money Management Issues to master in order to grow financial abundance:

1. Be careful with credit. Credit is the #1 problem in America for people in managing their money. The most important advice regarding credit is to pay it off monthly, when the bill comes in. If you cannot pay it off in the first month, make sure you pay off the bill before you buy anything else on credit.

2. The most important lesson to learn about making money is not that hard work will make you money. It is that you want to build systems that serve as investments where your investment pays you. This is the lesson taught quite well in the book, "Rich Dad, Poor Dad," by Robert Kiyosaki.

3. Working harder will often result in making more money, but not always. For example, if you get paid $20 an hour to dig a ditch, and you work 8 hours a day, you'll make $160 a day for digging ditches. The logic would have it that if you worked 10 hours a day, you'd make $200. What this logic fails to consider is you'll be so exhausted from digging ditches that you might not be able to work 10 hours the next day. Not only that, but your incidence of injury increases with the higher hours. Rather than teaching people to work harder, sometimes we need to be taught to work smarter. The person who gives talks for free could start improving their talk and getting paid to do the talks (maybe even $1,200 per talk!). Another person who sells for a company might offer their knowledge in a program about how to improve selling (I do this, myself!).

4. Own our choices. It is hard to face the fact that the stock we bought at the all-time high in March of 2000 might not be worth more than 1/20 of the purchase price. But, we knew what we were buying. My point is that we need to own our choices. Taking responsibility for those choices helps us learn faster, so next time we won't make the same mistake.

One of our choices is about how we spend. The other choice is about our perspective about money. I really like the contrast as demonstrated by this quote from Rich Dad, Poor Dad:

One dad would say, "The love of money is the root of all evil." The other, "The lack of money is the root of all evil." Having two dads - and loving them both - forced me to think about, and ultimately choose, a way of thinking for myself."

Perspective is useful. Making sure we own our perspective about money is as important as owning the choices about how we spend our money.

5. Instant gratification and earning more money are not good partners. Most people who make a lot of money do not do it through winning the lottery. Most people who make a lot of money do it slowly, through time, good earning, spending, and saving habits, and making wise choices regarding usage of their money. It is easy to go out and blow a wad of money for things that depreciate: cars, furniture, clothes, etc., but the wiser thing to do is to put that money in an investment (real estate, stock, bond, business, 401K) that eventually earn us more interest or appreciation to be worth far more than the original investment.

6. Giving money or giving something often leads to others sending money back to you. Like the link exchange strategy in growing a website, if you offer a link to a site with high traffic volume, and they offer a link back to you, it only makes sense that you will both gain in traffic (and potential income) through sharing traffic. The Biblical principle of tithing money to a church or charity is a valuable discipline in money management.

7. When asked "What is more important, love - or money?" most people will respond "love". Yet, it is easier to pay for things in life when you have more money. Nevertheless, money does not buy you happiness. Most people forget that they are happiest when their life is most simple and their social networks are empowering to them.

8. Use a system to pay your self first. Most people have a hard time saving because they don't have a system to manage their money. When you have a system to manage your money, money will get appropriated more easily. For example, when I first chose to invest in an IRA account, I funded it at the end of the tax year, by writing a check to an account, rather than investing in it monthly. The following year I funded my 401K, but rather than investing at the end of the year, I withdrew money from my paycheck on a monthly basis. I noticed my pay seemed lower the first month of this deduction, but I adjusted to the change in net money shortly therafter. Over time, the 401K account filled until maximized the $10,000 to fund it each year. This is one of the best ways to create a fund like this. Pay your investments to yourself and your retirement first, before you pay your bills.

9. Self-employed people have to put an extra measure of effort into making sure they pay themselves first, by first sending money to their account, then to the 401K, then to the charity, then to their business, then to their bank account. I've started creating bank accounts for various things I am funding, so that I can track each separately.

10. Regarding buying anything new, I like to ask myself the following four questions:

(1) Do I need it?
(2) Can I afford it right now?
(3) Do I love it?
(4) Is this the best time to buy it?

When I follow these sets of rules, my money management is much better.
I'll be digging into this list further, and eventually offering the full series as a little money management e-book here at AspireNow and ARRiiVE.com. If you have suggestions or personal stories that might be fun to include in the e-book, please share in my comments!
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This article is written by Scott Andrews, Founder of AspireNow. Copyright 2007. All rights reserved.

This article is provided as entertainment, only. I always suggest talking to a financial advisor before making any change in financial investments. To receive more tips on money like this, subscribe to the A-Blog.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Online Self Help Experts

Are you a life coaching expert? If you're providing self-help, coaching, dating and relationship advice, motivational speaking, financial advice, and things of this nature, you are invited to join my AspireNow Self Help Expert Coaching network at Plaxo!

The criteria to join the self help expert coaching network is:

1. You've been providing coaching on a paid basis for more than three (3) years.
2. You speak professionally either online, on the radio, or on TV.
3. You are interested in collaborating with other coaches.

If this is you, you are invited - click here to join!

http://selfhelp.plaxogroups.com

Also, make sure that you do not spam the group - it is really important that we moderate and keep comments focused on coaching. Aside from that, if you like the group, make sure you CONNECT with me at Plaxo, too, so we can join our networks!
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This article is written by Scott Andrews, Founder of AspireNow. Copyright 2007. Plaxo is a trademark of Plaxo.com. No infringement intended.

You may republish this article only AS A COMPLETE WHOLE with ENTIRE LINKS and copyright messages attached. All rights reserved. Subscribe-don't miss out!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Letter To A Wounded Soldier

The Associated Press announced today that letters addressed "To A Wounded Soldier" were being returned as undeliverable and return to sender. Reasons given: (1) threat of anthrax through the mail, and (2) concern over whether a message contained in the email would be demoralizing (such as "stop killing babies" or stuff like that).

A comment by one woman was "I just wanted to say, 'I'm sorry you're hurt. Thank you, Merry Christmas.'"

In the spirit of such a gesture, I've decided to write my own version of a "Letter to a wounded soldier" here at AspireNow. If this letter moves you, feel free to forward/copy to your friends and family members who are affected by this war. All I ask is you keep the original author copyright and links attached. Blessings!

"Letter To A Wounded Soldier:

December 11, 2007

Dear Wounded Soldier,

I am writing on behalf of the parent who is too numb, scared, upset, or unable to write to you.

I am so sorry that you are not home with us this year for the holidays. More importantly that that, I am sorry that you are wounded and in pain.

I know you felt it worthy to fight for the cause in Iraq. I know you felt it worth dying for, or you would not have gone. I just can't imagine anyone would have thought you'd get hurt. I am so proud of you for fighting to right injustices in the world. I have not been there to see everything you may have done. But whether all of your actions have been good, or bad, I give you the benefit of the doubt. Why? Because I love you and believe you are standing up for the right thing. Just as the men and women who planted a flag in the ground the morning of September 11, 2001 stood up for the right thing.

Some people do not believe in this war. To those people, I can only say that I understand your frustration. It seems that our government rushed to war in both Afghanistan and in Iraq. Many people feel the war is the right thing to do, while many oppose it. Nevertheless, it is the American responsibility to stand up and serve our commander-in-chief, even if we do not always agree with him. This letter especially goes to the soldier who felt this way prior to going to this war, fought in the war, and suffered injury due to the war. To you, especially, I write to share in your frustration.

While you may not know me, and I may not know you, it is so important to so many of us back home that you hear this message:

We love you. We miss you. We are sorry you are hurt. Please heal to the best of your ability. We pray that God would summon a quick healing for you and bring you back to be with us soon. We miss you, today, and every day that you are not here with us.

Thank you, so much, for what you do for every one of us, and our country, America.

Love,
Me."
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This article is written by Scott Andrews, Founder of AspireNow. Copyright 2007. All rights reserved. You may republish this article only AS A COMPLETE WHOLE with ENTIRE LINKS and copyright messages attached. To read more articles like this, subscribe to the A-Blog.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Get AspireNow Feeds On Your Cell Phone

I've just added a new subscription service so that you now can not only recieve AspireNow's RSS Feed through the feedburner, you can also subscribe and receive this via e-mail, or you can subscribe to the feed through the buzmob widget in the upper right subscription box.

Now, you can follow new posts anywhere, any time, any place!
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This article is written by Scott Andrews, Founder of AspireNow. Copyright 2007. All rights reserved. To read more articles like this, subscribe to the A-Blog.

Energizing The Earth


There is so much attention around Global Warming, and rightfully so, that there is a concern that other environmental issues are getting swept under the geo-political landscape. People are so focused on Global Warming, and I'm glad this issue has heated up; however, we need to be looking at how the we power the Earth, as a whole.

Earth Day: Only .03% Attention

Earth Day is usually in April, one day out of the year. But this focus is too minuscule to matter. 1/365 is less than .03% of our time! We need EVERY day to be Earth Day. Every day ought to be a day we focus on improving our Earth and creating a better way of life.

It is true that if you're talking about an environmental issue in a group of a dozen people, it is inevitable that the conversation will shift to Global Warming almost every time. I have a group of musician and dancer friends who are very interested in global issues. The last time we gathered, sure enough, someone brought up an environmental rant and within two minutes four of them were in full-fledged Global Warming debate.

Can you relate?
But the bigger concern, from my perspective, isn't just Global Warming. Global Warming, to me, seems like a subset of the bigger picture question facing our future needs: energizing the Earth.

How do we energize the earth?

It is important that we, as people inhabiting our Earth, consider ALL issues that might impact this planet, and try to minimize them. So much attention is focused on carbon dioxide emissions and the effect of greenhouse gases that people are forgetting about equally important issues surrounding mercury, nuclear waste, and other concerns.

I challenge the scientists probing for energy breakthroughs to find a way to power our Earth from the solar system, rather than from natural resources within our Earth. Energizing the Earth from natural, renewable sources ought to be the Earth's primary focus, right now. Why? Because we cannot continue to drill out all the oil, mine all the coal, and build any more nuclear waste sites. After all, how many years does it take for a nuclear site to become non-toxic? We're talking generations.
To me, the water is as important as air we breathe. In fact, water may, in some places, be even more important. If we cannot get pure water to drink, we run the risk of disease, poor health, and many other issues as vital to breathing unpolluted air.

Solutions to help us Energize the Earth:
1. We need to focus on harnessing natural Earth energy as much as possible:

air, solar, water, volcanic, etc.

2. We need to minimize power sources and fuel sources that put waste into our air, water, forests, and earth. By these, I mean coal, natural gas, oil, and nuclear. Is growth, at all costs, worth it? Is it worth risking another Chernobyl-type meltdown? We need to make WISER decisions regarding our planet and stop seeing ourselves, as human beings, as superior beings who can take and use the Earth at our discretion.

Does Global Warming Matter?

This seems to be a question of debate, still, for many people. To me, you only need look at the facts of global warming and you can quickly see that we must reduce gases and pollution in our atmosphere.
Taking a Stand

People need to TAKE A STAND against adding more nuclear and coal-powered plants. One group, Billionaires For Coal, recently took a stand against TXU, a company planning 11 new coal-powered plants in Texas. In an article by Tara Lohan of Alternet.org, the Billionaires For Coal activists sent suitcases filled with coal to Merrill Lynch, Citigroup, and Morgan Stanley, the three firms bankrolling the multi-billion dollar project. The statement to the bankers is simple: stop being stupid over corporate greed!

Legislating Future Plants

The banks need to become more responsible in projects they will finance. If they simply took coal and nuclear off the map (most likely through government regulation), this would force the banks and energy companies to redirect their efforts to Energize the Earth with more natural, sustainable energy production methods.

More Advanced Solar Plants In Deserts

If we know we can create an energy plant that will make our air more healthy, then that is the plant we ought to build. If we know we can build shipping vessels that put less waste into the ocean, then those are the vessels we ought to build. PERIOD. The most logical source of power in the form of renewable energy (at least, in all practical meaning of the word "renewable") is SOLAR. One suggestion is to create a massive solar grid in major desert locations, then redirect this power into the grid that fuels power-consumption across the planet. If we put as much money into the development of renewable solar cell energy and solar plants as we did into making war with other countries, it would seem this alternative would be far more possible far more quickly.

3. We need to rid our dependence upon oil as the fuel for automobiles and convert this to air. We need the oil companies to lead this charge.

Compressed Air?

I'm a believer that compressed air may be a solution. (See http://aspirenow.blogspot.com/2007/11/how-important-is-global-warming.html for more on the importance of this concern.)

Methane from Microbes: Killing Two Birds With One Stone

An article just published today at http://www.physorg.com/ indicates that methane from Microbes could provide a clean, renewable energy source and use up carbon dioxide in the process. More information about clean and renewable energy is coming out all the time. If we could produce clean and renewable energy AND use up carbon dioxide, this would kill two birds with one stone. So, some type of source of energy, either compressed air, or methane from Microbes, needs to be developed and utilized in ALL automobiles as soon as possible.

4. We need to look for natural energy sources within our solar system. Perhaps energy from Jupiter might be a solution? The red spot is supposed to have anti-cyclone energy of some type.

Harnessing Other Galactic Energy?

Perhaps there is a way to harness that energy? I'm not a scientist, just an observer who happens to think "what if" scenarios about the information I learn. I'm curious to learn more about this developing potential source of energy. If you have information regarding harnessing space energy, please comment/forward the URL.


Yes, Global warming matters.

I continue to find evidence of an increase in real, measurable impact that directly results from an increase in human-related activities influencing our planet. I discussed this more in my "How Important Is Global Warming" post in November, 2007.

What are your thoughts on environmental issues? Do these relate to life purpose and living with more love, to you?



1 Billion Points of Light

There is another way we can energize the Earth, that often is not talked about. This is not physical energy, but spiritual energy. The idea put forth by former President George H. W. Bush of "1,000 points of light" is ridiculous, when you consider there are now BILLIONS of people living on Earth! We need to think in terms of "1,000,000,000 points of light!"

As we focus more and more on the aspects of improving our Earth and the life around us what we need is a continual state of prayer, focused on more love, more benefit for the Earth. If 1,000,000,000 people were praying, focusing their thoughts and intentions upon better, natural, renewable energy for the Earth, my feeling is that our scientists would find their solutions quicker. Oil companies would release their death-grip on the planet and start to act responsibly towards the planet's future. Government agencies would take stronger stands. Corporations would be focused on the big picture, rather than short-term greed.

Entrepreneurs: You are called to develop advanced companies with new technology to create a healthier planet. We need you now more than ever. It is with this perspective that we can transform our planet and truly create a sustainable global footprint for the future.

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Resources related to this article:
An Inconvenient Truth
Amazon Price: $17.98 List Price: $29.99

Miracles for the Earth
Amazon Price: $11.49 List Price: $19.95

NOVA - Magnetic Storm
Amazon Price: $11.00 List Price: $19.95

Quatermass (1979)
Amazon Price: $8.40 List Price: $39.95

Saving Earth - Energy from the High Frontier
Amazon Price: $12.95 List Price: $12.95
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This article is written by Scott Andrews, Founder of AspireNow. Copyright 2007. All rights reserved. You may republish this article only AS A COMPLETE WHOLE with ENTIRE LINKS and copyright messages attached.

Friday, December 7, 2007

How To Become More Psychic

Are you psychic? I once heard a psychic tell me, "We are all psychics. The only question is how open we are to that internal nature."

Perhaps. If spirit is this conscious energy that runs through all things, then we truly all ought to be psychic. So, if that is the case, in order to become more psychic and activate our 3rd eye, we must then remove the blocks and learn how to "attune" ourselves to this energy force available to us.


How To Know Your 3rd Eye Isn't Activated?
There are several ways to know your third eye (3rd eye or 6th chakra) is not yet full activated. Ask yourself these questions:

1. Do fears and anxieties consume you, or can you release negative thoughts easily?
2. Do you get stuck in fantasy land? Or can you balance fantasy with reality?
3. Are you scared of "Deja Vu" moments? Or can you trust your intuition and insights?
4. Has your ego run amok? Are you overly timid? Or are you able to give yourself credit, and balance pride and ego fairly easily?
5. Do you often feel lonely? Or depressed? Or do you feel empowered and easily overcome adversity?

If you get stuck answering more the front part of each question, you're not really fully engaged with your third eye. If you find yourself gravitating towards saying yes to the latter questions in 1-5 (above), you're pretty much hitting on cylinders of the chakra.
This chart helps understand the colors and conditions for each chakra: http://www.chakraenergy.com/chart.html.
If you look at the 6th chakra, or indigo (3rd eye), you'll notice words around intuition, psychic, enlightenment, and so forth. For conditions, you'll notice nightmares, headaches, migraines, blurred vision, anxiety, paranoia, and things like that. What this means is that if you're suffering from these conditions, it may be a symptom of "dis-ease" with your third eye.
By developing more comfort with your natural third-eye rythym, you're more apt to reduce these symptoms.
Activating the third eye:

In order to activate the third eye, you first must know WHY you want to activate it and WHAT you want to do with that. My suggestion, if you don't know, is to suggest WHY: to become an enlightened, complete, spiritually whole, completely loving being. That, to me, is the most noble and spiritually aware meaning of focusing on 6th chakra or 3rd eye meditation and psychic awareness. Please do not misuse for ill-conceived intent. Remember, karma matters! As for WHAT? I'd suggest focusing on ways to bring more love into the world, through your life. That will be the most powerful way to utilize this energy frequency. Beyond that, WISDOM. When you ask for wisdom, you will be given it. It comes slowly, over time...


What is the chakra? A Chakra is the natural energy that flows throughout your spiritual being, as it connects you within this physical world. It functions not as much in linear fashion, as often depicted in yoga charts, but in a more circular wheel in a general area, as described here: http://www.chakra-colors.com/.



Now, in order to understand how the third eye activates, you must understand the system of the chakras in your natural physical energy. Some good explanations for this may be found at:




The chakra chart of color:


This is actually a really incredible poster that you can purchase (no affiliate, just my sharing because I truly love it!): http://www.yogalifestyle.com/POBSSacredCentres.htm

The chakra chart of sound:


Being a musician, I'm also interested
in ways to activate the third eye through tonal and atonal qualities. You can go between the crown energy and third eye by vacillating between notes, such as playing between A-B. If you wish to open this area, you must play A and B scales (popular for guitar players). A is probably the most popular key for guitar players, perhaps for this reason, or the fact that guitars are usually strung where A is easy to play. Or, sometimes, Bb (a terrific saxophone key, as the saxophone is closed on the Bb scale for tenor sax this is the key of C, as the horn is a Bb instrument), is interesting, because then you're in the space between the crown and 6th chakra. I love experimenting with sounds. But, the true 3rd eye tone is, in fact, the pure note "A" and will be reflecting that energy.

A really cool site to play with the way sounds work and see them VISUALLY as they are played, is here: http://www.soundessence.net/chakras.php. I also love the way this site describes chakra energy:

"A chakra is a center of activity that receives, assimilates and expresses life force energy. The word Chakra is sanskrit for wheel or disc and signifies one of the seven energy centers of the body. We record every thought and feeling in one of our seven chakras and they become lodged there until they are released. As we evolve and live our lives it is important for us to give up old ideas to move forward and grow. Each of the seven musical notes and seven colors corresponding to the chakras have emotional and physical issues attached to them. It is the quest of Sound Essence to give the information and the tools needed to allow the song of your soul to be heard."

More and more, people are discovering that sound can be used to open parts of our chakra and even heal our physical body: http://www.soundhealingcenter.com/therapyctr.html



Now, if you get really geeked up on this, get a crystal tones, frosted bowl. I LOVE my frosted bowl, and play it to create energy often... friends come over and play it - they are drawn to the sound from it. Kids love it, too!






The third eye is also known as the 6th chakra. Considering this, you have three ways to drive at this part of your spirit, from the meditation practices I've learned:

1. Channel from the root up. Start with your 1st chakra, and work your way up your body. A good meditation for this is to think each color of the chakra spectrum. Another way to do this is to play sounds up the scale of a piano or instrument. I enjoy doing this with my saxophone, as it also involves breathing. If you can imagine the color while you play each note, this is even more powerful. One you play the 6th note, you picture indigo.

2. Channel from the top down. If you start with bright which light, blending into purple, gold, and pink all around you, you will drill down from above your 6th chakra until you settle into the 3rd eye, which is the color indigo. Once you are there you will feel certain vibrations. As I just focused upon indigo my whole body shook with a powerful chill. That is your chakra energy clearing and activating.

3. Channel from the world around you in. Focus on various objects. Close your eyes. Pay attention to the fast flashes hitting your eyes. Slow them down. Breath with open throat deeply for 10 seconds in, 16 seconds out. You may also breathe out shorter while saying "Aum" which will connect you with your spiritual self. Once your eyes are quiet, picture yourself going on a journey. See that journey. Then picture yourself shielded. Ask your guardian to protect you with white and golden light. Then ask for what you want to see. Sometimes you will gain access to your third eye this way. Then focus on indigo.

Meditating:

There are thousands of possible meditations to achieve various states of being. One that is focused on the third eye, or 6th chakra, is this one:

Practice of Purusa Dhyan Meditation
Sit upright in a chair, or in a comfortable cross-legged posture on a sofa or on a cushion on the floor. Close your eyes, and focus your attention at the point between your eyebrows.

Place your attention on the following points for three to five minutes each, monitor your experience at each level, then shift your focus of attention to the next level:
  • Sense of sitting in the present time
  • Awareness of sensations arising from the environment in the present time
  • Awareness of sensations arising in the body in the present time
  • Awareness of emotions arising in the present time
  • Awareness of thoughts arising in the present time
  • Awareness of I AM statements arising in the present time, with associated thoughts, feelings, and memories
  • Awareness of memories and impressions bubbling up from the Subconscious
  • Awareness of the present time being recorded in memory
Focus your attention in turn on each chakra of the Subconscious mind in the spinal tube base of spine behind the navel behind the solar plexus behind the heart, at the place where the neck meets the shoulders at the base of the skull at the point where the nose meets the forehead

Move behind the point between the eyebrows towards the top of your head. You will encounter a presence behind this center that silently observes. Focus more intently on this presence. You will begin to see light emanating from this presence.
Affirm quietly, "the self, the size of a thumb, is seated behind the two eyes. It is self-effulgent light. It is consciousness itself. I am this consciousness."
This is the attentional principle. This is your third eye, which allows you to see within when your two eyes are closed. Remain in this state for as long as you wish. Then, when you are ready to return, retrace your steps through each focal point until you are fully grounded in your normal waking awareness.
Practice this meditation until you can go at will to each focal point and unite with the attentional principle easily.

There's a really good set of meditations at OSHO, too.

Issues to Review:

Your third eye is your Indigo Brow chakra power. The Indigo chakra is your intelligence center for your true intuition. It is the wisdom center. It is the center that taps into the universal consciousness that flows through everything. Your psychic potential may be best developed through accessing the third eye.

Ways to maximize this access include:
  • Star gazing.
  • Eye rolls.
  • Meditation
  • Developing one's intuition and psychic abilities.
  • Eat indigo foods and consume indigo drinks.
  • Use aromatherapy oils such as Patchouli, Frankincense, Myrrh.
  • Music such as Mozart or Bach. Chanting (OM or AUM).
  • Wear or carry an indigo gemstone or silver jewelry.
  • Indigo stones are Amethyst, Tourmaline, Tanzanite.
  • Bathe in the indigo color in your clothing, decor, art, etc.
Mantras:

I found that stating out loud "I am divine love" while breathing, then while breathing out then saying it again, seems to increase your aura around you by 10 feet. A great way to integrate love and compassion with new power.

Another mantra I've been playing with lately is saying "I am divine wisdom" after focusing on the chakra chart colors and working my way down, then back up the chakra spine. Once I am in the indigo circle, I whisper, "I am divine wisdom" and breathing in and out, say it louder each time. Then I focus on what visions come to me. This is also powerful before a brain-storming session for work. I used it today, and the person who received my ideas wrote me back: "I love your ideas... I'll need time to figure out how to implement them!" Clearly, it helps to get focused before you brainstorm!

I like the song by "The Who" called "I can see for miles and miles" this song typifies the mantra of the third eye. I can see for miles, and miles is a very empowering mantra to say after activating your third eye.

Try utilizing your sixth chakra and opening your third eye - especially if you wish to overcome challenges illuminated in the questions above. And, please, comment on what works well for you!
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This article is written by Scott Andrews, Founder of AspireNow. Copyright 2007. All rights reserved. Note: this article provided for entertainment purposes. If you're suffering from medical conditions, we suggest you seek professional medical care from a licensed physician.

To read more articles like this, subscribe to the A-Blog.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

How To Get More Love

By Scott Andrews, Founder of AspireNow

How Can I Get More Love?

Where can I find my soul mate? How can I find true love? Is my knight in shining armor for real? How can I meet the woman of my dreams? Are these questions you've asked recently? Singles frequently talk about finding "true love" -- especially when they are in an unsatisfying relationship.


A recent study showed that most people would be willing to give up over 6 months salary to find their "true love". In some cases, this could be quite a bit of money

How many people know where to meet someone, though? In many bookstores you can find dozens of books about finding love or dating for success. John Gray has made boatloads of money with his "Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus" books. Why? Because we all want to find a partner with whom we can experience deep, lasting love. Fact is, just about everyone wants to know where to go to find our true love and have better relationships. The elephant in the room seems to be the question: How do we meet this mystical person? Recently,

I came across some interesting statistics that shed light on this situation. According to University of Chicago researcher Dr. Edward Lauman, here is how we meet our significant other:

23% meet at school
15% meet at work
10% meet at a private party
8% meet at a bar
8% meet at a church or synagogue
4% meet at the gym
<1% meet through personal ads


These stats may have changed slightly with the recent popularity of AOL, chat rooms and Internet dating. I know of several people who've met on-line. However, the interesting stat, to me, is that almost 30% of the remaining people met OTHER ways! In other words, they met doing something they LOVE. Whether that's swing dancing, listening to music at a concert, volunteering for a charity or meeting at the grocery store - people meet many ways. Upon seeing this I decided that if you were to replace the environment you have at school, you will have the highest likelihood of meeting someone you like. So, perhaps taking a class or lessons or studying a new subject where other people around your age and socio-economic background are likely to hang out and the odds will be higher.

So how do we meet someone? I look at it as catching a wild animal (call it a cat, if that helps).

There are at least two ways you could go about catching a wild cat. One method is to chase after the cat and try to catch it by pouncing on it -- likely to scare the cat away and make it a little more jittery the next time it sees you. This method is unlikely to create success and more likely to leave you feeling frustrated and alone.

The other method is to go where the wild cats are, offer the cat some fish or catnip and wait quietly, enjoying where you are without worrying about whether or not you catch the cat. It may seem like it is taking longer - but this is deceiving, as you are relaxing and enjoying where you are. After a while, when you are relaxed, quiet, and comfortable, the cat may start to check you out. As the cat learns you are safe and have treats for them, they'll be eating out of your hand. Once the word travels, you may even have your choice of several "cats".


Another method is to confidently approach the cat you want and offer it the milk you offer. A friend of mine claims that if you do not seize the world you're just a lamb and waiting for your slaughter. It works for him, as in general a man is still expected to be the person who approaches a woman (with confidence).

The most masterful trait, though, to finding love anywhere, is to simply send love out, without expectation, wherever we go. Sending out unconditional love, as a regular practice, is sure to come back to us tenfold. The trick to making money is often spending some. When you buy a new suit you can land that job sometimes just by looking the part. Well, with love it is the same way. When we are able to be confident and loving, the love we seek may come to us.


Do you have a question relating to finding the love you seek? Check out the AspireNow Advisor - solutions for only $29.95!

What are ways to create more love, or find more love, by sending more love out?


1. Take a friend to lunch or coffee. During the conversation, tell them three things you really like about them (with sincerity).

2. Buy a little gift for a friend, something that you think might uniquely appeal to them, based upon who you know them as. (No gag gifts - they might backfire!) It doesn't have to cost a lot to mean a lot.


3. Call a friend up on the telephone and let them know you really don't have a reason for calling except to say "hi" and you were thinking about them. Is there anything they need that you can help them with? Or, is there a way you can reconnect?

4. Drop by a friends house with a gift, or show up with some food, and offer to share it with them. Let me know one or two things you appreciate about their friendship.


5. Host a potluck party. You can make it interesting and make it a common interest party. For example, my brother goes to a monthly "writer's" party. The group is mostly English Teachers, who wanted to maintain their own craft. Everyone brings their own beverages and food, and the host prepares a main dish. Each person writes something before dinner. They take about 30 - 45 minutes to write their poem or story. After dinner, they sit around and share what they wrote. I cannot express how much more you get to know people from doing a shared interest party versus just showing up to a regular type of party.

6. Offer to do small favors for people. This could be as simple as holding someone's books or handing them the hard to reach item in a grocery store. Random acts of kindness build opportunities for new friendship. Don't expect return favors, just do it.


7. Compliment people who stand out to you. Be sincere, concise, and smile, when you compliment. The more you practice complimenting others the more you will see how people light up at your kindness.

8. Smile when you have no reason to smile. People like happy people. More than one person in my past attracted me because they smiled and laughed a lot. Happiness is contagious!

9. Find an event you want to attend, and invite someone you are interested in to go with you. This could be a play, a movie, a concert, or even a book reading. You choose.


10. Find an event you are interested in, and invite nobody, but go with the expectation to meet at least three new people in a sincere way. Make the meeting about them: ask them questions, show genuine interest in who they are, what they do, how they have fun.

Remember, most people love to share about their vocation, travel, what makes them passionate, how they have fun, their hobbies, and children. These are all pretty safe topics for most folks, and will build good will and better rapport than talking about politics, religion, sex, or other topics that are considered highly sensitive.


Please note: This article is intended for entertainment purpose only. The author of this article may not be certified as a licensed psychotherapist -- please consult professional assistance as your situation dictates.

Learn more at AspireNow's Blog: Seriously Fun Self-Help!


Listen to the AspireNow Radio Show - often featuring special guests!

Visit AspireNow - a leading self-help site on the Net, for more articles like this, at:

http://www.AspireNow.com.

Related books on attracting love:
POWER FLIRTING by GINIE SAYLES - Amazon Price: $49.00 List Price: $49.00
Attracting Genuine Love - Amazon Price: $6.50 List Price: $19.95
The Surrendered Single: A Practical Guide to Attracting and Marrying the Man Who's Right for You Amazon Price: $2.98 List Price: $14.00
His Rules: God's Practical Road Map for Becoming and Attracting Mr. or Mrs. Right Amazon Price: $2.85 List Price: $16.99
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This article is written by Scott Andrews, Founder of AspireNow. Copyright 2007. All rights reserved. To read more articles like this, subscribe to the A-Blog.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

How To Break Up

When You Know It's Over

First, how do you end it?

If you were once in love, and if you were once good friends, wouldn't it be wise to end it like you started, to the extent possible? There are a few good rules to abide by in breaking off a relationship.

How to Break Up:

1. Be nice. Let them know you enjoyed their company, had some good times, and wish them well in the future.

Maybe you're thinking, "Scott, you're nuts. There's no way I'm going to give her flowers while I'm dumping her." Or, "Scott, are you outta sight or what? I'm not giving him a massage and showing up with garter belts under my dress when I'm telling him to get lost!"
I know, it's hard. BUT, all I can say is that through any difficult situation, as well as any FUN situation, the same basic rule of life still applies: LOVE is the ANSWER!

PLEASE keep in mind that I'm NOT saying "go back and do it again, baby" because I know that cyclic relationships are usually unhealthy relationships. And unhealthy relationships ought not be continued for the better of all parties involved. I'm just saying be kind, be respectful, be good, be polite, be decent. Is it that hard?

2. When you break up, offer encouragement, if possible. Example: "I hope you find the love you seek."

3. During a break-up is not the time to tell them everything that is wrong with them. This is not the time to tell them all the things they messed up on during the relationship. If you intend to do this, do it with a counselor, not to your partner. If they ask, "why are you breaking up with me," tell them one or two key things that are unchangeable about the situation or that you see as not working for you or the both of you. In your description, be very simple (don't say more than you need to), be specific, and be positive by framing each negative around two positives (PNP approach). Don't lie or tell them it's you not them. Just make it about CIRCUMSTANCES rather than personality. That's the nice thing to do.

4. Initially, do not continue to write them, call them, contact them, or ask for anything back besides the first time you ask for it (Occasionally, people do weird things to "get back" at their ex-lover, such as keeping their stuff. If this happens and your things are very valuable or quite important to you, and they refuse to return them within two weeks, let them know you'll be alerting authorities unless they return the items within a week. If they do not return them within this time, follow through and you'll likely get your things back.) Otherwise, consider it the same as if a thief had stolen from you at random. You'll get over it, regardless of what they keep. But minimize all contact during the break up.

5. If you work or go to school with your ex, be cordial but let it go at that. If they decide to be friends with you later, it should be the person who was dumped to reach out and make that happen. If you were the dumper, rather than dumpee, then you should reach out when you are comfortable that you've moved on from the relationship and let them know you intend to be friends, but I do not suggest doing this during the initial breakup period. I once knew a woman who continued working her old job where her ex also worked. She talked about how she was broken up "but not really out of it" for MONTHS after the break-up. Years, in fact. If working together makes the situation particularly difficult, I suggest finding a new place of employment.
It will be better in the long run for both of you.

6. Remember to smile. Remember to pray. Remember that you will get through your break-up and try to keep yourself happy. When you get down, look up - it raises the spirits. If you get bummed out, work out. If you get stressed, play music, learn to paint, learn something new. whatever, just don't sit there and stew in bad feelings.

7. When you break up, it is good if you can end up friends. If you can't figure that out within one year, let it go. When you are comfortable, try to reach out in a positive way, and at least let them know that you wish them well. This is a positive way to reset closure in case the initial breakup ended with resentments. It can also be helpful to forgive each other, and to accept each other's offer of forgiveness. Forgiveness is important to release anger, resentment, and negative bonding cords so that you may love again in the future. Remember, show mercy. As you show mercy to others, so it will be that mercy will be shown to you.

8. When you break up, don't surprise anybody. If you're thinking about ending it, you ought to have had some discussion about how the relationship isn't working for you. Don't just one day, out of the blue, say "I'm done," and leave. That's not cool. Is that how you'd want to be treated? If things aren't working, you ought to have been communicating what hasn't worked for a period of MONTHS, or certainly at least days. The break-up shouldn't come as a surprise.

9. Unlike in the movie, The Break-Up, starring Jennifer Anniston and Vince Vaughn, don't tell your guy you want to break up, if in fact you really are just trying to get him to notice and show appreciation for you. Breaking up is a terminator. He likely will act as a guy who has been dumped rather than more appreciative (as in the movie) and it will backfire on you, big-time.

I'd recommend you make an effort to break up in a loving way. You never know, you just might get back together and wouldn't want to regret what you said. Also, what would you want someone to say to you? The golden rule is a wise rule to follow when you break up.

Learn more about how to deal with a break-up at AspireNow:

The AspireNow Break Up Guide
How To Get Over A Painful Breakup
Digging In The Dirt

Rebuilding: When Your Relationship Ends, 3rd Edition (Rebuilding Books; For Divorce and Beyond) Amazon Price: $10.34 List Price: $16.95

The Journey from Abandonment to Healing: Turn the End of a Relationship into the Beginning of a New Life Amazon Price: $7.99 List Price: $15.00
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This article is written by Scott Andrews, Founder of AspireNow. Copyright 2007. All rights reserved.

You may republish this article only AS A COMPLETE WHOLE with ENTIRE LINKS and copyright messages attached. All rights reserved. To read more articles like this, subscribe to the A-Blog.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Is Love Like Diamonds or Chocolate?

I recently watched a movie that compared relationships and dating to diamonds and chocolate.

A comment in the movie went something like this:

"If a woman wants a one night stand, she wants chocolate. If she wants a long-term relationship, she wants diamonds."

So, the question for men and women is, do you break out the chocolate, or the diamonds?

I'm curious what women would think of this. After all, aren't diamonds a girl's best friend? Then again, chocolate is also known as an aphrodisiac to love. Men, on the other hand, are often blamed for wanting chocolate. Yet, there are men who crave a diamond relationship.

Now, to dig deeper, let's look at what chocolate really means.

Chocolate is fast. It's easy. It doesn't cost a lot. Sure, it's a nice gift. I've given a candy bar before. Even Hershey's kisses. It's cute. But, I'm not sure chocolate says "I want you forever." It seems to me that chocolate says more "I want you right now." In other words, chocolate equates to a gift of lust. Not that there's anything wrong with that. Many love relationships start with lust. It's a symbol of the heart. How many chocolate hearts are given out on Valentine's Day?

Chocolate, roses, and things like that are nice, but they don't say the same thing as jewelry.

If you're someone who tends to go s-l-o-w - so much so that you tend to lose the man/woman you really want, maybe you ought to try chocolate. It might be a refreshing change of pace for you. Sometimes, the person who plods along needs a kick in the pants.

Now, on the other hand, if you're the impetuous sort of person who jumps into things, you might consider treating your relationship like a diamond.

Why? Well, because if you've been quick, fast, and easy, you've been giving a signal that you're not in it for the long-term. And, as a result, you'll get what you seek. It's the law of attraction, as applied to relationships. Are you tired of playing the field and want to settle down? Shift your perspective. Rather than the quick pick-up or giving it up early, stretch it out, take your time. In other words, think diamonds. See how things shift for you.

So, if it's love, she wants diamonds. If it's lust, chocolate.

Which one are you giving? Which do you attract?

Learn more at www.AspireNow.com:

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This article is written by Scott Andrews, Founder of AspireNow. Copyright 2007. All rights reserved. To read more articles like this, subscribe to the A-Blog.

Friday, November 30, 2007

A Childhood Hero: Daredevil Evel Knievel Dies

According to a family member, the legendary daredevil, Evel Knievel, died at the age of 69 today.

Sad news. As a kid, I was inspired by the daring feats Evel Knievel would try to accomplish.

The biggest dare I recall Evel going after was jumping the Snake River on his motorcycle. At the time, this was a big deal. I remember the crazy stunts Evel would do, and also remember that in many of these stunts, he failed. I recall seeing him with broken legs in casts. It wasn't pretty.

Yes, there he was, in all his glory, dressing like an American flag, ready to jump the next Guiness record into history.

At the time of his death, this article reports that he had 40 broken bones in his body. What sacrifice to live his purpose!

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/7122258.stm

If you think about your own life, what have you sacrificed to live your dreams? Do you have ANY broken bones over it? I don't. I may have experienced other aches and pains, but not those.

Imagine if, every time you were going to go for your next big challenge, you know you could end up in the hospital -- or even worse, dead! That was the fear that Evel Knievel had to overcome. And that was why he was an American hero.

Who were your childhood heroes? What did they sacrifice? I love hearing stories of people who've faced their fears and recovered. Evel Knievel was a hero who showed us all how it could be done.
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This article is written by Scott Andrews, Founder of AspireNow. Copyright 2007. All rights reserved.

You may republish this article only AS A COMPLETE WHOLE with ENTIRE LINKS and copyright messages attached. All rights reserved. More fun than breaking a leg: subscribe to the A-Blog.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

How Important Is Global Warming?



In a speech to the London Business School on March 28, 2006, entitled "The Opportunity for Private Citizens to Effect Positive Change in an Increasingly Interdependent World," Bill Clinton discussed Global Warming. In that address, the former President of the United States asserted: "[Global Warming] is the only existential threat that, those of you who are students here, your generation faces. It could literally undermine your ability to raise your children and grandchildren." He went on to say "And yet it is a phenomenal opportunity."







The problem with energy and the global warming trend is caused by several factors, but primarily these three:

We're burning too much coal, using too much oil, and deforesting too much of our planet. Of these three, though, over 65% of the damage is caused by the burning of coal, oil and gas. In other words, the way we're powering our world is impacting our very future existence upon it.

However, the odds are rather low that anything is going to change dramatically until the Earth burps on the Human inhabitants pumping out all of the precious black gold from its Geothermal inner layers. Upon what fact can I base this opinion?

Fact: over 50% of the world's richest companies are OIL & GAS companies.
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It's true. Look at this list from Forbes, published in March '07:

Rank Company Country Industry Sales Profit

#1 ExxonMobil United States Oil & Gas $335.09 $39.50
#2 Royal Dutch Shell Netherlands Oil & Gas $318.85 $25.44
#3 BP United Kingdom Oil & Gas $265.91 $22.29
#4 Citigroup United States Banking $146.56 $21.54
#5 Bank of America United States Banking $116.57 $21.13
#6 General Electric United States Conglom. $163.39 $20.83
#7 Pfizer United States Drug/Bio. $ 48.37 $19.34
#8 Chevron United States Oil & Gas $195.34 $17.14
#9 HSBC Holdings United Kingdom Banking $121.51 $16.63
#10 PetroChina China Oil & Gas $ 68.43 $16.53
#11 ConocoPhillips United States Oil & Gas $167.58 $15.55
#12 Total France Oil & Gas $175.05 $15.53

(Numbers are in billions of dollars)

If you think the numbers change when you sort on Total Sales, oil and gas still rank 6 out of 12, or 50% of the list. That's a lot of revenue and a ton of profit for those six companies.

Source: Forbes list of 2,000 richest companies, top (03/07)
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What's my point? Of the wealthiest companies in the world, black gold (oil & gas) is producing more wealth than almost all of the other companies combined. They are that rich.




Chart at left source: Forbes list of 2,000 richest companies, top (03/07)







And that's the problem with global warming. See, we COULD produce a car that runs on solar and air, IF we put our research dollars behind these technologies. Forget bio diesel, ethanol, which drive up the cost of corn and thus food cost. Forget hydrogen, even, which I've been saying is the answer for over 10 years. We need cars that run on compressed AIR - our greatest resource next to water.

And, we need these vehicles now. Upon looking at the rate of pollution and warming, Al Gore did a pretty good job of explaining the problem in "An Inconvenient Truth" with the following chart compiled by the Hadley Centre for Climate Prediction and Research of the UK Meteorological Office:



The clean air acts like the Kyoto Treaty and other government agency efforts to reduce pollution to 1990 standards is not enough to reduce the impact upon the environment. As you can see here, 1990 is still too high, and may still lead to a global warming or ice age. The world is filled with many, many people. All of these people driving cars might get the oil companies excited, but at some point the amount of global warming just might cause the skin of our earth to shift. The thin crust we all live upon is not that thick compared to the Earth's core. Polar caps HAVE melted before in the Earth's past and shifted the landscape.

Why aren't the oil companies worried? Actually, they seem quite concerned. In visiting each of the energy company websites, I found that most of them are mentioning sustainable energy, renewable energy, and Global Warming. Chevron has an action plan to address Global Warming that includes (1) reducing emission of greenhouse gases and energy efficiency, (2) investing in R & D and technology, (3) pursuing business opportunities in driving alternative energy revenue, and (4) supporting flexible and economically sound policies and mechanisms that protect the environment. It all sounds good on the surface, such as agreeing to lowering levels to 1990; however, I think we need to be MORE dramatic than 1990. We need 1890 emission levels if we are to start reversing the damage! Many of their initiatives, underneath the surface, didn't seem to me to be aggressively addressing the problem. Reading about carbon sequestration didn't convince me that we could lower greenhouse levels substantively through that program.


Considering these companies ARE investing in new technology in record amounts (BP claims to have invested in alternative energy more than any other company in their current commercials that airing on CNBC), clearly they know alternatives exist, except that these companies often buy alternative energy companies to shut down threats to their own existence. But what can they do to stop their pursuit of wealth? At this point, the markets are driven by REVENUES, PROFITS, and HITTING ESTIMATED NUMBERS. As a CEO of a corporation, if you miss your numbers, your stock gets hammered. As CEO, when your stock drops, your job is on the line. So, the very system is working to fuel the oil thirst that haunts our fragile planet's future existence.

Considering that momentum, what can we do?

First, start speaking up. That's why I wrote this post. I care about green companies. But, more than that, I want to see a car fueled by AIR hit the market in a serious way. Pictured, at right, is an air car by MDI. So, it IS possible. Air, as a fuel, souldn't cost much of anything and combining the solar cell technology with an air engine could enable the world to support Chinese and Indian automobiles, which are only rising in demand in our global future.

If you're developing technology around air, solar, or hydrogen, and wish to include me in your initiatives, please share what you're developing. Perhaps we can start a group at Plaxo to facilitate this discussion further. You may also contact http://www.arriive.com/ for further help on the matter.

Second, start investigating what is happening with air and solar. I keep thinking of the lyrics to the song that go "All I need is the air that I breathe yes to love you" and believe air and sunshine is the answer. Call me a tree-hugger if it makes you happy, but it just makes the most sense to me. We have the technological know-how to develop these technologies to be produced en-masse and develop a more sustainable planet. We're just NOT getting these developments fast enough because of the financial factors driving the greed of the world's wealthiest companies. We need to push our government, these companies, and other influences to act now and get the infrastructure developed to support a shift in how we power our planet.

Last, make an effort to reduce your own oil dependency. Drive less. Lower your commute. Get rid of the gas guzzler and buy a vehicle more economical - or better yet - a hybrid. We've got to start moving more in the direction of sustainable living. A pdf file by the EPA helps describe these steps in further detail.

I'm involved with an organization called Global Footprint. The focus of the group is how humans can grow sensibly and sustain healthy living within the footprint of the Earth.

Again, in looking at what's happening around the world, start to think about AIR and SOLAR vehicles. Ultimately, we need to arrive at a solution allowing sustainable economic and human population growth within our global footprint. The opportunity is here now. We must not delay.
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This article is written by Scott Andrews, Founder of AspireNow. Copyright 2007. All rights reserved.

You may republish this article only AS A COMPLETE WHOLE with ENTIRE LINKS and copyright messages attached. All rights reserved. More valuable than a tank of gas: To read more articles like this, subscribe to the A-Blog.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Fake It Til You Make It

How many times have you heard this expression?

"Fake it until you make it."

I heard it again tonight. It can be useful to people trying to get to an acceptable level of success. I've used it myself in my past. Heck, sometimes, with some new products or services, I feel like I'm faking it a little, now. But, actually, what I've realized is that when we think we're faking it, we're often not faking it at all.

That's right. I don't think it's fake to stick your hand up in the air and say "I can do that!" and then have to figure out how to do it. Because, frankly, many of the world's biggest companies do this when they are trying to secure a big account.

I remember when I told Tandem I could sign over $1,000,000 in revenue volume in equipment for computer service and support and start supporting it with just five days' advanced notice. That's not a lot of time to implement a major deal of that size. At the time, all of the rules in my company were stacked against me. The company had a hard and fast rule that we couldn't add equipment without serial numbers. We also were supposed to input our own orders (I'd have been there a month just doing that!) Yet, this was a lot of money. I needed the deal. So, I stood up and said to the client "We can do it." In other words, I was faking it until I made it. But, I knew I could do it, if I just got my management team to buy into the deal.

So, my biggest sales pitch was actually not to the customer, but to my own company. I profiled the account, profiled the equipment base, and approached my Director of service operations. He listened to me, then dialed the Senior Vice President of Operations at D1, Marty McHale. I liked Marty. I'd met him before and let him know what I was working on just three months earlier. So, it wasn't a new discussion. Like my Mom used to tell me "don't go to the grocery store when you're hungry" I'd bought my groceries in advance, so to speak. After Marty heard my profile, and listened to the Director's position, he suggested implementing with an asset management program to get the serial numbers. I suggested assigning an implementation manager to the account so that I could still be free to sell to other accounts. Marty assigned J.D. to the account, who masterfully smoothed over all of the initial customer issues on our first service calls.

So, that was a situation where speaking up and saying, "yes, we can do this," when I wasn't 100% sure of HOW we'd do it, made me a lot of money.

There are probably people who will read this and say "If I say I can do something, and I can't, aren't I setting myself up for failure?"

The answer is "Yes, if you don't have the experience or know how you will do what you raise your hand for, indeed you DO have an opportunity to fail." I know. I failed miserably doing this. I once agreed to speak at a group of managers, with a time slot right after lunch, and with the meeting place right by the beach (good for them, not good for me). To make matters more challenging, it was my first talk in over a year, and I was speaking on a new topic. The group I was speaking to was, in many ways, more senior to me, with more experience. And, last, I was totally sick with a bad flu when I accepted the speaking engagement, figuring I could get well in the week before I spoke.

Bad idea. You can't fool mother nature and this was before the discovery of Airborne. I was NOT well the day before the talk, but felt it was too late to cancel. The next day, I was still messing around with slides trying to get it just right. I practiced my talk on the drive to Santa Cruz. When I arrived half an hour early, I found out that they didn't have the proper overhead set-up for me. Even the extra time didn't help me correct the problem. So, I had to put my slides on a chair, which looked tacky. I was nervous, sick, and under pressure. The group had people in the back of the room being intentional trouble-makers. Well, it was a rough day. If I had to grade my talk, I think I'd have given it a 6 out of 10 that day. I was that bad. And, for me, that was a dismal failure. I'm used to getting 9's and 10's on my talks! I learned so much about speaking from that talk! I'll never forget one of the managers who looked in my eyes, held my hand, and said, "Scott, you have a gift. Make sure you use it." Her comment is still part of what drives me to speak to this day.

Now, when I go into a group, I speak about topics I've spoken about before. In addition, I take certain steps to control what is happening in the room. I often include facilitators in the back who I can refer to as I speak. This gives me a complete command of the room, because people in the back won't goof off if they know you have a plant back there watching them. More than that, I do active Q & A whenever possible, because, like Bill Clinton, I'm good at the townhall style of speaking off the stump. Slides are cool, but they can restrict what you're doing if you're not careful.

I always have my notes together before my talk now, and always practice it. Then I throw my notes away and try it again. It's amazing how much you learn when you can't cheat!

You probably get the point: you CAN take a chance. You MIGHT fail. But, even the failures will end up making you stronger. So, my theory is, GO FOR IT. Have you faked it and had it work out for you? Flopped? What would you recommend to your peers and people starting out with living their purpose?

I say "Fake it until you make it." And, you just might surprise yourself. If not, you'll learn so much to help you be even better in the future, the lesson will be worth the cost.
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This article is written by Scott Andrews, Founder of AspireNow. Copyright 2007. All rights reserved.

You may republish this article only AS A COMPLETE WHOLE with ENTIRE LINKS and copyright messages attached. All rights reserved. To read more articles like this, subscribe to the A-Blog.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

How Bloggers Make Money

I launched a new program last on November 19 and forgot to share it here on the blog:

Profitable Business Blogging (www.howbloggersmakemoney.com).

Through this valuable course, which starts Tuesday night, November 27, at 6PM PST - 7:15PM PST (don't worry, I'll provide audio downloads of the teleseminars you might miss), you can learn:

How A-List bloggers built their blogs
How to launch your own blog
How to use blogging software technology
Powerful promotion strategies
How to get your articles Top Ranking in Google (what I call G-juice!)
And much, much more!

The information in this course is compiled from over 500 hours of personal internet research. If you're starting a blog, why invest all that time when you can learn what I know within one month? If your time is worth more than the cost of the course (less than the value of one day, for most people) then you will benefit from this powerful program. My focus in building the program was especially how blogers make money. This is a growing trend on the internet, yet, most bloggers haven't cracked the code to success with making money with their blog.

If blogging isn't your bag, but you know someone else who is launching a business, or trying to find ways to grow traffic to their business, then you might want to refer them to this program which will help them become much more productive in much less time.

One tip from Profitable Business Blogging:

"Did you know that when you search for a name on search engines, that domain hawks might be watching your search? This means that someone else might reserve the name before you do. Do you know which search tool lets you search for a name without tracking your search? Just this tip alone can help you protect the name you so dearly need to protect. (This tool link is provided in the program.)"

I've got about 1,001 more tips like this, and many of them worth immediate money to someone who is just getting into blogging. Even if you're an experienced blogger, you will find this course to be a valuable refresh -- not to mention that I'll be adding more and more resources to the PBB website every month - your course fee gives you access for a whole year to this valuable resource database.

If there is a way I can help make the program better, specifically, for you, please email me and we can discuss. I'm always seeking ways to improve my content of the programs I offer through ARRiiVE Business Solutions.
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This article is written by Scott Andrews, Founder of AspireNow. Copyright 2007. All rights reserved.

You may republish this article only AS A COMPLETE WHOLE with ENTIRE LINKS and copyright messages attached. All rights reserved. To read more articles like this, subscribe to the A-Blog.

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