I get to

“I get to.”

Three little words that can be so powerful.

The parking lot is packed; the only available spaces are very far away.

Mindset shift: I get to walk the long distance because I am healthy; I am not handicapped.

I am having a bad day at work; I get frustrated dealing with vendors, customers, and co-workers.

Mindset shift: I get to work inside an air-conditioned office sitting behind a desk; I am not working outside in 100+ degree weather installing roofs.

My son is acting up; he loves to tell me ‘no’ and argues with me.

Mindset shift: I get to communicate with him; he doesn’t have nonspeaking autism where he cannot speak.  I just need patience and have the right approach.

Someone cuts me off in traffic; I get mad.

Mindset shift: I get to drive without stress. The driver may be rushing to the hospital because a loved one is very sick. I’m not so mad anymore.


Mindset shift: I get to have all these human experiences because I am alive; my dad passed away 3 years ago. What he wouldn’t give to be alive and experience life, the good and the bad.

It’s the story we tell ourselves. A simple shift in the words we use can make a world of difference.

Leverage the power of words.

Borrowed Expertise

I’ve always been fascinated with marketing. I loved seeing the inner workings of how to influence customers to buy.

I see how marketers manipulate audiences. But I also appreciate how marketers make concepts concise and intriguing.

And don’t get me started on political spin doctors…

In a way, marketing is the science of changing someone’s beliefs.

But for someone to believe what you have to say, you need to have credibility.

And if you don’t have credibility? Borrow it.

Years ago, I was researching how to write a viral post when I came across the concept of newsjacking.  It involves leveraging a news story to gain attention for your brand.

Back then, I had a brand new blog, so I definitely needed some credibility.

I had a great idea for an article about Kickstarter, the crowdfunding platform. Because of the controversial nature of the article, I knew it would get picked up by some niche media outlets. And it did. It also caught the attention of a professor from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

Long story short, together we did a follow-up article. This time, due in no small part to his expertise, we got picked up by major publications like CNN, Forbes, and Inc.

I capitalized on a trending topic and leveraged the reputation of a professor to create my first (and only) viral post.

Now THAT was a great ride.


Overcoming resistance with momentum

“Documenting little details of your everyday life becomes a celebration of who you are.” – Carolyn V. Hamilton

I didn’t feel like going to yoga yesterday.

My body ached from swinging kettlebells the day before; my whole body was sore. It’s telling me to rest.

Hoping to find support for skipping yoga, I woke up Googling whether it’s a good idea to do yoga when my body is sore from exercise.

Damn it, yoga promotes active recovery, and the stretching is good for soreness.

Even as my mind fought to stay home, I got ready to go.

As I drove up to the yoga studio, I saw the parking lot was full. For a split second, I thought about turning around and going home.

But I already made it this far. Just go inside and the decision is made.

I leveraged the momentum of my physical actions to overcome my mental resistance.


Today I celebrate my freedom of movement. On my day off, I chose to go to the yoga studio first thing in the morning and practice power vinyasa.

I appreciate how well (or not so well) my body moves as I’ve gotten older.

Our physical fitness and mental acuity are the ultimate leverage we have. Without one or the other, there is no freedom.

The why

At my age, I need all the leverage I can get to stay around for as long as I can… for the one person that matters.

If your ‘WHY’ is strong enough, you’ll figure out the ‘HOW’.

Every day, I’m working on the ‘HOW’.

Finding the point of leverage that will make the most impact.

Problem solver

No matter what jobs I’ve had over the years, I always saw my role as the problem solver. Even within the family dynamic, I’ve always been the problem solver. Maybe that’s why I’m so fascinated by the concept of leverage. To understand the power to influence a person or situation to achieve a particular outcome.

However, it wasn’t until later in life when I realized that leverage is at its most powerful when the person I’m trying to influence is not someone else, but myself.

I finally understood the power of leverage when, instead of giving in to deep emotional pain, I used it. I leveraged my pain to transform, to create a new self.

The practice

Seth Godin is one of my favorite writers and thought leaders, and I love his book, The Practice. Recently, I came across an old podcast episode where he spoke with Tim Ferriss. In it, he said that everyone should blog every single day. By doing so, you will find a discipline that can’t help but benefit you.

This blog is my daily practice.

“Your choices create leverage. Your habits unleash leverage.” – James Clear

Leverage unleashed.