Monday, September 25, 2006

Issue 385 - Mon 25th Sep 2006

I hope Monday finds you well.

After last week's issue I got some emails telling me that I had given enough coverage to my groin adventures.
One of them was quite succint, a simple 'Groin Groin, Groan'!
Another one I got within a couple of hours of it going out...

'It is disappointing to see you use so many 'groin' jokes as a 'crutch' on an otherwise interesting 'tasty handful' of ideas. You always manage to throw a 'sac of balls' up into the air - so that we, your many readers can 'grope' amongst them on their descent - to find our own 'support' in life. We all envy you, your amazing 'testicular fortitude' in searching for a new girl friend, and pray that you can for evermore hold 'hernear'. It will happen 'trussed' me.'

That made me smile good and proper, written by my buddy Les Miserable from the BluesMothers.
You can see his site here:

Right, today I want to talk about one of my favourite words, it's one of what I like to call the 4 magic words beginning with 'A'.
In fact I wrote about it in my 'Transform Your Life in 21 Days' book.

The word is 'ASK', and it can bring amazing results, I like to use the theory as much as I can.

A while ago I had toyed with the idea of making videos (and no, not THAT kind) to sell online.
The trouble was that the resulting file was of such a massive size ( no jokes) that I didn't know how to handle it (sorry).
It suddenly occured to me that someone I knew from the music jam sessions had put a video on disc for someone else, so he seemed a good bet to ask.

I asked him, and he gave me 2 tips that I could use, the 2nd one being maybe the most useful - 'you're are using a dvd instead of cd aren't you?'

I wasn't.
A simple answer, and all I had to do to get it was ask!

Last week I was trying to record some audio onto my old pc.
I couldn't use my laptop, becauase what I wanted to record was something I was getting online *from* the laptop.
Anyhoo, the input socket on the pc didn't seem to work, so I gave up, assuming it was just old, and therefore knackered (much like myself).

When I mentioned it to a friend, he said he knew what the answer was - that the factory default was to mute the input, so I would have to go and unmute it.
I went and looked, and sure enough, all I had to do was unmute it!
That must be the most absurd default setting I've heard of.

That's a design meeting I'd love to have been at...
'Hey, I know, let's make the default setting for the line in to mute'
'But why, that doesn't seem to make sense' (good question)
'I know it doesn't make sense'.
'Ok then, let's do it.'

So despite the fact that the surreal exchange above actually must have taken place, the answer to my problem was simple, and all I had to do was ask.

Ask - a magic word.
If you want to read about the other 3 magic 'A' words, you can get my book here:

Ok, that's it for today - talking to people about your plans and goals can lead to some huge information coming your way.

Have a good week.
'Til Next Time,
Health and Happiness,
Get my self-improvement book at:

Monday, September 18, 2006

Issue 384 - Mon 18th Sep 2006

I hope everything is ok where you are.

My return to marathon training after my strain has brought up material for 2 articles, but I can't decide whether to make them into one or not.

Last week saw me suffering with shin splints for the first time, and some quick online research showed me that there are plenty of searches done for that subject, 3-6 keyword phrases.
This means it shouldn't be that hard to optimise a page for those phrases, and rank well.
The visitors would then get the helpful content, created by myself, and bingo, free traffic.

That traffic can then be monetised in a few ways.
Sometimes it can be as simple as that.
I think I'll call the article 'Shocking Shin Splints'.

Today though, I'll use the material for an article called 'The Groin Groin Grass of Home.'
I was going to call it 'From One Groin to Another', but the Groin Groin Grass title is a more pleasing way to feature 2 groins.

Regular readers will know that I strained my right groin, and I took a few weeks off training to let it recover.
I'm still not 100% sure that it wasn't my arsing around when playing bass that did it instead of the running, but there we are.

Speaking of 100%, I also wasn't sure that the injury had totally gone when I resumed training.
I took the first couple of sessions very gingerly, and was pleasantly surprised that my right groin felt fine.

Here's the thing - after a couple of sessions, I started to feel a twinge in my *left* groin.
'Interesting,' I thought, which was just about all I could do until I got home, as I 've mentioned before, groin fondling in public is not to be advised.

I quite enjoyed the twinge, because it made me consider the way the brain works, bringing a smile to my face.

The concept of pain is the brain interpreting the messages it is fed from the rest of the body.
The original pain in my right groin told me that something was wrong, and allowed me to address the problem before it became much worse.
When I got the pain in my left groin, which may have been psychosomatic, my brain concentrated on that, and stopped looking for a pain message about my right groin.

Can you see where I'm going with this?
Our brain interpretations can be a wonderful tool to help us, but it is easy to get our brain used to these messages, so much so that body messages can then be misinterpreted.

So it was pain from another part of my body that broke the cycle of waiting for pain messages about my right groin.

As I say, now I am in the midst of shin pain, but that's another story.
With habit and practice, we can build solid pathways in our brain's message network, embedding ways to act and ways to think.

We can use this to develop good habits, and break down old ones.
In fact we use this process all the time, we just don't do it consciously, so we need to be careful not to develop bad habits!

Ok, that's it for this week, have a think about what bad messages you may be ingraining into your brain, and to help break out of it, just consider my groins!

Have a good week.
'Til Next Time,
Health and Happiness,
Get my self-improvement book at:

Monday, September 11, 2006

Issue 383 - Mon 11th Sep 2006

I hope Monday finds you well.

Today's date really dictates what I write about today.
Most newslettersr around this time, particularly those today will talk about 9/11, so I could deliberately *not* mention it, but that would just be churlish.

When I write, I focus on 3 areas - goal achievement, self-improvement and wealth creation.
I have done for coming up to 4 years, and I'll continue to do so.

Today, as the space shuttle Atlantis docks to the International Space Station, we can see a spectacular example of our goal achievement and self improvement as humans.
5 years ago when the towers were hit, there were so many tales of people who maybe didn't lead as spectacular a life as an astronaut, but they contributed to society.

Think of the rescue services, who find their fulfilment and self improvement, by helping others to live.
They risk their lives to often achieve amazing goals, and faced with an impossible situation that day, they still pressed forward, and it cost hundreds of them their life.

On days like this when we remember events like the ones 5 years ago, the raft of documentaries bring back the human tales of what happened, and I like to look out of the window.

I like to look at something natural - it may be a tree, or the grass.
Then I close my eyes.

I imagine it all taken away.
Then I open my eyes again, and take another look.

The wealth creation I talk about doesn't have to be financial wealth - how about the wealth of abundance?
This doesn't even need to be created, it just needs to be appreciated!

Do I have wealth of abundance that I can look at the grass and trees, open the window and smell the fresh air?
It's a window to a flat which keeps a roof over my head, where I lie down with a healthy body.
Anyone telling me that isn't abundance is reading the wrong newsletter!

It's a simple point today.
It's also very obvious.

That doesn't make it any less valid.

Yes, the little things can get on our nerves and irritations are easy to find, but today is as good a day as any to step back and appreciate what we really have.

That's it for this week.
Have a good week.
'Til Next Time,
Health and Happiness,
Get involved with my Marathon at:

Monday, September 04, 2006

Issue 382 - Mon 3rd Sep 2006

I hope everything is ok where you are.

A new series of 'The Apprentice USA' started over here in the UK.
I say 'new', it is new for us, but it's only series 3, and I think they are up to series 5 or more in the US?

After the first series aired here, it was such a success, the makers decided to do a version with a UK business mogul.
It was so popular that the US version was reduced to the backwaters of our schedules.
I like them both, our version is very British, and the Donald Trump original is very, er, American.
If anyone fancies telling me the result, then please don't!

For this run, Trump put a twist on the 2 teams.
Both teams had the same average age, and the same average IQ, but one team went to college/university, and on team got no more than a high school pass out.
One team has 3 times the income of the other.

'Boring,' you may well mutter.
'Not boring,' I'd reply, because it's the high school team with the higher income!

Nice twist, and further evidence of one of my favourite topics - education.

As adults, there is almost no limit as to what we can teach ourselves, we just need to choose to do it.
It's too easy to say that when our 'official' education ends, that's as far as we will go, and we'll have to make do - wrong!

We learn every day, it's just that it is unfocused learning.
With the rise of the internet there is a huge array of learning materials around, much of it no cost, and before that there were, (and still are) good old fashioned books.

As well as academic study, you can't really replace action.
The high school grads didn't get where they are today by just reading a few extra books - they took action.
They learnt what worked, and learnt what didn't work.
Then they carried on, and the fact that they are on the show means that they are still taking action!

Would it have been possible to get a team of college/university grads that earnt 3 times the school leavers?
Of course, but it woudn't have driven the point home.

Higher education is not to be poo-pooed.
For all the success stories with only a high school education, there are plenty more drop outs and criminals.
A higher education often means that when your time comes to act in the 'real' world, you are directed less by trial and error, and more by established theory.

Both sides of the coin have their value, it's up to the individual to analyse where they are in life, where they want to get to, and what kind of education they need to get as an adult to bridge the gap.

I've made this point over and over in the 4 and half years I've been writing this newsletter.
I made it for sure in my book 'Transform Your Life In 21 Days!'

There's a reason for that.
It's a fundamental of goal achievement and self improvement.

Ok, that's it for today, what education do you need?
Have a good week.
'Til Next Time,
Health and Happiness,
Get involved with my Marathon at: