Hey all, just giving an update for the week and month. It’s been a while since we’ve updated and even though there’s a lot of news out there, it’s been mainly a lot of noise and hard to separate the wheat from the chaff. Summer is coming to an end in the Northern hemisphere and with that most of the world will be bunkering down and getting ready for winter. The four seasons are inevitable like the cycle of life. We’ve noticed a few trending topics and wanted to briefly touch base on a few items at hand.
First off, in much of North America Daylight Saving Time is coming to an end. Around 2pm EST you’ll find yourself turning back your clock. This was done from what I remember to help out the farmers get in more daylight when spring arrived and to resume normal time when the harvesting season came to an end. I always remember many of the aphorisms of Ben Franklin as he was known to have many. But a mnemonic quote of “Spring ahead, fall back” always helped me remember which way to turn the clock.
As we approach winter a lot has been in the news of a second wave of coronavirus and many health experts have been saying we’re not at the optimum reduced pandemic sickness levels that they had hoped we would be going into winter, but you know what? We have to make do with what we got and plan as best and do as best as we can. Europe has a second lockdown going into effect as we type this out. France also has a bit of turbelence happening with also some mandatory quarantining going on. For far too long many strong big nations have been dismissing the health concerns. And then when they finally have a flat tire in the middle of the road or other preventable problem they look back thinking about things that could have been done better.
The other thing trending which we noticed this morning was an uptick in the search keyword for “survival food” in the right side bar of Yahoo. It had all the normal other categories and things but it made us think that more people are starting to realize that they have to go it alone to survive and use their smarts, wits and bare hands. Smarties of this generation have seen uptick in news algorithms about certain topics. And so there’s often this doomscrolling that goes on and some are also aware of the potential of fearmongering, worrisome news becoming reality and other things that could sway real life outcomes. In much of the USA for instance there is constant coverage about upcoming politics. We won’t talk about it here since there’s already other better 24/7 coverage elsewhere. But the trend in this generation is just distrust and mistrust of those running the show and pulling the strings. Those making the rules and calling the shots. It seems for instance there was a trend to say certain health equipment wasn’t needed. Then there was a revision on stance to let people know it was prioritized to allow critical supplies to go where urgently needed for life saving purposes. And then there was news that the pandemic was in the knowledge and minds of the politicians running the show but withheld to not have a run on supplies and induce widespread worry.
Basically there’s been a lot of question on transparency and the people in the know are hoarding and squirreling away information. It truly is an information war. And in this war it is the war of the haves and have nots with the people that have education and more money or assets or position to obtain the critical knowledge being in a better position than those that do not. Another case in point is those that know a certain drug or vaccine or medicine might be lifesaving and critical may stockpile or invest large sums in anticipation of a success to boost their own portfolio profits. There are all kinds of examples. And even now with political and diversity issues being mentioned in the news, people are trying to get transparency, special camera and footage and documentation of things that occurred at flash points to find out what happened. Many communities are struggling, grieving and worried financially and also ill-stricken by what is going on with economic, health and political concerns around the world. The only solution that we can offer is more transparency, tolerance and patience in times such as these and reaching out to help your fellow people. We can’t change what has occurred or is occurring around you at this time, but you in your community can reach out to educate your community financially about the world. To be independent and self-sufficient as much as possible. To some that may be going off the grid or finding alternate ways of gaining knowledge and wealth. Wealth does not always mean richness in money but can be food for the mind and soul. Many people in the community can definitely use that now.
So Halloween is happening tonight. To many this has been a different year more than any other year. There were no festivals, sports and eateries and dining out and concerts this year. There were no fun events and church gatherings and big wedding celebrations. This year has been quite turbulent in fact. And we also think that part of the problem is the churning of the media and the news that keeps some of the hardier, scarier part of the news upfront and center. Sometimes this is needed to bring attention to topics and get change. But this year you have people cooped up at home with no release and no way to get entertainment and it was a powderkeg for all kinds of pent up released tensions, as you can clearly see in the news every day.
One thing that has been a silver lining is that people are trying to find alternate ways to connect again. They are doing Zoom meetings or other videos to try to stay connected. A local school for instance connected older kids to some other kids via computer meeting so they could find new friends and maintain friendships, continue to be social and form necessary human bonds to be successful people. We can’t just 5G and be behind the P.C. expecting to learn everything from our laptops till the end of time. We humans were designed to be social interactive animals and not really to sit in front of a screen all day long. If you’re reading this, how many of you can affirm that perhaps you’re stuck in an office and have to wear a mask all day and read and sometimes find yourself yawning uncontrollable or getting a bit tired. You’re not really getting enough oxygen and stimulation from just reading. Compare that against a vibrant live presentation from a great teacher and often you have live student engagement or find yourself really connected. 2021 and 2022 will hopefully be the year of the celebration of people and human connection again. We will still use Doordash and UberEats and all those other things likely. But many of us, when society is opened back up to allow it, will gladly go back into a dining or sports venue to reconnect with friends, get a hug, and just spend hours shooting the breeze and look and stare and enjoy the presence of another human in front of them again. Not in front of the computer.
There is a movie called Demolition Man where Sandra Bullock’s character and Sylvester Stallone get to a point where they are romantically inclined and want to consummate their attraction. But this is the future and it is all virtual complete with flashing images, and multicolor lights and moving body parts. Stallone’s character is overwhelmed and pulls away from the virtual connection and asks why they can’t do it like the old fashioned times? For those of us that have been lucky enough to be in another’s presence we consider ourselves happy beyond words that we have someone to: 1) help us get through this Covid crisis together and talk to, 2) have a friend or conversation partner that may or may not be 6 feet socially distanced (if family or close friend etc). We know life is short. And we are all too eager to savor getting back out there and being able to play sports, dine out, go to bars etc. We want to travel and all that. It feels like we’re being collectively punished but it’s all to try to keep the vulnerable individuals from getting sickened. Speaking of life being short, Sean Connery, the actor that played 007 in the spy movies passed this week. You may have a favorite Bond or Bond movie. I personally enjoyed the Casino Royale moment where Daniel Craig unbeknowst to him has his drink spiked and has to use his wits to get out of it alive. You see this latest Bond as fallible and with flaws, but don’t we all? We’re not invincible heroes living in a movie, but we can definitely be inspired by them.
Speaking about inspiration and ethics, if you run a business now or B.C.V. (before coronavirus) then now more than ever people count on you to run your business the best way you can. And if you have the advantage and position to be able to help out your community a lil bit, then count yourself lucky and do so if you can. Don’t become a “slimeball”. We’ve seen a trend where some businesses give discounts online or way to take off some of the cost off a purchase (like a coupon discount code) but for some reason they couldn’t apply it within 10 minutes of an order being placed or you couldn’t reach support or some other higher up person to override and change an order or discount despite several attempts to reach the business. One business offered a credit for future. Another business just apologized. There really ought to be a way to take in some human factor and offer exceptions when needed. Also a business should not get too confident. Often it forgets that it helps serve the people and without customers they business can’t survive. We’re not saying that a business can’t charge a rightful amount or ask for what they deserve, just that discretion and special circumstances sometimes apply and a business needs to be able to change and adapt but also adhere to rules and regulations and best position and protect itself. A business can be ethical, helpful, serving the community, and also making a profit.
Now we’ve been talking about our views about businesses and life and our expectations just now, but as we said before people during 2020 are probably going to undergo some level of mental and social stress. We’ve not been able to be with our friends, see our customers and engage in the activities we once used to. And so we also wanted to mention that it’s a good idea to temper your expectations. 2020 we have so many expectations and things being thrown at us at once that it might be a good idea to take a breath and hold and release. A big thing is probably couples and families. How many of you (hold up your hand) can acknowledge that perhaps you’ve been holed up or stuck together with your partner or spouse or significant other more than usual this year and perhaps driving each other a bit up the wall? In other years perhaps we could have shipped the children to summer camp or church activities or to grandpa/ grandma. But this year maybe you all have to quarantine. Or perhaps you can’t go out and enjoy a great date outside at a festival or dancing or some other public theater event. It has been frustrating and then maybe you end up spending a lot of time together and drive each other crazy when you truly appreciate each other and need each other. Well, we’re telling you that it might be a good idea to give yourself a small separate space and time to enjoy time apart but also enjoy time together. Video dating and meeting with masks has been interesting this year, but we all have to realize that expectations are just to meet, socialize and have fun like we used to. Criticism may come up but it’s important that you hold that tongue! Sometimes we don’t realize that we’re frustrated and things aren’t working out the best way, but we truly when we look at everything are blessed and lucky to have many of the people surrounding us to keep us from going stir crazy.
Another thing to work on during this quarantine season is yourself. Jim Rohn, who was the famed teacher and speaker and mentor of the modern motivational speaker and coach of Tony Robbins often said that it was important to “work more on yourself” than any other job out there, because the skills would translate into you becoming a better stronger person that could really 10x your results. Well, Tony Robbins went on to inspire many other motivational speakers and writers. We found a good book that is good for the ladies but also the gents related to motivation, business and psyching yourself up to the “just do it” mentality. The book titled “Girl, Stop Apologizing: A Shame-Free Plan for Embracing and Achieving Your Goals” by Rachel Hollis is good for being down to earth and figuring out your personal use of time. It helps you think and manage expectations, personal criticisms and limiting beliefs. Limiting beliefs are a key core concept to changing and overriding your inner mental programming blocking you from being a success. I had first learned about the idea from a dating coach by the name of DeAngelo for dating coaching.
Lastly as we get ready for winter, October has passed and there are only a few more weeks where the temperatures are somewhat bearable before needing to layer up. Now may be a good time to consider stockpiling and stocking up. It’s a good time to prepare. In life we really have to think a few steps ahead and prepare so you can stay ahead. As mentioned in Ms. Hollis’s book above if you’re not waking up early and planning for the day, the month, the year, then you’re falling behind and might not even know it or might be missing the milestones and goalposts you need to be setting for yourself to be successful. If you’ve ever played a boardgame like chess, checkers, Connect-Four or most any other games and video games then you know there’s a certain strategy and looking ahead. You need to be keeping a mental tabulation or better yet to get yourself a desk planning calendar. It doesn’t have to be anything elaborate. That way you can see your progress and things you need to do and keep on track for the year. Some days you may need a post it note or a memo programmed on your phone calendar. Other days perhaps you need to plot it out on your paper calendar so you can see the big picture. But regardless, taking an hour or so to plan ahead periodically can make a big difference to your daily success. Got a fitness goal, or want to finish a book report by a certain time? Calendar and planning and time budgeting can really help.
People can see the writing on the wall this year. They were caught off guard by the toilet paper scare/panic of 2020 and they could see the supply chain might be disrupted and so people that could went out and stocked up. But many of the people that knew about SHTF scenarios had already done their homework years ago and were already in a better position than most. Think of it like the Spiderman 2 phenomenon where Peter Parker’s character has enhanced abilities and senses. He is able to dodge Flash Thompson’s attempted attacks coming because his mind can see so far ahead of what’s going to happen and calculate what’s about to happen and so everything seems like it’s moving in slow motion. That’s what proper planning is like. You can pretty much Batman yourself out of most situations and those few scenarios you aren’t quite prepared you can wing it based on a protocol. It’s like bodyguards that protect A-listers. They have had years of training and running through scenarios so that when the real thing happens their training just kicks in.
Lastly, as I am working on myself and my own 2020 issues like autumn leaves, and keeping up the lawn grass and maintaining good relationships with the people around me and being patient and our yearly pest control,… I remember that humans are built on connections and a lot of it involves time-honored traditions and doing things that connect us to our past. Somethings have gladly and gradually phased out such as a lot of negative societal beliefs, unquestioning obedience to outdated rules, and restructions of mottos and mascots that were stereotypes etc. We have a lot of bad systems out there that just need to be overhauled. We’ve gotten into BAD habits. A lot of things were established initially to be temporary and to see us through disaster or bad scenarios. But then they never went back to previous imposed regulations. This is something to heed and be aware of if you’re Gen X,Y,Z, millenials or any other generation. Once a regulation or idea has been entrenched into habit and codified it is that harder to repeal and remove it back to before. The saying is that once some entity gains power or an ability they never had before, they are reluctant and reticent to give it up. There was a saying our history teacher once said that power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. It’s time for us to examine who and what we choose to lead and give power to. Whether that be someone governing or some belief controlling our daily habits and lives.
This year St. Nick won’t be coming to Macy’s to do the parade, an almost 160 tradition. Somethings have been tradition. Some things can be temporary, transient, or stopped. Parents are choosing to spend more time with kids and give toys to help them through this rough year. Even as parents we sometimes have to examine how we treat our own kids and consider if we’re enabling them or perhaps continuing a some cycle that was imposed on us as a child. Perhaps we were told to eat food or drink from a bottle when we got fussy to distract us. And now we do the same to our kids. Perhaps we were criticized or told to be a certain way when growing up and now imposing our patterned behavior we learned. There’s a Cherokee saying that there are two wolves within us. Which gets bigger? The one you feed. Make sure you’re examining your daily habits, life, mental attitude and check yourself and stand guard at the door (to your mind and beliefs and attitude) before you go home to your wife and kids or to work. 2020 has lit a spark, and where it goes depends on what you do today. Choose wisely.