October 14, 2021

Use things, not people.

Use things…not people. Many years ago, a good friend and mentor said that to me. I was only 22 at the time and had already enjoyed a modicum of success in business. Maybe he saw something in me, that I had blurred that line between using people and things on some occasion? Perhaps I had slipped into an all-too pragmatic, or even transactional mindset when interacting with friends, cohorts, and clients? It hit me like a gut punch that he saw that in me, at least enough to mention it in a positive, constructive way. Of course, it’s easy to […]
October 4, 2021

September 2021 Market & Economic Recap

Stocks hit choppy waters. September was a month characterized by volatility on Wall Street, although a U.S. stock swoon wasn’t all-together unexpected after a record run of gains. In fact, it was the worst month for the S&P 500 since March of 2020 – the epicenter of a stock selloff due to the Coronavirus pandemic. Through September, the S&P 500 fell 4.8%, the Dow Jones dropped 4.3%, and the Nasdaq sank 5.3%. But all was not lost since, for Q3, the S&P still posted a slight positive gain of 0.2%, its sixth straight quarter and 7th straight month of gains, […]
September 28, 2021

It’s never too late to change.

My grandfather suffered from Parkinson’s Disease at the age of 35. He was a warm and generous man, from what I remember. But suffering from such a debilitating progressive disease at such a young age, he faced struggles that we can’t even comprehend, both physical but also emotional. He tried his best, but couldn’t even play catch with his son, my father. By the time my grandfather was 45 years old, he was already in a wheelchair. At 50, he was almost totally incommunicado. By 62, he had passed away. Thinking of my grandfather recently – and my father, and down […]
September 22, 2021

“I really can’t complain.”

This morning, I drove to LAX before the crack of dawn. I silently cursed the early hour, trying to wake myself up and looking forward to getting my short flight over with so I could visit one of my favorite clients. Going through the clear/TSA line at the airport, a young man was working. He was in a wheelchair. As he began taking me and two others through the line at security, he asked, “How are you all doing?” I replied, “’Pretty good. A little tired but not bad. How about you?” This young man, who was in his early twenties, looked […]
September 10, 2021

August 2021 Market & Economic Recap

                Anemic payroll, S&P stays strong, eye on inflation amid Delta fears.   Latest payroll report shockingly low The big news last week was the release of a shocking payroll report. According to the report, non-farm payrolls increased by only 235,000 in August, which wasn’t even close to the 728,000 new jobs anticipated by economists for the month. (However, the unemployment rate did tick down from 5.4% in July to 5.2% in August.)   Fed hits pause on stimulus roll-back The ripple effect of that report is that it will likely keep the […]
September 9, 2021

Seeing the world through a child’s eyes.

Friday Thoughts: Seeing the world through a child’s eyes.   My son, Barrett (6 ½ years old) brought me the mail yesterday. As usual, there was some junk mail and a few bills. Barrett looked over the stack of envelopes and asked me, “Dadda, why do you always get these?” “Get what, bills?” I replied. “Yeah Dadda, bills. Why do you always get these?” I chuckled. “Well, I have to pay them.” I told him. Barrett looked slightly confused for a minute and then said, “Well, why can’t someone else pay them so you don’t have to?” GREAT QUESTION! I dropped […]
August 22, 2021

You earn it when times are tough.

Sometimes, you’re not going to be your best. It happens to all of us, when we have days, weeks, or even fall into prolonged ruts where it seems like nothing goes right, despite our best efforts. You try and try to turn things around, but no matter what you do, things keep falling apart. Other times, we’re on a roll. Things start going well and just get better and better. It feels like luck is on your side. You can’t really put your finger on why things are going so well, but there’s no need to question it and you […]
August 13, 2021

What would you do if you couldn’t fail?

If you knew that you could not fail, what would you do? What actions would you take today if you were 100% certain that everything would work out perfectly? That’s the ultimate question that we often neglect to ask ourselves. Would you quit your day job and launch that new brand that you’re so passionate about? Take a big chance by telling people what you really think and feel when they ask? Communicate with courage and vulnerability to your spouse and loved ones? Start a new sport that you love but have never tried? Go travel the world? Instead, we’re […]
July 26, 2021

The only time Steve Jobs ever turned off his iPhone.

I recently read an article about Steve Jobs and his iPhone use. Of course, as the iconoclastic head visionary at Apple, it’s no surprise that Jobs had his iPhone with him all the time. According to first-hand accounts, he never shut it off. Ever… Well, except for one and only one occasion in his workday (which, for Jobs, was every day). Steve Jobs did hit the power button and turn off his iPhone whenever he met with his creative team at Apple. For those minutes, hours, and days, Jobs wanted to discuss new ideas, product design, and vanguard innovations with […]
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