Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Why I Love The Internet

I spend a lot of time on my computer and some would say that it is not necessary.  For me, it is a great way to keep in touch with friends and family, get information and learn about new things that interest me.  It is much better than having to deal with television, advertisements and corporate media.  I can cut through the pages I want to see and moderate to an extent that I am reading.  

After we met with Jeremiah at Forrester Research, he wrote a blog about my generation being the "Obama Generation" and how his Presidency along with social media will affect my (our) lives.  At the end he asked the question about what are some other characteristics of the Internet that may link us to our government.  

To me, the Internet is one big "web" of communication.  It can be used to strengthen our relationships with others in an open-access community (such as I am doing with my blog) by forms of direct communication with our friends and family.  Free applications such as Blogger have enabled me to do this and have given me the opportunity for a much larger voice than before the Internet.  The idea of Blogging particularly interests me because it gives people the opportunity to get their voice out over media censoring (not that any of my content would be censored....yet).  More than ever in Silicon Valley did I hear of stories that had yet to be published online because of people who were at the event were able to submit a post on twitter to their followers and the word was out.  I wonder what will happen as the concentration of independent media increases and democratizes media control over the content we are presented?   

Looking at this from a non-cynical point of view, I feel that the Internet can help lead our country to the core source of democracy, where the people lead and the leaders follow.  Internet has opened up a new door for more people to be heard.  Stories can be told in many way from uploading your video on YouTube, podcasting, blogging, journalism, and other forms of independent media that is sprouting up.  These forms of media (as long as they stay open access and less regulated) allow citizens to break the barriers of censorship and expose their own opinions free of political bias.  This can only lead to more forms of debate with our President online at places such as WhiteHouse.gov.  The biggest problem is getting people to voice their opinions and making sure their voices be heard online.  As more voices are gained, it can lead to more serious and thought provoking debates along with more viewer attention.

In all, the possibilities for where the Internet can take democracy is endless.  The ideas we heard about on our trip were things that I never had imagined possible.  Who knows what will be invented next and how it will change our lives?  When I graduated high school I never expected to see my President on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube but this is the way it is unfolding.  How we interact with Him and our community members is in our control.  

Create, Inspire and be Inspired.  

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Final Valley Visits

Thursday was our final day in the Valley. Our day included visits to Palo Alto Research Center (PARC), Facebook and a happy hour with Robert Scoble.


At PARC we meet with Ed Chi who is an area manager and research scientist who helps people in understanding how the Internet and social computing systems help groups of people to remember, think and reason. We had a great talk about how systems are developed and the innovations that have occurred at PARC. Ed helped us realize that many inventions are great, but do not serve all people. For instance, most would assume that the iPhone is a great product and would sell all over the world....right? Well in Japan, they would sell close to none because for their culture everything must be accessed with one hand because the other is generally occupied by grabbing onto something (rails on subways for instance). Something as small as that can lead to the success or failure of a product and at PARC they look for ways to eliminate these blunders.

Another interesting part of our talk was about how with the Internet, a small number of people can make a huge difference. When Wikipedia first started, it was 10 people who had raised 1 million dollars to start their website. Their user content generated site has grown to become the fourth most trafficked website in the world. As a college student I can say that my life would be much more difficult without their website. The amount of information on their site is incomprehensible and their site has grown because people can contribute to it whenever they want. How can so few people make such an impact on the world? What is something that you could do to affect so many people? They started with something small, an idea and believed in it. More than their idea though, they believed in the people to make it great and that is was gets me.


For those who don't know what Facebook is, it is a social networking site with over 150 million users online and are currently getting 450,000 new users each day! It was started in 2001 at Harvard University, initially for Harvard students only, by college dropout Mark Zucherberg. Our conversation took place in the conference room that was filled with couches (wish our classrooms were like this). We talked about entrepreneurship, innovation and why we use Facebook.

It was cool to see the work environment at Facebook because it was different from anything we had seen on our trip. There are no cubicles at their offices, just open desks places next to each other and people wandering around the office on skateboards. People show up to work in jeans and t-shirts and nerds are normal in their offices. It was somewhat of an eyeopener even after being at Google.

Robert Scoble

Scoble is a tech geek, blogger and tech evangelist. He gets to go around to all of the tech companies in the valley, see their products months before they are introduced, and writes powerful reviews online. He talked with us about creating an image online along with why he believes certain products are more successful than others. He was an interesting guy to talk with for the short time we had with him.

Thanks to all those who have been following my trip to the valley! I plan on continuing my blog with writeups about all of my interests from technology, health, biking and anything else that crosses my mind. I have some great ideas for my blog from this trip so be aware that there may be some changes happening on my blog. Stay tuned!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Final Meetings in Silicon Valley

Wednesday consisted of a lunch meeting with two young entrepreneurs in Redwood City and a meeting with Jeremiah at Forrester research.

Ani Vallabhaneni is a current entrepreneur who is working with a current Luther grad on a project where the goal of their business is to establish a system where moderate loans between friends can be used without the high interest rates of banks. Him and his partner both worked at Epic Systems when they came up with their idea and moved to California without any connections. They provided us with some great insight on building a networking base here and the benefits of having a startup in the Valley.

After lunch we headed to Forrester Research which is a company that focuses in technology and market research and uses their informaiton to provide advice to many national companies. We met with Jeremiah Owyang, who's focus is on social media, has an interesting blog that you can check out here. He gives a breif overview about what we talked about in his post, "The Obama Generation." Our talk with Jeremiah was one of the more valuable Q&A's we had because many of the things we talked about was software the I use everyday such as Facebook, Twitter, and Blogspot. We talked about creating our image online and ways to secure our identity. One valuable piece of information he gave us was that anything we say or publish online should be written in a form that you could present to you Mom, future wife, and future boss. The internet does have a memory and anything linked to you can be found in the future.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Hummer-Winblad and Rev3

Tuesday was an exciting day. Not only we were able to watch President Obama's inauguration but we were also able to visit two very different, but exciting companies.

Our first stop was at a venture capitalist firm, one of the best in San Francisco, Hummer-Winblad. This VC firm specializes in investing in software and technology firms. We had a direct tie to them because our professor, Brad Miller, was one of the starters of NetPerceptions which Hummer-Winblad invested in the late 90's.

We learned a lot about pitching to VC firms, what they are looking for and how to present yourself and your product to them. So as some advise I will pass down the six factors that Ann presented to us can be found below:

1) Start with a 60 second briefing about yourself and your product
2) Your mission
3) What market are you trying to conquer
4) Quantify your opportunity
5) Your businesses timetable
6) Foldout Plan

The VC world is a crazy world and many people say that to be a VC you only have to be right 5% of the time. These firms invest millions of dollars in start-ups in hopes of a high return. They are in essence risk reduction engineers trying to find unclaimed market opportunities. Coming into this trip I had little information about what VC's did besides loan money for start-ups but I now have a much better idea about the thought process behind their decisions.

After scarfing a great portabello sandwich for lunch, we headed to Revison3 studio's just outside downtown San Francisco. Revision3 is a Internet television broadcast studio producing their own shows that can be see online at any time. It was started by Kevin Rose who is huge out here in the valley for his first Internet site Digg.

We had a tour of their studios and talked with Ron who gave us some insight into how they use Internet to leverage their product and collaborate to form their shows. I have never really used digg or Rev3 very much but both are sites worth checking out. Digg is a sight where if there is a popular video, article, blog, ect that is somebody likes they can click the "digg" icon and the ones with the most "diggs" get pushed to the top for everybody to check out.

We had another special guest, Dave Mathews, who is a friend of Steph's and known in the valley as the gadget guy. He was a great guy to talk with an was full of energy about his products. He is the inventor of many cool products including SlingBox (Anne I think Nil's has this for his "cable") and his current project that is still in beta form is Boxee. Boxee is an awesome idea that eliminates the cable companies power to control the television we watch and when we watch it. In essence, it is all shows stored online free for you to watch at your own convenience with only 15 second commercials between cuts. I can explain it more to anybody who is interested and it is something that I find totally awesome.

Until next time,

Creat, inspire and be inspired.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Yes We Did

Today was a day that I will forever remember where I was when Barack Obama was inaugurated as the 44th President of the United States of America. This was an incredible moment in history and as a young American I am proud of our country today and pray the movement continues.

Monday in the Valley

On Monday we only had one meeting that took place at 5 PM so we figured we would use the day to relax some and do some hiking. Brad, Jake, Daniel and I went back to the area where Brad and I had biked on Sunday and decided to hike in the National Park.

It was a beautiful day with clear skies and we could see for miles. An ocean view accompanied us to our right and a view of the San Francisco Valley to our left. It was even more beautiful than on Sunday because there was less fog coming in from the bay.

When we got back I went down to the pool and read some of my current book along with getting a little sun. Apparently, 70 degrees and sunny is terrible weather here in San Francisco because we received many weird looks while laying out trying to get some sun in our swimsuits. Must be the thick blood from the Midwest.

Afterward, we were able to pick current CEO of Krugle's brilliant mind for about two hours. Steve Larsen is a proven CEO for multiple companies with a particular skill for leading venture-backed technology companies. Having hired over 500 people himself, he gave us some great tips for preparing for interviews and questions to ask when being interviewed. His communication skills impressed me a lot and told many stories about how he was able to get people on his side in the business world.

We talked about many of the core differences between business in the Midwest compared to that on either coast. I thought in many ways he was right on in his comparisons. Out here is it not unusual for people to work for companies for a few years, leave and find another job and follow this trend their whole life. It creates different goals and makes you be more known and versitile. In the Midwest many people stick with the same job for most of their life even if they don't like it. I found this interesting and he had a good analogy to job decisions in that making them is like a distributary on a river. You have many options to choose from but once you choose one, it makes it more difficult to go back and choose another. Some other differences we also talked about related to family life, friends and values.

The best piece of advice I took from his talk with us was when I asked him who he looks to for advice. He excalimed that no matter how much of an expert you think you are at something, you are not. Why does Tiger Woods have a golf coach? Why do professional football players have trainers? Everybody has something else they can always improve on and everybody has their own special talents they can share with others. Above anything else, you can always read to attain new knowledge. That is one of the biggest things you can do to stay ahead in this world by never ceasing to harness new knowledge because so many times it is just that extra %5 that makes the most crucial difference in this world.

It was a great start out to our last week here in the Valley and we will continue it tomorrow with a trip to Hummer-Winblad which is the top venture capitalist firms here and a trip to Revision 3.

What extra %5 can you give today?

Create, inspire and be inspired.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Sunday Funday!

Sunday, Brad and I went to the local bike shop to rent bikes and go for a road ride. It is always fun to get out of the city when traveling and see the beautiful scenery that is not made up of cement. It was awesome to see hundreds of people outside enjoying the weather and biking. Bike lanes are plentiful and all drivers expect one were great with sharing the road.

We completed an epic ride that I have mapped out here.

While some ventured into the city here is what Brad and I accomplished/saw.

Rented a hot pink Trek Pilot 5.2 women's bike for my ride because the bike shop had no other men's bikes.

Saw 27 miles of beautiful scenery under the power of our own legs.

Saw some California Redwood trees.

Completed a climb reaching 2,500 feet.

Passed people in a hot pink bike.

Rode with an ocean view to our right and the valley of San Francisco to our left.

Biked in 70+ weather.

The views that we saw today is what make life great and biking up that extremely long and steep road so rewarding. I am blessed to have been presented such great opportunities in life.

Make the best of your day.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Pier 39

On Saturday we were able to take some time for the usual tourist activities. We started our day at Pier 39 and immediately Jake, Brad and I found a bike rental to see the area. Two of my favorite things combined in one is a no brainier: bikes and sightseeing.

We were given directions to the Golden Gate Bridge and took off accordingly. It was about a 4.5 mile ride to the bridge and an additional 1.5 miles to get across it. Biking was definitely the way to see the area because we were able to cover a lot of ground and make it back in time to grab some grub before our Alcatraz tour. I was not planning on eating until I spotted a store selling crepes and decided I was getting one regardless. Brad and Jake followed cue and afterwards we walked around a bustling Pier 39 area before meeting the rest of our group.

At 4:20 our boat left for our night tour of Alcatraz, home of many past criminals including Al Capone. The tour was very interesting and had lots of escape stories. The nightime provided us with a great opportunity to see San Francisco lit up at night and people in our group got some awesome pictures. Check out our flickr account here. I have been trying to upload photos but for whatever reason blogger is not letting me.

When we arrived on shore we found a seafood restaurant where I ordered some Mussels which are one of my favorite seafood's (thanks to Anne for getting me hooked!). We then headed back to our hotel for some 500 and bed.

Until next time,

Create, inspire and be inspired.

Friday in the Valley

Sorry for the delay in postings, activities that run well into the evening along with 500 games back at our room have detoured me from my blog.

On Friday we headed into San Francisco for a morning visit with Citizen Space. This business is a co-working facility where entrepreneurs can rent out a workspace for $425 dollars per month. One of the coolest aspects of this business is that anybody can come in for a day and use their facilities when vising San Francisco and need to keep their business activities afloat. The people who "rent" here are a very close knit group. Many times their businesses are unrelated but everyone is open to suggestions and shares their experiences openly. Definitely a cool approach to business.

We quickly rushed off across the Bay Bridge towards Pixar, where we were told we had an 11:30 showing and could not be late. Pixar, of course, is a digital animation company that makes movies and has collaborated with Disney on many pictures. Their movies are appropriate for all ages and are awesome for adults. Some movies they have produced are Toy Story, Monsters Inc., The Incredibles and their most recent film was Wall-E. It was a stroke of luck that we were even allowed into Pixar. Our Prof was talking about our trip on a cruise over Christmas break and somebody knew somebody who works for Pixar and got us in! As such with companies such as Google and Apple, you must have some pretty good connections to get into any of these companies.

Aside with touring their campus and seeing all of the artwork with impeccable attention to detail that goes along with creating their characters, their ingenuity impressed me the most. Thousands of ideas are generated each year and everyone is told that their ideas are good, the question is how can they make it great. Thousands of storyboards are written before the movie goes into production. Finding Nemo had over 40,000 slides sketched before it was produced.

Before our tour had ended we saw a short for an upcoming movie that I cannot remember (or probably say because of the NDA anyways) that was very funny and will see when it comes out in four years. Afterwards we ate at the Pixar caf where I took way to much food from the salad bar that was about as extravagant as a salad bar can be.

Our last stop for the day was at MobiTV. This company simply streams live TV to your phone. For instance if you were on the subway this coming Tuesday during Barrack's inauguration you could watch it live on your phone. Pretty awesome huh?! One of the six founders of Tivo who is now with MobiTV gave us a great presentation about life as an entrepreneur, life in the Valley and lots of background about the company. It was one of the most productive meetings we have had on this trip and the view was just as awesome. Located on the top floor of the building, our meeting room was wide open with an awesome view of the Bay.

I will keep the night short because this post is getting lengthy....we basically hung around Union Square. Stephanie held an event at the Clift Hotel which we attended for a while and then checked out more of the square before eating dinner and heading back to the hotel.

Until my next post in about a half hour.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Big Businesses and Big Hits

Sorry for the delay in postings. Our days have been full (as expected) and has led to my slacking in the blogger area.

On Thursday we visited some companies named Google and Apple. I previously thought that Google was just some extremely large number and that Apple was a fruit company.....I was way off-base.

We arrived at Google with much anticipation. Rick Klau (Feedburner developer) and former Luther grad Craig Cornelius gave us a quick tour. We were able to see many things although there is not much I can discuss because we signed an NDA. Google's campus is amazing, filled with energy and friendly people along with beauty. The courtyard consists of a company garden, volleyball courts, swimming pool, outdoor dining areas and bicycles scattered everywhere to accompany its many buildings. You would think with all the extra curricular within the work environment that not much would get done, this is far from the truth. Google has such a commitment to their employees it only builds more confidence within their work environment. There is so much I could talk about from how the company has shuttles for people up to 60 miles from work to the free cafeteria to their green initiatives and their interesting work environment.

Google's main purpose is to engage people online and organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful. Everything in this company is data driven. There is no such thing as a "hunch." Bring data to the table and present it. Did you know that every minute 13 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube? Or that every four hours enough information is uploaded to the Internet by Google to fill the Library of Congress? This philosophy is heavily rooted in the fact that they believe the world will be a better place if people are knowledgeable; which will lead to people making better decisions.

As if visiting Google wasn't cool enough, we were privileged enough to visit Apple headquarters at 1 Infinite Loop in Palo Alto, Ca. Jeremy and Joe gave us the opportunity for some Q and A before a walk inside the courtyard and provided us with a meal at the Apple caf. This was an extreme benefit because it is extremely rare that anybody who is not an Apple employee to be allowed inside their buildings, let alone the courtyard.

It was neat to hear from Apple employees describing their work environment and how they handle their work. A lot of projects are done on teams and it appears to be somewhat secretive among workers and then people up the ladder link them together. Where with Google people are working on side projects with workers in completely different departments with their 20% of work time to explore other company interests. Apple seemed to be a much more secretive company that was less transparent. Either way, both strategies seem to be working fine.

We then headed south to San Jose for the Sharks game. It was my first hockey game and we were hooked up with tickets thanks to Stephanie's friend and Luther Alum, Jen. The Sharks lost 3-2 to Calvary but the game was exciting to watch....a lot better than on TV.

For now, it is nearly 1 in the morning and I am tired after a day filled with more travel. We are heading back into San Francisco tomorrow for a day of tourist events including a trip to Alcatraz.

Until next time,

Create, inspire and be inspired.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Day Two

Guy Kawasaki

Our first thing on the agenda for today was to meet with Guy Kawasaki. Guy was Apple's evangelist (he told everybody about a little brand named Macintosh) when they were first getting off the ground and is a very important, influential person here in the valley. He is a true veteran and we were able to harness a lot of his knowledge during our meeting with him this morning. His career has ranged from an evangelist, venture capitalist and speaker at over 95 events a year.

Stephanie has let me borrow one of his books to read and it has lots of information about being an entrepreneur. It contains information on how to sell, speak publicly and present yourself, raise money and how to build a team. Aside from my reading, there were many pieces from listening to him talk that have stuck with me. He encouraged us that if we feel we have something important to say, say it and say it often. There is so much information out there and what you don't know, you don't know. It can be your job to empower people and help make this world a better place by sharing your talents with the world. It is the ideas of great men and the reality that they let everybody know about them that have established the world we see it as today.

After our talk with Guy we had an hour to kill around Palo Alto so we visited the local Apple store and then walked around downtown.

We then had lunch with Charlene Li, an analyst at Forrester Research and author of the book Groundswell. The book is also written with another analyst and incorporates "practical, data-based strategies for companies that want to harness the power of social technologies like blogs, social networks, and YouTube." There are many opportunities for companies to grow if they properly used these applicatoins. We also talked about how her career started and the difficulties of balancing home life along with work.

After lunch, we walked from downtown to Stanford University and checked out the campus and its bookstore. It was a beautiful day today and I felt a little guilty knowing that everybody back in the midwest is stuck in miserable below zero temperatures. Stanford has a beautiful campus and I am sure pictures are being posted as I am writing now.

Tesla Motors

After leaving campus we headed to Tesla motors which is a company who first envisioned a car where people could have the look of a sports car along with the economy of a hybrid. What they came up with is a totally electric vehicle that can go from 0 to 60 mph in 3.9 seconds. These cars are incredibly sleek in their design and cost pennies per mile to run. With a price tag around $110,000 I do not forsee myself owning one anytime soon, but they are really cool. In a sence they consider themselves a tech company because the batteries they use to run the cars are litium ion batteries much like the ones we use to run our computers and iPods. Unfortunatly the cars exterior is made of carbon fiber which can also contribute to why bicycles are so damn expensive as well.

The cars themselves are assembled here in the US but with products shipped from all over the world. We were able to see the shop and drivetrain instiliation plants here in Palo Alto.

We then headed to a neat Indian restaurant for dinner with current Google employee and former Luther professor, Craig Cornelius. Dinner was excellent and we will see Craig again tomorrow when we visit the Googleplex and then we are off to Apple in the afternoon and the Sharks game to cap of another awesome day.

Until next time,

Create, inspire and be inspired.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


Check out everybody's photos taken on our trip (I did not pack my camera):


Also, check out Jake's blog from the trip as well here.

Day One


We started out our tour of "The Valley" with a trip to LS9, a biotechnology firm which specializes in producing a renewable petroleum fuel as diesel. LS9 is based in the South San Francisco area, about a 45 minute drive from our hotel.

At the office/laboratory we learned a lot about the companies vision and the process of acquiring funds to get your ideas further off the ground. Similar to many other great companies, their idea started with two guys in a garage (which I think is where I should start my business, there appears to be a trend). It is not currently a profitable business but has millions of dollars in funding from venture capitalists. Above all, we learned about the process many entrepreneurs in the valley go through to turn their visions into reality through funding, raising capital and branding. We talked about the risks you must take and how you have to be able to look past the risk, but know when it is too much. We also talked about being able to present your ideas and keeping your focus on your purpose.

I found all of the topics we covered very interesting and it was helpful to have a scientific background because I was actually able to understand how the process of turning sugar cane into bio fuel works. Aside from my feelings about "green" alternative fuels, the presentation was extremely informative. John was very knowledgeable and had excellent answers for any questions we had for him.

Sarah Lacy

Sarah is the author of the book, Once You're Lucky, Twice You're Good. Although I have yet to read the book, our discussion with her was very informative. She had some great insight into life in Silicon Valley. She gave us great information based on her experiences on what to do and how to do handle situations in the entrepreneurial world. I was clearly able to see the passion she has for what she does and as she told us, don't follow the money. If you have passion and love what you are doing, the money will follow you.

From what I could gather from our meeting, she was a very genuine, friendly person and it has translated to her success into journalism and PR. She was one of the first journalists to interview people such as Facebook creator, Mark Zuckerberg and Digg creator Kevin Rose. It was not because she was the best journalist or because had the most connections, it was because she believed in these people before they were successful and gave them the time of day when nobody else would. She put in the time to get to know them in a sincere way before anybody knew who they were, not because she knew it would help her in the future, but because she was interested in their ideas. The idea of being above somebody was something that crossed her mind and has now led to her being able to catapulte somebody into wider fame through her reporting. In media's terms, she was the first one on the scene. Everybody else was a few months too late.

Sarah seemed to be the person who is able to look past the craziness in peoples ideas and see that they can be useful and that is what Silicon Valley is based upon. Negativity is contagious and I hate it. For instance, it started with a crazy idea such as a computer, which I am sure was shut down my many cynics, and now has completely changed the way we live. People should try their ideas and see how they work out, regardless of who says it cannot work. It is the ideas of many entrepreneurs that have formed an entire community and has attracted people from all walks of life to take part in its development here in Silicon Valley.

We still have the night free, but thus far I have already attained a lot of knowledge from just two meetings. I have been presented with a great opportunity to learn from a lot of very intellegent people. Their stories of success and failure are something I can really use to better prepare myself in a ever changing world.

Until next time,

Create, inspire and be inspired.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Silicon Valley

Arrived in San Jose this afternoon at about noon local time. Checked into the hotel and grabbed a bite to eat before vising the Tech Museum in downtown San Jose.

Weather is awesome! 70 and sunny while I hear the Midwest is getting pounded by snow.

Tomorrow we are heading into San Francisco to meet with LS9 in the morning and two authors in the afternoon, Sarah Lacy and Brian Solis. Check out the link to our schedule here.

Stay tuned for more updates on our travels in Silicon Valley.

Create, inspire and be inspired.

Monday, January 5, 2009

New Years Resolutions

I never have been a huge fan of New Years Resolutions. I think that if you have to wait to a New Year to create new goals, then you are probably five months behind on what you should be accomplishing anyways. In the past, I have never written down any resolutions or even considered thinking about them because I (like most people) never hold true to them.

The problem is that we all are procrastinators. I am guilty as chagred, it's January 5th and I planned on writing this New Years day. The reason it because we get stuck in the dreaming phase about how things could/would be. We all know what we want, but we have trouble committing to the needs to get there. People fear commitment because they fear what may they may become, they could be embarrassed, they could be rejected. People actually fear becoming healthy because they won't receive the same amount of attention as when they are ill. Thoughts like this are absurd!

Too many times we shine all of the light on the negative aspects of our goals. When you focus on the negative it zaps all of your motivation right out of you. People continually talk their goals down, justifying to themselves that their goals are unattainable or unrealistic. The truth about goals is you are either working to get them accomplished or are making excuses to why they are not getting accomplished.

Accept the fact that you may fail. You might fail and people may laugh at you, but who really cares? The only person who you have to satisfy is yourself, because as much as you (and I) think people are paying attention to all of our actions, they are NOT.

As bad as it sounds, have low expectations for yourself. Once you exceeded those expectations, it will become easier to establish new goals and accomplish those. You can't just expect to lose 25 pounds this year without having the simple goal of getting one workout in a day.

Right now is the only moment you ever have.

Start your dreams and goals now.

Create, inspire and be inspired.

"Don’t ask yourself what the world needs; ask yourself what makes you come alive. And then go and do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive." -Howard Thurman