Elvis is on the Rig! Mattress Mack & Domino Principle #2: Determined Proactivism

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“I lost 12.5 million dollars last year but it really raised the trust in the brand.” — Jim “Mattress Mack” McIngvale, March 17, 2015, at The After Hours Network.

Can you make money during an economic recession or industry downturn?

Of course you can.

The 10 Domino Principles provide a framework for taking control of our lives and businesses, navigating the present, and shaping an exceptional future. Over time, I am introducing and applying the 10 Domino Principles through articles on this blog. Today we are going to delve into Domino Principle #2, the principle of Determined Proactivism.

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“Yeah! Dominoes, bitch!”

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A fallen Domino. “You’re the smartest guy I ever met, and you’re too stupid to see — he made up his mind 10 minutes ago.” Hank Schrader to Walter White, Breaking Bad, “Ozymandias.” Photo via AMC.

Do you ever lie to yourself? Yeah, I do. Plenty.

Yesterday we introduced Domino Principle #1, the principle of Deceptive Perceptions, quoting Richard Feynman stating: “The First Principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool.”

I’m a fairly smart fellow. And sometimes I’m really good at not lying to myself. But I’d be lying to myself if I didn’t admit… for every time I’ve been good at not deceiving myself about something that is important, I could probably point out another instance where I’ve failed to let myself see a truth sitting right in front of me. Not deceiving myself is something I’m working at getting better at doing, each and every day.

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True Lies! Richard Feynman & Domino Principle #1: Deceptive Perceptions

feynman_first_princ2The 10 Domino Principles provide a framework for taking control of our lives and businesses, navigating the present, and shaping an exceptional future. Over time, I am introducing and applying the 10 Domino Principles through articles on this blog. Today we are going to delve into Domino Principle #1, the principle of Deceptive Perceptions.

As my old friend Mr. Spock said: “In critical moments men sometimes see exactly what they wish to see” and “Humans do have an amazing capacity for believing what they choose — and excluding that which is painful.”

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I Have Been — and Always Shall Be — Your Friend — LLAP

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For the second time in a year, I’ve lost a man who was part of me in the truest possible sense. My father passed away last September. I eulogized him here.

Today, Leonard Nimoy, another man who became part of my very essence, is gone.

“You (humans) find it easier to understand the death of one than the death of a million.” — Spock, “The Immunity Syndrome,” Stardate 4307.1

I’ve struggled today with what to say about Nimoy‘s passing, or if this is even the place to say it. So much has already been said and will be said by so many who knew him better and have voices far more eloquent than mine. Yet I can’t let his passing go without comment, and surely the best way I can remember him is to speak of the many ways he and his character touched me at the very deepest level. With regards to sharing this message in this blog, I never thought when I launched this site a few weeks ago that I’d be writing about a topic like this. But this blog is now my voice and my platform, and much of what I learned from Nimoy‘s Spock applies quite directly to The Domino Principle. We will leave the business lessons for a more appropriate time, and today I’ll just talk about what Nimoy meant to me personally.

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“I Go to the Hills, when my Heart is Lonely”

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Cliff Kurtzman, overlooking Zion National Park, July 2014.

“Climb every mountain,
Ford every stream,
Follow every rainbow,
Till you find your dream.”
–The Sound Of Music – Climb Every Mountain

“You can CHANGE LIVES in two minutes,” my friend Sam Horn wrote this morning (her full note is embedded later in this post, below). She’s right! It just takes a fraction of a second to knock over the first domino in a chain reaction that can change your life or the lives of others. Yet it can take days, weeks, or even a lifetime to set up the dominoes necessary to allow that chain reaction to occur.

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Connections — “Death in the Morning” by James Burke

connections-600Connections was an amazing 1978 documentary television series and book created, written and presented by science historian James Burke. Today we continue our look at¬† the series with Episode #2 – “Death in the Morning.”

From the introduction:

“I would say it was a pretty safe bet, that the one magic wish most people would like to be granted would be to be able to see into the future. Think what it would mean. And backing the right horse! But we can’t. We have to guess about tomorrow and we have to act on that guess, and it’s never been any different. And that’s why following the trail from the past up to the emergence of the modern technology that surrounds us in our daily lives, and affects our lives, is rather like a detective story. Because, at no time in the past, did anybody have anything to do with the business of inventing or changing things, ever know what the full effect of his actions would be. He just went ahead and did what he did for his own reasons, like we do. That’s how change comes about. And it’s like a detective story because if you follow the trail from the past up to a modern man-made object, the story is full of sudden twists and false clues and guesswork, and you never know where the story is heading until the very last minute.”

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401 Stories; Running the 9/10th Marathon; Domino Principle #4: Distress Potential

marathonersmarathonOver time, I’ll be introducing readers of this blog to a series of 10 specific Domino Principles. These Principles provide a framework for taking control of our lives and businesses, navigating the present, and shaping an exceptional future. In this article, I’m using the news of the past week coming out of Marathon Oil to introduce “Domino Principle #4: Distress Potential.” (The Domino Principle framework is still evolving and somewhat fluid. Things may change.)

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Oil — Around the World in an Under $80 Daze

“It may be taken for granted that, rash as the Americans are, when they are prudent there is good reason for it.”
— Jules Verne, Around the World in Eighty Days

Who wins and who loses from the drop in the price of oil? That is a complex question, one which we will continue to explore on The Domino Principle for some time to come. Today we take a look at it from a broad geographic perspective, examining which areas around the world win or lose overall, heavily referencing 13 articles I’ve found which address the topic in great depth. In each case I provide the link to the source material for a fuller explanation.

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Connections — The Trigger Effect by James Burke

connections-600Connections was an amazing 1978 documentary television series and book created, written and presented by science historian James Burke. It demonstrated how various discoveries, scientific achievements, and historical world events were built from one another successively in an interconnected way to bring about particular aspects of modern technology.

Years later the success of Connections in syndication led to two sequel series, Connections² (1994) and Connections³ (1997).

Connections illustrates The Domino Principle in action over periods of thousands of years. Fortunately, many if not all of the Connections episodes are now viewable online. So over time, I’ll be sharing episodes of this series with our readers.

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Can We Ever Really Change What We Are?

mohinder“When we embrace what lies within, our potential has no limit. The future is filled with promise; the present rife with expectation. When we deny our instinct, and struggle against our deepest urges, uncertainty begins. Where does this path lead? When will the changes end? Is this transformation a gift or a curse? For those who fear what lies ahead, the most important question of all – can we ever really change what we are?” –Mohinder Suresh, “The Fix,” Heroes.

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Strategies for taking command of our lives through seeing "deep repercussions" in world events and realizing how chain reactions can produce future outcomes.