Crypto-currencies; Blockchain Tech Boom

Since I last wrote on the subject Ethereum it has risen from $92.94 to a value of just over $251! more than doubled!

This is not the only cryptocurrency that has seen great growth. Coinbase added litecoin which grew and has held a stable price over the last month. There are many other coins on the crypto exchanges and I am looking into diversifying my holdings.

A couple coins I am watching keenly are Golem coin(GNT), Siacoin(SC), & NEM or New Economic Market (XEM). I think they show great promise and are all currently trading under 60 cents.

I will now outline the potential for a $1000 dollar investment in any of these.

 

The underlying concept of GNT is to utilize the blockchain technology to power a decentralized super computer for large projects that no one computer could process. All the computers on the network would complete the project and in turn receive a part of the fee paid to initiate it.

Currently Golem coin is trading at around 52 cents. A $1000 investment would purchase around 1900 Golem coins. if the price were to rise to $3 dollars this would give you $5700 an increase of 470%. Since this project has much potential I see it easily becoming worth $3 dollars or more.


The concept of Siacoin (SC) is decentralized cloud storage. If you run the SC network and have free space, you can rent out the storage space on your computer for a fee. Because it is decentralized your information is not in the hands of any one person and is thus safe and secure. It also allows people to take advantage of memory resources not being utilized.

Currently SC is trading at around $0.014710. This may seem much lower but the reason is there is a larger number of coins in circulation – however this does not preclude siacoin from seeing a nice rise in value. A $1000 investment would purchase about 67,980 coins.  obviously if siacoin reached even $1 in value you would see your money returned to you in leagues and leagues.


Lastly NEM or new economic market (XEM) is what I believe to be one of the most well developed cryptos out there. If anything the value of the coin is overlooked for others due to lack of marketing and the huge hype of other less substantial coins.

Currently NEM trades at about $.2189 meaning a $1000 investment would purchase 4560 coins. If it were to reach a $1 you would see your money grow nearly 356%


Of course this is all speculation at the moment, but I’m putting my money where my mouth is and expect to see at least 50% growth in the next year or less.

If you have any questions on crypto currencies please feel free to ask me and I will tell you what I know.

There are hundreds of coins out there but I suggest strongly looking into any you might purchase and assess them for value based on underlying concept and development team behind them.

I use Coinbase to purchase initially, and then I like to make exchanges on Changelly.

As far as exchanges go – I utilize Poloniex, mainly to store some of the altcoins that don’t yet have a good mobile wallet app or desktop wallet. For example I bought coins on Coinbase, made an account on poloniex, made an exchange for coins on changelly, sent payment to changelly from coinbase, and had the GNT sent to poloniex for storage.

A little confusing for now, but I’m sure it will be made easier in months to come.

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Things Are Different In The Morning

As of this post Ether (The digital crypto-currency of the Ethereum network) has reached new heights. $92.94! Growing astronomically since January of this year from about $1.00. This follows from a constant overall growth trend in the crypto currency space – everything is going up. Speculation surrounding the SEC weighing a decision to approve a fund to be traded in ETH (Ether) is abound and if it does it is sure to send strong price growth incentives throughout the financial sector.

Where will it go? Will it continue to rise? Good chance it may. It will certainly be interesting to follow the roller coaster ride!

A World Born of Merit

You’ve heard it before – work hard and you’ll go far.

But when you look around it doesn’t seem to add up.

You clocked in every day and did what you were told.
You even got better, and improved some processes!
But you still aren’t seeing the fabled land of success.

The truth is… Hard work isn’t enough. It isn’t even the number 1 determinant.
And it’s not because life isn’t fair, which it isn’t. 
Hard work just doesn’t cut it.
Without persistence it doesn’t measure up to anything.

But you’ve done it. And you’ve done it again. You show up.
Why haven’t you reached the shores of success?

While not everyone can show up and do the work persistently,
Even fewer can figure out how to leverage their work and persistence.

You’ve heard that before – WORK SMARTER

Because it is true! You’re not thinking big enough.
You’re not working SMARTER!

There are so many ways to leverage your work no matter what your job is. And it starts with looking at what you can learn in every interaction and process you experience.

The people skills, the positives, the negatives, reading between the lines, questioning practices which seem off to you, what you enjoy discussing in your down time, what you hear people talking about in the streets. It’s all about observing trends, and taking in as much as you can so you can cross apply knowledge

When you learn or experience something, there is a good chance that somewhere down the road it will apply to another situation.

 

The better you get at identifying this and navigating your experiences, the more success you will see when you start to piece together the bigger picture of your life.

For example: If an individual works at a pizza joint some might call that a dead end job.

They don’t see any value in the experience of working such a position. But imagine you are working this job. Your job is to often prep the kitchen, check inventory, keep the place clean, take orders both in person and over the phone, and make sure everyone is satisfied in their interactions with YOU & their experience is positive.

Organization is a big one, not to mention plenty of others like a sense of timing and customer service – mental agility, knowledge of food preparation; All these skills can really give an edge above people who have never had the experience. Handling pressure with a sense of urgency and care! Have you ever burned someone’s pizza and then had to de-escalate them when they showed up expecting it done? The list goes on.

It introduces you to many important skills which you can use to succeed and ultimately work smarter anywhere.

But only if you leverage them.

With all these skills you develop from this one job you can  look to work at perhaps more upscale restaurants and refine some of these skills to further develop yourself. You even start to understand what it takes to manage a place of your own, and gather an idea of what else you need to learn more about.

This is just a brief look at leveraging your work, with a focus on identifying skills and thinking about how each skill may be cross applied to other tasks.

It take more than developing skills to leverage your work, such as reading people, and effort, but it is a start. I promise if you don’t have a good array of honed skills, your leveraging won’t have the multiplying factor you’re seeking.

“Without leverage, a lot of things would seem impossible.”

Long-Term, Short Term; Goals

In this post I’d like to briefly discuss – Goals – of any significance usually require effort over a period of time towards a task or feat we’d like to accomplish.

You of course get to decide what your goals are! – But from my experience, the best way to achieve those goals is to give yourself stepping stones to reach them. And this is where we signify the endurance.

Don’t a string of short term tasks add up to long term? Yes.

More importantly, long-term is a vision of the future built on a foundation of successful short-term goals. In other words, short term wins are essential to the goal achieving process.

By planning and taking those steps, we create a dialogue of subtle pressure which points us in the right direction.

Try this: Identify your current goals. Make them manageable by creating a series of more easily obtainable goals that act as stepping stones along the way to your ultimate goal.
Perhaps you have a year long goal – In this case try setting yourself quarterly goals that keep you on track and gauge progress towards the year end goal.

Whatever your goals, breaking them up in this way can be a big help!

————————————————–

*Short term wins are short term goals, designed to be easily obtainable, to build your momentum on the road towards the peak of the mountain.

*Long term goals

 

Folding Under Pressure

It happens, and it’s always when we could really use our walls to stand strong. But does that mean we are doomed to live out our lives in the shadows of the mangled ruins?

It depends.

It depends upon the choices you make following the collapse. You can either blame and complain or reflect and grow. I assure you that If you don’t look to reflect and grow, then you will – long from now – find yourself excavating the same old ruins.

So what does it mean to fold under pressure? Well we aren’t exactly taking the route of picnic tables and chairs. The term folding under pressure translates into  a collapse, or cave in, when pressures on the outside, combined with a weakness in the internal structure’s integrity result in acting out of character; Usually in a way that is not the ideal becoming.

This kind of thing happens. We are not perfect, no matter how much we aim for that elusive stag. We can however learn from our collapse, reevaluate and rebuild greater strength for the future. This is what life is about. Re-calibrating, and improving –GROWTH in all caps!

If  you’ve wound up folding, and falling out of character, or into a position you didn’t intend to ever come into, you can always reorient yourself and grow with the new insights taken from the experience. Maybe it doesn’t feel good initially, but your intent to grow with new light is the hallmark of life.

Diamonds are formed under pressure after all!

 

A How To: Improving Listening Skills

So you want to listen to what someone has to say? Do you really want to listen, take in, and comprehend the message someone is sharing with you as you read this? Well then what are you doing looking at this and not paying attention to them!

We could call this lesson one – Perhaps the most difficult thing to do for us individual humans with our own race car engines revving inside our skulls. What was lesson one? Paying attention! 

Paying attention requires a certain subset of skills. I know, I know. This is getting absurd – First we had to pay attention, now we found out that it requires us to do other things like focus, breathe relaxed, engage with your speaker, and resist the urge to make it about you.

Lesson 2: Focus
What does it mean to focus? Well it means you are not thinking about what you will eat later, what you ate earlier, who you are eating with tomorrow, or the thing you thought about in the shower this morning (potentially eating). Yeah we all love food, but it’s a choice to let your mind jump to these things outside of what is going on in front of you right now. Yes, I threw distractions at you on purpose. I want you to practice quieting those wandering thoughts and urges. It isn’t easy – It is a choice to let them persist and creep around in your peripherals or even take the center of your attention. You are capable of exerting some self control.

Wow, now I’m asking you to not only use self control, but practice it too? Maybe even exert it! Where does it end? The point is you have to choose to be a little selfless, intent on giving your undivided attention to what is before you at that time (If it’s important to listen to who is speaking – Here I go bringing up making a decision on what is important again).

With all that’s constantly going on it’s important to stay relaxed and breathe easy to help with focus. Breathing at all times is the number one necessary thing you have to do to stay living. If you quit for any period of time beyond how long you can hold your breath your body goes into a tantrum, and you probably die. So breathe relaxed, it shouldn’t be a big deal. Keeping it level does weigh on our ability to focus and comprehend what is going on.

Lesson 3: The almighty engagement
And I’m not talking about getting married. I’m talking about being active in your listening. It keeps your brain awake and focused. If you aren’t apart of the conversation/listening you are somewhere else and not paying attention. This doesn’t mean you are looking for your Q to talk at the person. You don’t have to utter a word to be engaged in listening.

How the hell do I engage without speaking? You do it in two ways, the first being eye contact. That’s right – The old look em’ in the eyes and mean it. As someone speaks to you, direct eye contact speaks back saying, “I am intent on paying attention to what you have to say to me.” Of course this means you must follow through on those ‘words’ – To give someone that engagement, but really be thinking about what you’re doing later or why they are rocking that outdated hairstyle is rather dishonest of you. So I ask that you use this eye contact with respect or don’t do it at all. The second part to this is body language. Whether you are sitting or standing It all comes back to being relaxed and open with your gestures. You want nice easy movements with relaxed breathing to convey that you aren’t restless or thinking about something else.

Lesson 4: Not making it about you
Also known as listening with the intent to understand, and not respond. If you are simply waiting to respond the entire time someone is speaking how well are you comprehending what they are telling you? Rhetorical question. You’ve neglected to actually listen. Your goal should be to pick up on key words and phrases, and then when the time comes and the person wishes to hear what you have to say (If they want you to speak on it) Go ahead and ask them some questions using those key points they spoke of to show you heard what they relayed to you, and that you are intent on having a crystal clear understanding. This assures that you’ve heard them and gives a warm feeling of validation.

Lesson 5: What Was Said Without Words
It is one thing to listen and understand, but another to listen and make it felt that you have listened attentively and picked up on what the person is trying to relay – Including what isn’t necessarily said outright! Believe it. People will tell you things without actually using their words and hope for you to understand.

Woah. That’s some advanced shit. Listening to what someone is saying and understanding what they haven’t actually said. This requires practice and a good level of emotional intelligence. Don’t feel bad if you weren’t able to read everything between the lines. It takes a lot of practice, but just be aware of the bigger picture. Listen for tones of voice, watch their body language, their energy level – tie in your knowledge of their circumstances, the environment, or things you’ve previously have spoken with this person about. All these things can give insights into what isn’t being said.

Remember that all of these things take practice. The good news is that there is not better time to start than now! There are numerous opportunities to practice and improve your listening skills everyday – There is always someone who wants to talk 🙂

I Was Told Some Great Advice Once – But I Can’t Remember It

Advice comes and goes, in one ear and out the other. The best advice is the stuff we learn from our ‘mistakes’ and ‘failures’ Ultimately these things, with proper reflection, make us better. It takes time to let it all soak in, and become the wisdom of the sage. Either way it doesn’t hurt to hear something here and there. It is after all up to you to make a choice.

Remember to align your thoughts with your actions. Step back and make sure you’re following the ‘right’ star. This is a lifelong voyage, and where you end up is on your shoulders. Listen to people actively. Listen to understand, not to respond. Show them you’ve listened. Remain chill. It’s a blessing to keep your calm. Don’t repeat your mistakes. Remember the lessons you’ve learned. Do everything you can in a day, but don’t expect to be perfect. You’ll improve. Be kind. You deserve it. Give yourself to others, but don’t give yourself away. Always look for what isn’t there. Look for what you did well, always the positives. Remind the good people in your life that you think of them. Try to help someone each day, even if all you can give at the time is a smile. The things that are difficult will pass. Keep your head up. Stay smiling. Stay in motion. Look to grow. Stay learning. Take a deep breath. Laugh it off. We’re all going to make it. Don’t forget how people looked out for you along the way. Be true to what you feel inside. Don’t deceive the honest. Show your heart. Express your soul. Create. Give life to this world! Restore your faith in humanity by way of your own deeds. You make it up just as much as anyone else. Conquer your fears, love yourself – you’re beautiful… You see what you pull out, so find the beauty.

I apologize for not finding time to create articles as often as I’d like, drawing, writing, and running multiple projects doesn’t leave much 🙂 In the meantime I hope this suffices. If not I do have other projects out there you may find entertaining…

Pulling Down The Moon

Anyone can do it one time. Yes that’s right. Anyone can pull down the moon one time. We’ve all done it. You’ve mustered all your humanity to bring the moon down for yourself or to give it to another. I’m here to say that although that’s a great effort/beautiful gesture, It’s not enough. It isn’t enough to just pull it down. You have to put it back up. Then you have to go ahead and pull it back down the next day only to put it back once more. If you want to be the best you can be for yourself and anyone else then pulling down the moon is an every day event.

I don’t mean to discourage anyone. I want you to attain the best you possible. That’s why I’m going to tell you that you can do it. You can pull the moon down and put it back up. You’ve done it once, you can do it again. It doesn’t get easier. You just become more determined. There may be days where it just doesn’t go as planned. On these days, when you are tested to your breaking, don’t let up. Give it everything you’ve got. Don’t fear failing. If you approach the difficulties with your entirety, at some point you’ll surpass it all.

Know your worth. It’s value is worth giving your all!

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How to Implement Change (‘Be the Change’ Agent!)

I figured it would be good for people to have a clear and concise best practices methodology for implementing change!

With that being said several near universal steps are crucial to the success of any change initiative. There are certainly variations and numerous academics who have worked on the theory of change, but putting in the logical contemplation on such change initiatives will usually result in something along these lines:

1. Establish The Sense of Urgency!

This is crucial as often times if something does not appear imminent or critical people just aren’t moved. They don’t see the need to act ‘now’ and that can create powerful resistance in getting change to move along smoothly let alone sink in.

2. Forming a Powerful Guiding Coalition or Team of Change agents.

This is important for if you don’t have people working together with both experience dealing with change ie. being themselves an agent of change within their own lives (‘balanced psyche’) and the ability to manage such a change initiative then you will probably find your change falling short and stuck useless in your back pocket. It also helps if said coalition has some power players within it, for having the power to initiate change can assist greatly. Regardless of power, these folks should be proponents of the change and thus consist of cheerleaders and role models of said change.

3. Creating a Vision.

If there is no vision, your change initiative will likely fall short of whatever it is trying to achieve. This is because people need something they can get behind, something they can attach to and feel apart of and recognize with. That being said your vision must be crystal clear and within reason for if people can’t understand it or be convinced it will work, they will never be fully behind it and may ultimately end up adding resistance or breaking apart your coalition.

4. Communicating the Vision.

That being said it is of utmost important that once your vision is created that you communicate it effectively. If you come out with a weak ‘war cry’ what warriors will follow you into the fray of change? Those who will be ineffective at championing said change. You could lose some of your supporters, and your guiding coalition could drift away. This would be a devastating loss in the tides of change before you’ve even begun. This is why strong communication is critical. This is also an opportunity to listen to your resistors and see if you can gain from their perspective or even provide them with information about your vision and thus turn them into an ally.

5. Empowering Others to Act on the Vision.

Having a great and crystal clear vision is not enough. If your supporters have no means of implementing it, then you have left them powerless and without any hope of succeeding. You must provide to them the tools for which they can begin to implement it. Without this they may fall victim to infighting as they begin to panic and can see no clear means of victory. This could be training in dealing with those who might oppose the movement for change, or methods of keeping everything organized so that work can be managed. Ultimately you must empower those you hope to lead to victory with whatever means you reasonably can to give them the best chance of success.

6. Planning for and Creating Short-Term Wins.

Since step is critical in any initiative that hopes to win the war. You must make certain that there are smaller steps that can be achieved that lead up to the ultimate goal. This assures a good morale within the camp and allows for momentum to build. If people can feel the change happening, the energy moving onward and upward, then they will work harder to finish what they started. This can also be of great use to silence or convert more resistors and neigh sayers. The less resistance on the other end, the easier it is to get to the goal.

7. Consolidating Improvements and Producing still more Change.

You will make change happen, but once it does you need to know when to take a step back and re-examine what you have already affected. Things may need to be re-shaped before moving forward. Remember you just did all this work to initiate change which you plan to solidify. Do you really want to get to the end and realize you solidified something that will now require an entirely new change initiative to fix? From here you have to keep your head up and remember you aren’t done yet. There is still more change to produce.

8. Institutionalizing New Methods.

If it doesn’t stick then you’ve wasted all the efforts. This is the phase where you go down and make sure every thing is going the way it was intended. Have we changed? Yes. Then lets keep doing what we are doing until it becomes the way of things.

*9. Performance Measurement

If you can’t measure your change then have you actually altered anything? Probably not. How do you know when you’ve succeeded and the movement has accomplished its goals? When someone says, “This is the way we do things here.”

Sine Cera

Training Your Mind to Effectively Communicate

It can be easy to sit back and just let someone’s words slip past you. We’ve all done it before.

Wife: “Hey honey, I’ve got a really busy afternoon with this Voyer account, so I don’t think I’ll be able to grab groceries before picking up the kids. Do you think you could try to get over there on your way home and grab some things. Can you grab some fresh apple cider too? I want to make some apple cider bread tomorrow.”

Husband#1: Yeah, sure thing. Got it.”

This isn’t the most effective response for showing that you’ve listened. In fact, if this is how you respond to most things people say to you, it’s pretty weak. This isn’t about whether you understand the other person, it’s about effectively showing the other person that you understand. It builds stronger relationships and prevents misunderstandings.

Wife: “Hey honey, I’ve got a really busy afternoon with this Voyer account, so I don’t think I’ll be able to grab groceries before picking up the kids. Do you think you could try to get over there on your way home and grab some things. Can you grab some fresh apple cider too? I want to make some apple cider bread tomorrow.”

Husband#2: Yes I can do that, I know you have been working really hard on that account all month. You get the kids and leave the groceries to me. I’ll grab two gallons, I love your cider bread. Is there anything else you’d like me to make sure and grab?

Obviously this is generic, but you can catch it if you look for it in your daily interactions. This has nothing to do with being a good or bad husband. This is simply communicating to other humans in a manner that shows them you have listened. It can be used in any day to day interaction. It does require practice. This means training yourself to ACTUALLY LISTEN and show that you’ve done so. You don’t want to be sitting there silent while you think, “How can I make it clear that I’ve understood?” – you want that kind of active listening to be a reflex.

One way this can be accomplished is by way of repeating key words. In this hypothetical example, a salesperson and a merchant are ‘communicating’

Merchant: We don’t really have the time for this because we’ve had offers like it before and they didn’t work out. The timing on this project is going to be critical and I can’t have it fail to take off. That kind of thing is bad for the image we’re trying to put out there and following through is a big thing for us.

Salesperson: Well you don’t have to worry about anything like that because if you just look at these numbers I can show you how great of an offer this is for you. You’d be crazy not to jump on it.

Okay… how do you think this Merchant is going to respond? Did the Salesperson actively listen to what was said? Obviously not. He certainly heard what was said, but they failed to give anything more than a rote, generic response that did not address the merchant’s concerns. Such a response shows the merchant that his concerns do not matter, regardless of whether or not the offer’s potential benefits do indeed nullify them. Let’s try effectively communicating by showing we understood. Pick up on, and utilize key words to get more information that will be sure to aid you in avoiding misunderstandings!

Merchant: We don’t really have the time for this because we’ve had offers like it before and they didn’t work out. The timing on this project is going to be critical and I can’t have it fail to take off. That kind of thing is bad for the image we’re trying to put out there and following through is a big thing for us.

Salesperson: When you say ‘we’, does that imply that there is someone else who needs to be present in order for this decision to be made? It seems similar offers were tried in the past and they did not go so well for you, what were these offers? Why is the timing on this project more critical than in the past, have previous offers failed to deliver up to expectations? What kind of image are you trying to give off, and does it have anything to do with being reliable?  Let me show you here why following through is a big thing for us too.

Which salesperson showed they listened better? The answer is clear. Which one is more likely to build better relations with the merchant? No contest. The second salesperson is an effective communicator. The first one is not going to go very far. What did the first one effectively communicate? Basically that everything the merchant said doesn’t matter as much as getting the sale. No investment of mental is being made. That’s not a good message to relay to a potential relation. The second person made it clear that this is important. It was clear they were looking to understand the situation as in depth as possible. They were vested in the success of the project. That’s a great message to relay.

You want to train your mind to move quickly and effectively to communicate that you’ve listened. This means actually listening and actively showing it.  Now remember this takes practice. It’s a skill that you hone each moment that you spend interacting with others, but only if you CHOOSE to hone it. It’s a choice: to lazily let words slide over you and brush the other person off with generic responses, or to expend a little extra mental energy and with time become a truly great listener. Lastly, keep in mind that with great listening comes greater trust from others. Do not abuse this trust. The rat race of modern society is full enough of nefarious scheming individuals out solely for personal gain. Please, don’t waste all your natural human warmth and genuine fraternity to become one of them.