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Special Seth Godin post

December 15, 2011   |   16 Comments

OK, you know from my book review of We Are All Weird that I love Seth. I even got to share the stage with him briefly last week when he invited me to say a few words at The Medicine Ball Session about meditation and getting to know how your mind works. (Which is very important when you’re trying to navigate the tremendous ups and downs of starting/growing your business–I can say with all honesty that for me the biggest obstacle is,well, me. The tremendous ups and downs of emotion, self-confidence, and creative energy…) Here is a picture of this super cool occurrence.



The other day, Seth sent out a list of assorted tips (also posted on his blog) and I felt inspired to make up my own.


  1. No stranger or unknown company will ever contact you by mail or by phone with an actual method for making money easily or in your spare time. And if the person or company contacting you asserts that they are someone you know, double check before taking action.
  2. Don’t have back surgery. See a physiatrist first, then exhaust all other options before wondering if you should have back surgery.
  3. Borrow money to buy things that go up in value, but never to get something that decays over time.
  4. Placebos are underrated by almost everyone.
  5. It’s almost never necessary to use a semicolon.
  6. Seek out habits that help you overcome fear or inertia. Destroy those that do the opposite.
  7. Cognitive behavorial therapy is generally considered both the quickest and most effective form of addressing many common psychological problems.
  8. Backup your hard drive.
  9. Get a magnetic key hider, put a copy of your house key in it and hide it really well, unlabeled, two blocks from your house.
  10. A rice cooker will save you time and money and improve your diet, particularly if you come to like brown rice.
  11. Consider not eating wheat for an entire week. The results might surprise you.
  12. Taking your dog for a walk is usually better than whatever alternative use of your time you were considering.

Told you they were assorted.


  1. The two biggest tips for increasing self-confidence are: Clean up your room. Wear clothes that fit you.
  2. It’s almost never necessary to write a one-sentence paragraph.
  3. Don’t ever agree with someone who is badmouthing an ex. They might get back together.
  4. Disbelief in your own basic goodness is at the heart of aggression, whether directed at self or other.
  5. The most important questions in your life will never be answered. They dissolve and change into new questions instead.
  6. Romance always dies. Intimacy has no end.
  7. Just because you love someone doesn’t mean you can create a life together that you love.
  8. Not all problems are opportunities.
  9. Eat real food, always. No excuses.
  10. Never, ever show off. This is the cardinal rule, never to be broken.

OK, now it’s  your turn.

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  • Posted by:  Gwen

    I love these kinds of lists, because they implicitly acknowledge the many big and small things we are all trying to figure out and deal with in this life.

    A few thoughts of my own:

    If you are a task-oriented list-maker (like me), you have to make connecting with people an important task, or you will never prioritize it over whatever errand “for sure” has to get done today.

    Small houses are awesome. There is less to maintain and clean, and it is much harder to stay in a fight with someone when you can’t stay physically separate for very long.

    Your doctor is not your health advocate. If you have a chronic health condition, you have to learn about your own body and what helps it feel better.

    You must have at least one open credit card in your name. Don’t carry a balance, just use the card and pay it off right away. Having zero credit history can bite you in the butt decades after you think it would be important.

    Sit with at least one person while they actually die, preferably not in a hospital. It can make you much less afraid of death. Regardless, you will understand it better.

    • Posted by:  Susan


  • Posted by:  Tom

    The comment about a health advocate and dealing with chronic illness is SO true. (From one who finally figured that out after three years.)

    When choosing business associates include one who is a good B.S. detector.

    During a job search interview the interviewer.

    • Posted by:  Susan


  • Posted by:  Sherralee

    Your #10 is one of the most vital to live by ever. It would be great if you could write a post describing how you came to this insight.

    • Posted by:  Susan

      Ok! I will. Stay tuned.

  • Posted by:  ellen

    “Just because you love someone doesn’t mean you can create a life together that you love.”


    • Posted by:  Susan

      Yes, that one can be a real heartbreaker

  • Posted by:  Elana

    Susan, your list rocks. I have lived the wisdom of most of those. Seth, not bad.


    1) When your gut twinges, pay attention. Your body is telling you something that you need to hear.
    2) When in doubt. Do nothing. At least until you calm down.
    3) Don’t wait until you are dead to make amends. Do it as soon as you recognize the need to.
    4) Know the difference between extending compassion and empathy and being a punching bag or energy source for the damaged.
    5) Love comes in multiple forms: be open to and appreciate every single one.
    6) When something ends, weep for it awhile. Then look up to the sun, and you will see a new beginning.
    7) Recognize the poetry and absurdity of life, then celebrate it in whatever form moves you.
    8) When celebrating (above), do it with others.
    9) Laughter can awaken the most tender, dark and painful places within us: do it often.
    10) Rest your body and cradle your soul. This is an act of self-love and a necessity.
    *11) Practice, practice, practice what you preach : )

    Love you Susan!

    • Posted by:  ellen

      #4…I’m still trying to figure this one out.

      • Posted by:  Susan

        Yes. Worth a lifetime of contemplation.

      • Posted by:  Elana

        Me too, Ellen. I’m getting closer ; )

        • Posted by:  ellen

          let me know when you’ve got it figured out ;). Is there a book on this subject? I’d love to hear what more people have to say about this subject. It’s something I really struggled with in my last relationship. I was trying to practice acceptance and empathy but it turns out most of the time I was just taking in crap that I didn’t need to be.

    • Posted by:  Susan

      These are great, Elana. I esp like #3. No, #11. No, all of them. Love you too, El G! S.

      • Posted by:  Elana

        #11 is my achilles ; ) Thanks Susan.

      • Posted by:  Paloma

        than done but you can learn to do it. There are a couple of geduid meditations at that website for doing this. Breathing is essential in meditation but it does not need to be the focus of it. Just get through the breathing parts but do not focus on them. Pay attention to the other parts. I will put another website that will be helpful for learning to do that.Take care.

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“With wisdom, creativity and artistry, Susan Piver brings a Buddhist lens to the spiritual map of the Enneagram. The results are vibrant and nourishing; a banquet of insights that help us transmute our difficult emotions into pure expressions of our basic goodness.”

 – Tara Brach, author of Radical Acceptance