“If the doors of perception were cleansed, everything would appear to man as it is – infinite.” William Blake

There are Redwood trees at my local park, Robson Harrington, it is easy to pass by them, indulging in their shade and resting on a picnic table while dogs chase balls and gardeners trim the moldy aftermath of Summer.

Slow Down, Breathe Deeply, Expand Your Perspective.

Excessive Compulsive Disorder – ECD

Like addiction, Excessive Compulsive Disorder is either a tool in our belt or it is a crippling weakness. Currently, I am deep in the gluten.

With 3 types of bread all over the kitchen on Friday morning, I placed my order for 2 breads for Saturday morning pick-up at Ponsford’s. This is how ECD works. As I am making Spelt Challah for the first time, I have to get one of Craig’s Spelt Breads and know what the gold standard is. Resistance is futile.

Wait, what? Yes, only Saturday. That’s the only day you can get bread at Ponsford’s. It is an extravagant indulgence to get so much bread, I remind myself to stick with the vegan breads and avoid the decadent croissants and danishes. This is the compromise.

I am very careful with my ECD, when I allow myself to be swept into a hobby, or aspect of my life, especially as I age. Everything we do is connected. I can eat unlimited bread and carbs, as long as they are vegan, the fats have to be from vegetables. If I listened to Crosby, Stills and Nash, they’d probably say we have to have rules we can live with.

Autumn is here, while you are waiting in line at Ponsford’s, the bread man reminds me to be creative and experiment, whether it is with Generative AI or Connected Devices or baking focaccia or making a poolish for pizza dough; the arts encourage us to learn, apply discipline and break rules at the same time.

Note: I am eating “most” of the bread I am making, to encourage me to improve. I am framing this as a reward in my head. Right?

Back To Basics

Marketing basics remind me to be predictable: tell people what you are going to do, tell people what you are doing, and tell people what you did.

One of my hobbies is baking these days and I am working on pizza and focaccia weekly.

I’m a little light on the salt and very light on the oil, the dryer bread is healthier in my mind as I am eating all of the bread I make. Right? This is the incentive to make better bread. Ideally it will get good enough that I will share it. This week? I am eating a lot of o.k focaccia!

Like most of my hobbies, I started doing this because I want something, to live healthier. Literally nobody believes eating pizza will make you healthier, unless it’s your favorite food, you know, the one you are taking to the island and living forever with?


And by the way, I want it vegan!

So, I’m practicing and learning what happens as the parameters change, what the rules are and how they work. Intentionally finding limited success. I’m getting closer, to something.

In the spirit of progress, and improving with consistent practice over time, this focaccia is really a metaphor for my daily life, goals and maybe even California and America. This focaccia needs more water. I need to drink water before I ride the Peloton and even as we head into an El Niño Winter, we have water shortages in our State and as an aging population kidney stones from lack of water. Whew. Maybe just make another batch next week and feed the dough a little more?

And drink more water.

One of the the keys to success in having healthy skin and muscles is a balance of hydration.

We grow better with water.

I visualize my body as a filter, with a pressure based structure to care for my brain. The food and water that nourishes growth and processing is balanced with the joy and experience of living.

Do The Work. Every Day. Improve.

It’s O.K. To Cry

The story is as old as the bible, maybe, I didn’t want to go, resisted, and had the best time. Yeah, I’m talking about the ride I took this morning on the Peloton through Provenance, France, in the garage.

Beyond the desire to get away, I mean travel, I’ve been doing the scenic timed rides that are self led. During the warm-up I lay out my training blocks for the ride, and sweat. I’ve been into the slow burn cool down for the last 10 minutes dropping the resistance one notch per minute and keeping the cadence up. Finishing is easy, how do we start?

I’ve got 3 Pro-Tips to share:

  1. Set out my clothes for the ride before I go to bed, get the prep done hours before you will workout.
  2. Ride Early. For real, even if that means getting up earlier. Getting your workout in before the day starts is key.
  3. Praise Your Self. Seriously, Acknowledge and Encourage your activity on the bike, “YES, WE are in for a FAST FUN ride this morning!” I’m encouraging you to speak poistively to the room and include yourself in, hear the support. You will get more out of the ride and start to create the reality you want.

Daily exercise is key to thriving through change, doing the work and growing intentionally. 

The latest Apple update included some mood logging software, which I immediately implemented, the more data the better, especially subjective data that I add. The early results are obvious, I feel better and more confident after exercising.

You don’t have to believe me, do your own experiment. Try getting up 30 minutes to an hour earlier every day for a week and doing your workout first thing in the morning. See what the data shows you.

If you want to experience change in your life, whether it is personal or business, tighten up your daily routines around fitness and health, these are the keys to shifting smoothly. Yoga, meditation, hiking, spinning, lifting weights; these are all great tools to support our growth in the other parts of our lives.

Start today.

PS – My daily routine includes spinning or hiking and 20 minutes of pilates core to strengthen and support my back. I roll out my muscles regularly and include light yoga. Every other day, light weight lifting for 15 minutes. Do the physical, so the mind is free to work.

‘Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.” Dr. Suess

Nuts go Nuts for Nuts

I am deep in it. Every 2 weeks through the end of the year, evolving Big Daddy’s Spicy Nuts. I’m mostly working with cashews and almonds as the base nuts to get the heat right and the balance of agave and chipotle. Each batch is an opportunity to tune into the details and improve part of the process. As I am mixing the ingredients, I think about the flow of the sticky syrup, the color of the spices as they blend into a rich dark undertow of heat slowly building into a cool wave of sweat on the back of your neck just below the hairline.

I make extra nuts so I have random jars and containers to pass out to my people. The end of the year brings every stress and trauma to a zoom meeting with every project that has to finish by the 31st, and nothing happens after the 19th; and here I am roasting nuts and encouraging all of us to slow down and enjoy the next few weeks. If you are in the neighborhood, stop by and get some of Big Daddy’s Spicy Nuts.