Being Bruce -: October 2010

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Astronomy, Coaching, and Bull Fighting

I love to learn about individual purpose and at the same time consider life and our place in the universe. It turns out astronomers do that, too. Many of the most famous astronomers have worn second hats as philosophers.

I'm not an astronomer, I'm a coach. As someone who works with individuals and helps them discover their life purpose, I find it very interesting that those who study the stars quite often shift from their telescopic consideration of the universe to an equally compelling view of the individual's place within that universe.

Consider the words of three famous astronomers:

"You cannot teach a man anything, you can only help him discover it in himself." - Galileo , 1564-1642, Italian physicist, mathematician, philosopher, and astronomer.

"We are like butterflies who flutter for a day and think it's forever." - Dr. Carl Sagan, 1934-1996, American astronomer and astrophysicist.

"Be happy for this moment. This moment is your life." - Omar Khayyam, 1048-1131, Persian mathematician, philosopher, poet, physician, and astronomer.

Many hold and I think it's true, that all religions and cultural traditions hold that the universe is in the individual just as much as the individual is in the universe.

With that in mind, I invite you to be the astronomer of your own universe and the philosopher of your own life purpose.

Do you know your life purpose? If you do not, that is one way I help my coaching clients - finding their life purpose.

Are you very clear about your passions, about those activities or states of being that get you most excited about and energized in life? If not, that's another way I work with clients - defining and prioritizing the person's unique set of passions.

If you are aware of your purpose and clear about your passions, how well are you able to stay in alignment with them in your personal and business life? This activity is where I spend the bulk of my time working with clients.

Learning about your passions and discovering your purpose are important life tasks, and not to be taken lightly.

Once you know your purpose and passions however, even if you make choices not to pursue them, at least you will be clear about the choices you do make.

And how does bull fighting fit in with all this?

Here are the words of the most revered bull fighter in history, "Bravery is believing in yourself, and that thing nobody can teach you." - El Cordobes, 1936- , Spanish Matador.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Some Cards We've Sent Recently

We had a lot of great feedback two weeks ago when we sent images of custom cards we'd sent to friends and folks we've met recently. So we're doing it again, with another batch. 

As you know, Marge and I utilize custom printed greeting cards we create with SendOutCards as one of our primary ways to keep in touch with people.

We love to take photos of folks and put those pictures in cards that we later send as thank you's or notes of appreciation.

Here are the fronts and insides of some of the two dozen or so cards we sent in the past two weeks:

Here's the front of a card we sent to Monica Clark and Kerry Kasotsky of K&M Speed Networking:
Here's the inside:
Here's a birthday card we sent to Dana Fisher:
The inside:
Johnny Mercer, Director of the Wilmington Regional Film Commission spoke at a meeting I attended, so I sent him this card:
Here's the inside:
Our friend Sidney Rabon of Cape Fear Chem-Dry Carpet Cleaning (whose passion is cooking for crowds):
The inside:

A card I sent after meeting Rita Tatum and Amy Lowrance of the Ocean Isle branch of East Carolina Bank:
The inside:
A card we sent to Brandon Sneed after meeting him at his book signing at RBRBooks in Leland:
And last, the front of a card we sent to several friends for Halloween:
It's fun to use custom greeting cards for business (as well as for personal use). All you do is create them on your computer and then hit send and the company prints, stuffs, stamps, and mails them. And, to top that off, each of these cards costs only .93 (plus .44 in postage
with a real, first class stamp on the envelope).

A great deal.

If you're looking for an effective, easy, low cost, and very personal way to keep in touch with your clients, contacts, or referral sources, using cards like this can be highly cost effective.

We invite you to send a card on us, absolutely free, to see what it's like.

Just go to our web site and click on 'send a free card'.
If you're wondering about whether using the SendOutCards service would make sense for you, answer these 3 questions:
  1. Do you send cards and gifts?
  2. Do you know anyone who sends cards and gifts?
  3. Would you like to make money whenever you or anyone you know sends cards and gifts?
If you answered 'yes' to the first question, it might make sense for you to be a SendOutCards customer.

If you answered 'yes' to questions 2. and 3., it might make sense for you to be a SendOutCards distributor.

All it takes to find out if either makes sense is to watch a 15 minute video, which you can see on our site After you watch it you'll know if it makes sense for you.

To your joy and success,

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

My Take on the Current iPhone vs Android vs Blackberry 'Discussion'

[Okay, so I usually don't write/comment/post about technology. I'm a recovering technology journalist (1982-2004) and try to stay away. This morning I couldn't resist, however, so the following is a bit of a rant and roll touched off by some recent discussions on my Facebook wall about smartphone OSs and devices. - bb]

[warning - the follow is rated PG-GEEK - consumer advisory]

Here's an historical perspective. And, as they said about the story of Judge Roy Bean, if it's not exactly the way it was, it's the way it should have been.

In the 80s, while the big iron mainframe folks  were blindly confident they'd be the only real "computer companies" and grudgingly let the mini folks do some back office number keeping and front office word processing, Apple's open box (II and IIe) strategy was winning the day over Radio Shack's closed box Model IIs and IIIs for consumer and education use. Commodore and some of the other toy computers were clearly low end. CPM was the first serious OS for PC business applications and started to gain major traction - chipping at the mini computer market and pulling up the PC market, when finally IBM took it all seriously (on a fluke) and took over the market with an open box design, helped along of course by MS. Secure in the safe choice, with an open hardware design and a standardized OS let them rule, but the biggest factor was stability and security. Apple took a back seat for a long time as a niche market device (graphics), somewhat in education, and for purists/hobbyists.

In the late 90s and up until 9/11 Palm and Windows Mobile were battling for PDA and eventually smartphone supremacy - Palm was the safer, more controlled and stable standard that knew what it was supposed to do, organize personal information. When paging/messaging and telephony applications were added it got funkier - what was business going to do? Apple wasn't event playing. Windows PDAs and the early Windows Phones did (or tried to do) too much and were confusing and unstable. People snuck Palm PDAs into corporations for their easy utility, but not much was certain till 9/11. Blackberry OS devices were bad PDAs but excellent pager/message devices - the first ones tied to servers. When 9/11 let the world know that the only secure device (and network) at the time (not counting satcom) was the Blackberry system (with encryption co-developed/kissed by NSA) suddenly that single purpose device was the secure, safe choice for business users. (Think back to the mid 80s and the IBM PC and PC/MS-DOS). The early Blackberry phone combos weren't players, but eventually the strength of what they did do well (secure messaging and then follow-me email) brought the phone share up as well as normal people got tired of carrying and charging and keeping track of mutliple devices.

The Internet and WWWeb added another dimension to the mix that no one as yet has a good solution other than maybe netbooks or tablets (will third time be the charm for tablets? or the second time for netbooks?). People don't want their WWWeb diluted, so the current solutions still fall short - with some slight promise from netbooks and tablets.

Apple, however, after essentially sitting out for about 20 years, totallyl killed it with the iPod. People did want their music - even if they had to pay for it (too bad Napster). And then, while the smartphone players and messengers duked it out, Apple continued their unsurpassed interface development and focus on saavy, smart, and cool. And now where are we?

Palm is gone - too limited a platform in the end (despite 100s of thousands of APPs and an open platform).

MSPhone is trying again, for what, the fourth time around? Hard to be taken seriously (ON THEIR OWN ANYWAY).

Blackberry, despite their 31% (ref orig article above) smartphone marketshare, isn't keeping up with growing consumer and mainstream demands. But who cares if their system and content are secure? Remember, security and stability are what really matter in the long run for corp and business use.

iPhone has huge share - close OS, only slightly (and recently) open application market, high price, still cool, still desirable style wise. Battery life goes begging and reception is tough - both will improve incremently.

Android is the wild woolly west in this scenario. Locked and cocked, techies like it, gamers drool, open source OS, open apps, multiple hardware vendors, apparently easy (!!) to develop for. Okay, fine, but will Android devices present a secure enough and stable enough device, OS, and application platform for the vast world of users who want devices that work, as they want, when they want, where they want.

Will Google's Android be the 2nd Decade's IBM PC/MSDos (from the 80s) or Blackberry (post 9/11)? The question is, who can the market
count on for safe, stable devices - that will be the solution for business.

Consumers and other non-business uses will be mainstream and huge markets and will allow multiple big players, but the platform that will rule for business applications (and remember that so many people only want to carry one device) will promise (and DELIVER) security and stability.

That's what I think. The most intriguing matchup I see in this world right now is Bing (MS) and Facebook - but I still wonder if Google and MS will decide to put on their respective big kid pants and own it all - for the next decade anyway. There's no reason (other than the same respective corporate egos) why that wouldn't work easily to take over the whole shootin' match for smartphone - BingDroid could handily handle iOS/iPhone.

So that's what I think.

Now I'm going back to Zen and Rock & Roll.

Bruce Brown
Personal and Business  Development  Coach and former Contributing Editor to PC Magazine, Computer Shopper, and a slew of other publications

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

How to Have a DaVinci Day

Today I wish you a DaVinci Day!

I'll start by saying I'm already having a fabulous day and I wish the same for you.

Earlier this morning I posted the following: "It's easy to be bursting with good intentions. Today I'll do my best to fulfill them with equally good actions." - Being Bruce

I was inspired to write that during a brief morning meditation session, which is how I find most of my sayings.

After attending to some correspondence I decided to listen to one of Brian Johnson's Philosopher's Notes from I have Brian's collection of abstracts and commentaries on 100 written works of importance in both written and recorded versions and I like to listen to one or a few each day (they're only about 20 minutes long each, so it's a convenient break).

Here's Brian:

The recording I chose today (for the second or third time I've heard this one) was Brian's Philosopher's Note on Michael Gelb's How to Think Like Leonardo DaVinci. Leonardo DaVinci, of course remains the poster boy of creativity and productivity.

Actually, for a short diversion, here's his poster (actually his work, Vitruvian Man, which was a study in physical ratios and proportions for artists).

As I was listening to Brian's summary and thoughts on Michael Gelb's work, I thought of my friend Lisa Rothstein (aka @DaVinciDiva on Twitter). Lisa and her colleague Liisa Kyle are the creativity coaches behind web site The DaVinci Dilemma, Solutions for Multi-Talented People (

Here's Lisa with a link to her personal website (click her name) Lisa Rothstein .

And here's Liisa with a corresponding link to her personal site: Liisa Kyle, Ph.D

As I pondered the whole DaVinci concept a bit more and listened to Brian's recording, I realized that my morning post was (sorta) in a similar vein: the concept of being inspired and having great intentions AND taking action on them.

So, therefore my wish to you:

Have a DaVinci Day! Be inspired, generate strong intentions, and take action!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Bruce and Marge Live! Passionate Life Teleseminar Call Archive - All Free

All calls recordings are unedited downloads from the original sessions. They are in MP3 format and are approximately 25MB in size each. Typically they run 50-55 minutes, although a few are a bit shorter and some a bit

Each call is generally available on the day after the live call.

Bruce and Marge Live!
Passionate Life Teleseminars
Recorded Calls

  1. You CAN Do Business Video and Why You Should
    (original call date August 3, 2010)
  2. Passions Lead to Profit – the Formula in Action
    (original call date August 5, 2010)
  3. Making the Most of Live Networking Events
    (original call date August 10, 2010)
  4. Manifest Your Ideal Life
    (original call date August 12, 2010)
  5. Essential Social Media for Entrepreneurs
    (original call date August 17, 2010)
  6. GAR – Gratitude, Attitude, and Readiness
    (original call date August 19, 2010)
  7. Ask Bruce and Marge (submitted Q and A)
    (original call date August 24, 2010)
  8. Authentic Goal Setting
    (original call date August 26, 2010)
  9. Transform Your Work into Play
    (original call date September 7, 2010)
  10. Tips on Working with Your Spouse
    (original call date September 14, 2010)
  11. Business Social Media Strategy
    (original call date September 21, 2010)
  12. De-Mystifying Self-Hypnosis, A Tool Everyone Can Use
    (original call date September 28, 2010)
  13. How to Stay Aligned with Your Passions
    (original call date October 5, 2010)
The full set of Bruce and Marge Live! Passionate Life Teleseminar calls is available to subscribers to Bruce and Marge at the Edge, our free, weekly business and personal development newsletter.

To subscribe to Bruce and Marge at the Edge, please fill out the form below:

Hey, did you know our previously recorded teleseminars are available free!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Kicking Butt - Personal Development Requires Change

Who ever said personal development is easy?

Sure, it can be fun to go to a weekend workshop and learn some helpful stuff about yourself and maybe pick up some useful techniques and tools to improve some aspect of your life. Personal development workshops can be so much fun that some people go just for the good feelings.

If you want to actually develop, however, that requires doing stuff and usually it means doing stuff differently than you've been doing it before.

So you know what that means... Change!

Yeah, change. Change is difficult for many people, and even scary for some.

But hey, that's why the people at the top are at the top... they're willing to do more, to sacrifice more, and if necessary, change what must be changed in order to get where they are.

I've started making a series of pretty informal videos on various components of the inner workings of personal development. These videos don't address tricks, techniques, tools, or strategies for personal development. Rather, they're about attitude and willingness and real readiness for change and growth.

I'm calling them Kick Butt videos because, yeah, they kinda kick butt. I don't think they're harsh or rude, but rather they do point out some vital aspects of personal development that I know you need if you're really going to develop, to make changes that will help you live an extraordinary life. And you want that, right?

The three videos below address separate topics:
  • Playing full out.
  • Losing your self-limiting beliefs.
  • Getting started NOW.
If you don't incorporate all three in your personal development strategy, your chances of making significant change are pretty slim.

So here are the videos. As you'll see, each is short and the message for each one is pretty simple. But they're important and I wish you all the best in incorporating them in your life plan.

Play Full Out

Lose Your Self-Limiting Beliefs

Start NOW

So I hope you enjoyed my little videos. I'd love to hear any comments you have about them.

Also, if you think you'd like to work with a personal and business development coach who will be objective and tough with you while still holding you in the highest regard, shoot me an email at or call me at 910-297-8753. I'd love to talk with you about your plans for an extraordinary life of your own!

Friday, October 1, 2010

World Hunger Solution Designs at Full Belly Project

I stopped by the Wilmington, NC world headquarters of The Full Belly Project today to meet the Executive Director Daniel Ling and to see some of their income-generating devices designs for agricultural world communities.

That's Daniel in the photo below.

Here's Daniel again, with the Full Belly Nut Sheller, which I guess you'd call their signature machine.

Pictured below is a foot-powered Nut Sheller and behind that is an electricity-powered version.

Daniel showed me a few other devices, including this foot-powered corn grinder.

Here's another shot of the corn grinder.

This one is a bit different, it's a low water consumption hand washing station.

As you may remember (from yesterday's blog post), the Full Belly Nut Sheller used by one of the BBC World Challenge 10 finalists. That project is in Malawi and is called "In a Nutshell".

Votes for the Malawi In a Nutshell project would be appreciated on the link below: