how to make hot cocoa – video

I’ve been a little obsessed with my vitamix machine ever since I bought it about 2 weeks ago. I’ve been making delicious smoothies twice a day with anything I can find my fridge. And I mean freaking EVERYTHING.  Every conceivable vegetable/fruit combination you can imagine.

I haven’t thrown up yet. God bless America.

I decided to make one of my favourite hot beverages of all time last night.  Hot chocolate. Yes this machine is even capable of making hot soups (that’s next!) and hot beverages such as hot cocoa.

Here’s a quick how-to video from last night. Fun times.

check it out:

 

 

Closing all tabs

It’s Friday! What’s shaking?

Closing all tabs on the computer after the day comes to an end is a big mind relief.  Sounds funny even to type this out. It’s the feeling of done.

Same thing with making bed or finishing a book. It’s done. The mind can start anew.  I’m mean if you honestly can’t finish the article THEN throw it on delicious (it bookmarks online articles masterfully) and save it! Bam.  Make some notes in the comment area for the bookmark and refer to that the next day.

Main thing is to eliminate it by end of the day or maximum two days is gonna be my new mantra. Might take awhile to make this feel normal as it’s only been a few days, but definitely gonna try this more. I definitely feel there is huge production gains.

Before I’d keep things open for 3 days thinking it’s something I need to refer to.

But you know what?  Seeing your previous days tabs again in the morning just nags you. So you have to close the tabs.   Because you want to start the next day with a blank canvas.

Try it out.

number one marketer

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I’m going to make a bold claim here.

You know who I think is the Number one marketer of all time?  Guess.  You would never guess it: Buddha .

He became so popular in India within 50 years and eventually the rest of Asia and by how ?  By expressing how his philosophy works for him. He told people how something worked for him. His friends tried it and it worked for them too. Ashoka The Great of India loved his philosophy and spread the message even further. The cycle continued, etc.

 

Same thing I noticed with Richard Branson. His biggest following I found to be isn’t on facebook or twitter but on linked in!  He’s known as this cool, adrenaline junkie businessman. You should follow him on LinkedIn and also add me on while you’re at it (click here).

He recently wrote a piece on the importance of taking notes.  And it reasoned with a lot of people. Initially I was dumb founded by this. Why? Because as  a billionaire he’s probably disconnected from the average worker.  But the thing is people relate to him because despite his luxury lifestyle, he has habits that are relatable and plus he’s writing from his perspective, which is all he can do. Being a sorta of hippie and having long hair must help too in promoting his Virgin empire.

Other things is because of the internet, everyone (even you) is getting smarter and smarter if they’re curious enough. You can find anything you didn’t know about 2 mins before.  It’s hard to be too dishonest with people nowadays like say in 1920 or even 1980’s: or even a thousand years ago during the time of Buddha. You can only say how it works for you !! That’s why people skip descriptions and go straight to reviews.   They want to know if others like them found your product worthwhile.

Some random thoughts 😉

Peace out.

Nish.

Ten apps that I’d like to use

What’s up?

I’ve been reading a new book called Idea Machine by Claudia Altucher.  The whole point of the book is write to 10 Ideas every day to make your brain sweat. Get your creative juices flowing. Once done consistently, say after 180 days, you become an Idea Machine.

ideamachine

Why do you want to be an idea machine? Because ideas are the currency of 21st century. Not money. Money can run out. Good ideas can buy you experiences, etc….

She does a terrific job selling the idea on why writing down ideas are important! It got me pumped and you may wanna consider this exercise too. It’s only 1 dollar on the Kindle.

BTW this book is more of a worksheet than a proper book. And I like that!  And doesn’t necessarily have to be business ideas. It can be ten  ideas about how to practice gratitude in the day.

I liked Day 2 of the idea worksheet. These were my ideas.

List Ten Apps That You’d Like To Use, doesn’t matter that they already exist or not, think of what would be helpful for you in particular:

  1. App Reminder System for your friends/family to return items.

  2. App that changes your ringtone based on the weather. Ie: Thunderstruck by ACDC when a rainy storm hits.

  3. App that gives you flirty text suggestions you can send to girls via text.

  4. App that gives you Indian or Paleo food cooking instructions every day.

  5. App that tells where free parking is in any city.  A sort of Airbnb for parking.

  6. App that give you new clothing suggestions every month for men. Based on whats trendy and links to stores nearby to you.

  7. App for food delivery to your door – one click – sent to your apartment door.

  8. Tinder like app for doing actual fun activities. Matches you with people who play soccer, tennis, run stairs up in Crescent Heights, right here in Calgary. LOL. Why not? Coffee dates are boring.

  9. App that gives you the Top 10 Rok’n’Rol  tracks of the week suggested from Bands you already love. Ie Noel Gallagher writes them out on a daily basis on his blog!

  10.  App that gives you guitar chords after you Shazam the songs to find who it was.  Godsend. What about Ukulele chords?

recent books i’ve been reading

nishant costa rica december 2014 use in blog on reading

I’ve been reading a lot lately. I especially did during the holiday break in Costa Rica back in December. Did I only listen to rok’n’rol surf tunes the entire time?? NO. Not me.  I took advantage of the dead time sitting on the plane and laying by the beach by READING!!

I did a lot of  fun activities too, but I wanted to make sure I finally caught up with ze books.

Reading is a great way to turn dead time to alive time. Alive time is where your learning and acting on your intended future. In my case it was taking down notes and working through the following:

The Fish That Ate the Whale by Rich Cohen.

Holy shit this book is excellent. The best business book I read in 2014.  I’m holding the book in the above pic.

This is the insane untold tale of Samuel Zemurray, the self-made banana mogul from Russia who went from penniless roadside banana peddler to kingmaker and capitalist revolutionary.  It reads like a James Bond tale. It’s insider’s look at the American Dream filled with great insights on business strategy, leadership and even geopolitics.

The story hit me even harder, when I realized my hostel in Santa Teresa, Costa Rica sat right next to a banana plantation.  Costa Rica is the birthplace of United Fruit (The Google of the 50’s).

You will also have a desire to visit New Orleans after reading this.

Going to have to read the authors other books.

Obstacle is the Way By Ryan Holiday.

This book is a modern take on stoicism. It’s written by Ryan Holiday, who also runs an book email list that I’m proud to be part of. Actually many of the books I read are directly because of his recommendations, (including all the ones in this blog post except Agassi) .

This is one I will definitely go back whenever I feel I need to re-frame problems. I’ve read Seneca and Meditations, but I enjoyed his for the modern examples he used to explain out ideas.

“The impediment to action advances action. What stands in the way becomes the way.”

Agassi

Before this book, I didn’t know much about Andre Agassi, except that he was half Persian, was very good at tennis and married Brook Shields back in the 90’s.

This book caught me by surprise early on as he mentions he hated tennis growing up.  Super entertaining sports biography. Tennis is an intensely psychologically tough sport.  I love watching it, but reading about the emotional swings from a world class pro is another thing.

How he courted Steffi Graf was also super entertaining! what a playaaaah 😉

Napoleon by Paul Johnson.

I’ve read his other ones – Socrates, and Churchill. I love these quick 200 page biographies by Paul Johnson. You can tell he knows the history very well. He gives you solid primer on what makes up these epic characters of history in concise manner.  He has strong opinions, but I tend to believe him since he alludes to so many previous biographies of Napolean (He’s one of the most written about world leader in history).

By the way, Napoleon was no hero. He’s mentioned as an early predecessor to the 20th century monsters of Hitler and Stalin.

The Boys in the Boat

Before this book, I knew nothing about rowing nor did I really care for it. This beautiful book, however, made the sport seem amazingly interesting.

It’s one of those books that will get your adrenaline pumping and YOU will want to finish in 3-4 days. There is a lot of sadness in the early stages of the book. It’s about how this working class kid was abandoned by his own father at age 10.  His mother died at an early age, his step mother was quite cold to him.This part of the book might make you CRY.

Yet through all the obstacles and emotional issues, not to mention tough economic times of the 1930’s, he made  it to the University of Washington Rowing Team.

Eventually his rowing team won every championship in the United States and was chosen to be the national team to compete in the Olympics in 1936 in Berlin hosted by Hitler. Enjoyed the side Nazi storyline as well.

It’s quite motivating read. I’ve started warming up in the gym with 2000 m row since reading. go figure.

Plutocrats

I was a little obsessed with 1% vs. 99% movement back in 2011. So I’ve naturally been a bit curious about the global super rich since then.

No idea how the author had privy to so many people from the 1%.

How did the plutocrats came to be in the first place? Some forces include: globalization, technology and also a lot hard work by these self-made people.  Raises a lot of questions and kinda of left me feeling sick. Sick in the sense that these people psychologically don’t seem to be thinking what they aren’t doing is unethical.

One nugget from Dan Ariely in this book: “when you have financial incentive to see reality in a certain way, you will see it that way, not because your bad, but because your human.”