Bad Grammar Doesn't Make You Sound Smart

"Can you set up a meeting for you and I?" 

That sentence should make your skin crawl. It's wrong. It's glaringly wrong. And almost everybody with a college degree makes it. I hear that mistake every day. 

People with less education don't make that mistake. They sometimes make its opposite. "You and me can go to that meeting." 

When people make the second mistake, some people call them ignorant. But when people make the first mistake, I think pretentious . And ignorant

It's easy to excuse the less educated person for using "me" when "I" is appropriate. It's much harder to forgive the overuse of the "I." 

To help people sound smart and unpretentious, here's a little trick. Say the same sentence, dropping the "you and."

Would you say "Can you set up a meeting for I?" 

No. No you wouldn't. 

Would you say "Me can go that meeting?" 

Maybe. If you're three. 

Practice this at home. Whenever you use a compound subject or object, mentally say it as a simple subject (the person doing the action) or object (the person the action is done to). If the correct object turns out to be "you and me," say it that way. No one worth impressing will think less of you. 

What Business People Get Wrong About the Scientific Method

Are you stuck? Work feel like a treadmill? Feel like you never get anywhere? Massive misrepresentation of the scientific process could be to blame. 

Business people talk a lot about getting all the facts. Getting all the facts sounds sciencey. People who forgot fifth-grade science class forget how the scientific method begins. 

The scientific methods begins with observation. Next comes a question: why? Then comes an explanation for what you observed.

You see an apple fall from a tree. You ask "why do apples fall down instead of up?" You invent an answer. A straw man. Then you investigate. 

If you began by gathering all the facts you'd never get past fact gathering. Facts are infinite. You'll never gather all the facts. Never in trillion years. Without an observation, a question, and a hypothosis, you don't know which facts to gather. You don't know where to start. 

A lot of work feels that way. How often do you say to yourself "I don't even know where to start?"

Business people who want all the facts are afraid. They're afraid of making a decision. They're afraid staking a position. They hope the facts make their decision for them. But the facts never do. Only people can make decisions. 

If you're on that treadmill, stop and get off. Observe. What's happening? Why? Why is it happening? 

Your brain will find answers to any "why" question. Try it. Write down what comes back. Write down all the answers. Shoot for 10 possible answers. Then test them. Try to disprove every one of them. 

When you find one (or two) that can't be disproved, you might be on to something. Test it again. 

If this sounds like trial and error, it is. The scientific process is trial and error. It starts with an observation and a question. The question produces answers. Most of the answers your brain serves up will be bad. You won't know they're bad until you test them. A lot of right answers sound wrong before they're tested. 

When someone tells you to find all the facts before stating a hypothesis, nod your head and ignore them. They're afraid of the answer. They like their treadmill. But you're free to find the answer that stands up to a test. That answer is pure gold, and it's hidden in a hypothesis. 

What Great Coaches Know But Business Executives Don't

I've written before about that Peter Drucker "quote"  so many business people believe. It's a lie, and a dangerous one. It not only hurts their companies in the long run, it leads people to do very bad, unethical things. They become bad people. 

And Drucker never said, "What gets measured gets managed." The guy who said something like it was wrong. So stop living by it. 

Instead, think about great sports coaches like John Wooden and Bill Walsh. 

Wooden, you probably know, was the great UCLA basketball coach who produced both champions and very good men. He built character that became success. And he never measured himself, his teams, or his players by wins and losses.

Bill Walsh transformed the San Francisco 49ers from the NFL's doormats into perennial Super Bowl champions. And he had no room in his brain for winning percentages. 

Instead of focusing obsessively on the final outcome, which neither these coaches nor their players could control, Wooden and Walsh focused on the building blocks of greatness. Here are two quotes that tell you all need to know about their philosophies.

John Wooden

Success is peace of mind, which is a direct result of self satisfaction in knowing you made the effort to do your best to become the best that you are capable of becoming.

Bill Walsh

The score takes care of itself.

Contrast that with most corporate executives. They talk only about profits. And because they can't actually control their profits, they use financial engineering to give the illusion of extreme growth and obscene profits. They talk about "making their number" and "shareholder value." Rarely do they talk about the qualities that tend to produce great outcomes. 

What are those qualities that produce great outcomes?

Again, the great coaches told us, if only you would listen. 

Wooden's Pyramid of Success

John wooden lived and coached according to his Pyramid of Success:

 

John Wooden's Pyramid of Success

 

Coach Wooden recognized that he and his players could not control the outcome of any game. They could control all the other qualities. And when enough players practiced those qualities, his teams won. 

Walsh's Standard of Performance

  1. Ferocious and intelligently applied work ethic directed at continual improvement.
  2. Respect for everyone in the program and the work that he/she does.
  3. Be committed to learning.
  4. Demonstrate character and integrity.
  5. Honor the connection between details and improvement.
  6. Demonstrate loyalty.
  7. Be willing to go the extra mile for the organization.
  8. Put the team’s welfare ahead of my own.
  9. Maintain an abnormally high level of concentration and focus.
  10. Make sacrifice and commitment the organizations trademark.

Know What You Control

It all comes down to knowing what you control and doing something about those things. Profits and growth are a result of the things you can control plus fortune. Success depends on improving things within your control and gratefully accepting the outcome. 

Both of these legendary coaches built their models on the ancient philosophy of stoicism. And knowing what you can and cannot control is the foundation of all stoic philosophy. As Epictetus wrote:

The chief task in life is simply this: to identify and separate matters so that I can say clearly to myself which are externals not under my control, and which have to do with the choices I actually control.

Steve Jobs created the most valuable company in history by focusing on things in his control: designing great products that people loved. The profits took care of themselves. 

I know you're not Steve Jobs and your company isn't Apple. Maybe it never will be. But if you keep focusing on profits and hoping character will take care of itself, you're in for a miserable downfall.

 

Print Edition of Fight to Evolve Now Available on Amazon. Rush!

Most of my readers asked for a print edition of my new book, Fight to Evolve: The Government’s Secret War on NTX.

Great news! Your book is waiting for you on Amazon. It’s just $17.99, and you’ll be happy to know that I don’t get a penny from the sales. All proceeds go to the Coalition for Safer Drinking and its fight to reduce alcohol’s negative effects on health.

If you, like me, prefer electronic books, you can get the Kindle version of Fight to Evolve for just $3.99 today, too.

If you know someone who drinks and you worry about their health, be a friend and buy a copy of Fight to Evolve for them, too. Two hardbound copies are about the same price as on bottle of good vodka. And you might save a life.

You've Been Drinking Wrong All Along - Podcast

It’s a beautiful day in spring. The sky is radiant and wonderful blue. Birds singing, trees starting to bloom, grass an impossible shade of vibrant green. A cool and welcoming breeze licks your bare skin, your cheeks, and playfully ruffles your hair like a lover.

Your work is done, now, so you sit in your favorite outdoor chair and take in the relaxing, comfortable view. Smell the freshness of spring wildflowers. Let the sun gently warm your body from the top of your head to the tips of your toes. That’s right, you deserved this.

Now you reach for a perfect vodka and cranberry juice to relax a bit more and damage your liver.

Wait, what?

I said “damage your liver.”

Yes, it’s true. Every sip of alcohol produces a measurable spike in liver stress just minutes after. Take a look:

 

Liver stress caused by alcohol consumption by Chigurupati Technologies

Now you have something to think about, don’t you, as you try to relax on this beautiful day in spring. You try to enjoy that delicious Cape Cod, but a little voice now whispers in your ear: “liver damage, my friend. Liver damage.”

But it doesn’t have to be that way.

[Win a Free Copy of Fight to Evolve. No Purchase Necessary. Free Giveaway Closed. Thanks!]

And maybe it isn’t that way for you. If you happened to make your drink with vodka made with NTX, that 300% increase in DNA and liver damage is 93% smaller. Ninety-three percent safer. Almost completely safe. Almost no damage at all.

That’s right, you might be drinking a safer drink and not even know. 

The reason you don’t know? It’s not your fault. You don’t know what’s in your drink because some bureaucratic nerds at the U.S. Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau in Washington decided you don’t deserve to know. These government weasels have banned discussion of NTX’s health benefits in the United States. The TTB, as it’s known, has ruled that the First Amendment does not apply to health and wellness.

And this isn’t the first time the federal government has tried to prevent consumers like you from learning heath information that could save your lives or protect your children from crippling diseases. In the 1990s, Bill Clinton’s administration tried three times to deny women safe access to information about folic acid and spina bifida. As a result, over 25,000 new, preventable cases of spina bifida occurred while the federal government censored information from the public.

That’s disgusting, and every employee of the TTB should ashamed. And shunned. Do you know anyone who works at this secretive agency? If so, ask them why they won’t let you know what’s in your drink.

You’ve been drinking wrong all along, but now you have a healthier choice. Demand your right to know what’s in your drink. It could save you life.

On Wednesday, I will take part in a press conference at the National Press Club in Washington where Bellion Spirits, Chigurupati Technologies, Campaign for Liberty, the Coalition for Safer Drinking, and legendary First Amendment lawyer Jonathan Emord will announce plans to force the TTB to honor the Constitution and let you know what’s in your drink. What you do with that information is up to you, but you have every right under the Constitution to have the information now.

Ponder that as you enjoy this beautiful spring day.

Discsolure: I am the National Spokesperson for the Coalition for Safer Drinking and author of Fight to Evolve: The Government’s Secret War on NTX now available for the Kindle on Amazon for just 3.99. Cross-posted from www.hennessysview.com.

Why You Should Keep Readers Guessing

Harsha Chigurupati wants to make your spirits functional. 

Don't you want functional spirits? 

Functional spirits potentially help billions of people. 

At this point, you're probably wondering "what the hell are functional spirits?" And that's precisely what you should be thinking. Congratulations. 

You might feel a little frustrated--maybe even angry at me, the writer. You might be thinking, "why doesn't he tell me what a functional spirit is?"

And I will, dear reader. I will. In just a moment. 

But there's great benefit in keeping you in suspense. Benefit for both of us. 

For you, it make this story more interesting. For me, you will remember both the phrase "functional spirits" and its meaning better. Because you're wondering what I mean by "functional spirits," your brain will celebrate when you get it. That celebration will include a little shot of dopamine, the reward chemical. Dopamine makes you feel pleasure, like when you eat something good, win a prize, or have sex. And when you discover something gratifying, like the meaning of "functional spirits." 

Discovery is the key here. When suspense is satisfied, you feel more powerful. You've discovered the missing ingredient. It helps when you, the reader, had a hand in unveiling the truth. Like putting the final piece in a puzzle. A mental puzzle. 

Harsha Chigurupati invented a technology that eliminates most of the physical harm from drinking. In other words, Harsha's made alcohol work for us instead of against us. His spirits function for humanity's betterment, thus (you're way ahead of me) functional spirits. 

You won't forget that term now. You might even find yourself using "functional spirits" in conversation. Or you might modify other nouns with "functional" in the next few days. Functional bread. Functional shoes. Functional pets. You'll apply it to anything that works for you instead of against you. 

Alcohol gets us buzzed, but it messes with our livers, our genome, and with all of our cells because of oxidation. But functional spirits protect our cells and our livers. They're functional. They serve a purpose without the detriment. 

Now you've learned three things in one post: functional is good, delayed gratification aids memory, and alcohol infused with NTX protects your liver and other organs from damage. Good reader.

Feel smarter? I thought so.

Safer Drinking? It's Here

Ever feel a just a little guilty about the drink with friends after work? That beer at the ball game? A glass of wine with dinner?

 

Do you pay attention to the studies saying moderate drinking is good for you? Or the ones that follow quickly saying drinking's bad for you? 

Do wish you could have a vodka and cranberry juice without guilt or worry?

Well, you can. A research company called Chigurupati Technologies has invented and patented a technology that reduces liver stress from alcohol by over 90 percent. That's better than some fast foods. The technology is called NTX and it's already available in a vodka brand. 

Not only does NTX reduce liver damage to near zero, it also protects against the damage alcohol does to your DNA. Not to mention increasing the liver's production of antioxidants. 

(Read more about NTX and Chigurupati Technologies here.)

But with all good news there must some bad news, right? 

Of course. The US government has put a gag order on Chigurupati Technologies. They're not allowed to tell consumers that vodka with NTX could save their lives. The rotten bureaucracy at the heart of this anti-consumer nonsense is the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau.

There's an epic battle brewing right now in Washington over safer alcohol. And an organization called the Coalition for Safer Alcohol has asked me to help in its fight to defend the First Amendment for consumers. The Coalition for Safer Drinking believes it's a good thing that people can drink without getting sick. We're not advocating drinking for people who don't, and we implore people to drink responsibly. 

We believe that drinking responsibly includes choosing alcohol that does the least possible amount of body damage. We know that just 15 minutes after your first drink, your liver enzymes show signs of stress, you DNA processes go sideways, and oxidation of your cells increased. We also know, based on two human studies in India and the in the U.S., that alcohol produced with NTX reduces those bodily stresses to the point of insignificance. And we are flummoxed by the government's attempt to hide this lifesaving information from consumers. 

Check out the Coalition's website for more information. If you'd like updates from me, subscribe below. Otherwise, subscribe at the Coalition for Safer Drinking. It's up to you.