Living Your Values

So I had this great conversation today with someone about values.

Thinking about what I really value and whether I am living consistently with these…

For me, I was able to clarify for myself these critical values:

1) Being a good person and influence in the world (having a positive impact on people and ideas)

2) Being a good family man (a loving husband, father, and previously son)

3) Being spiritual and serving G-d (living selflessly for my Maker and not selfishly for myself)

4) Being a hard worker (living productively and not as a laggard or sloth)

5) Being a balanced person (living along the “golden path” or “middle of the road”–not an extremist)

6) Being a generally healthy person (living a lifestyle that includes activity, exercise, good nutrition, and no smoking, drugs, or excessive drinking)

What I realized is that when I need to let my values guide me every moment of every day. 

This ultimately means my success and happiness! 

Being what I think that I am supposed to be or what others would want me to be, just doesn’t work–it’s a strategy for failure. 

My father used to tell me:

“Let your conscience be your guide”  (that and the Torah, of course)

This is the answer to a lot of questions that I have in my life–about what to do with my life and what decisions to make.

Values–driven by conscience and integrity–that’s where I want to go next and next. 😉

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


When People Fear You, You’re Not A Leader

As the fortune cookie I came across yesterday says:

“Leadership is action, not position.”

And actions demonstrate a good or evil heart.

When everyone hates a leader is that a “leader?”

– Fear is not leadership.

– Bullying is not leadership. 

– Corruption is not leadership. 

Leadership is:

– Showing others what is right and being a good influence. 

– Rolling up your sleeves and doing the hard work alongside everyone else. 

– Helping others to achieve their potential. 

– When others see you as a leader based on your integrity of purpose and actions. 

How we treat others is as true a test of leadership as of where we want to go and how we want to get there. 

G-d sees everything man (leader or not) does, and only He in Heaven is the Leader of Leaders and the King of Kings.  😉

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

613 Everywhere

So many times, I have written about the holy mystical number of 613 (the number of commandments in the Torah) and variations/transpositions on these numbers (316, 163, etc.).

My wife and I continue to see 613 all the time and everywhere!

Prices, receipts, license plates, accounts balances, stock price changes, lottery winnings, bar codes, time of day, wait times, schedules, number of email, rows in a spreadsheet, road numbers, social media views, etc. etc. etc.

– I have questioned myself over and over whether I am seeing it because I am sensitized to it or simply even looking for it at this point. 

The answer is a definite no!

Here’s a recent example, of the change in the stock price for Teva Pharmaceuticals (above)–it’s exactly -.0613!

But this isn’t a one time event or a fluke.  

As we all know stock prices fluctuate every moment on the marketplace. Yet, when I check at completely different and random times, it is up or down by a variation of 613!

Other times, I’ll check multiple stocks… and they will simultaneously be moving or priced at variations again of 613–at the exact same moment, I repeat, different stocks priced at the exact same moment.  

Here’s another non-financial example:

I did a post a few weeks ago on the critical importance of emergency preparedness. 

Look at how many views it got on LinkedIn…exactly 163!

This happens everywhere and all the time!

Here’s a third example:

A license plate. 

Here’s a fourth example:

Can you see the code on the package…613!

A fifth example:

A tracking code on a shipment. 

A sixth example: 

A bar code on a bottle of Life Water.

A seventh example:

A label on some spinach!

An eighth example:

A construction site.

An ninth example:

A public solicitation for the Department of Energy.

A tenth example:

The winning pot for Powerball. 

Hey, I am not superstitious and I am not OCD–seriously. 

But this happens all the time.

I cannot help but think that G-d is sending us an important message.

From a personal level, my wife and I have both tried to take the messages seriously and to continue to improve our lives–albeit we know, we are far from perfect human beings. 

However, we also feel compelled to share this message more broadly.

There is a lot going on in the world, and could this mean something bigger and more consequential to a lot more people?

Please, please, please, G-d have mercy on your children…we are but flesh and blood…and we desire to do good. 

(Source Photos: Andy Blumenthal)

Brighten Your Mondays


So a colleague asked me why I wear bright, happy ties on Mondays. 

Well, I explain, I guess it’s a combination of two reasons: 

1) I’m starting the week all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed coming off the weekend energized and ready for a brand new and exciting week.

2) I’m trying to take what many consider “blue Mondays” and make them brighter and more cheerful for everyone. 

– Smile and the whole world smiles with you!

So the other person responds, as if all the craziness of the office and organizational psychos during the week will somehow wear down my good cheer:

“So by the time you get to Fridays, what are you wearing black ties???”

I guess everyone knows the workweek is the workweek.

And they don’t call it work for nothing. 😉

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Live 4 Something

Live 4 Something.jpeg

I was on the treadmill the other evening. 

On the TV was Sylvester Stallone in the movie, Rambo. 

Ah, some nice welcome action to take my mind off the exercise.

Some doctors and missionaries are trying to make their way to to Burma to help the helpless victims being slaughtered by the military warlord and his henchmen. 

Stallone knows the danger in going there, and at first, he ties to discourage them from going.

The beautiful and sincere women in the group convinces him to take them there…to try to make a difference in these people’s lives who are suffering. 

Stallone takes to the lesson and incorporates it into his inner persona. 

And later he says:

“Live for something 


Die for nothing!

I thought this was a really good philosophy. 


– We can choose to make our lives meaningful and impactful or to hide in the closet or under the bed and really accomplish nothing.

Our lives are a gift, given to us to do something good with–it’s a sin to waste that gift and not do everything we can to be a good influence, help others, and make this a better world. 

(Source Graphic: Andy Blumenthal)

It’s Just Bling

Crystal Kids.jpegSo sitting in synagogue today, my friend Jacob said something very interesting to me.

He was talking about some very wealthy people with multi-millions and even billions. 

And then he says, you know what the difference is between the rich and everyone else:


I asked him what he meant by this.

Then he starts listing off to me like this:

“Well, they live in a home, and you live in a home.
They drive a car, and you drive a car.
They eat food and you eat food.”

And it was amazing how smart his words were, and it hit me how right he was. 

It’s all sort of just in our minds.

Their homes are bigger and nicer; their cars are more luxurious and fancier; their food is better and tastier…but what difference is any of that really.

We both have a roof over our heads to protect us from the elements and a nice place to sleep. 

We both have a car that gets us from here to there and back again. 

We both have food and drink to fill our bellies and nourish us. 

Isn’t the rest just a bunch of bling?

It’s branding and marketing and the sense of luxury that some are better and have more than others. 

But beyond the essentials, we really don’t need any of that!

What we do need is our relationships–people we care about and love and who love us. 

The ability to have a deep impact on others. 

To influence them and make a difference in their lives–in what they do and how they treat others. 

The ability to help people and society. 

The bling is just bling. 

The ability to love and influence that is true wealth. 😉

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Your Everlasting Timeline


So I wanted to share this really smart thought about life and death:

“What is the most important part on a person’s tombstone?
The dash!
Why the dash?
Because it represents what a person has done between the date they were born and the date they died!”

We tend to wildly celebrate birthdays.

Also, we perform a remembrance (or memorial) on the date of a person’s death. 

But what is truly the significant part is what the person did during their life–the kind words, the good deeds, the positive influence that they had on people and the world around them. 

A simple dash between the DOB and DOD.

The small things are really the big things. 

No, an elaborate timeline of life events and doings.

Our time on Earth abbreviated, but not trivial at all. 😉

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)