Thursday, January 31, 2019

Movie & TV Recommendations for January 2019





YOUTUBE VERSION

There are affiliate links in this post

During the fall and winter, I tend to stay in more often.   When this happens I enjoy catching up on TV.   But what to watch?      I'm here to help.    These are TV shows that I've watched in the final months of 2018 and into the beginning of 2019.   These are recommended.   There might be some spoilers in spots.

Television

American Horror Story seasons 2,3,5

After watching and enjoying Haunting of Hill House on Netflix, I wanted to continue seeing some great horror TV.   I've heard rumblings about how good American Horror Story is from co-workers over the last few years.    I even talked about it with my therapist as she's a fan of the show.    I binged-watched seasons 1-5.    I began season 6(Roanoke)but it did not hook me and I dropped it about 3 episodes in.    My favorite seasons where Asylum, Coven, and Hotel.    They weren't perfect but so much fun.   There were wonderful homages to classic horror movies in Coven such as Evil Dead and Night of the Living Dead.   Hotel was visually eye-catching and has some of the craziest characters such as James Patrick March and the Countess.   Asylum feels like an engaging novella you'd read on a long trip(and my absolute favorite of the three).

Daredevil season 3

All hail(in my opinion)the best Netflix-Marvel show.    This is the series I currently recommend to co-workers and friends if they are deciding on checking out the multitude of superhero, long-form content on Netflix.    In season 3, worthwhile adversaries Bullseye and Wilson Fisk a.k.a. Kingpin give Matt Murdock a run for his money.     

When we were kids, my younger brother owned a beat-up, Secret Wars, Mattel Daredevil figure.   I think he got it from a friend.    Little did I know this Marvel character would have such a rich history of awesome gritty noir storylines.    After watching this season I wanted more.    Possibly a great comic story to read from this character.   I found on Comixology 'Man without Fear' by Frank Miller and John Romita Jr.     What a great book that was!    I will discuss this graphic novel in a future podcast episode.

If you watch only one episode of this season, see episode 4 titled 'Blindsided.'   Witness an incredible prison fight scene which goes on and on.    Fantastic stuff.

Hell's Kitchen https://amzn.to/2TnPx23

Amazon Prime recently added multiple seasons of these 3 shows.  These were some of my favorite reality TV.   Revisiting them took me back to a time when I lived at home with mom.   They'd be appointment television watching.    I moved away on bad terms.   When I rented my first room, on lonely nights, these shows brought a small warmth of being back under my mother's wing.   They eased some homesickness when it would arise.    

Most of January 2019 has been spent watching these shows.    I love watching Hell's Kitchen while preparing and having dinner.   Seeing the chefs, the cooking, the challenges and 'Chef Ramsay' tearing into the competitors.    At home, out loud, I've often imitated the voiceover guy because I find him ridiculously entertaining.   

Amazing Race used to be my absolute favorite reality show.   The variety, the world travel, the teams, and their stories.   Phil Keoghan is a very likable host.   'The last team to check in here may be eliminated!'   

Phil Keoghan interview by Tim Ferris https://bit.ly/2Uv6iIu  

I enjoyed but had a disdain for Survivor.    The show was fun but the lying, cheating, stealing between the competitors was slimy and didn't feel good after watching.    With 2019 eyes, it is my favorite of the three.    Why?   I find storytelling is the best on Survivor.   I'm currently studying storytelling to improve my podcast, blog, videos.   This is the program which quickly gets me invested in rooting for the competitors or in tears when the finalists meet their loved ones.        

Watching these shows on Amazon Prime I can skip ahead and not spend 45 minutes per episode.    This is great for revisiting seasons I already watched in the past.


Narcos season 4

I truly enjoyed the first 3 seasons of this series.    This chapter started off slowly but ended in suspense.    It portrays Diego Luna as a villain who at first I empathized with.    But throughout the course of the show, you see his evil ways rear their ugly head.    Micheal Pena's character who tragically never quits in his search to arrest Diego Luna is inspiring but sad.    Other standouts are Tenoch Huerta as the unhinged Caro and his girlfriend Sofia Contessa played by Tessa La.   Matt Lescher as DEA agent Jaime Kuykendall, Joaquin Cosio as Don Neto were great too.   Narcos often has a very strong cast.    I loved how it connected to previous seasons with appearances by the  Cali Cartel and Pablo Escobar.    A young Joaquin 'El Chapo' Guzman is introduced and becomes a recurring character.     Season 4 is not the strongest of the show but it is quality.

The Last Kingdom season 3 https://amzn.to/2FZyW1c

I watched the first two seasons of this program before Netflix acquired it online through nefarious means.    I am a fan of the History Channel's Vikings.   When I came across this program a few years ago I thought the Last Kingdom looked like the aforementioned Vikings.    It even had a character of the same name(Ragnar Lothbrook).    

What I like about the show over the other is the pace.   It moves much quicker.    Also, we(the viewer)ride alongside the core group of characters(barring a few new players introduced here and there)and watch them develop through all 3 seasons.

Alexander Dreymon is a very charismatic lead and the supporting cast of King Alfred his family, Father Beocca, Brida, Aelswith, Athelwold to name a few, fill out this show well.    One of my favorite things is just listening to these names over and over on the show.    Great villains, great action you won't go wrong with this series.

-movies-

A Star is Born (2018)
Bohemian Rhapsody (2018) https://amzn.to/2MHHP05
Ralph Breaks the Internet (2018)
Bumblebee (2018)
Aquaman (2018)
Creed 2 (2018)
Overlord (2018) https://amzn.to/2G0T03f

-games-

Sunset Overdrive (2014) https://amzn.to/2TpEIME
Batman Arkham City (2011) https://amzn.to/2Siny6m
Splinter Cell Conviction (2010) https://amzn.to/2Wpc93U

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Email me at improveandhavefun@gmail.com 


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Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Get Uncomfortable and DANCE




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In this video I work on personally growing by doing the uncomfortable thing.    A cool dance party ensues.

The party begins at 2:30 into the video.

The party takes place in Kinfolk (94 Whythe Ave., Brooklyn, NYC)on Tuesdays.    Follow DJ Gringo on Instagram for more details https://www.instagram.com/djgringonyc/

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Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Tia & Tio's 50th Wedding Anniversary


YOUTUBE VERSION

My aunt and uncle recently celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary.    What better than to document this event!   Thanks to my younger brother for the pics and video.

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Friday, January 18, 2019

Action Figure Play-Madusa Vs. X-23-BONUS VIDEO



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Here's a quickie action figure play that I put together.   I love this stuff and want to do more of it.    I shot this around my neighborhood and used Marvel Legends action figures Madusa, X-23, and Catboy from PJMask.

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Thursday, January 17, 2019

5 Takeaways from Charles Duhigg's Book 'Power Of Habit'


AUDIO VERSION


Check out this episode!

YOUTUBE VERSION


I read this book with the hopes of curbing my bad habits.   Those being watching and masturbating to porn, consuming more than creating, and eating saturated fats which I know are bad for my heart.

I felt that the 'Power of Habit'  could've been summed up much quicker. It was padded with the stories and case studies.

Here are 5 takeaways.

Page 20.  'When a habit emerges, the brain stops fully participating in decision making.   It stops working so hard or diverts focus to other tasks.    So unless you deliberately fight a habit-unless you find new routines-the  pattern will unfold automatically.'

Page 73.   'The old cues and cravings for rewards were still there, waiting to pounce.   The alcoholics only permanently changed once they learned new routines that drew on old triggers and provided a familiar relief.'

Page 160.   'But sometimes, even destructive habits can be transformed by leaders who know how to seize the right opportunities.   Sometimes, in the heat of a crisis, the right habits emerge.'

I scribbled a note underneath this paragraph saying, 'Solutions in the problems.    Problems are good.'

Page 220.   'In general, sociologists say, most of us have friends who are like us.   We might have a few close acquaintances who are richer, a few who are poorer, and a few of different races-but, on the whole, our deepest relationships tend to be with people who look like us, earn about the same amount of money, and come from similar backgrounds.'

Page 78.   'If you identify the cues and rewards, you can change the routine.   At least, most of the time.   For some habits, however, there's one other ingredient that's necessary: belief.'

I came to this book looking for answers.    I learned about tools which can help me with my patterns, which I easily fall into.   I feel that if I apply what I've learned here, I can make a positive change in my life and stop feeling guilty when I'm indulging my bad habits.

You can purchase Mr. Duhigg's book here through this affiliate link https://amzn.to/2LcE55U .    It will support both myself and the author.   Thanks!

Thoughts? Comments? Do so below or you can contact me by calling or texting 1-201-429-0274. If you leave a voicemail please be aware, you only have 3 minutes.

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Thursday, January 10, 2019

8 Goals for 2019 + 10 Continuing Habits



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8 Goals for 2019

1. Work on Bad Habits.
A. Watching, masturbating to porn.
B. Going off my vegan diet regularly(Sometimes/irregularly it's        ok.    Cholesterol is needed).
C. Having unsafe sex.
D. Consuming more, creating less.

2. Continue Therapy.

3. Continue Seeing Sex Workers Safely but be Open To Dating.

4. Travel to Two Places.    Arizona Definitely.

5. Publish a Journal.    10,000 words.

6. Continue Saving  Cash and Investing in Stocks Weekly.   7% or of your pay or less.

7. Fast More often Over 24 Hours.

8. Get Outside, Vlog and Document More Often.   Use Story Format for your Videos.


Continuing Habits

1. Vegan, Gluten Free, Oil Free Diet.   It's Expected I Will have Meat & Dairy Every Once In a While.

2. Sleep 6-8 Hours Per Day.

3. Look Forward to Failure, Rejection, Uncomfortable Situations.    This is Where You Learn & Grow.

4. Continue Reading a Book, Listening to a Book, Reading a 
Comic Book.

5. Writing Is the Number One Activity.

6. Continue Yoga, Exercise and Dancing.

7. Contact Family and Friends Weekly.

8. Improve your Posture.

9. Continue Daily Happiness Routine-15 Steps-As Much As you Can.

10. Stay Consistent with Your 5 Focus Areas of 2019.
A. Podcast
B. Drawing
C. eBay
D. Video
E. Journal Publishing

LINKS


Thoughts? Comments? Do so below or you can contact me by calling or texting 1-201-429-0274. If you leave a voicemail please be aware, you only have 3 minutes.

Email me at improveandhavefun@gmail.com 


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Thursday, January 3, 2019

41 Lessons Learned in 2018



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These are lessons I learned throughout 2018 through reading/listening to books, through podcasts or through reading James Altucher's blog.

If I were listening to a  podcast or audiobook, I'd stop, open up the 'notes' app on the iPhone and type that particular idea or quote.    If the quote was from a book I'd highlight it right then and there.

I wanted to document this so I can look back and not forget these teachings.

Some of the podcast sources(with links)are:

The Mindset and Motivation podcast
The James Altucher Show
The Front Row Factor podcast with Jon Vroman
The Robin Sharma Mastery Lessons
The Marie Forleo podcast
The Smart Passive Income podcast with Pat Flynn
The Jordan Harbinger Show
Freedom Main Radio with Stefan Molyneaux
School Of Greatness with Lewis Howes
Dating Women Podcast with Doc Love
The School Of Podcasting with Dave Jackson
The Tim Ferriss Show
Video Creators podcast with Tim Schmoyer
Scavenger Life podcast with Jay and Ryanne
Porn Free Radio with Matt Dobschuetz

Other times I've deduced some of these lessons on my own as an amalgamation of things, I've read, listened to, or through therapy.

I've listed the areas specific to the lessons and what I've learned.

Creating and Documenting(4 lessons).
-60% of my creativity is born from writing.    Journaling is the #1 activity.
-Stories are how humans have related to each other for ages.   The story formula;
        a. A character wants something.
        b. Goes through conflict to get it.
        c. Is transformed through the process.
This method is great for articles and YouTube videos.        
-The process of creating is art.     Document the process.
-Sleep, play, movement brings forth new ideas.

Regarding Oneself & Reflection(11 lessons).
-How you treat others is how you treat yourself(inner dialogue). 
-If a person you know has an annoying trait, you may have the same.    That's how you recognize it.
-Talking out loud in public is acceptable now with our smartphones and Bluetooth headphones.    It's a great tactic to say how you are feeling out loud.    This can be a release.
-Don't feel guilty about trying new things and dropping them.    This is how we find new activities that we love.
-Perfectionism is self-destruction.
-Listen first and speak last.   You have the benefit of gaining more relevant info this way when it's your turn to speak.
-Love plus persistence equals abundance.
-Honor your strengths.    Accept you beautifully lop-sided self.    Well rounded can be a crutch.
-All addiction is a response to pain.
-Confidence is created through repeated action.
-Ego gets in the way of happiness.


Being Present Now(3 lessons).
-Bring your focus to right now.   The past has passed, and the future hasn't come yet.
-Stop with the 'back in the day was the best.'   The present time that we live in is so much better.   We are so much more advanced than we've ever been.   There are better resources now to do anything your heart desires.   Right now is great.
-Don't mortgage your happiness for later.    Be happy now.

Humanity(3 lessons).
-We as human beings commune with each other.   We are tribal; It's our nature.   We will look for others like ourselves.   
-The brain is meant to protect you.    It will keep you safe and in your comfort zone.    It will not place you in uncomfortable situations where you can grow.
-People are their happiest when they are free not controlled.

Work & Routines(4 lessons).
-Having a job gives purpose and routine.    This can be life-giving.    They are not evil.
-Routines complete projects and/or continue positively reinforced maintenance.
-Having a job allows you to create freely.    It pays the bills while you can explore and experiment.    If the venture doesn't work, you can throw it away and start again.     That's ok.    You don't have to compromise your creativity to eat.
-Getting a job doesn't mean quitting your dreams.

Failure(5 lessons).
-Video games have reinforced in me that progressing, failing and finding another way around an obstacle is the perfect metaphor for life when failing.    Like Ryan Holiday says the 'Obstacle is the Way.'   That's where growth happens.
-You won't have the same success as a role model.   You are not wired the same.    You can have your version of success.   Compete with yourself.
-If something or someone rejects you, be happy!    It wasn't going to be a good fit, to begin with.    
-Your sale skills improve with each rejection.
-It's ok to feel down when getting rejected.    You are human.

Side Money(1 lesson).
-When it comes to eBay, don't throw away most items, list it for sale.

Sex(1 lesson).
-When it comes to masturbation, it is better to use a Fleshlight as opposed to using your hand.   You are ruining the sensitivity of your penis when it comes time for actual sex with someone else.   Erectile dysfunction can occur.

The final lessons are quotes from books I've read this past year.

The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy(3 lessons).

-Page 60.   'Uprooting bad habits that have grown into mighty oaks is going to be arduous and difficult; to see the process through will require something greater than even the most relentless determination-willpower alone won't cut it.'

-Page 135.   This was a quote from John Wooden in the book. 'Mentoring is the true legacy.   It is the greatest inheritance you can give to others.   And it should never end.   It is why you get up every day.   To teach and be taught.'

-Page 140.   'Identify the influence the input of media and information is having on your life.   Determine what input you need to protect your mind from and how you are going to keep your mind regularly flushed with positive, uplifting, and supportive input.'

Start With Why by Simon Sinek(1 lesson).

-Page 41.   'The example starts to prove that people don't buy WHAT you do, they buy WHY you do it.'

Fearvana by Ashkay Nanavati(3 lessons).

-Page 63.   'I learned to shift my mental patterns to loving myself, forgiving myself, and allowing myself to focus on making progress, instead of reaching the perfection of a destination.'


-Page 151.   'We live in a world always trying to make our lives easier, but if you want success and meaning in your life, don't avoid struggle. Welcome it. Seek it out every day.'

-Page 84.   "The words that we attach to our experience become our experience, regardless of whether it's objectively accurate or not' states Tony Robbins."  

Content Inc. by Joe Pulizzi(2 lessons).

-Page 18.   'The key here is that you don't have to be the New York Times or the leading trade magazine in your industry to get people to engage with your content. Readers are open to receiving and engaging in any content that will help them live better lives, get better jobs, or solve a particular task. The point: You have as much opportunity to deliver amazingly helpful content as anyone.'

-Page 205.   'For all for of my books, including this one, a lot of material, ideas, and content originated from existing blog posts. If you have six months of blogs, you might already have half a book. Now writing a book is not an easy endeavor, but you may have a lot of the raw content already at your disposal to develop a book.' 

Have any of these lessons resonated with you?   Let me know.   Please comment below.

Links

You can find the rest of my biggest takeaways for these books here:

Compound Effect
Fearvana
Start With Why
Content Inc

Thoughts? Comments? Do so below or you can contact me by calling or texting 1-201-429-0274. If you leave a voicemail please be aware, you only have 3 minutes.

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Lessons Learned from Motivational Speaker Rob Dial

Season 2 Episode 12 On a recent episode of Mr. Dial's podcast he discussed his story of how he came to be the motivational ...