You Are Not As Tough As You Think

  I am not as tough as I think I am. The realization hit me while laid out flat, the side of my face crushed against the mat. On top of me was a blue belt named Nestor. He pinned me down with his legs, and using his arms he started working on my grip. Seconds later, he broke the grip and leaned back for the armbar. The second my grip broke, I let my arm go slack and started to “hitchhike out” — turning my arm to the right so my thumb was sideways. Then I ran my legs
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How Far Can Genius Take You?

  I once had a family friend named Andrew. He introduced me to Puff Daddy, Usher, and Triple Five Soul apparel. He also had a brilliant mind for medicine. Rutgers University literally created an award in chemistry, so they could give it to him. While he was in medical school, I asked him how he did so well in his studies. His answer was simple: “I learn things faster than other people.” He went on: “I see these other people in medical school, they’re studying as much as they can, as fast as they can. But in the beginning, it’s
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StashWealth financial advisors personal finance

My Brutally Honest StashWealth Review

  When I was 14, I started packing take-out orders at a Chinese restaurant. I’d stand in the oppressive kitchen in poorly fitted dress shirt from TJ Maxx for 7 hours and box ubiquitous white boxes of Chinese food. I’d put an X on the check, then sort and drop different sized boxes into a brown paper bag, like Tetris. When I got home, I’d take my pay — $20 — and stuff it into a brown wallet, tucked in my sock drawer. I asked my parents what I should do with my money. “Save it,” they said. Months later,
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The Millennial’s Guide To Doing Your Taxes

  When I worked in literary management, our writer clients would call me looking for tax advice. “What can I write off as an expense?” and “Can I write off my rent if I work from home?” I loved most of the clients. These were amazing people, who cracked the code on getting paid to write books. Unfortunately, in most cases, their personal finance acumen was inversely proportional to their writing talent — the most talented were the most financially illiterate. I think they assumed that because I was a millennial, I’d know more about this “TurboTax” thing. But back
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How Zuckerberg Fixes Facebook in 2018

  For his 2018 New Year’s resolution, Mark Zuckerberg vowed to fix Facebook. From his post: “Today feels a lot like that first year. The world feels anxious and divided, and Facebook has a lot of work to do — whether it’s protecting our community from abuse and hate, defending against interference by nation states, or making sure that time spent on Facebook is time well spent. “My personal challenge for 2018 is to focus on fixing these important issues. We won’t prevent all mistakes or abuse, but we currently make too many errors enforcing our policies and preventing misuse
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Restaurant Reservations: Returning to the Family Business

  In my favorite half-hour comedy, How I Met Your Mother, the characters Lily and Marshall had a series of long-term bets about the future. “Barney will watch the sex tape.” “Marshall will go bald.” “Ted and Robin will end up together.” This inspired me to keep track of my own bets for certain decisions in my life. I’d record the decision, write down a few sentences about my reasoning, and revisit it a year (or more) later.
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Taylor Swift’s Marketing Machine: Brand and Marketing Lessons from Reputation

  I can’t say Taylor Swift is my favorite songwriter. When it comes to conveying complex emotions, she doesn’t hold the beer of contemporaries like Sara Bareilles or Lorde. Take Red, where she uses colors to describe a former relationship. The color blue represents sadness. Red? You guessed it: love. And “fighting with him was like trying to solve a crossword and realizing there’s no right answer,” where she jams four additional syllables into a convoluted line. Or Gorgeous, the third single off Reputation. As one Swiftie (aka a diehard Taylor Swift fan) lamented, “she rhymes ‘face’ with ‘face.’” But
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How Did You Do In 2017?

  The first musical I remember listening to was Miss Saigon. My mother played the cassette on weekends, and we listened to it dozens of times. As a boy, I tried assembling the story by the songs alone: Why did Chris leave Kim so suddenly? Why did he marry Ellen? For years, for some reason, I thought she was stuck in a Vietnamese jail with her son Tam, not hiding in a village. A post shared by Christopher Ming (@christopherming) on Dec 8, 2017 at 11:06am PST A couple weeks ago, I saw the musical for the first time, and
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How I Would Learn Marketing If I Started Over Today

  My friend landed his first job in the marketing field. “Any books or resources or tips you’d recommend for marketing?” he asked. There are so many different philosophical approaches (e.g. direct sales vs. permission marketing), digital vs. traditional (email vs. direct mail), parts of the funnel (acquisition vs. retention), and channels (e.g. social vs. SEO)… Where should you start? Or, if I had to learn marketing from scratch, what would I do? I’d start with foundational material first.
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