It's the Retro Game Show!

Last night Velia Amaraisingham and I performed 5 hours of our original comedy Game Show program at Slack's anniversary party at the SF Mint. We curated retro material for "The Price is Right", "Let's Make A Deal", "Family Feud" and "Name That Tune".  People won everything from cans of Spam to a luxury vacation to an Alligator Farm in Florida! This video gives you a sense of the fun!



The Mind-Mechanics of Doubt

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When I was young and envisioned myself as an adult, I pictured a radiant, glowing person who carried herself with compassion, grace, ease, and certainty. It didn't occur to me that doubt, fear, and indecision would be ghosts in the machine, casting their vote all along the way.

What happened? The brain forged and fortified neural pathways into superhighways of doubt-related 'chemical fixes.'

You were framed

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1)  Between the ages of 2-16, our brains were quite literally programmed by our families and society. Was your programming 51% empowering or dismissive? Are you hanging out with people who doubt themselves too? If you're not sure, remember actions speak louder than words.


It feels good to doubt

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2) Doubt actually creates a reward response in the brain because it pulls the arousal out of the panicked limbic system and brings it into the Prefrontal Cortex, creating a sense of relief. This is how advertisers play us like a piano. For instance, they know that shame and pride wire together in the brain. Using our brains against us, they send these messages to our amygdala to trigger buying choices to meet their revenue goals.

We are all addicts

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3) We are addicted to thinking. If you 'doubt' this, try to completely clear your mind for one full minute. You'll find many uninvited houseguests clamoring for your attention.  What's worse, most humans are addicted to negativity. There is a pleasurable dopamine hit that comes when they can hold the attention of others, and trigger their emotional response system, in essence, sucking up some of their energy, (which is attention).

By understanding how your brain works, you can develop skills that have you to 'think masterfully'.

Up above your shoulders, sits the most powerful tool in the known universe and still, working at the fastest computer speeds to date.

Make this mighty force your ally by learning how to shape-shift it to create the life of your dreams.




- Marianne Williamson




Realtor and Community Activist Maggie Barr shares about new-paradigm leadership

This is the first in a series of interviews that I will be doing with amazing women who are a part of the new paradigm of community engagement that is merging business with philanthropy at a local level. 

Maggie Bar is a Realtor at Keller Williams Realty in Santa Cruz. She is a mover and a shaker in her community, especially with her involvement in supporting women in business.  She is CURRENTLY involved in 3 powerful women's communities including being a distinguished leader on the Santa Cruz Women's Council of Realtors, she is also a Commissioner with the Santa Cruz County Women's Commission, and a Board Member and with the Valley Women's Club of San Lorenzo Valley.

I learned a lot in our conversation and uncovered several distinctions around how a powerful woman in business makes discerning choices, and holds deep compassion for herself at the same time. Let's hear from a wise woman and game-changer, Maggie Barr.



The Power of using Magic for Philanthropy

The use of magic for philanthropy has been a deep calling for me. Generosity, compassion, and contribution are the REAL MAGIC. I recently performed at a fundraiser for Temple Isaiah in Lafayette, CA. One of the many ways that they serve the community is to invite homeless people to sleep in their sanctuary during the holidays. I happily donated 2 magic lessons for their silent auction because this is a way that I can give the best of my best to spread the magic of philanthropy.  

Ask yourself, "What is one way that I can add philanthropy to my life and business?"

"How can I 'raise the spirits of others?"

You can start small. I give away Love Packages from my car to people in need. (These are packs of supplies, food and encouraging notes that I assemble and have ready when the moments arises.)

Some ways that your can bring real magic to the world are: helping in a soup kitchen, visiting a rest home and offering your skill or hobby as an interactive activity, just smiling at people when you walk down the street. All of these are courageous acts of contribution that will ripple much farther than you know.  

List 3 things you can do right now, take action and watch how healing it is for your heart.

Here is a video clip from the event that raised the spirits for so many.



The Five High Truths I learned from the Five Coin Rollout

Coin manipulations are considered to be of the most difficult skills to practice and master in all of magic. Coins are small and require a tremendous amount of dexterity and ‘flight time’.

Over the years, making my living as a professional magician, I’ve been drawn deeper into the art and have grown more fascinated by the sublime composition of a well-crafted magical effect. The path to learning the Five Coin Rollout has been long and lovely.

Reflecting on what this ‘practice’ has taught me, I recognized Five powerful truths about life that have come out of this collaboration with my fingers and the round edges of coins.

Below I'll outline The Five High Truths I learned from the Five Coin Rollout and then offer a brief description of each truth with a book recommendation in case you care to expand upon that truth for your own ‘practice’.


Truth #1

  • You can achieve a thing that you thought was truly impossible if you just begin.

Truth #2

  • Mindful progression requires the tiniest adjustments along the way.

Truth #3

  • Consistency may well be the holy grail of life.

Truth #4

  • You know you’re on your bliss path when constant failure evokes no charge or reaction.

Truth #5

  • Learning new things that align with your true nature, makes you feel high.


Here is a brief description and a book recommendation:             

Truth #1

You can achieve something you thought was truly impossible if you just begin.

I never imagined that I would be able to perform the Five Coin Rollout.

I eyed it from a distance with awe for 10 years before ever attempting. But the day finally came when I began it.

The small victories continue to be many, as long as I keep growing in the practice.

Book Recommendation: Letters to a Young Poet, Ranier Maria Rilke

Truth #2

Mindful progression requires the tiniest adjustments along the way.

In areas that require subtle distinction, moving quickly will not do. Some avocations require a microscopically slow execution, which lends the gift of savoring the work in its intricate beauty.

Book Recommendation: The Slight Edge by Jeff Olson

Truth #3

Consistency may well be the holy grail of life.

I’ve recently come to the highest truth of all for a self-employed professional:

 “Life is about the Practice of Refining Lock-down PROCEDURES for Focus.” The deeper I dive into this ‘reveal’, I see that the operative words are “Practice” and “Refining”.

Jim Collins talks about the “20 Mile March” no more, no less, every day, making the biggest difference between companies that are successful and those that capitulate.

Book Recommendation: Good to Great, by Jim Collins

Truth #4

You know you’re on your bliss path when constant failure evokes no charge or reaction.

I have been fascinated to notice that each time the coins pattern crumbles between my fingers and fall away, instead of being discouraged, it only makes me more energized. I’ve learned that every drop of the coin is bringing me that much closer to the taste of a perfect coin roll out.

Book Recommendation: Failing Forward, by John Maxwell

Truth #5

Learning new things that align with your true nature gets you high.

It is amazing how many endorphin rushes lie just on the other side of a little effort.

You know that you have ‘chemistry’ with what you are doing if your brain releases very expensive chemicals into your bloodstream, making you feel a bit like flying.

Instead of arguing with the part that makes us resist our bliss-path, why not just go for a swim in a craft that grants ‘heart-retrieval’ as well as real accomplishment?

Book Recommendation, My Stroke of Insight, by Jill Bolte Taylor


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Innovation strategies - Finding inspiratoin in unlikely places

Would you like to add a Skype button on your form or enable people to leave voice recordings?

I counted a whopping 379 FREE widgets to choose from.

If you're wanting to learn more about the most recent players in this tech and data supernova, you can explore services that offer the latest widgets.


There are some amazing and enlightening widgets available for free on

They had everything form a form that will give you a drop down menu for ALL the cities in China to a widget that will offer Chuck Norris jokes!

You can explore these widgets to:

  • Get inspired about a new way to innovate your business,

  • Discover a new niche market that can use your services,

  • Learn about emerging players in the social media game,

  • Get a strategic view of trends that haven't hit the masses yet, or

  • To just modernize your forms,

I’m not affiliated with Jotform but I’m pretty impressed with their list of widgets.

Among the many options available are:

Voice Recorder, where people an leave voice recordings on your contact page. They also have off-beat widgets like Comedy Central and Ted Talks.


I found widgets that will do E-signatures, track referrals and do embedding.

You can even put your Linked in file digital card on a form.

I was surprised at how many cool, smaller Video Hosts I hadn’t thought of like Wistia, Animoto and Video Detector. If you’re looking to get more coverage for your videos, for your SEO and just getting a larger footprint out there, this could be of value to you.

I also found options for putting music into your forms or sound files, there is Spotify, Audio Boo and Official FM.

It’s really good way for you to get a pulse on the digital community and what the emerging platforms are.


You might consider marketing to these companies or using their services in a deeper way if one is the magic bullet that will give your organization leverage in your niche market. You might find out that they service your ideal client, and get new ideas.

Take a tour of the Jotform home page and the control panel.
There are

  • Form Tools

  • Quick Tools

  • Survey Tools

  • Payment Tools and

  • Widgets

Click “More Widgets” to see an exhaustive list.

I’ve found that they have pretty good customer service in terms of quick response to emails. I’m going with the free version. You can receive 100 forms a month.

I hope this is useful just to expand your perception emerging trends for widget lovers! 

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