4 reasons why connecting with the past matters.

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Moses and Alma Spencer; Source: Familysearch.org

My great-great-great-great grandparents Moses and Alma Spencer and their children had a different kind of life than you or I.

Alma (formerly Flagg) was the daughter of a American Revolutionary War soldier. Alma and Moses were both born and bred in Connecticut. Their parents, grandparents, and great-grandparents were also all born and raised in Connecticut (with a Massachusetts exception on one side of the family).

However, after a 200-year family tradition of living in Connecticut, they and their 9 children made a bold move. Like many other Americans of the mid-19th century…


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Source: Natálie Šteyerová, Pixabay.com

Several years ago, I received an acute criticism for a particular way I handled a problem at work. It wasn’t disastrous or anything. I wasn’t going to lose my job or get demoted. But the criticism floated around in my head for several days.

As a scientist, I daily engage in a process of the critical examination of facts and assumptions. However, when the process of critical analysis get applied to me as a person, it can be hard to embrace.

I’m OK considering ideas that challenge my understanding of human physiology and microbiology or a concept that reinvents the…


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Source: Álvaro Serrano, Unsplash.com

I recently heard a story about a Christmas card gone awry (story shared with permission). A local religious leader I know recalled the year he sent out Christmas cards to various members of his congregation. In addition to the season’s greetings, he thanked several of them for their special help and assistance.

Unfortunately, there was one Christmas card that must have been written in haste. Instead of the message “Thank you for your help this year. I couldn’t have done it without you” the closing message read:

“I could have done it without you.”

Yes, the message essentially said, “Your…


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Source: Pixabay.com

I’d like to start off telling you a short, silly story. Please bear with me; I promise it has a point.

Try to visualize the story in your mind as you read it.

One evening, I walked into my bedroom. I noticed a large Turtle on my bed eating my pillow. I was so mad! I went to hit him, but he’s a small guy so I had to Punch Low.

My wife came in and asked what was going on. I couldn’t let her know about the turtle, so I told a big Male Fib. To hide my lying…


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Source: Pixabay.com

I’m basking in the warmth of my warm, morning shower. I’m finishing up shaving and shaking off the morning sleepies. It’s warm, steamy, comfortable.

3…2…1…

As I count down, I start breathing deeply. Full breath in. Full breath out. Breathe in. Breathe out.

Then I crank the water faucet all the way to the right — right to the cold.

3…2…1…

After three seconds, it is very cold. Especially in January.

In the past I would tense up, shiver, shake, and shout. Now I let the cold wash over me and take in the cold sensation. …


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Source: Ashkan Forouzani, Unsplash.com

“My phone is so new, no one makes a case for it.”

“There’s free wifi, but it’s so slow.”

“I can’t spread the butter on my toast because it’s too cold.”

“I want food from the back of the fridge, but it’s blocked by all the food in the front of the fridge.”

“I have more clothes than clothes hangers.”

We’ve all had them. Those ‘first-world problems’ that vex us day to day. …


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Source: Alex Block, Unsplash.com

Lyme Disease and Categories

The splitters always win.

A few years ago, I was listening on the radio to an interview where a physician-researcher was speaking on the topic of chronic Lyme disease (CLD). CLD has been defined as a series of chronic health issues that appear to occur among individuals who have contracted or have been assumed to have contracted Lyme disease.

The named symptoms and manifestations are somewhat wide and varied, but include fatigue, sleep impairment, joint pain, muscle aches, pain, depression, cognitive impairment, neuropathy, headaches, and even heart problems. …


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Source: Wikimedia.com

What if I told you that a one-time investment of $0.30 could reap a lifetime of rewards?

Not insider trading on a penny stock.

Not a get-rich-quick scheme.

Not a scam investment.

This is about investing in the greatest source of capital around you — people. To start this investment, you need to commit to a two-week habit of expressing appreciation. And $0.30 (3 dimes to be exact).

But first, let me explain why appreciation and human capital are so powerful.

The Power of Human Capital

You can go at life as a series of transactions, or you can go at life building relationships. …


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Source: Michal Jarmoluk, Pixabay.com

“Your balance comes to $25.36, sir.”

You hand the clerk two twenty-dollar bills.

Quick — what is the change the clerk will give you? Can you get the answer before the clerk tells you?

If you buy a $23 item with 8% sales tax, can you come up with the exact final price in your head? Can you do it less than 20 seconds?

We live in a world saturated with calculating power. Your dishwasher alone probably has enough calculating power to displace millions (billions?) of humans doing arithmetic.

So what’s the point of mental math? …


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Source: Meagan Stone, Unsplash.com

Can you do 50 push-ups in a row?

30 push-ups?

10 push-ups?

2 push-ups…on your knees? Or standing and leaning against a wall?

You might not be able to do 50 push-ups right now, but if you have working legs and arms, there’s a push-up you can do. And you should start doing 2 push-ups every day.

Why should you do 2 push-ups?

Here’s the secret. The goal is not to build big muscles, though that may happen. The goal is not to help you lose weight, though that may happen too. …

Adam Washburn

PhD Chemist, father of six kids, and member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Writes about easy, awesome, life habits and hacks.

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