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As this past year just came to a conclusion many of us ended up recalling the year. What was “good”? What was “bad”? What did we enjoy and what not so much? What are we proud of, and what not so much? What would we like to do better in the new year or even avoid altogether?

We start weighing our “successes” and our “failures”. But then we might have a problem determining what to see as a success and what as a failure? What might seem like a failure could indeed end up being a success in the future and vice versa.

No matter where we are at this point in time, all we need to know is where we would want the journey to take us. What is my destination? Once we can answer this question then a path will reveal itself to us and the journey as such will become the destination.

It makes no difference if you are about to embark on a major journey or simply would want a small project finalized. With the end in mind the journey to the destination will be a, a journey, and all potential challenges will become a mere stepping-stone toward the completion of this journey. With a destination in mind, the journey itself will become your destination – with all of its ups and downs, highs and lows, successes and potential failures.

To give you an idea what I mean, I would like to share with you, very briefly, a journey of an entire country. A country of 80 plus million inhabitants. A country that was divided for decades and has been trying to heal its wounds for 25 years: Germany!

Germany is a country I have a lot of respect for. Hard working people. Organized. Determined. All the while levelheaded and giving.

On November 9th, 1989, for the first time since the end of WWII, East Berliners were allowed to officially and legally cross into West Berlin. What a monumental and history changing day that was!

Westerners (so called “Wessis”) welcomed their long lost cousins from the east (the so called “Ossis”) with open arms. In the early days it was common practice to leave physical gifts on the hood of a visiting car from the east. The 2 most symbolic gifts were:

1) 10 German marks rolled up and stuck in the windshield of cars. Wow! A total stranger leaving money for you to find when you come back to your car?!
2) A bundle of bananas. Can you imagine coming back to your car and there is a bundle of bananas on your hood? Why bananas you might ask? Well, because this was the exotic fruit that the “Ossis” couldn’t buy during communism and only knew from pictures. Thus practically overnight Germany became the biggest banana-consuming nation in the world.

Once it became clear that Germany was heading toward a reunification, the West German government had to decide what to do with the East German Mark; a currency not worth the paper printed on. First, the government aimed for a conversion rate of 10 East German Marks to 1 West German Mark.

But as the months went on the conversion rate became a 4:1 and right before reunification happened, the West German chancellor pushed for an exchange rate of 1:1 stating that Germans take care of Germans. Period! Simply incredible!

In the meantime Germany competed in the FIFA World Cup and won their 3rd title in the summer of 1990. Can you picture the pride and joy the about to be reunified nation was feeling? An entire nation on drugs, that’s how to best describe how things were then.

In the meantime, though the West German government looked closer into the books of the East Germans and had to realize that nothing, absolutely nothing, that the East Germans produced had West German standard and could be used. Also the entire infrastructure, which means not only highways, but also roads, train tracks, power lines, the sewer system, pipelines, etc., had to be rebuilt from scratch.

The government estimated that it would cost about 1 trillion German Marks (or ½ trillion euros) spent over a period of 20 years to get East Germany, with a population of 16 million people, on par with West Germany, which had a population of 64 million at that time.

And who had (and still has) to foot this bill you might ask? Correct, the taxpayer! So the so-called Solidarity Tax was introduced which added a whopping 7.5% tax onto each and every taxpayers’ taxes.


Overnight folks, overnight, there was no more singing and dancing between the West and the East. There were no more gifts left on car hoods. From that moment on it was the bloody “Ossis” who cost the “Wessis” their hard earned money, and the wall, this time an invisible wall, went right back up again.

25 years on, the cost of reunification has been not a “mere” ½ trillion, but north of 1.5 trillion euros (that is about 2 trillion U$). And the east today is still not on par with the west. And needless to say, that the invisible wall is still up.

But despite all of their challenges and the ups and downs on their road to reunification, when looking back, the nation can truly be proud of itself. Knowing where the journey was going, the country and its people, were able to overcome tremendous challenges and obstacles. And not only that the two parts of Germany are closer today than they have been in the past 70 odd years, but the nation as such has grown into being a better and bigger country, not only for the people who live in it but also for its neighbors and partners. For example, while all the internal struggles of reunification are going on, the country quasi single-handedly saved the euro from its collapse just a few years back and continued to be the driving force behind the growth and improvement of the European Union in every possible aspect. And all of this without ever playing the “big country card”, at least the way some other well-known big countries do on a regular basis.

Don’t you think that if a nation as big as Germany with all of its challenges and problems can do it, namely defining a destination and then going for it, you, with your significantly smaller challenges (and I am not disregarding your challenges here!), can do it, too?!

But you might say, that there is no way that you can relate to the challenges of a powerful and wealthy nation with its seemingly limitless resources and manpower.

Well then, how about me sharing with you one of my struggles and how I am overcoming it?

Nearly two years ago a nasty virus almost got the better of me. But I survived. So I consider myself really very lucky. But there are still quite a few health obstacles that I have to overcome. One of them being my frozen up muscles and stiff joints and the pain that goes with it – a souvenir from the virus and the treatment I received getting rid of it. Two years ago I could not walk even walk a hundred yards without getting completely out of breath. I couldn’t even lie down on the floor without major back in my back. Nor could I move my arm more than 2-3 inches away from my body.

My destination is pretty clear: getting rid of my pain and stiffness and being able to move my body the way I used to before my sickness. I had no clue how to get there though: all I knew was that allopathic medicine and regular physiotherapy won’t get me there. So a long and painful road of (self-)healing, and a journey of persistence and determination started: acupressure, acupuncture, myofascial treatment, TCM, herbs, Bikram yoga, swimming, and “semi-jogging”, just to name a few of my experiences, started.

To cut a long, long story short, it was during my yoga class on December 31st that I realized that I was experiencing my very first temporarily pain free practice. Wow! What a realization that was! What a class that was: I was grinning from ear to ear. And what an end to a year of self-healing that was!

Have I reached my destination yet? By far not! I still feel considerable pain and some of my muscles and joints are still fairly stiff. But compared to a few years back, I already feel like a spring chicken. I am so confident about my recovery that I am bold enough to say that I will completely get healed – with a bit of luck already by the end of this year.

I know my destination, so all the challenges that have been thrown at me while working on regaining my health, were simply stepping-stones on my journey to health.

If the big story of the big country of Germany wasn’t able to motivate you to set your aim on a destination and simply have faith that the road to your goal with reveal itself in due time, then hopefully my little story of self-healing was.

May this coming year be your year to shine!

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A few months ago I was in Malaga, Spain attending a conference. As the conference fell on my birthday, I took my mom with me so we could spend a little quality time together during my off time. I bought both of our tickets using my miles, which ultimately means that our flight tickets didn't cost me a dime. When we took off for Malaga from Vienna, Austria, I checked on the tickets to make sure I had the times down right. I read 10:45 a.m. as our departure time for our flight back to Vienna.

We spent a great time together. Did some sightseeing, walked along the beach and enjoyed great foods and of course also some delicious Spanish wines. The evening before our flight back, I checked on the tickets again and, again, read 10:45 a.m. as our departure time. I then proceeded to check us both in for the flight, chose our seats and then received our boarding passes via email. Hence I ordered a taxi to the airport at 8:45 a.m. giving us ample of time to drop off our luggage at the check in counter and then have a morning coffee before boarding for our flight. So far so good.

Malaga airport was only a 15 minute drive from our hotel. We arrived at the airport by 9:00 a.m. and the first thing I did was to check on the board to see if I could find my flight. As I scan through the departure times I saw a flight at 9:45 a.m. to Vienna but when my eyes arrived at the 10:45 a.m. section there was no flight to Vienna. First thing that happened was disbelief. Where is my flight? Second thing that happened was, OMG, don't tell me they moved the flight to 9:45 a.m. without telling me! So I rummaged through my briefcase to have another look at my ticket. And lo and behold it said in big, bold and clear writing that my departure was at 9:45 a.m. Then I cheched on my electronic boarding pass, which also clearly stated 9:45 as our departure time. Shock and disbelief settled in! Sweat started to form on my forehead while I was trying to process the situation. I just could not believe what I was seeing. How could I have misread the bloody departure time TWICE, if not THREE times?! 

We ran to the check in gate and explained the situation. By now it was 9:10 a.m. They told us that there was only one chance to catch the plane and that was to run with our luggage through security and to the gate. We had to be at the gate at 9:30 though. My poor mom and I pushed through the line at the security and put our suitcases on the belt. Next thing I know was that the friendly security staff wanted us to open our suitcases. It was 9:20 by now. Of course I totally had forgotten about the liquids in our suitcases. All the great wine bottles we bought were trashed. And all of our shampoos and gels and lotions as well. Poor mom was getting a heart attack as it was mostly her stuff that was being thrown away left, right and center. Finally, stripped off of our liquids, we were allowed to continue with our run to the gate. It was 9:25 by now. I told my mom to just walk as fast as she could while I would run ahead with my suitcase and both of our carryons to the gate. Of course the bloody gate was at the farthest possible location of the airport. Totally drenched with sweat and out of breath I arrived at the gate at 9:30 a.m. precisely only to see that the gangway was being pulled away from the aircraft. I yelled at the gate agents that we were promised that we could come along if we made it by 9:30 a.m. – and here I was. The agent only said sorry, the captain had decided that it was time to leave and that is it. 

My entire clothes were wet from sweat, my legs shacking from exhaustion, my lungs burning from the run, I waited for my mom's arrival. As soon as she saw me she knew that we wouldn't be on that flight. I really had to take many, many deep breaths to keep calm and not shout and curse at the agents at the gate – after all it was my own fault for being late – and no one elses.

We had to walk all the way back out into the checking in area and organize a flight back. To add insult to injury I was told that on that day Lufthansa was on strike so there were no more flights to Vienna anymore with Lufthansa. Period. I couldn't believe what I was hearing. They referred me to their competitors. After shopping around for a while at the airport I had to come to the conclusion that I either had to fork out some major cash or we would have to stay for another night. So I ended up biting the bullet and with my hat in hand accept the offer of an airline to fly us back to Vienna that afternoon for a mere EUR 270 (U$ 380) a pop. Pain, that is all I could feel. 

After all was said and done and we were sitting in our seats ready to take off (hours after our original flight, needless to add), I closed my eyes and started to meditate. I went through the events step by step and bit by bit and I had to realize that somehow my mind had chosen to read 10:45 a.m. as our departure time the first time I checked up on our flight times a week ago. And then it refused to let go of that image in my mind even though I physically looked at our the tickets again the evening before and even proceeded to check us both in online!

And once again the universe taught me that it is my own mind that creates my reality and not what I perceive as the objective reality to be. Even when physically looking at the ticket I could not see what "reality" was as my reality had already been created for me within. 

May this be a reminder to me and to you that our mind has incredible powers, much, much more than we are aware of and that we may invest all of our energies into utilizing its power to our benefit.

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My brother is getting married on March 30th and I am his best man. As his best man and brother I would like to organize him the best possible wedding there is, so I did some research and found some great artist who could perform during the wedding party as a surprise act for the newly wed couple and guests alike. One after another I was talking with them over the telephone to learn more about their act and how much they would cost and so on.

Just a couple of weeks ago, three days before my return to the US, I happened to talk to one of the artists on my cell for the first time – I will  not go into too much detail about these artist today as my brother might read this entry before his wedding and then it wouldn't be a surprise anymore. It was 5:30 p.m. and I was on my way to the gym. It was completely dark already and cold of course, as it was January and the roads were covered with snow as it had snowed just a couple of days prior.

As I know the way to the gym by heart, I was fully engaged in my conversation with the artist on the other end, and did not pay too much attention to what was going on around me. I was walking along a construction site where I saw a construction worker handling a "Long Fence" some 20 feet away from me. Since there were no signs telling me that I wasn't allowed to walk on the side of the road that I was walking on, I continued walking.

The second I continued with my walk I regretted my decision doing so. The construction worker lost control over the fence he was handling and it slipped out of his hand and the whole thing come down on me from above hitting me with its full weight on my right shoulder, knee and head. My iPhone flew several feet across the pavement, while my connection was still on, and I hit the ground with the fence burying me under it.

For a while I was groggy and didn't quite know what had happened. While the construction worker pulled the fence off of me, I gradually realized where I was and what had happened. I shook my head and pushed myself up again and staggered to my phone. I picked it up and heard the guy on the other end saying "hello" over and over again. I told him I had to get back to him as I was involved in an accident and  hung up.

Parts of my body were aching and my clothes were completely destroyed. Standing there in the cold, dark wintry evening in Vienna, I tried to recall the previous couple of minutes, which might have also been the last couple of minutes, of my life and realized that indeed life can be over without any forewarning or sign. One small freak accident is sufficient to bring an end to ones life. End of story and goodbye.

This incident, as painful and annoying as it was, was in effect a gift as it made me appreciate my life and health. That night I gave thanks to all the people I had in my life, the things I had accomplished and asked to be given enough time to achieve all the things I still would want to achieve.

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Many of you know that I also guide tours through Europe. Given the great health challenges I had prior the start of the tour, I thought I would share my little story with you showing you again what we are capable of if we set our mind to it.

My last tour started on December 14th in Munich and ended on December 23rd in Munich again; ten days through Central Europe with 52 guests on a coach. But let's start at the beginning. For several weeks my stomach had been acting up and I felt low on energy with a bad cough and some fever. I didn't think much of it, but still made sure to keep a nice diet, give myself plenty of rest, get plenty of vitamins and give my body time to heal itself. Since my symptoms started in early November I never was worried that I would not be fully recovered by the time I had to guide my tour.  A few days before the tour commenced I started to feel really bad – my muscles ached more, I had light fever again and my bloated stomach acted up stronger than ever. Finally I realized that I really had to do something as I only had a few days before I had to lead a large group of people through Europe. On Monday, December 10th I had some blood work done, my lungs x-rayed, and my stomach sonogramed. As the doctors couldn't really find anything, apart from believing that I was at the tail end of an untreated flue, and my symptoms worsened, I was urged to have a gastroscopy done. The only day available was Wednesday, December 12th, a day before I had to board my train from Vienna to Munich.

So on Tuesday, December 11th, I packed my suitcase and prepared for the tour as best as I could since I wasn't quite sure what to expect from the procedure the next day.

Since my cancer days I have always been a little nervous when I have to go to the hospital. In light of this, I meditated before going to bed, picturing that my day at the hospital would run smoothly and pain-free and that I would know what it is that had made me feel sick for such a long time.

As I was given a heavy sedative I didn't feel a thing and when I woke up, I was told that I had a gastric attack and had to take heavy antibiotics for a week and all should be well again. With a big smile on my face I left the hospital as I was finally on the right track of full recovery of my, by then six week long ordeal. But it seems that things have to get worse before they can get better again, so in the afternoon after my examination, I started to get the chills and my temperature rose to a dramatic 103 within a few hours. Sweating, aching and moaning I was shaking my head really, really wondering, whether I could even board the train the next day, let alone execute a tour. Having had no food all day, and pumped with drugs, I finally fell asleep at midnight.

On Thursday, December 13th, I woke up totally exhausted and drained of my energies as I had sweat out whatever toxins were in my body during the night. Somehow I now had to get to Munich as I was determined to not let my being sick keep me from doing what I had promised to do when I accepted to direct the tour several months prior.

Tired, slightly feverish and achy, I dragged myself to Munich, traveling for six hours and changing trains twice while shlepping a heavy suitcase and two bags; filled with all the things I needed to conduct a successful trip. Finally, at 11:00 p.m., after a full day of traveling and then preparing for the trip at my hotel in Munich, I switched off my lights believing I was about to embrace a peaceful and restful night. Far from it! At 2:00 a.m., after having tried every single technique I know of trying to fall asleep, I gave up, switched on the lights and started to watch TV in the hope that my mind finally would give in allowing me a few hours of rest before I had to get up at 6:00 a.m. Well, for reasons unknown to me, my mind simply did not want to rest at all, forcing me to start a tour without any sleep for 24 hours, still achy and slightly feverish. Before leaving my room for the airport I sat down and told my body that if it helped me to carry through this day, I will give it all the rest it deserved and pamper it as much as I possibly can. All day long I welcomed guests at the airport and transferred them to the hotel, smiling and being as cheerful and as engaging as I possibly could be. My day was busier than usual, with more check in problems and flight delays than on any other tour this year, but my body, soul and mind carried me through the day allowing me to conduct a city tour, give a welcome reception and take care of all of my guests smaller and bigger problems always with a smile on my face, never giving away that I was far from being OK.

At night, when finally back in my room, I thanked my body and my spirit for having been there for me when I needed them. I promised that I would take care of myself by giving myself plenty of rest and plenty of downtime as soon as this tour comes to an end. I continued to talk to my body, and to thank it every day while making plans for a very relaxed Christmas and New Year's period. I cancelled all of my engagements for the holiday period and created an environment where I really could rest and my body could get all the healing support I had promised it.

Needless to say that at the end the tour ended up to be a fantastic program with people being more than 100% happy and satisfied. Here I am now, writing these words to you, just as I had promised myself eight days of total and complete relaxation ready to embrace the New Year with new found energies. My body healed, my mind at peace and my spirit ready to dive into 2013.

This episode has proven to me again that our bodies and minds are capable of so much more than what we at first sight believe are capable of. If we really set our mind to get something done and believe in ourselves then the rest will fall into place.

Am wishing you all a most wonderful, happy and fulfilling 2013!

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Visualization is an imperative part of my coaching. Almost every time I work with a new client I have to overcome their doubts and reservations about the impact and influence potential visualizations have on our lives.

The reason why I simply know that there is no way around practicing visualization techniques on a regular basis – ideally on a daily basis – is because I believe that what we experience in our external world is 100% influenced by our internal world and the way we "see" and perceive the world to be.

The questions are the following – and they are not only philosophical ones: 1) with what do we actually see – with our eyes or with our brain? 2) can we only see what we can process?

Here is an attempt to answer these questions and at the same time providing you with some food for thought:

1) In a study people were asked to look at a specific object while they were connected to a sophisticated PET scan which recorded certain parts of the brain to light up. Then people were asked to visualize the same object while still connected to the machine and the exact same areas of the brain reacted. This only leaves us with one possible conclusion: our brain cannot distinguish between what we see through our eyes and what we project onto our mental screen. Further we must concluded that ultimately we must be seeing with our brain and not with our eyes.

2) I know you have heard of the phrase: "can't you see this/it/what is going on with you/etc.?" This indicated that someone else can see something that we cannot, even though we all see with our eyes the same things. If someone else can see something we cannot, e.g.: solution of an even simple mathematical equation, a deer hidden in the forest, a way out of a stuck situation, then that must mean that their brain has learned to process that specific information so that they can "see" the solution to the problem/challenge/issue, while we cannot. Just think back in your own life where other people could clearly see something you could not – be it a homework issue as a kid or a challenge you were faced with as an adult. You might have thought then how stupid you were not to see such an obvious solution and be mad at yourself for some time – never even realizing that your eyes could not see the solution simply because your brain did not know how to process the information. The most powerful tool in demonstrating folks the power of visualization is my BLUE exercise (which I described in great detail in one of my previous blog entries). This exercise clearly demonstrates that we see with our eyes a lot more than our brain can process and thus utilize. Thus all we have to do is to train our mind how to process the information that we are receiving and as a result we can create the most amazing lives for ourselves.

If you believe in the power of visualization and practice it often you will reap great benefits and lead a wonderful and fulfilled life!!

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It is a scientifically well established notion that only 5% of our decisions are made consciously. Which means that 95% of all of our decisions are made subconsciously, quasi on autopilot. This would for example mean that whether and where we drink our morning coffee, which route we take to work or which newspaper we read is already pretty much 'set in stone' – we simply do things without really thinking about it anymore – we are practically going through life doing the same things over and over again without ever realizing that for the most part we are kind of like stuck at a self-created assembly line called 'our own life'. In some instances such a 'factory work' life-style might indeed be very healthy and conducive to leading a fulfilled and healthy existence – such as when 'automatically choosing greens for lunch, going for a jog in your spare time, or reading a book. But in some other instances certain automated behaviors might be outright unhealthy and blocking the way to leading a fulfilling life. It is exactly because of those unwanted, but subconsciously automated habits, that we find ourselves in  undesirable situations: fighting those dreaded extra pounds, continuous lack of energy, failing relationships, lack of funds, etc.

It was Einstein who said that insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. We cannot expect that by eating the same foods, practicing the same routines and thinking the same thoughts we will achieve different results, i.e., lose the extra pounds, lead more fulfilling lives, have more energy and earn more money! One Must Change!! And the first step of change is to realize that most of what we do is subconscious and routine based. Once you are aware of this we can then look into our routines and change our patterns where and when needed!

If indeed you are seeking a "better" life then you must break yourself free from old patterns and create new ones – have the courage, take a leap of faith, transform and you will reap the benefits!

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I recently bought an iPhone – finally some would say ; )) – and now that I have an iPhone I also started to play games on it. One of the games that I have been playing over the past several weeks is 'Jetpack' and for a while, I must admit, I was quasi addicted to it ;))

While maneuvering my way to higher and tougher levels and being given more and bigger challenges – all of which I of course gradually have been able to overcome – I realized something about myself and life per se which I thought to be important enough to share with you in this blog.

When playing 'Jetpack' you always work on three 'missions' – which you can choose to tackle separately and step by step or, if possible, tackle all of them at the same time. The higher I got in the game and the better I got, the more I thought I could tackle all the missions at the same time aiming to complete the missions in one run. This is when I started to fail already early in the game and had to commence a new run which naturally annoyed the hell out of me as starting a new run means to play at a slower pace facing less exciting challenges and thus having a quite boring experience for a while. The fact that I failed to reach higher levels faster and with greater ease was not only a frustrating experience but it also made me stop playing for a little and step back from the game to think about the whole situation for a minute or two. This is when I realized that trying to "juggle all the balls" simultaneously creates too much "noise" and distraction for me so I started to pick one of the three missions as my main mission for the run and try to work toward accomplishing a second mission if and when possible and leave the third mission on the sidelines unless by chance an opportunity popped up to work on it. And lo and behold my success rate went through the roof – I was able to finish each mission faster and more missions in less time. So far so good. Though the "problem" that I am facing now is that because of my new strategy I have now completed all levels and completed all missions – nothing else left to do for me…sigh…which means I can either start from the very beginning again or simply move on the another game.

In hindsight this game proved to be a perfect mirror for me – reflecting real life in a fairly simple computer game: 1) have a vision and a goal (know what it is that you want – in this case: finishing all the levels and missions in as fast a way as possible) 2) pick one thing you would want to see accomplished (in this case: completing a single mission as fast as possible) 3) if need be, step back and re-evaluate that strategy you are following and if necessary adjust.

These steps can easily be incorporated into our daily lives: at work, at home, little projects that we have going on – business wise or personal, etc. Give this approach a try and you will see great results in a short period of time.

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I received so much feedback on my THREE FINGER TECHNIQUE video that I thought I would write some additional info about this. Hopefully I have been able to "prove" to you that our mind is a gigantic computer – far more powerful than we can comprehend – and as such we can program it to hone in on and create any end result we desire.

A fast and easy way to learn about the powers of energy and that we are all (energetically and invisibly) somehow connected is by utilizing the 'three finger technique'. A perfect opportunity for this technique would be to use it to find a parking spot. Tell yourself that when you put your thumb,  index and middle fingers of your left hand together you will find a parking space within five minutes of doing so. This technique works like magic. Somehow through this conditioning we pull together the energies that connect all of us so that when the time is ready – thus we need a parking space – one will magically appear.

This technique can be used in many situations helping you to achieve your goal faster and easier than you ever thought possible.

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Man of the week : Q Moayad

I’m very excited about this week’s Man of the week, read till the end to find out why.

Q Moayad

Meet Qiu. Through a rather unusual life and upbringing: escaping a revolution in Iran as a child with basically only the clothes that he had on, a three year long battle with cancer as a teenager post Chernobyl, academic pursuit and soul searching in his twenties and complete economic collapse and financial resurrection in his thirties, Qiu gradually realized that nothing in life ‘just happens’ and that we always play and integral role in everything that we experience, even in situations we think we have no control over: such as revolutions or nuclear and economic meltdowns. Our own frequencies attract the very experiences that we either enjoy or loathe – it is through our way of thinking and paradigms that we lead the life that we are in. Through simple techniques we can alter the direction of our life’s journey where we ultimately can learn how to consciously create the life we want to live.
How do you serve the world?
I help people to realize that they are not mere ‘bouncy balls’ and victims of a stormy sea called life drifting about aimlessly until, by chance, they reach a safe haven once in a while. Once you realize that literally everything in life is energy and ultimately everyone and everything is connected and learn how to utilize this all encompassing net of cosmic power you will be able to consciously and proactively create a fulfilled, happy, and healthy life.
How do you take care of yourself while serving the world?
Due to the fact that I had cancer as a teenager I am very conscious about my physical, mental and spiritual health. From the simple routine check-ups, such as getting my blood work done and paying a visit to my dentist and dental hygienist, to working out practically daily: gym, yoga, and jogging and of course my daily meditation and visualization routines.
What is the biggest lesson you have learned through being of Service?
That we all carry the power of self healing in us. All it takes is learning how to tap into this power and unwavering faith that we can heal broken bones and broken relationships alike.
What and who inspires you?
All people who have broken the mold and changed the paradigm to create a better world. From ‘big names’ such as Nelson Mandela, Mohandas Gandhi, Buddha, Martin Luther King, Jr., to my very own great grandfather Haji Khodabakhsh who was one of the most kind, forgiving, progressive thinking, and generous human beings I have ever heard of: he forgave his son’s killer at a time (Iran of 1880’s) where he could have demanded that person to be executed, didn’t turn his back on the religion he had adopted – even when tremendously tortured – and helped the poor in his village.
If you had 6 months left to live, what would you do?
First thing I would do if finally tackle my fear of heights and jump off of an airplane (skydiving).
What is a favorite quote of yours? 
Keep it simple!
Why am I so happy to have Q over? Because we are cousins!
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Recently I had the honor and the pleasure to sit next to the oldest person I have ever met – a 102 year old lady (see the picture below which was taken after we had landed). Had she not told me her age, I would have never been able to guess how old she was. At the most I thought that she was in her 80s. Incredible. Kate has lived through a lot in her lifetime: she was born before World War I, lived through WW II, Korea, Vietnam and all other wars before and since. She saw candle lights being replaced by electricity, dirt roads being paved, horse drawn carriages replaced by cars, and trains by aircrafts. In her lifetime telegraph poles were replaced by telephone poles and the mailman by email. Even though cell phones became a household tool in the 90s she never owned one as the little handheld devices look way too complicated to her – not to mention that she has never sent an email or even owned a computer. When Kate was born women did not have the right to vote in the USA, racial seggregation was widespread, nuclear energy was not discovered yet and Einstein had not yet published his theory of relativity.

When Kate dozed off for a while and I had time to digest how much change she has experienced throughout her 102 years on planet earth I realized that I also have experienced a lot of change – change that impacted primarily me as a person as well as change on a global basis – as well since I first saw the light of day: Revolution in Iran in 79 forced us to flee the country while it threw the country into chaos, culminating in a war with Iraq and sponsoring of terrorism. In 87 Tshernobyl burst, killing any number of people, turning a vast territory into a no-go zone, and causing me to get cancer. And in 09 the biggest economic downturn since the Great Depression kills hundreds of thousands of jobs and throwing the world into mayhem, causing a near economic meltdown while it destroys my business forcing me to declare bankruptcy.

Many, many things happed during our lifetime – many ups and at least just as many downs – situations we have no influence over and situations created directly by our own actions. The important thing is to simply know that throughout our life many, many ups and downs will happen and that everything is changing all the time – relentlessly. Change is life and life is change (see Heraclitus, a Greek philosopher known for his doctrine of change) – having the faith, a fundamental trust, that life will continue almost no matter which challenge we are faced with, will give us the energy, the will, and the joy to live on and seek the positive and fulfilling aspects of what life has to offer, irrespective of how seeminlgy bad the situation currently looks.

Have unwavering faith that life can and will go on no matter how desperate a situation or how big a challenge – through the power of your mind and your unwavering faith you can overcome it all.

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