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How I’m Able To Work A 4-Hour Workweek & You Can Too

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I don’t actually work only four hours a week, but I will describe how I have reached a point where I could work only four hours a week if I wanted to. And that, it seems to me, is enough good news to share in my column.

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The four-hour workweek concept was popularized by Tim Ferris, now a well-known writer with a franchise on four-hour things, including work, bodies and cheffing. He’s mastered the art of presenting himself as expert enough to write informatively and in an entertaining manner on all sorts of topics. He made his name, however, by arguing that you, yes, you, could make a good living working only four hours a week. How? Well, I’ll get there in a minute.

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In my case (since this column is about my four-hour work week, after all, not Ferris’s), I’ve had a dream for a while to be my own boss and to be independent financially. I’ve always been a free thinker and a bit unconventional. I also realized that there is something about my personality that made it hard to get along with my bosses. Almost six years ago I decided to take a big risk and leave my last employer to strike out on my own. I had about a year’s savings and figured I’d give it a go for one year as an independent consultant and lawyer in the field of renewable energy policy and project development, a field I’d been in for about six years at that point.

That plan didn’t work out too well. At least not at first. My savings actually lasted about half a year and my first big client turned out to be a complete dud who didn’t pay me. I quickly began looking for full-time jobs again. Strangely, no full-time jobs materialized, despite many promising leads and interviews, and I was forced to make the consultancy work. The first few years were rough at times and I ended up having to foreclose on one of the two condos I owned in Santa Barbara. I, like a lot of people got caught up in the real estate bubble and I had bought two condos near the height of the bubble. A couple of years later, I ended up doing a short-sale on my second condo and returned to being a renter.

It wasn’t all bad, however: I really like my new rented digs, so do my friends, and I like not having the worry of a large mortgage over my head. (For some perspective, my second, fairly modest, two-bedroom condo cost $680,000, which required a hefty mortgage payment).

tambookTurning adversity into advantage is a key theme in my life, learned the hard way. I lost a major client in the middle of 2013 and was compelled to start doing a lot more marketing and also to build a financial foundation that was more solid than my previous attempts. My increased marketing paid off and I enjoyed more interest from clients after they read articles I wrote for industry press websites (GreenTechMedia.com, RenewableEnergyWorld.com, etc). I also read, finally, Ferris’s book The Four-Hour Work Week and I was re-inspired to shoot for this goal.

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In thinking about financial independence, I realized that I could buy land and a decent home on the Big Island of Hawaii quite affordably. I plan to keep Santa Barbara as my home, and I have deep roots here after living here for 13 years, but I have had another love affair with Hawaii since being stationed in the Army on Oahu in the early 1990s. Can one have a love affair with two different places? Clearly, I can, since I am in love with both Santa Barbara and the Big Island of Hawaii (the Hilo side, in particular, which is rainy, warm, lush, wild, and bursting with creativity and spirituality).

After experiencing the uncertainty that comes with losing a major client, I decided I needed to find a place that I could own free and clear and that could be my fallback plan if everything went to hell in my career or in the world more generally. I ended up buying three acres of land near Hilo, Hawaii, with a small cabin that was in very bad shape. I retrofitted the cabin during an extended (and wonderful) stay in Hawaii early last year, with a lot of help from local builders. I am now the proud owner of a highly liveable off-grid “tiny home” in Hawaii with plenty of land to farm on and play with.

When I wrote above that I could work just four hours a week, I was referring to a life I could live in Hawaii in my little off-grid home. The home has a water catchment system, solar panels and batteries, and a rainwater-fed flushing toilet in the cutest outhouse you may have ever seen. I could theoretically grow all or almost all of my own food on my land, get all of my water from rain and all of my power from the sun. My expenses to live in this house are, accordingly, very minimal. There’s even a decent hospital nearby and a very good hospital in Honolulu for major issues.

Adding in the costs of owning a car, health care, cell phone and Internet access, as well as travel, food, etc., I’d need to work a few hours a week to make ends meet.

In sum, I could live very well working just a few hours a week if I wanted to. The rest of the time I could devote to writing, music, photography, film-making and generally having fun. That’s a pretty tempting life, but I’m not ready to call my current career quits just yet. I began my career in the renewable energy field because I feel passionately that we need to transition quickly away from fossil fuels. While we’re making great progress in the U.S. and around the world, we’ve got a long way to go still. I want to be part of this ongoing transition, so I’ll keep doing what I’m doing for a while yet.

Ferris likes to present easily digestible lessons in his books, so let me offer a few ideas for how you too, if you wanted to, could reach the point where you could effectively retire early. I’ll suggest three points:

  1. Establish a goal and stick to it
  2. Focus as much on the freedom to be poor as the freedom that comes from wealth
  3. Enjoy the ride

Establish A Goal & Stick To It

Looking back on what has allowed me to achieve what I have thus far, it seems that the ability to stick with a particular goal and work hard toward that goal is key. In my case, it was deciding to continue with my education through finishing law school and all the knowledge that this educational path entailed that was crucial to getting to where I am. As a lawyer I can charge relatively high hourly rates that are justified by the value I provide to my clients. If the goal is to work as little as possible, charging decent hourly rates helps! Getting a good education and specializing in a field that enjoys high demand would make sense for anyone pursuing the dream of a four-hour workweek.

The Freedom To Be Poor

Most discussions about financial freedom focus on socking away enough investments and passive income sources to allow you to live the lifestyle you want and not worry about financial issues. That’s a fine goal and one I still generally strive toward. There is a different option, however, and that is working toward a lifestyle that simply doesn’t require much money to live. This is what I mean by the freedom to be poor.

My little house and my imagined life in Hawaii would allow me to be poor if I wanted to. I’m by no means wealthy now, but I make a decent living and I have reasonable aspirations of one day building a nice home in Santa Barbara, perhaps up in the hills with oak trees for shade. It’s likely that if I stay on the path I am currently on that I’ll reach that goal within five to ten years. I worry, though, that if I do go down that road that I’ll be locked in to a relatively wealthy lifestyle in perpetuity because owning a home is an ongoing expensive endeavor. Mortgage, insurance, utilities, gardening, and many other expenses can quickly add up to a pretty hefty total. Even when a mortgage is paid off a large home can still be quite expensive.

I remain torn about the relative benefits of a modest lifestyle in a small off-grid home and the luxuries and benefits of a larger far more expensive home and the income requirements that entails. For now, I can let that decision remain in limbo but I do want to suggest here that there are many benefits that come from the freedom to be poor. If one’s expenses are very low this of course frees up a lot of time to pursue non-pecuniary interests. That value should not be neglected.

Enjoy The Ride

It goes without saying, but I’m going to say it anyway, that it’s crucial to enjoy the ride no matter where it takes you. The point in talking about financial freedom and four-hour workweeks is to reach a place where you and your loved ones can enjoy life without all the normal stresses and worries. But what if you figured out how to enjoy life now despite all the normal stresses and worries that almost all of us do experience? That’s a powerful tool to have in your back pocket, so I hope that Ferris’s next book will be The Four-Hour Enlightenment or some similar title. Learning how to be happy in the present moment makes the questions of financial freedom and worries a lot less pressing.

There is a caveat or two—isn’t there always? I do plan to have a family someday and families ain’t cheap. Raising a family in jungly Hawaii sounds fun but even then it’s unlikely to be that cheap. Multiply that cost significantly to raise a family in Santa Barbara and the worries also multiply. Add in the possibility of traveling back and forth from Santa Barbara and Hawaii and we get additional stresses. I’ll cross those bridges when I get to them but my point is that even the best laid four-hour work week plans will surely go awry at times. It’s good to remain flexible.

It remains a great benefit for my peace of mind to know that I could live on very minimal income, and live quite well, if I chose to do so. For now, I’ll continue to “suffer” in Santa Barbara working (gasp) forty or so hours a week on my day job doing what I can to help accelerate the transition away from fossil fuels.

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Boosting Your Mood and Improving Your Health With Vitamin D

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Vitamin D is essential for proper immune functioning and alleviation of inflammation.

  • Reflect On:

    Are you or someone you love suffering from depression or an autoimmune disorder? When is the last time you checked your Vitamin D levels?

Before you begin...

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Take a moment and breathe. Place your hand over your chest area, near your heart. Breathe slowly into the area for about a minute, focusing on a sense of ease entering your mind and body. Click here to learn why we suggest this.

Are you or someone you love suffering from depression or an autoimmune disorder? It appears vitamin D deficiency may be to blame.

Vitamin D is essential for proper immune functioning and alleviation of inflammation. The beneficial effects of vitamin D on protective immunity are due in part to its impact on the innate immune system and has numerous effects on cells within the immune system. Vitamin D is also involved in maintaining the proper balance of several minerals in the body. And, it helps to ward off the flu and many viruses and treat them. The latest research links vitamin D deficiency to many disease states. These disease states include cancer, osteoporosis, heart disease, depression, arthritis, and just about every other degenerative disease.

 “Vitamin D reduces depression. In a randomized, double-blind study, People with depression who received vitamin D supplements noticed a marked improvement in their symptoms.” – Journal of Internal Medicine

According to the Nutrition Research Journal, as many as 80% of people are deficient in vitamin D. Inadequate exposure to sunshine, poor eating habits, malabsorption, the VDR genetic mutation, and accelerated catabolism due to certain medications, dark skin pigment color, and too much sunscreen can be to blame. 

A doctor can check vitamin D levels with a simple blood test. Many mainstream doctors will suggest that you are within normal limits if your levels are 20-30ng/mL. However, for optimal health, the Endocrine Society and many functional medicine M.D.s and naturopaths will recommend levels of between 40-70 ng/mL for both children and adults. These doctors will also recommend a more aggressive replenishment program. For example, at age five, my son’s level was 24. The pediatrician recommended 500iu daily of supplementation, while our naturopath recommended 5,000iu daily for six months before retesting. Six months later, his levels were almost normal. 

“Through several mechanisms, vitamin D can reduce risk of infections. Those mechanisms include inducing cathelicidins and defensins that can lower viral replication rates and reducing concentrations of pro-inflammatory cytokines that produce the inflammation that injures the lining of the lungs, leading to pneumonia, as well as increasing concentrations of anti-inflammatory cytokines” – PubMed

How to Increase Your Vitamin D Levels

Get enough sun. Vitamin D3, “the sunshine vitamin,” is the only vitamin your body that is made, with the help of the sun. So be sure to get enough sun exposure to help the body make this essential nutrient. Hold off trying to protect ourselves from the rays of the sun at every turn by slathering sunscreen. Allow yourself to play outside, garden, and enjoy the rays in moderation.

If you must use some sunscreen, avoid chemical sunscreens made with toxic chemicals that cause thyroid dysfunction, endocrine disruption, allergies, organ toxicity, reproductive toxicity, skin cancer, development, brain, and metabolism problems. Shop for natural mineral-zinc-based certified products instead. When exposed to scorching climates or in the sun for extended periods, we use sunscreens by Babyganics, Badger, Babo Botanicals, and Goddess Garden products.

Eat a well-balanced diet, with foods higher in vitamin D. Although it is believed that we only get twenty percent from the foods we eat. Some foods higher in D include cod liver oil, fish, oysters, eggs, and mushrooms. 

Get checked for the VDR mutation. A blood test will determine if you have mutations in the vitamin D receptor. The consequence can be lower vitamin D levels and the inability to absorb vitamin calcium and many other minerals properly. According to a 2020 scientific report, supplementation of vitamin D can help improve VDR gene expression, so more supplementation may be necessary if you have this mutation.

“Something so simple. Vitamin D supplementation could improve the health status of millions and so becomes an elegant solution to many of our health problems today.” – Carol L. Wagner, MD – Medical University of South Carolina

Supplementation 101. Supplementation is often critical if you cannot properly metabolize or absorb enough vitamin D or not get enough sunshine. In areas with long winters and specific populations of people with darker skin color, supplementation may be even more critical. There are many supplements on the market. However, many tablet forms are not as bioavailable and harder to absorb. Therefore, it has been recommended that liquid forms are better. In addition, liquid D is often suspended in olive oil, which helps the vitamins to absorb more easily since it is fat soluble. One of my favorite brands is by Seeking Health. It does not contain any impurities or allergy-inducing ingredients. 

Final Thoughts

Boosting the immune system naturally works on your body’s innate wisdom. It supports the body to operate like a well-oiled machine, protects it from unwanted pathogens and disease, and helps ensure a healthy body and mind.

To receive more info on how you and your family can overcome ADHD, apraxia, anxiety, and more without medication SIGN UP HERE or purchase my book Healing without Hurting.

Dive Deeper

Click below to watch a sneak peek of our brand new course!

Our new course is called 'Overcoming Bias & Improving Critical Thinking.' This 5 week course is instructed by Dr. Madhava Setty & Joe Martino

If you have been wanting to build your self awareness, improve your.critical thinking, become more heart centered and be more aware of bias, this is the perfect course!

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General

Are Lockdowns Affecting Children?

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CE Staff Writer 2 minute read

In Brief

  • The Facts:

    We spoke to activist and mother Stephanie Sibbio about her co-creation of an organization called 100 Million Moms which seeks to empower women to stand up against injustices.

  • Reflect On:

    Are we choosing virus mitigation methods that are short sighted and harmful over the long term? Are they more harmful than the virus itself?

Before you begin...

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Take a moment and breathe. Place your hand over your chest area, near your heart. Breathe slowly into the area for about a minute, focusing on a sense of ease entering your mind and body. Click here to learn why we suggest this.

The potential downsides of lockdowns during pandemics have been explored quite a bit – and the truth is the scientific community is quite divided on whether it’s the right move. On one hand a case can be made for effectiveness of lockdowns, but at quite a cost, while on the other hand many have shown lockdowns to be ineffective in slowing spread. How a study is organized and conducted can also dramatically change results.

Interestingly a study in Nature showed that “less disruptive and costly NPIs can be as effective as more intrusive, drastic, ones (for example, a national lockdown).” This essentially states that governments could choose effective ways to mitigate virus spread effectively without inducing unwanted and long term side effects on society as a whole via lockdowns – regardless, lockdowns are still widely being used.

One question we might have is, what about factors that are not so easy to measure right away? Things like long term psychological damage of being constantly stressed, out of touch with community and friends, and confined to our homes. What affects are children experiencing in their development and learning? We may not know exactly for quite some time.

I felt inspired to speak to a mother who has not only be asking this question with regards to her child, but who has decided to do something to push back against government measures, like lockdowns, that many citizens and scientist don’t agree with.

Along with another activist, Stephanie Sibbio created a movement called 100 Million Moms who, as their Instagram states, are a rights-based movement empowering moms all over the world to stand up against injustice. We advocate for natural health & medical freedom.

I spoke to Stephanie about how she has seen lockdowns affecting children, and her story in co-creating 100 Million Moms. In this discussion you will learn how you can get involved as well.

Further Discussion

A large meta analysis on mask wearing has shown that children are having physiological issues and learning challenges with prolonged mask wearing.

A group of doctors did a panel worth considering that discusses the potential harms of lockdowns and the science that supports the idea.

Dive Deeper

Click below to watch a sneak peek of our brand new course!

Our new course is called 'Overcoming Bias & Improving Critical Thinking.' This 5 week course is instructed by Dr. Madhava Setty & Joe Martino

If you have been wanting to build your self awareness, improve your.critical thinking, become more heart centered and be more aware of bias, this is the perfect course!

Click here to check out a sneak peek and learn more.

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Health

Rare Mineral Can Remove Harmful Toxins & Heavy Metals With Just 30 Seconds a Day

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Before you begin...

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Take a moment and breathe. Place your hand over your chest area, near your heart. Breathe slowly into the area for about a minute, focusing on a sense of ease entering your mind and body. Click here to learn why we suggest this.

These days many people are struggling with fatigue, heart and respiratory issues, brain fog and memory challenges, and on top of that, cancer rates are increasing year after year. At times these issues can be a result of cumulative stress and emotional trauma, and other times it can be the result of our overly toxic environments at home, at work and in our cities.

Most disease, cancers and health problems we experience are rooted in toxicity. Mercury, arsenic, lead, cadmium, pesticides, and volatile organic compounds just scratch the surface of what our bodies have to fight against daily.

By some estimates, we are exposed to over 80,000 chemicals in our daily lives, just from the food we eat, water we drink, and air we breathe. These toxins build up in our bodies affecting our sleep, memory, concentration, weight, and even inflammation (1, 2, 3, 4).

Toxins can be found everywhere, including:

  • Food (pesticides, herbicides, chemical additives)
  • Pollutants (the air you breathe)
  • Skincare and Personal Care Items
  • Household Items (couches, chairs, beds, Paint, keys)
  • Water (a common source of heavy metals)

Our body’s are natural detoxifiers, kidneys, liver, and lymphatic system is designed to keep our bodies clean. Hence detox is not needed. But as our lives become more toxin filled, our bodies have a difficult time keeping up and this is why over toxicity leading to disease is become a prevalent issue. Thankfully, there are natural solutions that can help. One of those solutions is a powerful mineral, created through a reaction of volcanic ash and seawater, that can eliminate dangerous toxins from the body, down to the cellular level.

Its negative-charge and honeycomb shape acts as a natural chelator, binding to positively-charged toxins and ushering them out of the body, quickly and effectively.

Zeolite Clinoptilolite: A Mineral for Detox

If you’ve heard of the zeolite Clinoptilolite, it’s because this type of zeolite has been widely studied for its ability to:

  • Flush heavy metals from the body, including toxic lead (5)
  • Provide alkalizing minerals to support a healthy pH
  • Protect kidney function by detoxing heavy metals (6)
  • Strengthen the immune system through removing toxins (7)
  • Protect against leaky gut by strengthening the intestinal wall (8)
  • And much more, as extensive clinical research shows (9)

The detoxification and health benefits of the zeolite Clinoptilolite are astounding. It’s hundreds of times more effective than activated charcoal, a commonly known and used detoxifier that can detox the gut but comes with harsh side effects.

The zeolite Clinoptilolite can bind to toxins throughout the whole body and has an affinity for toxins only, so it never removes beneficial minerals, and there are no negative side effects.

The truth of the matter is though, not all zeolite products work, and all are not created equally. In fact, we stayed away from zeolite here at CE for a while due to the fact we could not find a reliable source.

Most zeolite products are not capable of cleansing at the cellular level. To go beyond the gut and reach into cells for a deep detox, the zeolite must be nanosized. When the zeolite is nanosized and suspended in water molecule clusters, this natural detoxifier can travel throughout the body, even past the blood-brain barrier.

What brings on things like clearer thinking, ease in recalling tasks, improved mood and much more is the fact that your brain is now free of neurotoxic heavy metals.

But to take out heavy metals and other toxins, the zeolite must also be cleansed and pre-filled with alkalizing minerals. Why? The fact is, when mined, zeolite comes filled with environmental pollutants because that’s what zeolites are good at in nature – absorbing toxins.

However, if a zeolite is already filled with toxins, it can’t take any more from your body. That’s why most zeolites sold today don’t work, and why we haven’t recommended one before.

The Most Effective Zeolite on the Market Backed by Science

After doing extensive research, we started taking a zeolite product in December of 2020 from Pure Body Extra by a company called Touchstone Essentials. Their cleansing process and nanosizing technology is hands-down the most advanced we’ve seen, yielding the only zeolite on the market that can effectively detoxify the entire body on a cellular level.

This zeolite uses nanosized Clinoptilolite to access toxins everywhere in the body. These particles are so small they are invisible to the naked eye and need to be magnified thousand-fold. And it’s backed up by the gold standard in instrumentation – Malvern particle size testing.

This nanometer size means they can get to a cellular level, and it also means the collective surface area of the zeolite particles creates a vast filter that mops up toxins within hours.

And because these zeolite particles are encapsulated within water molecule clusters, it is delivered in a liquid spray that is easy to use (just a few sprays, morning, noon, and night) with no odor, no taste, and no hassle.

Pure Body Extra has also been cleansed of existing pollutants so that it more effectively removes heavy metals throughout your body. This is all proven with third-party independent clinical testing. Not only that, the zeolite particles are pre-filled with alkalizing minerals. That way, the zeolite “swaps” a beneficial mineral for a toxin every time.

In all our research, this zeolite product has the most rigorous research and testing.

 

Why We’re Recommending it Today

We take Pure Body Extra every single day and have been blown away by the results. We were so impressed that we reached out to the company about making this zeolite available to our readers.

It turns out, Touchstone is as passionate about prevention and natural treatments as we are, so they agreed to reserve 500 bottles of Pure Body Extra at an incredibly low price, exclusively for our readers. Which is why we’re recommending it to you now. It’s truly a miraculous product.

A Special Offer for Our Readers Only

Normally, this remarkable detoxifier sells on their website for $79.95, which is why we were shocked when Touchstone said they’d offer it to our readers for just $5. They’ll even include free shipping. We asked them how they could possibly offer it at such a low price, and this is what the company said.

“We’re on a mission to touch one million families with goodness. We know if we just get the product in people’s hands, the results are so good, people reorder it again and again. We’re happy to make a difference in people’s lives.”

When you subscribe to a monthly shipment today, not only is your first bottle $5, but you’ll lock in a 20% off member discount and free shipping every month after that. Of course, the 100% Risk-Free Guarantee remains.

There’s zero risk. You can cancel your subscription any time (before the next shipment), or return your shipment within 30 days for a full refund. They’ll even refund your $5 if you’re not happy with the product, less return shipping of course.

Imagine being free of disease-causing heavy metals, nitrosamines, volatile organic compounds, and pesticides in just 30 seconds a day, with no harsh side effects.

It’s only available to the first 500 people as that is what has been reserved for our audience, and at only $5, they’re selling quickly.

In today’s toxin-filled world, our body’s detoxification system simply can’t keep up with the daily onslaught. We all need to reduce our toxin load if we want to live happy, healthy lives.

 

Dive Deeper

Click below to watch a sneak peek of our brand new course!

Our new course is called 'Overcoming Bias & Improving Critical Thinking.' This 5 week course is instructed by Dr. Madhava Setty & Joe Martino

If you have been wanting to build your self awareness, improve your.critical thinking, become more heart centered and be more aware of bias, this is the perfect course!

Click here to check out a sneak peek and learn more.

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