Read time: 9 min

October 12, 2020

Good morning! Don’t you just love that new newsletter smell?


“Definiteness of purpose is the starting point of all achievement.”

–W. Clement Stone

LEADERS & INFLUENCERS: Learn from the best

The Merchant of Death

Remarkable people around the globe are receiving Nobel Prizes as we write this. When you hear the name Alfred Nobel, one of the first things that come to mind is the Nobel Peace Prize. However, the name Nobel wasn’t always associated with peace, but instead war. Alfred was famous for developing new types of explosives, including dynamite. So what happened and why the change in the association?

In 1888, Nobel’s brother Ludvig died in France from a heart attack. Thanks to poor reporting, a French newspaper believed that it was Alfred who had died and wrote a harsh obituary that branded him a “merchant of death” who had grown rich by developing new ways to “mutilate and kill.” For Alfred Nobel, reading his own obituary came as a warning and spurred a crisis of conscience that led him to reevaluate his career. According to biographer Kenne Fant, Nobel “became so obsessed with his posthumous reputation that he rewrote his last will, bequeathing most of his fortune to a cause upon which no future obituary writer would be able to cast aspersions.”

In 1895, one year before his death, Nobel composed his last will that specified his fortune be used to create a series of prizes for those who “have conferred the greatest benefit to humankind” in physics, chemistry, physiology or medicine, literature, and peace. To widespread surprise, Dr. Alfred Nobel bequeathed 94% of his total assets, about US$186 million (in 2008), to establish the five Nobel Prizes.

Reading the obituary allowed Nobel to zoom out and ask, “what is my legacy?”.

Nobel shows that it is possible to change your reputation and legacy if you decide to do so; sometimes, you might need a little bit of a wake-up call.

ACHIEVERS’ ARMORY: Equip yourself with proven tools & tactics

Shift The Way You Work

Have you ever stopped and counted the number of programs you use daily when working at your job or running your business? We have a program for everything including, not limited to, marketing automation, sales tracking, team communication, social media management, finance management, file sharing, note-taking, video recording, and a bunch more. While these programs are necessary, it can be overwhelming and time-consuming to manage all of those tabs and bookmarks. Shift has an easier way.

Shift is a revolutionary software tool that helps declutter your desktop and manage your multiple apps and accounts. This program takes all of your various programs including popular ones such as Salesforce, PayPal, Evernote, Slack, Asana, Box, and more and organizes them in an easy-to-use dashboard. This setup will allow you to effortlessly toggle between your most frequently used programs and tools.

One of the most useful features Shift offers is the option to streamline all of your platform notifications. This program will take all of those annoying notifications and send them directly to your e-mail. Instead of having them pop up during meetings or disturbing your workflow, you can designate specific times during the day to check your e-mail and review them all at once.

Click here to get a firsthand look at how this tool can help improve your productivity,

NEXT LEVEL: Keep your success going

Don’t Be Average

A sure-bet way to become average is to follow the crowd. Cut off time-wasting addictions like endless social media scrolling, tinder swiping, and Netflix bingeing. Above-average people (or those who aim to be) focus on personal development, life-long learning, and building relationships that add value to their lives.

Cultivate relationships with people and invest yourself in activities that challenge you to become a better version of yourself. The above-average take action despite fear and doubt.

A challenge for you is to go to places and do things that you know will be at a disadvantage for you and demand more of yourself. (This is like the rule of formidable expectations).

Andrew Carnegie said, “The average person puts only 25% of his energy and ability into his work. The world takes off its hat to those who put in more than 50% of their capacity, and stands on its head for those few and far between souls who devote 100%.”

SELF-DISCOVERY: Unleash the Achiever within

What Does It Mean to Seek Greatness

So many of us are off on our quest for greatness. But what does seeking greatness actually mean?

Here are my (Sofia) thoughts on what seeking greatness means:

  • Listening to your own heart and following your own path. Don’t set out to achieve the dreams of someone else or lose sight of yours along the way.
  • Not missing the point. Success is all about feeling fulfilled. While you’re chasing success, don’t forget to go deep, not shallow. Don’t pursue things that aren’t integral to your path to fulfillment.
  • Not letting your ambition blind you or allow you to stray from the values and principles you hold near and dear to your heart. Don’t become a complete prick for your success.
  • Being courageous.
  • Having confidence in yourself and resoluteness when facing the doubts of others, or even your own.
  • Becoming better in your pursuit- gaining more experience, acquiring skills, creating connections, etc.
  • Impacting the people and communities around you.

Greatness is inside every one of us. We need not forget what it truly means to seek it. Is there anything you’d add to this list?

EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE: Master the soft skills

Three Simple Words NOT to Confuse

People often confuse these three related words to their detriment. We express these words in response to the experiences of others.

They are empathy, sympathy, and pity.


  • “The ability to understand and share the feelings of another.”
  • It involves an action: actively attempting to put yourself in another person’s shoes.


  • “An affinity, association, or relationship between persons wherein whatever affects one similarly affects the other.”
  • It’s automatic, involuntary, or passive.


  • “The feeling of sorrow and compassion caused by the suffering and misfortunes of others.”
  • There’s no understanding; you just feel sorry for someone.

Separating these three concepts is a guide toward actions and reactions that illustrate high emotional intelligence.

When you understand that it’s not just semantics and do the work of thinking about the differences, you’ll recognize that pity is, more often than not, unhelpful. Genuine sympathy is unlikely if you don’t have shared experiences. Maybe, you’ll pursue the highest calling of empathy, which will lead you to respond with more support, helpfulness, sincerity, and emotional intelligence.


What two women made the top 10 on Forbes’ list of the top-earning entertainers of 1989-90? Answer below.

NEWS BREAK: Stay informed

  • Dr. Anthony Fauci said Sunday he was “taken out of context” in a new Trump campaign ad that features his comments “without my permission.”
  • Oreo debuts limited-edition rainbow cookies in support of LGBTQ+ community.
  • NFL rescheduled eight games affecting Patriots, Broncos, Chiefs, Bills, Dolphins, Jets, Chargers, Jaguars due to positive COVID tests.

1% BETTER: Improve each day

Find someone in your company you can learn something new from and ask to meet for 15 minutes.

TRIVIA ANSWER: Oprah Winfrey or Madonna