My New Favorite Word

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I’ve got a new favorite word.

Unadulterated.

I used it in a post recently and it struck me that “adult” is smack dab in the middle of the word. (Call me slow to catch on.) Of course, I always knew that “adult” was in the word “unadulterated,” but I never took the time to consider the connection between that little fact and the actual definition of the word. [Read more...]

Do Re Me

The second Kim & Jason Escape Event was held this past Sunday and all Club K&J members were invited to participate. The challenge was “Do Re Me – do something childlike today that is music related in some way, shape, or form.”

Kim and I decided to mix music with food. Here’s what we came up with:

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Tip of the Week: Prison Break

This week’s Escape Plan challenge (aka our Tip of the Week) is #18: Prison Break: Get out of your element. Go somewhere you’ve never been before.

Last week we were in Atlanta for a speaking program. After the event the host asked us where we wereMary Mac’s heading for dinner. We excitedly shared that we were going to get some traditional southern cooking at the infamous famous Mary Mac’s Tea Room. Known for their southern fried chicken and pot likker with cracklin’ bread, we knew we’d get a real taste of the south. The host and her colleague sheepishly admitted that even though they have lived in Atlanta for years, neither of them had ever been there to eat before. Isn’t that true for many of us?

Is it possible that I am so busy doing that I no longer have time to enjoy being? -Wilson

Sometimes it takes going on a vacation for us to try new experiences and new foods. And yet, there is plenty to check out right in your own backyard.

Let us know what you explore this week. Leave us a comment on the Escape Plan Blog to share what you did to break out of your element.

EA #30: Living Life on Sesame Street

podcast_30.jpgIn this episode, brought to you from studio 315 in Madison, Wisconsin, we interview Bob from Sesame Street. We ask him about how he became one of the original cast members and what it was like working with Bird Bird and Oscar the Grouch. We also talk about the effects of stress on children, an awesome retro tote bag, and dressing up like characters from the Wizard of Oz. Just click “Play” to listen to the show… [Read more...]

Questioning the Shoulds

How’s your job? A thrilling and exhilarating adventure, or little more than an increasingly boring way to bring home the bacon?

101waysthumb.jpgPassion Catalyst Curt Rosengren is an awesome chap and a generous contributor to our latest issue of Kim & Jason magazine (on its way to Club K&J members as we speak…or as I write?) I have been reading his book, 101 Ways to Get Wild About Work, in small bites on airplanes as Kim and I have criss-crossed the country flying to speaking engagements. There are so many self-help books out there that it can sometimes be hard to tell the difference between them, but Curt’s really stands out.

One of the great things about children is that they see things with new eyes. Little things delight and astound them, sometimes only because they’ve never seen them before. As grown-ups we become jaded by the “same old, same old” and miss out on wonderful treasures that are right under our noses. If you are a veteran of motivational and self-help books, you’ll definitely want to check this book out. Curt did a great job of putting a fresh twist on age-old advice that made it new again, which invites the reader to see things with new eyes.

And if you’re more of a rookie when it comes to books like these, but you’re feeling stuck in a rut and yearn for a more exciting career and adventurous life, you’ll also want to give it a read. Impressively, Curt has been able to create something that is bite-sized but filling. Each chapter is only two or three pages long, but is packed with practical, real-world advice — and peppered with fun, too.

One of my favorite tips is #21: Jettison “Should” and Do What Feels Right. Here’s an excerpt: [Read more...]

Tip of the Week: Future Forecast

This week’s Escape Plan challenge (aka our Tip of the Week) is #19: Future Forecast: Spend 10 minutes visioning yourself 10 years from now as having accomplished one of your biggest dreams. Be as detailed as possible; imagine in all five senses.

Every time Jason and I end up at a mall he makes a joke about the “Ice Cream of the Future”… you know, Dippin’ Dots. This frozen treat company has been claiming this title for over 20 years.

When is the future, anyway?Dippin dots

And speaking of the future, when is our transportation system going to mirror that of The Jetsons? Speaking around the country would be so much easier if we could just fly from one place to the next in our own vehicles, or better yet- teleportation. Beam me up, Scotty!

All joking aside, in order to see real change in your reality you have to know what you’re going after. You have to have a vision. Otherwise, you end up drifting from one year to the next.

One of the questions in the Adultitis intake is as follows: [Read more...]

Chocolate Milk Made Easy

Consider another one of those age-old problems solved.

That’s what we do here.

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Interview On Entrepreneurship

Akemi writes a blog about life purpose, passion, and entrepreneurship. She recently posted an interview she conducted with me and Kim about our journey as entrepreneurs. Here’s a taste:

What were the three biggest challenges when you were starting off as a new entrepreneur?

Kim:
1. Funding. Jason and I were straight out of college with empty pockets and big dreams. There were a lot of upfront expenses, but not a lot of income at the beginning. We grew slow and steady, though, which enabled us to stay afloat.
2. Patience. We had grand visions, but weren’t exactly sure which steps to take to get there. It took a lot of trial an error- about five years worth. During that time there were many soul searching moments that inevitably shaped us into the company we are today.

Jason:
I’d also add self-doubt. Like many young entrepreneurs, we were very excited about what we were doing and had some big dreams to go with it, but when it comes to actually implementing your idea in the world, it’s easy to start second-guessing yourself. “Am I crazy?” seemed to be a recurring question that popped up in my head. I don’t think any of us have a good handle on what we are truly capable of and we typically sell ourselves a bit short.

Read the full interview here.

Next Escape Event Announced

The first Kim & Jason Escape Event was such a hit, we’re doing it again. But this time, we’re adding even more secrecy. Official top secret details have been transmitted to all current Club K&J members via the U.S. Postal Service. Check your mailbox and join us in the fun!

Tip of the Week: Instant Karma

This week’s Escape Plan challenge (aka our Tip of the Week) is #20: Instant Karma: Right an old wrong.

In 2005 karma was given a primetime slot, starring as the central plot point on My Name is Earl. Whether you call it karma or not, most people believe that “what goes around comes around.” Another way to look at it is the Golden Rule: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

When you’re a kid and you have a fight with a friend those two simple words can turn everything around- I’m sorry. Sometime your mom makes you say them, and sometimes you just know you need to, but regardless they serve as the super glue needed to piece the friendship back together again.

Almost everyone has “something” that needs fixing. Pick up that phone today. Send that email. Mail that card. Even if it doesn’t fix everything, it’ll be less for you to carry around tomorrow. Those two words might be difficult to say, but you’ll never regret saying them.

Share with us your Instant Karma moment in the comments on the Escape Plan Blog.

If you need some inspiration, just watch an episode of Earl… [Read more...]

Today is a Gift

One of the topics we hit on in our speaking programs is fear. Fear is a major obstacle to living an Adultitis-free life. Grown-ups sure have an easy time maxing out their daily quota of worry and fear. Our imaginations instantly create the worst case scenario, rarely leaving time for what’s likely to happen, or even what the best case may be.

Here’s the truth… fear is paralyzing – mentally, spiritually, and physically. It fills our Family Circushead, heart and body with unnecessary tension preventing chemicals and hormones from working properly… leading to a bunch of health issues that are not good. (technically speaking, of course) I know I’ve said this before, but it’s good to remember that F.E.A.R. is False Evidence Appearing Real. Most of the things we worry about never even happen. Truly.

I’ve been reading the classic book by Dale Carnegie, “How to Stop Worrying and Start Living.” This books is jam-packed with ideas and insights that shake you to the core. What a waste this gift of life truly is, if/when you live it in fear.

There’s a poem that is in the book that I want to share. Maybe you’ve read it before, but it certainly deserves another read. [Read more...]

Have You Ever Washed Your Face with a Fudgesicle?

justin_t_pepsi.jpgSometimes I wonder if we’ll ever have enough money to make a Super Bowl commercial. Maybe one starring a dancing lizard or Justin Timberlake.

And then I wonder that even if we did, would I be crazy enough to spend it in such a gratuitous manner?

We’ll cross that bridge when we get there, I suppose. Until then, we’ll continue to operate with a shoestring marketing budget that is short on cabbage and long on weird ideas. Which is actually a good thing.

And very childlike, indeed.

When I was a kid, afternoons often evaporated in a whirlwind of exciting adventure fueled by little more than a unique garage sale find and oodles of imagination. And that’s how most small businesses start: with some great, crazy ideas and a mishmash of borrowed things, like time, office space, and computers.

In any enterprise, the ideas make the difference. Many wise established companies will tell you that too much money is a bad thing, as it can often serve as a poor substitute for insightful, creative, and weird ideas. Weird ideas seem to be something we at Kim & Jason have in abundance. Such as…

What if you washed your face with a fudgesicle? [Read more...]

JELL-O for Breakfast

Jason is drinking JELL-O through a straw. Why?

Why not?!

Last month I wrote about the crazy childlike selections atIHOP Follow-Up IHOP, in celebration of the Seuss movie, “Horton Hears a Who!” Well, there’s only 12 days left (until April 20th) to order one of these colorful dishes. Jason and I ended up at an IHOP in Waterloo, IA last week, after a speaking program. Jason decided to order the “Beezlenut Splash.”

IHOP’s description of this silly drink is as follows: Springing up from the jungle of Nool. Lemon-lime soda- refreshing and cool. With Cherry and Berry Blue Jello-O – what fun! Slurping up the colors one by one!

Indeed, Jason did enjoy slurping up the colors… one by one – such fun!

We saw a fifty-year-old guy giggling over his plate of Who-Cakes. Any time you can get your grown-up customers to giggle… you know you’re doing something right. They’ll be back.

I have to admit, I was not that impressed with their version of “green eggs.” Instead of dying the eggs green, like our friends the Greene’s did for April Fool’s day, they took the easy route by adding spinach to the eggs. Maybe they were nervous that no one would order green eggs.

You have to give IHOP credit, though. The idea of adding a medley of Seuss-like selections is a tried and true sign of Adultitis-free leadership.

Speaking of JELL-O, remember the classic JELL-O commercials Bill Cosby did a few decades ago? Check out a few of my favorites… here and here.

Tip of the Week: Thanku Haiku

This week’s Escape Plan challenge (aka our Tip of the Week) is #21: Thanku Haiku: Write a haiku about the things you are thankful for and put it somewhere to serve as a reminder.

A few years ago the concept of a “gratitude journal” became widespread, after Oprah shared about hers on her show.

“If you start focusing on what you have and what you’re grateful for, you will then begin to see more.” —Oprah

The action of being grateful is refreshing to the soul. Kids are naturally awesome at putting things in perspective, but sometimes us grown-ups need tools to help us along the way. This week’s challenge combines this exercise of appreciation with a creative writing project from childhood… the haiku. When’s the last time you wrote a haiku?

Okay, I realize that many of you are probably asking the same question… how do you write a haiku again?

Well, I’ve found some very special teachers- Sean and Jacob. These little sherpas from Canada will jog your memory. [Read more...]

Follow the Yellow Brick Road

The journey of creating a magazine cover

We really had a lot of fun with this cover, going with a full-blown Wizard of Oz theme. It required a lot more effort and Photoshop savvy than previous issues — and the Tin Man costume was really HOT — but I think it turned out pretty well.

I’ve written up a little behind-the-scenes look at how the magazine cover was shot and digitally, um, enhanced.

The first step, once we decided to do a Wizard of Oz-themed cover, was to track down the costumes. Originally, the idea was for me to be the Scarecrow, but Kim suggested that the Tin Man would be more appropriate, as his search for a heart was a better link to the idea of passion. Jenna was able to procure an authentic Dorothy costume from her family. Meanwhile, Kim scoured the internet and local costume shops for a good Tin Man outfit. Some of them were so bad we wondered if the people making them had ever even seen The Wizard of Oz. Kim badly wanted me to try on one costume that heavily relied on spandex as its main source material. I declined.

We finally found a decent Tin Man costume to rent — at least one I felt I could work with in Photoshop — and we purchased a plastic funnel hat and heart clock. We did the photo shoot in the office. Doug was the photographer, and he had to stand on a table to get the right angle. Jenna stepped in as prop manager, lighting assistant, and costume attendee — she’s multi-talented!

We took over 50 photos, with a variety of poses, and loaded them into the computer to decide on the right one… [Read more...]

Sixty-Six is the New Six

Here’s a great itty bitty post from Adultitis Antidote winner Rocks in My Dryer:

We were on our way home from an especially well-played soccer match. My son Joseph settled happily back in the seat and sighed.

“Mom,” he said. “I feel, deep in my heart, that I’m about to be famous.”

“Really? I asked. “What do you mean?”

“Well,” he said, “You know how I’m not famous now?” I thought for a minute, trying to remember if I’d seen his picture on the cover of People magazine. Nope.

“Yes, I know.”

“Well,” he continued, “I just feel, in my heart, like I’m about to be.”

He contentedly sighed again, and he gazed out his window.

How easily I forget the wonder of having the mystery and possibility of an entire life stretching out in front of you.

It’s good to be six.

Don’t forget that even if you’re sixty-six, there are still a LOT of mysteries and possibilities in front of you. If you’re still breathing, God still has plans for you. After all, Colonel Sanders didn’t become really famous until he was in his sixties.

Dream big. Live life to the last drop.

Meet Chris Hinton

Our featured fan is Chris Hinton, who was our March S.W.E.L.L. prize winner. He won a limited edition Cure Adultitis T-Shirt. Only a few of these were ever made, and his was signed by both Kim and Jason. Chris shared,

Thanks! Looking forward to the shirt arriving. The photo is of me having a fantastic time at a local racing circuit. One of the things I’ve always wanted to do, for as long as I can remember, is drive a racing car. My in-laws treated me to a day of driving for my Christmas a few years ago and I had the time of my life! Thanks for all you guys do!

• Hometown… I’ve moved houses often, so that’s a toughie. I was born in Falkirk, pretty much in the centre of Scotland, but I count my home as Kirkwall, in the Orkney Islands.Driving

• My biggest dream… I’m married to a lovely woman, and we have a gorgeous baby daughter, so some of my biggest dreams are already being fulfilled. But if I had to choose something I would say my biggest dream is to go on a round the world trip and visit places I’ve only seen on TV, and meetup with some of the great people I’ve come into contact with through the internet.

• My inspiration… Is Jesus, who holds the highest influence in my life. I can’t discount the inspiration of my parents, though, who brought me up to believe I could be whatever I wanted to be and taught me to enjoy being myself.

• When I was a kid, I… [Read more...]

Ignore What Mom Said

picking_nose.jpgWell, not all of it. Let me explain. Brett Farmiloe has neat post about the things our mothers told us and how they affect our adult lives. Some of the instructions, if they’ve stuck with you, serve as beacons of good behavior and great advice.

“Remember to say your please and thank yous.”

“Wash your hands.”

“You could have called.”

“Stop picking your nose.”

Challenge #11 of the Escape Plan is You’re Not The Boss of Me: Do something your parents would never let you as a child. Most parents want the best for their kids, and the rules they pass down to us reflect the culmination of best judgments based on their life experience. They’re designed to keep us safe, help us be successful, and prevent us from looking like a total buffoon. (Especially the nose-picking advice.)

But sometimes they’re wrong. Sometimes the advice they’ve passed along is broken or misguided. Sometimes Mom was just repeating the stuff her mom said. And sometimes it becomes a crutch, keeping us from achieving our full potential. [Read more...]

Permission Granted

There are few days where you are encouraged to have fun and fight your Adultitis, and April 1st is one of them.

Everyone knows someone who LOVES April Fool’s Day. That person in my life has been my dad. The “worst” one was when we were in grade school. He told us when we woke up that school was closed because it had snowed all night long. It was a snow day! Woo Hoo! Of course, we’d forgotten that it was April 1st, and we ran excitedly to the window to see all of the glorious snow that we’d be playing in all day… to find nothing but grass. April Fools!!

My oldest sister caught the bug from my dad and has enjoyed playing tricks on her husband over the years… everything from plastic wrap on the toilet seat, to vaseline on the door knobs. The best, though, is hearing the hyjinks between my sister and my dad. She’s tricked him into thinking so many crazy, unbelievably outlandish things on April Fool’s Day.

What childlike playfulness!

Don’t forget to have some fun today – just because you can! This is the perfect day to bring out that food coloring for dinner… and while you’re at it, why not use dog dishes instead of plates.

Here are a few extreme examples. They might help you appreciate your coworkers today. [Read more...]