Balancing Act: The Newsletter

(No. 241, September 2019)

Balancing act is in four sections this month:

  1. Strange Stuff (At Least to Me)
  2. The Human Condition: Okay
  3. Musings
Strange Stuff
  • I can’t remember the last artistic performance I attended where there was not a standing ovation, irrespective of the quality of the performance.
  • Why do golf and tennis demand total silence during play, but not football or lacrosse or hockey or boxing?
  • I can find, agree to, and record an appointment faster using my Filofax and a pen than anyone else can on their electronic gizmos.
  • We’re astounded at recognizing someone we know in another city or on a plane, but we never consider how many of those people have been near us and we’ve never noticed because our noses are stuck in a smart phone.
  • If you’re going to take 15 minutes every time negotiating with the server about food allergies, intolerances, and special combinations, you should buy me my martini first to make the circus tolerable. (Unless you have celiac disease, refraining fastidiously from gluten is simple an affectation.)
  • Do they teach loquaciousness in dental school?
  • Most of the people whose habits and behaviors we detest are enabled by us because we refuse to confront them to avoid the pain of conflict. So instead we tolerate long-term pain.
  • The only thing tougher being a parent in this environment today is being a child.
  • Dogs have a great time at the beach and the water is never too cold for them, but it’s the people who dig all those holes, not the dogs.
  • The British managed to fund two aircraft carriers, but the compromise to allocate the funds meant that they couldn’t afford to build or buy any planes. Perhaps the word aircraft before “carrier” should have been a clue?
  • Every captain’s welcome on an airplane includes the fact that there is a “great cabin crew” today. But in their announcements, the flight attendants never mention that there is a “great cockpit crew.” That’s always concerned me a bit.
The Human Condition

There’s a clever commercial on TV about not settling for “just okay” in your insurance coverage. There are doctors, tattoo artists, and others who are proud to be “okay,” which disturbs the customers and patients greatly. One doctor asks a patient prior to an operation, “Are you nervous?” When the patient acknowledges that he is, the doctor says, “So am I.” (He was just reinstated by the medical board.) It’s a funny bit.

Yet the search for perfection—and even excellence—can be dysfunctional. I don’t need the very best screwdriver, just one that can screw and unscrew. I can enjoy a movie without being in the best seats, and I’ve never demanded that my music be so pure that only dogs can hear C above high C.

Most of my domestic airline seats, even in first class, are okay. My cable and satellite TV connections are okay most of the time. Fast food is almost always okay, but I’m not taking clients there for lunch.

My cell phone reception is okay.

All that is good enough. I’m not saying that we should always settle and never select, but I am saying that we need perspective and not always waste our time and stress ourselves seeking better than okay when it’s not needed.

I don’t expect great airline food. I expect planes and trains to be somewhat late some of the time. I know my cars will flash warning lights sometimes that simply confuse me until I can plow through the owner’s manual. I understand that some people don’t meet their commitments.

I don’t want an okay surgeon or lawyer or even designer. But an okay day on the beach is still pretty damn good.


I have no idea where you end up if you simply go straight up. I know you’ll go into the stratosphere, and into the solar system, and eventually out of our galaxy. But what then? What is the limit of the universe? Can there be simply limitless, infinite space?

Is there life out there? The only three responses I know of are yes, no, and I don’t know. All three are staggering. There may be life we one day encounter, or we may be alone in the cosmos, or we may be faced with the unknowable forever.

What’s at the bottom of the sea? We’re really not so sure. We can spend an hour or so entombed in a bathyscaph that allows small glimpses. We think there are animals that can live in incredible heat vents at astounding pressures. Scientists think some can live without oxygen altogether.

We pride ourselves on scant photos of the giant squid, which is a sperm whale’s primary food source, because we otherwise know nothing at all about them. It lives, breeds, and is successful at terrific depths.

In the 1930s, fisherman off the Comoros islands netted a strange fish, unlike anything ever seen. After experts became involved it was identified as a coelacanth, thought to have been extinct for 65 million years. That is not a misprint. We now know that they are flourishing off Indonesia and other Asian islands unchanged from their antecedents.

We are arrogant. We think we know much more than we actually do, and think we can influence much more than we actually can. We can’t even stop from killing each other, something the coelacanths don’t engage in.

There’s a reciprocity in life, the world influences us and we influence the world. But as much as we’d prefer to think so, it’s not tilted in our direction.

Only Read This if You Know Me Well

I was speaking to the National Steel Foundation at the Ritz Carlton on Amelia Island. As is my custom, I visited the room at 7:30 am, well before the 9:00 am start. It’s a good thing I did, because it was set up incorrectly.

I picked up the white phone on the wall and found the manager on duty. A crew was there in five minutes and by 8:00 am had changed the entire room from theater style to classroom, altered the sight lines, raised the stage, and so forth.

I said to the manager, “You folks have been terrific, I intend to tell the Steel Foundation people how great you’ve been.”

“Steel Foundation?” he asked. “This room is for the American Auto Dealers.”

Development Opportunities
Getting Started in Consulting and Reenergizing Your Practice

Getting Started in Consulting and Reenergizing Your Practice

I’ve priced this ($600!) so that everyone can attend to begin their consulting journey or refresh the one they’re on. I’ve even arranged rooms, if needed, for about $270. You will spend an entire day with me, and I’m buying lunch. Your return should be about 10,000:1. The room size creates a limit on numbers, so sign up now for something I’ve never before offered but feel I should.

Million Dollar Consulting® College 2019

Million Dollar Consulting® College 2019

I think this is my 25th and could well be the last, since I’m doing so many new things. But I already have 13 people, so only three seats remain in this comprehensive, intense, 2.5-day program at a great property. You’ll also receive 30 days of coaching with me.

Thought Leadership 2019

Thought Leadership 2019

I’ve attracted the renowned Chip Heath, professor at Stanford, author, and consulting guru to be my special guest this year at my 9th such conference. We’ll be at the Four Seasons in Palm Beach where you’ll hear from Chip, colleagues, and me how best to ascend to Thought Leadership in your field of expertise and use your powers for the good of all!

Six Figures to Seven (627)

Six Figures to Seven (627)

One of my most popular offerings of all time, this is only the fourth one and third in the U.S. In two days master the skills and behaviors needed to move into seven figures (or whatever bandwidth you need for your ideal lifestyle and contributions). You’ll have plenty of “air time” with a small group. Two seats remain.

Critical Thinking Skills

Critical Thinking Skills

Join me in Dallas for a full day on the critical thinking skills I’ve developed to move fast, resolve complex issues, and make highly accurate decisions personally and with clients. You’ll feel much more powerful as you leave this never-before-offered program.

Million Dollar Consulting® Growth Access

Million Dollar Consulting® Growth Access

This lifetime access to my vast vault of intellectual property (workshops, video, podcasts, teleconferences, articles, etc., etc.) is now being added to bimonthly with items from my body of work. However, beginning November 1 I’m adding to it monthly with new items expressly for Growth Access never before distributed and not to be distributed outside of Growth Access. The fee will go up to $5,000 at that point, but you can still obtain those benefits for life for $3,800 if you sign up before November 1.

Creating Dynamic Communities

Creating Dynamic Communities

My global communities provide tremendous value to participants and a great laboratory for me to develop new offerings. In fact, many of my greatest successes originated in my real and virtual community settings. (As you read this, is operating all over the world.) Now I’ve codified how you can do this with your own corporate or consumer audiences and prospects. (Zero-labor access to my intellectual property alone is a seven figure business.) Join me for this new, restricted participation event.

Million Dollar Consulting® Convention in Sydney

Million Dollar Consulting® Convention in Sydney

MFor the first time I’m taking the Convention out of the US to one of my favorite places in the world, Australia. This will be my 19th trip.

After my sold-out workshop on Best Practices in Adelaide in 2018 I was encouraged by the attendees to return with the convention in 2020. Our 2019 Convention was a full house in April 2019 in Washington, DC.

We already have nearly 50 people registered for Sydney, half from outside New Zealand and Australia!

You’ll hear the best of the best generously sharing their knowledge on acquiring business, marketing, brand building, delivering strategy, serving as a trusted advisor, advanced coaching, and so forth. The networking is fantastic during extended breaks, lunches, and cocktail receptions.

Special discounts for residents of Australia and New Zealand. Register now before the fees increase!



I’m offering a new, confidential, counseling service for those who have issue in the personal lives, with relationships, with families, illness, and so forth.


Alan Weiss’s Balancing Act® Newsletter is a registered trademark of Alan Weiss and Summit Consulting Group, Inc.
© Alan Weiss 2019

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