March 2020 Archives

Ep. 72 COVID19 + Interview With Todd Herman On Performance in Business in Trying Times

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I hope you are doing amazing. Today I am doing something a little bit different. I actually went live the other day with Todd Herman. Some of you may know Todd Herman, he is the founder and owner of the 90 Day Year program. He is a performance coach and he helps athletes and leaders and CEOs optimize their performance to get more done, be more, and make a bigger impact.

So I actually interviewed him the other day. Given what is happening with our current climate with business and the Coronavirus. So I wanted to sort of pick his brain about what he’s seeing, and what he’s encouraging people to do in this time. And also, he actually was diagnosed with the Coronavirus. So I am going to link up this interview right now, you can hear it if you didn’t see it live, here it is for you. So thanks so much.

I think you were the first person that I knew of that got it.

Todd: Yeah. Oh, lucky me.

Julie: Lucky you.

Todd: I was like probably somewhere in the patient 100 and less here in the New York City area, which has now become this epicenter. It’s pretty eerie to be living in the kind of, feels like the Will Smith movie, I Am Legend right now, with how desolate the streets are. But yeah, so I think I got it maybe when I went in to get surgery, because I have, I ruptured my Achilles tendon doing American Ninja Games with my oldest daughter who really wants to make it on the show. And the warped wall beat me.

So I had to go in for surgery and most likely I think, I probably got it while I was in the hospital at the end of February. It didn’t show up though, until exactly 2 weeks ago. So I’m into about day 15 on it now. But it started off for me as a really bad, what felt like a flu in the beginning, and then I actually went into the hospital on the first day because I was so sick. I actually passed out in the actual waiting room, waiting to be..
Julie: Oh my gosh.

Todd: Yeah, I was in bad sorts with it. But not everyone gets the flu side of it though. A lot of people, it’s just strange how it kind of, everyone, it effects them differently.

Julie: Yeah.

Todd: After about two days the flu thing went away and then the chest and breathlessness came into it. So I’ve been okay, I’m not one of those people that needed to go to the hospital for the breathing side, but it sure as heck does linger around and definitely can make you tired and stuff. But you know, this is a good example of just the importance of all of us taking care of our bodies so that when we do get something like this, we can actually fight it, with a healthy self.

Julie: Yeah, because I was going to say, you are, you’re not like the epitome of not healthy. You’re like the epitome of healthy, so it took you out. And this is what we’ve been hearing is that lots of people who are really, really healthy and take care of themselves, still are getting knocked down.

Todd: Yeah, yeah, but then even you know, my wife, because everyone in the family got it. My two, I’ve got three little kids, Molly and Sophie, both of them had fevers, lasted for them about a day, and then they were fine. My little guy Charlie, who is three, he’s the one who is probably a little more like me, he’s had it sort of sitting in his lungs for a lot longer, but you know, he’s still being a big pain in the butt around the house. And then my wife she’s managed to avoid, at least my experience of it, but she hasn’t been all that sick with it. So everyone’s just different.

But you know, like I’ve said to people whether it’s through interviews, I talked to the New York Times, I talked to Business Insider and just other interviews with people, is this, my experience makes me really appreciate how I know that people who’ve got maybe lung issues or just compromised immune systems, why it’s so important to self distance. And to just follow the play book so we can, you know, mitigate the spread of this as fast as possible. And then the flip side is, the fast, the smarter that we play that game, the more we’re going to actually save, not that I want to talk about the economy, but you know, everyone’s going to get impacted in some way, possibly financially.

Some people are winning right now, I just got off a call with one of my good friends who’s company is just taking off, but that’s Franklin Sports, you know, they make gloves and all sorts of games for kids. And everyone’s buying up tons of stuff. He said that in the last 8 days they’ve sold more basketball hoop type things that you fill up with sand.

Julie: Oh yeah.

Todd: In the last 8 days than all of last year combined.

Julie: Well so, I want to talk about this a little bit because I think there’s this sort of double, we have to number one accept that things have changed and that business is going to change. And then the faster we do that, the faster we can see where the opportunities are. So I would love to just talk about what you would say to somebody who’s feeling panicked, they don’t want to admit that things are changing. They either want to pretend it’s not happening or look for evidence that everything’s just going to go back to normal in few days, and it’s not. What would you say to them to try to help them accept it and then also see the opportunity that may be there for them?

Todd: Yeah, I think that maybe to give people a little bit of a metaphor or analogy to think through this with is choose your favorite predator, whatever it might be for you. Whether it’s a shark or whether it’s a lion, or whether it’s a wolf, or whatever is your spirit animal on this kind of thing. And we want to attack the problems. I shared a quote last week that I gave to CEO that I was talking to who was very much in denial state a little bit, talking about the fear mongering, and China conspiracy and other things. And I was talking to him because I’m doing this huge study on how CEOs right now are responding and reacting to the current climate. And we’ve been doing studies like this a long time and there’s a very specific process that we follow. And I’m more interested in gathering the word choices and the context of what they are saying, and we record stuff and you know, analyze it.

And anyway, at the end of it, so he wasn’t a client by any stretch, most of them are not even close to being clients. So I said to him by the end, again because I’m a coach, I’m a mentor and advisor, and that means just because I’m the noun, he didn’t want my verb, which is my coaching.

Julie: Right, right, right.

Todd: …signing up to talk to me about the world. And I said, “Are you willing to be coached right now?” and he said, “Yeah, please do.” So I said, “You can’t solve a problem you’re not willing to have or accept.” And just I’ll say it again for people. You cannot solve a problem if you’re not willing to have or accept. So that’s the problem with the denial phase for people. All you’re doing is you’re just pushing off a decision or a problem that’s going to, that you have to accept at some point and time.

And accepting the problem doesn’t mean that you’ve got to accept whatever your presupposing is going to be the outcome from it. Because when you actually accept the problem, say like, ‘I’m willing to accept that maybe my industry or my business model might not be custom built to win in today’s climate right now.” Because the moment you accept that, now you go, okay, now you just clear up the emotional space in your head, which allows you to get into the mental space to now handle it in a more pragmatic fashion and think more clearly, and maybe get other people to help you look at your current situation or circumstance and find the opportunities.

And anyway, I talked to him just a little bit longer and he said, “I can already feel some of the weight of emotion leaving me, because you’re right. I haven’t accepted, I’m not willing to accept it.” But in that moment he was, he had made a decision. And it’s amazing. That’s the thing for all of us, the choices of our words, I mean you guys talk about it with the stuff that you try to help people with around offers and messaging. When you find the right way to say something to people, maybe you don’t even need to sell an entire course to them.

Julie: Yeah.

Todd: But you give them that space to now get clarity and that’s one of the first milestones that we need to get people to first. Let’s lift the fog so that they’re clear now about what the issue might be, what the problem is, what the opportunity might be, so that they can now move forward and take action.
Julie: You know, I’ve struggled with anxiety for pretty much my whole life, and I have a therapist/coach/person who has always said to me that anxiety is just a fear of another feeling. And so if you’re having anxiety about your business, it could be a symptom of the fact that you’re fearing the feeling of like, “oh crap, things have actually changed.” And that’s like a signal to you that you’re probably struggling to accept what is. And then like you said, that once you can the mental bandwidth that that frees up to accept and then to move.

And you said something to me the other day when we were on the phone, I would love for you to talk about it, about Maslow’s hierarchy of need and how a lot of offers in this space tend to focus on the self actualization part of the pyramid, and sort of how you see that. So if you could just share that.

Todd: Well, you know what, I actually have, I have it up on my whiteboard app, so I’ll, if it’s okay I’ll share my whiteboard.
Julie: Yes. Share your screen.

Todd: So if people are familiar with Maslow, Abraham Maslow did this amazing, wrote this amazing book called, Man’s Search For Meaning, that’s the right title. So it is, the big model that everyone’s found very useful is Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. And if you think about at the very bottom of this layer down here, you’ve got the physical and basic needs that human needs have. And you know, when we first started out as organized societies, that’s where we were moving from, these tribes that were just looking at safety needs and physiological needs.

And then we started to be able to climb up the ladder because of the development of our societies and stuff, and cultures. So physiological needs, air, water, food, shelter, sleep, clothing, sex. Safety needs, personal security, employment, health and property. Then you get into love and belonging, which is friendship, intimacy, family and connection. Then you rise up into esteem, which is about respect, self esteem and freedom and status, recognition. And then finally self actualization.

You know, so as people satisfy these different needs, their desires now level up, right. Now here’s the challenge though, you can also map your business services and your products to a lot of these levels. So some people with some of their products and service offerings right now, and their messaging, they sell to these categories. You know, the self actualization one is the desire to become the most one can be.
Well the problem is if you maintain your messaging at that level right now when really, the attention and the need of the market has come down the pyramid, because people are now, not everybody again, this isn’t to paint the entire brush, but you’re going to find more than less, their attention has come down here.
Julie: Yeah.

Todd: And even if you take a look at groups, you and I were talking about this last week, people who are perceived as real leaders right now are really winning in the market because there is this real flock into groups to get connection, to get belonging, to get assurance, that’s a big need for people right now, to get reassurance. But if you’re not perceived as a leader, maybe you’re not seeing that same trend, because people at the same time also have this huge need to get psychological safety.

Julie: Yeah.

Todd: and just some advisory around some of these other needs that are down there.

So my point about this is, if you go back and you take a look at your offers, your business, your products, your business model, and you go, “Wait, am I communicating to the wrong need right now?” how can you shift up the communication to now match up the way that you’re clientele or students or customers, thinking is actually going towards. Then you might find that you could start to win again.

Julie: Yeah, exactly. So it’s not necessarily about changing the core of the offer, as much as it’s the messaging around the offer, and the needs that it fulfills. So if you’re, if you are a marketer, I know a lot of marketers follow me, we could talk about it in terms of these higher needs of, you know, brand, mission, impact, and all this kind of stuff. Or we could bring the messaging down to, this is about making money so that you have your physical and safety needs met in this certain time.

Todd: Right now we’re selling meat and potatoes, we’re not selling cotton candy and sprinkles.

Julie: Yeah. That’s great.

Todd: Even thought that’s what people want, is cotton candy and sprinkles many times. People want stuff that’s going to satiate the need and the appetite right now, there’s just one way to really think about this.

Julie: So what about, so obviously not every business is going to survive this. It’s just not. There are a lot of businesses that run with margins so tight, you know, over leverage lifestyles, so how do, if you are talking to someone who wasn’t prepared for this kind of situation, what would you say to them to encourage them to not be afraid to pivot their business? So for example, let’s say you’re a Facebook ads agency, and your clients are drying up and you may need to pivot what your agency service does, what you say to someone who’s trying to figure out how to get their footing when things seem like their dominoes are falling over?

Todd: It goes back to what I was saying before with the quote. Are you willing to accept the problem? Are you willing to also maybe see yourself in a different way right now. This is the reinvention of all of us that’s being forced upon many of us as well. I mean, we’ve got to reinvent, there’s some things that we need to be doing. We lost you know in the last few weeks, we’ve lost a large chunk of revenue because we had a couple events that we had in New York City, and then….lost my microphone for a second. Can you hear me?

Julie: Yeah, I’ve got you. You’re good.

Todd: So you know, I mean, that’s no sob story for us. I mean, like I said, the wind is blowing on all of us, alright so who cares, Todd. But it’s this opportunity to like iterate and reinvent. And I think in some ways if people would actually admit to themselves that some people were, and I find this, there’s people who are, there’s a lot of people who I mentor and help in the million dollar plus range of businesses and on up, and there’s a lot of people who’ve got businesses that are fairly ramped up and scaled up, that actually they felt stuck or trapped inside them.

So you know, this is an opportunity to rebirth the business that maybe you want, and I don’t know about you, but my experiences, a lot of the things that I’ve found that I ended up loving in life, was very good at, ended up becoming a passion for me, were only discovered by being forced into them in some ways.
So you don’t know, sometimes we prejudge something before we’ve even gotten into it. We’ve all maybe played that as like, ‘Do I really want to go and do the go carting with my friends tonight.” Or something like that, and you end up winning the checkered flag you know, dominating your best friends husband who you didn’t really like anyway, or something like that.

But you know, you couldn’t have discovered that unless you went and you did it. So this is the thing that I love about the two very distinct groups that I work with, which is athletes because I have performance company that works with pro athletes and Olympians, and entrepreneurs, founders, and CEOs, is that their psychological makeup is actually very similar. In that they have very high levels of risk taking, and they’re one of a very, very few distinct groups of people that are very much willing, like a snake, shed their skin.

So I think the people who are willing to shed the skin the fastest right now, whether it’s cut away things that don’t matter, and make some hard choices with your personal life, or in business as well. Or just going right back down to your business model and saying, “Okay, is the who that I’m serving with the product that I have, and their problem, is that all matched really well right now?” with the way their marketing? Because if not, then let’s go reinvent that.

Julie: Yeah, you know maybe we started talking about this. You talk about attacking the problem. What does it look like if you were compare two people, one who’s attacking the problem and one who is paralyzed? How do you learn to take risk when you’re feeling like you want security? You have to lean into something that is against what your intuition is telling. What’s your advice on how to do that?

Todd: So well, some of the stuff isn’t actually risk, it’s just reality.

Julie: Ah, that’s good.

Todd: You know, a lot of people aren’t willing to truly face, again it’s like are you willing to accept this problem that we have? Because I actually just had a meta operating belief in my life, which is I don’t have problems. I just have decisions that haven’t been made yet. So someone else might look at it as a problem and I go, “No, that is just a decision that I have not made yet.” So my pursuit in life as a Libran, Libras typically aren’t the best at decision making apparently. That’s what they say on the sign, the horoscope, I’m not a big horoscope guy, but there’s some interesting things that are there.

You know, I was always very indecisive when I first started out in business, and I’m maybe known for the alter ego world in building performance identities and stuff. So when I built out my leader persona for myself in business, I wanted to truly adopt the behaviors, the actions, the mindset of someone who is very decisive. You know that sort of more immature version of Todd was indecisive, but not that one. That one was going to be cut away, make decisions.

So even all of the frameworks and things like that that I help people with is truly about helping them make decisions. Even my 90 Day Year program, truly the 90 Day Year is actually a decision making program. It might not sound sexy to everyone, but when you look at your real problems in life, or the issues that you’re dealing with, it’s a decision issue. And most people make bad decisions because they don’t have good, methodical processes.

So that idea of attacking things right now for you is, we want to mitigate as much risk as possible. So what does that look like? That means, how can you make a really small bet that doesn’t demand that your entire business might fail, to see if this new offer and this message might work for you? What are the small bets, the small tests that we can make?

Julie: Yeah, that’s good.

Todd: And then, depending on your own threshold of risk, someone else it could be go big. That’s why there’s nuance to how you coach someone through this process, because everyone’s thresholds are slightly differently, everyone’s skill sets are slightly different than others. So I would just say keep your costs low, as much as possible, and make some small shifts and bets and see if that starts to land differently, and then really I think where most people are making the mistake is, they are, there’s two distinct areas that they’re making a mistake on.

One is they’re not talking to their audience enough. And when I say talking I mean like, talking, I mean getting on the phone and talking to them. That’s why I’m doing that CEO study and getting on the phone and calling all these people, because I want to hear the real words. I want to hear the real emotion that’s there, because that’s very much dictating some of the offerings and ways that we’re trying to help people.

And secondly is, yes, communities have come together. People have started to have probably more Zoom calls or Facetime calls than they’ve had in the history of their life, and has 5x in activity more than anything in the past. But one thing I just challenge people on is are you coming onto those calls, and you’re leaving with (sigh) someone else like me. Or they’re dealing with it. That makes you feel good. But that doesn’t get you the one thing, or two things that are really important, which are clarity and movement.

So I have this framework called CALM. Which is about people in need right now need clarity, they need assurance, they need leadership, and they need movement. So a lot of people are coming into groups and they’re getting assurance. You know, “Everyone looks like me, and other people are challenged too.” That makes you feel good. But they’re not getting good advisory and coaching to get them clear on what needs to happen next, and what their action plan should be to get them moving and hold them accountable to it.

So I would just encourage people to make sure they’re really seeking out that clarity for them to take action so they’re not just sticking, staying stuck in a mud of just reassurance, because that’s just not going to get you anywhere.

Julie: Yeah, movement, it’s so important. And that’s even economically what we need. We need money to move in order to bring the economy up, that’s just a principle. Movement is where, and you know, we’ve got the fight or flight mechanism that happens to us in crisis and the freeze one is probably the most painful one because it’s the opposite of what will actually get you out of it, which is movement.

Todd: Well, and the freeze one is just so terrifying because when you’re frozen you actually see the train lights coming at you and you know what the impending doom of it, and yet you still don’t move. And it’s like for some people, there are some of those people who are not willing to move and shift their businesses right now, and yet, they fundamentally know that that light that’s coming is not going to feel good when it hits them. But you know, you’ve got the power because you’ve demonstrated it before to start. So yeah, you can lament the fact that things changed and you didn’t want it to change and you didn’t ask it to change, but that’s not a leader. A leader is going to go, yep, I didn’t want it, but I’m going to take it. And I’m going to chew on this fat that I got right now.

Julie: Yeah, it’s interesting because you know, I mean I financially, I’ve got a rainy day fund, and we talk about this all in theory. You know, every month I’v ebeen taking 70% of my profits and using it, and then 30% is for a rainy day. And you know when there’s no rainy days and everything is fun, you watch your rainy day fund go up, and you forget that you’re actually going to have to use that rainy day fund for something that you probably didn’t want to have to use it for, but that was the point. But you have to like, suck it up and be like, “Oh right, that’s why I made that, and now I’ve got to use it even though that’s not what I thought I was going to use it for.” And just keep moving.

Todd: 100% rainy day funds are never typically for things we, that’s why it’s the rainy day fund, never for the things we wanted.
Julie: Right, but when you build a business and things are always going well, you can forget that that fund is actually, what that’s there for. You can think that it’s just, whatever, funny money, or what have you. But so I know you have a book out about alter ego’s, and can you, what would be a piece of advice for anyone listening who’s like, ‘Okay, I hear you, I need to accept it, I need to see what I need to shift, make decisions. I am not that person. I am worried to death and I am scared. I can’t. I don’t know what to do next.”

Todd: So one of it is just noticing of language. So it’s you may not be that person right now. And that’s because as human beings, we always act through whatever we associate ourselves with. So often times we can be associated with an identity that can feel trapped. Or we’re associating with someone who’s a victim, or you know, if you’re associating with yourself being a victim right now, it’s hard for you take and even see opportunities right now.

And yet, I’ve done this for 22 years, working people on the six inches between their ears and you know, more specifically on using alter ego as a way to create a powerful model for you to envision in your mind, for how you want to step into a new way of behaving, feeling and thinking, to help people transform and see themselves. And so the reason I say that is that the skills, abilities and qualities, attributes that you need right now to be successful are already there. They’re already, everything that you need right now to help you get momentum and wins, is already there. That’s just how I treat people, I know it to be true because I’ve done this for a long freaking time.

So just even that, recognizing that those attributes are there, whether you can see them or not, just you know, if you trust me, if you think that I’m giving you some good advice, then just blindly trust me on that. Just blinding trust me on that. And if not, that’s fine. So then let’s test this out.

Julie: Yeah.

Todd: So the way to be thinking through this then is, you know because the alter ego itself comes from Cicero who said it in 44 BC, who is widely known as being one of the greatest Roman statesmen and philosophers to ever live, and he said, “The alter ego is the other eye or trusted friend within.” And the way to be thinking about it is, what’s that model of the person that I already respect or admire? And I would love to show up like they would in this situation and circumstance.

Because when you do that and you find someone, again, you’ve got to have an emotional connection to that person. You can’t just say, “Wonder Woman.” Because that’s a super hero, but if you don’t like Wonder Woman, and there’s no emotional connection… For someone else it could be Jane Eyre or it could be Oprah, or it could be, insert the name of anyone or anything, it doesn’t matter to me. What matters is that you’re emotionally connected. Because that emotional bridge is the connecting device between the ideas you have of how you want to act, think and behave, and gets them out onto the field of action, where behavior sits.
So thinking of that model in your own mind of how you want to show up, and for right now the challenge is sometimes for some of us in our homes right now. Everyone’s faced with the same reality of having our kids, if you’ve got kids, home with you. And if not, you know, good for you. You’re not challenged by that right now.

But like, you know, really thinking through who’s that model that might be out there? And then finding ways to embody their traits in the way that you show up. So like, I have a pair of glasses that I used for the longest time that I used to activate that super Richard version of myself that was confident and decisive and articulate when I first started out and I felt indecisive, lacked confidence, wasn’t very articulate in the way that I communicated. But super Richard was. And super Richard, if you think about it this way, that alter ego’s true purpose is to be the advocate for the dreams, or aspirations, or desires that you have within, it helps pull them out. Because maybe in some way you can’t find and see yourself doing it, but that alter ego can. And then all the sudden you end up becoming the person that you wanted to be. And it becomes so natural for you, and really the alter ego is just this great disassociation that you used to help find the attributes within.

Julie: And you were using an actual, physical object in this case, the glasses to help activate that persona, that identity shift that you were creating for yourself.

Todd: Yeah.

Julie: That’s awesome.

Todd: And it’s, what it’s tapping into is a psychological phenomena called enclothed cognition. Which is that we as human beings, we add story and meaning to the clothing that we wear and that other people wear. And when we put it on, we actually unconsciously activate those traits without having to think about it. For example, if you put on a lab coat or a doctors coat, it’s been proven in multiple different studies, you will start to act more…
Julie: Interesting.

Todd: Yeah, you’ll start to naturally act more detailed and you’ll start to act more pragmatic, and you’ll start to act more careful. So if you were doing an activity where those attributes helped you succeed at that, what a beautiful thing. And that’s why you know, glasses, glasses are proven with multiple studies to.

Julie: And that’s why when we’re all in quarantine we maybe should not just have 2 sets of pajamas we keep switching in and out of all day.

Todd: Maybe that would be a good idea to level up your clothing a little bit.

Julie: Yeah.

Todd: It’s just a shift that happens, everyone knows that. Whether it’s a favorite pair of shoes, or a favorite dress or shirt or pants or shirt, it doesn’t matter.

Julie: But there’s like a psychological activation that happens, this isn’t just like a weird ritual, this is you know, studied.

Todd: and even if it is a weird ritual, that’s the beautiful of human beings, we can add story to anything. We can add story and meaning to anything. So I’ll give you an example. So I have little figurines made up of all my little kids.

Julie: That’s awesome.

Todd: This is little Molly, she’s my little statue that sits in front of me. And I’ve got Sophie here as well, my other little one. And they sit right here on my desk in front of my larger screen. And when I’m creating programming or when I’m creating messages, that’s actually who I’m talking to, is those two. Because in my mind, 20 years or 10 years or whenever it is that they might become entrepreneurial, or they need some sort of mindset help, I hope they find a messenger that cares about their well being.

So when I’m speaking to people, it’s almost like I’m speaking to Molly and Sophie. It’s not even almost, that’s who I’m speaking to. Because it’s very easy for me to care about them. So if it’s easy for me to care about them, then it’s going to be easy for that transmission of emotion to come across in the videos that I have, or the training that you have. So that’s just a totem, that’s just an artifact. And yet, we all have these things, and it takes me zero seconds in time for me to make that mental shift. So that’s all it is. Those glasses helped me make that mental shift, this hat, there’s similar things that I wore when I wrote my book, I didn’t see myself as a writer. Now I do. But I twisted my hat around and wore it backwards when I wrote, and it was me switching a new identity on it.

Julie: Switching a new identity. So all of us, whether, so step one for if you guys are just joining, step one is really to accept the acceptance. Are you willing to accept that your business has shifted? And you didn’t ask for it, none of us did, but here we are. There is an opportunity here, like you said, for some people who were exhausted by their business, this is a crisis, and a perfect opportunity to pivot. And then once you’ve done that to use movement and also to activate that alter ego to just start making decisions.

Todd: Yep, that new model of reinvention of yourself just to speed through the process, because we’re all going to have to move through it. So if that’s a reality, just for me, I’m just so pragmatic I’m like, ‘alright, well then how can I do it way faster than other people so I don’t get stuck in the quagmire of change like many other people do?”

Julie: Yeah, awesome. Oh my gosh, well thank you so much. Can you tell everyone where to go get your book, because I know you have…

Todd: Sure, is kind of a home base for it. I also have a kid version called My Super Me.

Julie: Oh that’s awesome. I was wondering, I could see it in the background. I was like, that looks like a kid’s book over there.

Todd: Yeah, so on the one year anniversary of the Alter Ego Effect coming out, which was last month, I wanted to have a children’s version to come out for everyone as well. It’s done exceptionally well. And I’ll even read the first, because it’s a perfect map to kind of, if you think about the world that we’re living in. It starts out with, so this is all about right now it’s a little guy that has a stuffed animal that he imagines in his mind, his name is captain Storm, who helps him do tough stuff.

So it starts with, “Sometimes things are hard. Sometimes things are tough. Sometimes we try and we try and it’s still not enough. Things are heavy, they’re scary, they’re new, they’re old. Things are too hard, too loud, too hot or too cold. When things are too something, too this or too that, I may get quite angry, upset, or just sad.” And it just goes on and he finds this kind of hero within to help him do tough stuff.

Julie: That’s awesome.

Todd: I will give, if you do have little kids, that book’s called My Super Me, if you do have little kids, I’ll give you a caveat, do not read it to them right before bedtime, because it makes it feel like they can run through walls. It gets them going.

Julie: It gets them going.

Todd: A great way to start the day, don’t end it with the book.

Julie: The name of that is called what?

Todd: That one’s My Super Me.

Julie: My Super Me. Okay.

Todd: Yeah, and, or you can just go to Amazon and find both books there. And then my home base on the internet is and you can find all the links to social media there as well.

Julie: Awesome. Well, I’m really glad that you are coming out the other side of this ridiculous virus. And I’m really glad that you are speaking up on all the ways in which entrepreneurs and business owners have to adjust and pivot and I really appreciate your time.

Todd: Yeah, absolutely. Happy to be here and help. Thanks Julie.

Julie: Alright, talk later guys. Bye.

Julie Chenell

Giving Credit Where Credit Is Due

I started talking about COVID19 in February, after following it closely *yet silently* since the first reports came out at the end of December.

I did choose to talk about it before it was everywhere, and in one of the most profound examples of why I need to trust my gut – ended up with countless PM’s and emails from people in the two weeks that followed.

  • “Because of what you said, I was prepared. I didn’t have to clamor at the store like everyone else the day after the President spoke in the Oval Office to the nation.”
  • “You literally woke me up to putting contingencies in my business and now we’re okay today because of what we did just a month ago.”
  • “Because of your daily takeaways in your Facebook group, I decided to email my list of 500k people to help them get prepared.”
  • “We took measures to pull our kids out of school before they shut down because you said you were doing the same. Now it’s everywhere, but we are all healthy and home.”

Since first speaking about it, I have set up a Facebook group where I post two threads a day…

  1. One is a thread for people to link up articles they are reading
  2. The second thread is my daily takeaway. It’s just a smattering of thoughts and information I gather throughout the day based on the science of the virus, the public health, the economic ramifications, etc.

When people ask me why I do it, I say simply, “Because my gut tells me to.”

But I’m starting to think my gut instinct might be mislabeled, and I’ve been taking credit for something that isn’t me.

What lots of people don’t know about me is that I carry a deep faith and belief in Jesus. Prior to being a marketer, I was a worship leader, pastor, and heavily involved in the Church. My entire life, whenever I’d go to prayer meetings or conferences, the same message would be spoken and prayed over me. It happened even as a very young child. I had a strong prophetic gifting that people needed.

I had a supernatural experience at age 6, where my mom describes me sobbing as a young girl – in my living room – listening to worship music trying to describe the presence of the Holy Spirit to her in little kid language.

When everything in my life fell apart (in 2014), I walked away from my Church. I lost faith in most every religious body, and clung onto my belief in God (barely) and in small ways where I could. But I was also reasonably sure that any favor or blessing or gifting given to me had been immediately revoked. I’d fallen too far into sin.

I lived with this belief for the last five years.

And then something strange started to happen. God started speaking to me through other people. Other people who had NO idea of my past, and in some cases, didn’t even realize I was a Christian. They’d say, “I know this is going to sound nuts but…” and then launch into a prophetic word so accurate, it’d leave me weeping uncontrollably.

This past fall, I started to hear God speak to me again, without needing someone else to say it. You can find some of the posts on my Facebook profile in October/November. I knew He was doing something, I just wasn’t sure what exactly.

Now I understand.

He knew I would need Him more than ever in 2020. He also knew that people would need me. They would need me to be a voice of clarity in the midst of so much bullshit and noise.

There were a number of decisions I made “with my gut” that were difficult to explain. I just had a sense, a feeling, a premonition – that I would need to be nimble, flexible, adaptable. And there were also a number of decisions I made (IGNORING my gut) that cost me deeply. I started to see a pattern emerge, and it wasn’t without help from a therapist, and also people who were diligently praying for me.

It’s funny. People like to separate spiritual stuff from intellectual stuff from emotional stuff… we’re so separatist in the western world. And it’s just not real. God uses therapy, He used instincts, brains, emotions, all of it. He created us as these amazingly integrated human beings and what used to be a thorn in my side (my intellectual brain being chided as faithlessness since it asked too many questions) is actually a gift He’s using. Just like using therapy too. It all works together, and the patterns are there if you look.

There are a number of ways we all exit this crisis. If we do this whole “pandemic” thing right, you’ll know it because scores of people will say the world over reacted. That’s how you know we beat it. If we mess it up, and deaths start to recklessly pile up in cities all over the world, there is no better time to start using all the parts of you – your spirit, your brain, your emotions – to stay connected to the One who knows you better than you know yourself.

Lastly, I want to make something very very clear. 

Most of what I find, read, post, speak about is NOT somehow spiritually downloaded from heaven. God gave me a brain and wants me to use it. So I do. However, what I’m noticing now is that I’m better able to see how God is using BOTH my brain and my spirit to help guide me, that I am leaning into what my instincts say because I believe they are Him… and not me.

He’s helping me to find the doctors and scientists to read and listen to. He’s helping me sift through mountains of information to figure out what’s most important to remember, and what I can ignore. He’s putting smart people in my path that know way more than I do, and prompting me to listen. In all of this, it was high time I give God credit for the work He’s doing in and through me.

If anything I’ve said over the last month has helped your family or you in some way, that should be an unwavering indication that God loves you very much. He’s here. He sees the end of all this, and He isn’t moved or shaken by a wobbly economy, joblessness, lost customers, clients, or sickness. He’s got you, just like He’s got me.

And that really is the best news of the year.


Ep. 71 Coronavirus + The Online World

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Hey everyone, this is Julie and today’s podcast episode will be not like any of the others. Because this is a time unlike any of the others that I can remember. So if you’re looking for marketing advice, today it will not be here.

But I want to talk to you guys today about what’s going on in the world. Obviously we are living in unprecedented times with the spread of the Covid-19 virus. For those of you that follow me on social media, you know that I have been talking about this since late February, thinking about it much, much longer than that, since it really began in January. And I sent a message to all my subscribers and followers on March 12 about what I think about this whole scene.

And when I mean scene, I really mean the social media scene surrounding the virus. And I know a lot of you probably can relate that you probably see two types of responses. The first are the people who throw out statistics about other viruses H1N1, HIV, other things like that, and how this is just some sort of plow from the media to get us all worked up, to crash the economy, to knock our president out of office, there’s a whole bunch of reasons. There’s conspiracy theories galore. And you will see that there are people who play totally into those conspiracy theories, and there are others who don’t so much, but they basically tell you to simmer down. “Simmer down, quit buying toilet paper. Get a grip. Stop panicking. This is no big deal. This is just a cold.”

And then on the other side you have, which prior to March 12th, it seemed to be what you would consider outliers, outliers talking about this being a big deal. There were not as many because especially in our circles, in entrepreneurial circles, because it seemed almost like a sign of weakness to show concern or worry.
So I was really torn, conflicted about this and I on February 25th is when I think I started talking about it publicly. Then on March 1st I just couldn’t handle the level of urgency I felt inside of me. I posted a blog post on it, then on March 2nd, I fell into a Facebook group where they were giving out horrible advice to this woman who wanted to travel. And that got me writing another post. So all along, I’m thinking a lot about this idea of influence, and when we have a platform as marketers or entrepreneurs, we have people following us, and our words mean something.

Whether you have a following of 3 or 3 thousand or 3 million people your words carry weight with those who trust you. And so watching this sort of uniformed hysteria sweep social media, lots of making fun of the toilet paper virus, and yet the cognitive dissonance was so loud and so strong in my head, I felt like I just couldn’t not share what was going on with me. And so what’s going on with me, and what’s been going on with me is definitely falling down a rabbit hole of following scientists, medical journals, ER physicians, other people like this on other social media platforms, and recognizing that we are in an unprecedented crisis.

So talking about it today doesn’t feel weird anymore. It feels like the nation and the world has finally woken up with what’s been going on in Italy especially and now Spain and France. And cases are rising so fast in the US as well, and now everybody’s talking about it. Now what used to be sort of an outlier conversation, is now the conversation. So it can be hard to get on social media and do business as usual. It’s hard. I had to create some bookmarks on my browser bar to go into specific groups that I need to manage, because if I don’t and I go through the newsfeed, I’m just inundated.

And honestly, I didn’t have a specific point for today’s podcast episode except to say that life as we know it is definitely going to change over the next several months. I don’t know how long this is going to last, but it can be very hard to do business as usual when it’s not business as usual. Many of you probably are listening to this and you are stuck at home. Maybe your kids are out of school, you could be under a curfew, you could be someone who was thinking about the laptop life, but still working a job even though your job may or may not be there for you right now.

We are in times that none of us have ever seen. So how do we keep going? How do we do business as usual and also recognize that we are in a time unlike any other? And that’s hard. I would encourage you to join the conversation. If you are a business owner, don’t put your head in the sand. Don’t shame people that are worried, don’t talk down to people as if they’re stupid or the word “sheeple” goes around, which is like talking about people as if they’re sheep. And I get it, I get the concept behind it, but it really doesn’t help anybody to talk like that.

I would encourage you to join the conversation in a way that is helpful to not just you, but to society. What can you do today to help society do the right thing, to help society do business as usual, to help society also do business as usual in this new world?

So that’s my encouragement to you, ask yourself that question everyday when you wake up. What can I do today? You know, a lot of people are worried about local businesses, and there’s a lot of great resources out there that says, go buy gift certificates, stir up the economy, continue to spend money with these local businesses so they don’t go bankrupt. How can you help people in your company? Can you continue to pay them, even if there isn’t work? Can you continue to pay things like your nanny or your housekeeper? We are currently paying our house manager, even though she’s not working here, because we’re going to do our part to continue. Everybody, no matter what part of the supply chain you are on, and to be honest, the higher up you go, the more responsibility you have.

And I don’t say that lightly, but I think that it’s important to note that if you have a business where you are more in the top of the food chain than the bottom, it’s your responsibility to do what you can in this moment to help those who are less fortunate than you. It’s very anti-capitalist thinking, huh? But I believe it so I’m just going to say it.

Also, I would say that if you are on social media and you are, and you want to talk about it, talk about the virus, talk about how it’s affecting life, talk about all those things, I would encourage you to talk about it as freely as you want to, but don’t attach it to a sale. I think when you attach it to a sales pitch, it just sounds terrible. Not only does it sound terrible, but it can feel like a real not so good tactic. So my recommendation is to join the conversation, to talk about it, to be relevant to your audience, but do it with your free stuff. And let your customers decide if now is the right time to buy. Don’t draw the conclusion for them that, “Oh, because you’re stuck at home”, “Oh because you’re in quarantine”, or “Oh because your job is at risk” let them draw that conclusion.

Use other hooks, there’s lots of other hooks and angles you can take when you sell, and the question has come up multiple times to me, “Should I be selling right now?” Yes, you should be selling, we have an obligation to continue the economy in every way, shape, or form that we can. Our economy crashing is a terrible, terrible, terrible problem. So yes, you should be selling. Just don’t sell snake oil as CoronaVirus treatments. Don’t sell your products and be like, ‘Well, see this is, don’t you wish you had started your business earlier? Because now you’re out of a job because of CoronaVirus.” Don’t use it as the hook, but yes, you should continue to sell.

And remember that people are right now scared, they’re nervous, and that’s normal and that’s okay. But at some point, this is not something that is going to end this week. Eventually the paralysis is going to end, and people are going to be bored, people are going to be restless, people are going to want to take action. Right now we’re in a phase of sort of freeze. Everybody freeze, you know, and there’s that fight or flight mentality kicking in, but it’s not going to stay that way forever, because this is not a quick problem with a quick solution.

So the point at which people are going to be in the newsfeed, people are going to be on social media and bored and restless, if you have something valuable to offer, that’s going to help somebody else, you have an obligation to continue as much as you possibly can, business as usual. And remember that the people who come out of these sorts of crises and thrive are those who notice that even in crisis there is opportunity, and not opportunity to leverage the pain of somebody else, but opportunity to see where you can serve. And money always follows value.

So see where you can serve, see where you can provide value. This is a great time to see lots of people coming together. I started a Facebook group, sort of on impulse even, when I sent out an email about the CoronaVirus, because I felt like at the time I really didn’t want to overwhelm my newsfeed with posts about it. But I knew I couldn’t not talk about it. So I thought well, I’ll just talk about it in a group and then whoever wants to join the group can hear whatever I have to say about it, and then that way, this was sort of my delineation factor. That’s really why I started it. It’s called We’re In This Together it’s on Facebook, you can find it.

What I didn’t realize, or that I thought might happen, but didn’t realize how much it would happen is that over the next week, it became so obvious that CoronaVirus was going to stop all our lives, that now it’s totally normal to talk about it on your newsfeed. However the group has sort of taken on a life of its own, it’s an amazing place of firsthand accounts, questions, people who feel like they can’t talk about things with friends and family, but want to talk about it. They post in the group every day. We have a pin thread and people post articles that they find that are helpful. A real spirit of camaraderie and support has formed in there. So if you’re looking for that, I would encourage you to join it.

Like I said it’s called, We’re In This Together. And very science based, encouraging, no fear-mongering, no conspiracy theories, no you know, big Facebook group cover photo of a giant virus attacking you, like some of those groups are.

So that’s the small part that I have done. I said, “You know what, I can continue to pay my employees, I can continue to run my business, I can continue to encourage people to market with heart and integrity in the midst of this, and I can create a place in a community where people can share and learn and take all the research that I’ve done and make decisions for themselves and their families.

So that’s what I’ve done. I encourage you to figure out what you’re going to do today. Also, side note, keep a journal, keep a log. Do some writing, do a blog, do something. You’re going to look back on this time, because you’re going to survive it, we are going to get through it, we are going to come out on the other side, and someday you’re going to want to look back and be like, “remember when…” “Remember when in March of 2020 the whole world stopped for a tiny, little virus.” And so I appreciate you all, thanks for listening, and I’ll talk to you soon.

Ep. 70 Our Latest Launch Experiment!

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Today I kind of want to take you a little bit behind the scenes of what Cathy and I are doing with our next big launch. On March 9th we open the doors to Launch Gorgeous.

We are in phase 4 as of the recording of this, but probably by the time you hear this episode we are in phase 5 of the first round of Launch Gorgeous. And the program actually has 6 phases. So I wanted to take you behind the scenes of some things that we are trying that we have never done before.

So a lot of you guys know that I talk a lot about different funnel types depending on the value ladder. And people are always asking me, you know, “How do I know what kind of funnel to use?” you know, “What kind of offer to create?” and I always say to them, “You know what? You should purchase Funnel RX because that answers that question completely and entirely.” But typically there is some price differential between the three different levels of your customer journey from the beginning level, when they’re getting introduced to you, to the mid-level where you’re offering them sort of the flagship offer, to the premium, which is only about 5 percent of your customer base are going to take it.

So what Cathy and I are kind of embarking on as an experiment really, is we are working on turning this program, Launch Gorgeous into one of our premium offers. It’s definitely higher ticket than anything else we sell. For any of you guys listening who’ve purchase Offer Cure and Funnel RX, they’re very, very affordable, our templates are affordable. We actually function as a company more like a digital commerce. So think of an ecomm brand, but just digital commerce, because we have so many products in our shop and things like that.

So we are really focusing our info product line, this particular program, Launch Gorgeous, on the premium market. So it’s gonna launch at a higher price point than most courses.

The second thing we’re doing is we are basically killing the course idea. And we are doing this for a couple of reasons. Number one, we all know that courses, the education industry is exploding, and it’s sort of a play on words because yes, of course we have online curriculum for Launch Gorgeous. But what we’re trying to teach, and what we I think have succeeded in doing in our lower ticket products, is teach in a way that gets people to take action, to get momentum in their business, and to basically clear a hurdle that they couldn’t clear before.

Because a lot of think that the problem with our business, or whatever solution that we’re trying to find, is that we don’t have the right information. And it’s almost never about the information. It’s almost always about the execution of that information, the implementation of the information in the context of real life, with lots of distractions, personality types, all that kind of stuff.

So Launch Gorgeous is going to be a higher ticket program, it’s going to be a $3000 done with you experience. And the reason why we’re calling it that, is because we are working with the students live, day by day, to make sure they get done what they need to get done in time to launch.

So a couple of key factors about Launch Gorgeous that are different than other programs, number one, every program is done live and there is a set date in which you launch, you complete. So much like a University where you have a test and you all take a test at the last day, or an exam, and you pass an exam. Even though there’s not pass/fail in Launch Gorgeous, we are going to all launch at the same time.

So right now we’re in the middle of launching with this first cohort, and March 23rd is the date. Nobody is going to go to jail or get a x mark, or whatever, an F on their report card if they don’t launch on March 23rd, but the idea is that the group is moving towards that date, and it creates some social pressure, the good kind. Number two, it makes it so that the assignments are very clear. So it’s very obvious when somebody is over thinking or falling down a rabbit hole because you basically say, “Hey, what’s the homework assignment for today?” and they tell you, and then if they say, “Well, I’m worrying about something that’s not on the homework assignment.” Then pretty much you know that you’re either over thinking, or getting off track. So it’s very, very easy to stay on track when you have that kind of, what’s essentially daily accountability.

So those two things require a fair amount of effort from Cathy and I because we are in the group on a daily basis, we answer questions once a week. We also do a core training. We also have resources, etc, etc. So the program has been really fun to watch because it is having the intended effect that we hoped it would have, which is that people are really working through a lot of the mindset issues that come up when you try to launch, when you try to build a funnel. So it’s basically proof to us that it’s working, because falling behind is harder in this program.

So we’re launching in at $3000. Now, typically if someone came to me and said, “Hey a $3000 program or above, would be an application and a sales call.” It’s very unusual to have a $3000 program that’s a simple buy now, especially if you don’t have a webinar. But we’re getting ready to launch and we are not going to have a webinar. And we’re going to open up our cart at $2997, we will have a payment plan, so this is a little bit of an experiment for us.

We have a lot of loyalty, we have a lot of great customers, we’re not trying to list build to sell it to a cold audience, so that’s important to note from a strategy perspective. We are selling to our existing audience, and we’re going to see if this works. We’re going to see if people trust us, trust our experience, trust our results, trust our testimonials, and just trust our process enough to be able to say, “I’m ready to dive in.”

And one of the things that we’re doing in our messaging is really drilling down what it is and what it isn’t. So Launch Gorgeous is not a course, it is way more like a coaching program, but even that sort of falls flat, because coaching programs, I mean some do, but most coaching programs aren’t going to give you a day by day assignment, it’s more like a weekly check in. And that’s where Launch Gorgeous is totally different.

We also are adding several features to the program that give you that sense of a total shortcut. So from our templates, and actually we’re going to be giving, I think it’s $500 of Funnel Gorgeous dollars to use for templates, and we tell you what to do buy, when to buy it, how to use it, how to adjust it, that people who would have said, “Oh my gosh, I didn’t think I could ever write sales copy.” Are now writing sales copy. People who don’t have any design experience, modifying their logos, getting their brand ready to go.

And it’s just incredible to see how much momentum there is when you really work hard to design a program that meets the person where they’re at and helps pull them over to that next hump.

So March 9th is the big date. If you are on my email list, you probably are seeing emails go out. We’re working on a pre-launch series right now. You know, we’ve got posts on Facebook and Instagram, you can see there’s a lot of buzz being built. And if you’ve listened, or binged on my podcast you know that I like to build pressure, so you’re seeing that happen. There will be a lot of signature hallmarks of what we do when we launch, but again, this is an experiment because we are basically saying to people, “Hey, we are launching a coaching program, a premium program, done with you live experience. But we’re actually going to do a buy now.”

What are our expectations? You know, it’s really fun. I use a lot of the spreadsheets that I created for Launch Gorgeous, I built specifically for my high end one on one clients, because I kept having the same conversations over and over. And I thought, oh gosh, let me just solve this problem here with a spreadsheet. So I’m actually using the spreadsheet for Cathy and I. We’re using our own templates, we’re using our own curriculum, which is super fun.

So we are expecting a smaller group for this, and in fact, we both made the call that, you know, we crunched the numbers, that we never want more than probably at the very most, 200 people in a group. And more importantly probably closer to 100 would be the most ideal. We’re doing the group right now with 171 people. And it’s working great, we’re able to get to everybody’s questions without any trouble, we’re able to be in the Facebook group everyday and see every single post that comes through, which is, I think, pretty impressive.

So we expect to get around 100 students, that’s our hope, that’s our goal for this next launch, but using the spreadsheets, that’s going to take a significant push. Not only that, it’s an investment for sure.

So for any of you guys who are watching what we do and looking behind the scenes, “Why are they doing it this way? Why are they doing it that way?” one of the things that you’ve seen sort of exploding in the Funnel Gorgeous brand is this idea of creating momentum. And it’s not enough for us to just give you education, it’s not enough for us to just tell you the information. We actually want to present it in a way that takes action. And what that ultimately does is it creates sort of a virality almost of our courses.

We are approaching 3200 students in Offer Cure. We launched it in October. So November, December, January, so in 4 months we have gotten over 3000 students, and some of our students are really big names in the space, who have actually written into us and said, “This program was amazing.”

So that’s sort of where we’re heading and that’s what Launch Gorgeous is doing on a much grander scale. It’s taking all that we learned about what worked with Offer Cure, and what worked with Funnel RX and putting that into a done with you experience, where you’re just not going to get the same experience in a regular course where the course creator shows up maybe once a week. It’s way more intense, hands on, and it also puts a lot of own-ness and responsibility on the person to say, “Yeah, I’m ready. I’m ready to launch.” We don’t people in the program who are not ready to launch. We don’t want people who are collecting our curriculum, we want to incentivize people.

And one of the really fun things that we’re actually going to be rolling out is, Cathy and I have a pretty good email list. It’s not huge but it’s very engaged. So we are going to be writing an email to our list of about 20-25,000 people and we are going to pick 3 of our launchers, 3 people who we think did an amazing job following the experience and launching, and we’re actually going to blast out an email highlighting these 3 people and sending links to their funnels and offers. Which is an incredible sort of gift to those 3 people, and hopefully incentivizes everyone who comes through the program to not let it collect dust on the shelf, to work with us live, to get and to commit to showing up for yourself, showing up for your offers and your business.

So if you guys are watching behind the scenes or you want to get in on the pre-launch, you go to, the doors are opening March 9th. We will shut the doors if we hit 200 students, we have committed to that. So that is a big gamble on our part. Obviously we would love to do a million dollar launch someday, but Launch Gorgeous, it’s more important for us to protect the integrity of the program.

So it is by it’s nature scarce, by it’s nature urgent. It’s going to be an experiment, and I will keep you posted on everything that happens. And thank you guys for listening, I really appreciate you. If you enjoy my podcast, I’ll tell you what, instagram tags @juliechenell, reviews on the podcast itself, mentions in Facebook groups, really motivate me to keep recording. Because sometimes it gets hard with the business. So if you enjoy this I would love to hear about it. I appreciate you all, talk to you soon.

Where To Get Accurate Information About COVID-19 Coronavirus

I’m disgusted with BOTH the news media and our government’s attempt to educate the public about COVID-19. So instead of bitching about on social media, I’m going to do something about it by telling you where I’m getting my information. Take what you will!

I think most everyone will agree…

  • The news media has an agenda.
  • So does our president and the leaders who serve him.

It’s an election year and so both sides are quick to politicize this outbreak. Not only that, but our President has anchored his entire presidency to economic policy and the stock market, so delivering bad news will certainly continue to spook the markets. This is why we’re seeing these incredible press conferences filled with self-adulation, puffery, gaslighting, and very little ACTUAL information.

It would stand to reason that the only logical solution in this instance is to follow the advice of those who have expertise in infectious disease and public health crises like worldwide pandemics.

This means I’m following epidemiologists and other science backed accounts to read the facts and the analysis around the numbers.

If it’s a politician, a government official, or a major news media spokesperson, you can be sure there’s a spin somewhere.

And if you’re getting your information from conspiracy theorists or friends and family who might be falling down the rabbit hole of conspiracy theory, you might find yourself more panicked than you need to be… or too relaxed than you should be.

Today is Sunday March 1st, and in the United States, we’ve just recorded our first death.

Many epidemiologists are on record as saying that because of the lack of testing, many more deaths have probably been mislabeled as viral pneumonia or other flu-related deaths. We haven’t had the testing capability or the government’s permission to test until late last week.

That actually might feel a bit like a relief. After all, it means that the majority of people go on to be just fine. If the virus is here and the world hasn’t ended, then it’s not really a bit deal.

However, this isn’t just about an individual experience with a virus. This isn’t about how hard to panic (we shouldn’t by the way). It’s about our economic and health system bearing the weight of a brand new virus that will – if spread as far as they suspect – will cause enormous strain on our society.

What I’m going to do is curate a bit of information I’ve found — hopefully it will help you the way it did me!

>> Make sure you actually click on these tweets and read the whole thread. The author is tweeting replies to his/herself in order to give out more info! <<

This is a great (albeit) nerdy explanation as to why 1 death in Washington State actually suggests that we have hundreds of people infected that aren’t currently labeled as COVID-19.

If you’re wondering how to respond, how to track it, what level of awareness you should have, I loved these recommendations…

If you’re interested in understanding how scientists view this crisis, and why giving the system “slack” is so important, this was incredibly helpful!

In answer to the question, “Why is speed so important?”

Why this isn’t just about any one individual, but about doing our civic duty to stay informed and protect the frail around us…

Why the press and news relying on today’s numbers is so flawed…

If you have resources (scientifically backed – not government backed), would love you put them in the comments!