Loving Life Blog

Spur of the Moment Reflections

From American Idiot to Great American… September 19, 2009

Filed under: coaching,Entrepreneur,Swedish-American — Johanna C. Nilsson @ 1:30 pm
Tags: , , ,

I had the privilege to get tickets to the World Premier of the Rock Opera “American Idiot”, based on the hit album by Green Day of the same name. It was a tempo filled performance at Berkley Repertory Theater Wednesday night by a very talented group of musical artists. The anticipation was high, the house was full and the standing ovations rocking. So was the opening party. I can warmly recommend the show!

You may recognize this song, Boulevard of Broken Dreams:

However, American idiots and broken dreams were not what I intended to write about – rather the contrary. Something that captures the spirit of the American Dream. One lesson the entrepreneur & CEO freedom fighter Christine Comaford learnt by Bill Gates in terms of growing a business, reducing risk and securing revenue was “Sell first, build later”. Ask provocative questions and find the need of your individual clients. Find the pain of the clients, come up with and sell the solution that will remove it. Know that you with your commitment, capability and connections can make it happen.

You could also market your idea and create a buzz before it actually has been materialized. One individual who did just that was the now entrepreneur and CEO Coach Mark Friedler. As an exchange student [correct me if I’m wrong Mark] in Stockholm, Sweden, 22 years ago he realized in essence that Swedes “suffer from the pain” of not having American Chocolate Chip Cookies. After a successful sample test serving cookies in Humlegården, by the Royal Library in Stockholm, he happened to step into the same elevator as a visiting journalist from the Wall Street Journal. That is literally when an elevator pitch comes handy! Sharing his story resulted in the below notice in the WSJ and later on the creation of what today still exist as American Cookies in Gallerian in Stockholm.

Mark was this weeks keynote speaker at the Swedish-American Chamber of Commerce (SACC) San Francisco/Silicon Valley’s monthly luncheon with the topic “10 tools to grow your bottom line”. Life was too busy to let you know ahead of time – but keep your eyes open, I’m sure he will appear elsewhere. The next mothts speaker will be the founder of Craigslist!

What is the pain that you can identify with your clients? What could you create as a solution to remove it? What do you need to do to sell it and close the deal?

I went to the concert yesterday with “The Pain of Being Pure at Heart” at the Great American Music Hall in San Francisco. The concert was OK, but I have secure sources that say the group will become very big, so I kept the ticket ;). I loved the facility. The promoter in me looked around with the eyes of “what event can be created here?” It would be perfect for a US release party of Spotify – I guess I should sell them the idea! Anyone wanna join?

Go painkillers!


clipped from www.facebook.com
blog it

Dead Man Attracts Love September 10, 2009

Welcome! I thought I would become a journalist – what do you think of my headline? Seriously, please read on – there lies something in it, as we would say in Swedish…

I started writing this last time I came back from yoga. Relaxed and happy – the session ended with a nice Savasana – dead man’s pose. Apparently it is the most challenging pose of them all, although it’s the one that seems the easiest. B.K.S. Iyengar wrote: deadmanspose

In this asana the object is to imitate a corpse. Once life has departed, the body remains still and no movements are possible. By remaining motionless for some time and keeping the mind still while you are fully conscious, you learn to relax. This conscious invigorates and refreshes both body and mind. But it is much harder to keep the mind than the body still. Therefore this apparently easy posture is one of the most difficult to master.

Keeping the mind still. It is good to practice. Not only to learn to relax, and refresh your body and mind, but also to allow things to happen. As Rusty put it at that time: “the biggest favor we sometimes can do to ourselves is to step out of our own way. To stop thinking, forcing or manipulating something to happen. Sometimes the quickest way to create what we really want is to step out of the way and let it happen.

The following evening I attended an entrepreneurship event organized by TiE – The Global Network of Entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley.  The title was “Wisdom From Past Entrepreneurs – The Dirty Little Secrets that No One Talks About” presented by the CEO Freedom Fighter Christine Comaford. Christine is a business accelerator referred by individuals such as Bill Clinton and Bill Gates. She has track record like few – check this video for a taste of her wisdom to help you as an entrepreneur avoid the mistakes that keep you overworked, underpaid, and feeling trapped by your business. As a former Buddhist monk (aside from software engineer, geisha trainee, entrepreneur and venture capitalist) one of her key tips at the end was “keep the mind still daily”. She recommended Eckhart Tolles latest books “Stillness Speaks”, and she reiterated what I have said beforeit is so often in that stillness that you find a great idea or the solution you have been looking for.

Next morning I receive an email from my leadership group where one individual shares along the same lines on a personal level:  “Awareness is just that…staying without judgment, feeling without adding shoulds, and in the end, being able to look into my own eyes and see the joy and strength and beauty of the moment – awareness of the moment is the connection to the heart…. connection to the heart is connection to everything else that exists in the Universe.  […] I have gained quite a swatch of grey hairs over the past year – and the peace I feel in my heart is allowing me to step into my role as an elder with courage and incredible enthusiasm.  While I have lost what I thought was the love of my life, I have gained what I know to be the life of my love.” So beautifully put. It made me think of the introductory words of a book I had just come across: Enchanted Love, by Marianne Williamson. “Forget logic. Forget your head. Open your heart, and come with me.” Now I am curious what more it has to say.

Dead man’s pose in reality – how attractive is that? Maybe more than you think.

With love,




San Francisco Musician and Composer

Steve Blank

Innovation and Entrepreneurship


- where it all comes together...

Co-Creating Health

Creating Great Days!


definition of GRIT: firmness of mind or spirit


From the heart of Silicon Valley


Phil Sanderson


WordPress Music Theme


a community for VR developers and enthusiasts