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The Pride Ride

By: Michael Blankenship |

“The way to be happy is to like yourself, and the way to like yourself is to do only things that make you proud.”

– Mark S. Lewis

Good morning!

Did you know a narwhal’s tusk reveals much about its past? Similar to the rings of a tree, scientists can look at the “layers” of a narwhal’s tusk to learn about past conditions such as pollution, temperature, and even diet. I can’t… because I’m not a scientist. But I can use savvy tools like Masterworks to help me diversify my investment portfolio (how was that for a transition?). Masterworks makes investing in artwork (like Picasso and Monet) affordable, easy, and often more profitable than the stock market or even real estate. If you want to diversify, check it out. Unless you’re a scientist, in which case you’re probably busy examining narwhal tusks. 

– Mike & Alec

The Pride Ride

Maybe you think of pride as a bad thing — as one of the seven deadly sins. 

But it’s difficult to understate how powerful well-placed pride is for personal growth. 

I’ll never forget when my wife started training to run a marathon — something she’d aspired to do but never done before — and the personal pride she experienced after every day of training was spectacular to witness. 

She was proud of herself because she was doing something difficult, something she’d never done before. And that pride looked a whole lot like joy. 

Because she was proud of herself, she also started to work more diligently in other areas of her life as well — as a mother, as a wife, and at University. 

That’s the domino effect of having pride in yourself — pride turns into self-confidence and self-confidence turns into meaningful action. 

And then the cycle repeats. 


How can you become more proud of yourself? 

The best starting place is action. 

Make a commitment and do something that’s just a little bit difficult or outside your comfort zone. 

That could mean training for a marathon, signing up for therapy, reading a book, or purchasing a fitness program. 

It’ll be different for different people. 

But one thing’s for sure… once you take control of one aspect of your life, you’ll feel immense pride and want to take control of other aspects of your life. 

That’s how growth happens.


Retirement “Engine” Running on Empty?

After a decade-long bull market boosted your nest egg, retirement was just beyond the horizon. But this year’s 23% market decline has thrown a wrench into many people’s retirement roadmap. It’s time to get back on track, and make up for lost ground, by looking outside of traditional markets. 

One thing the investing pros are turning to are real assets like fine art. Not just for inflation protection and portfolio diversification, but performance too. According to new research from Goldman Sachs, diversified portfolios with real assets like art have outperformed traditional portfolios since WWII. 

Masterworks makes it simple to invest in art. With this award-winning platform, over 575,000 members can invest in multi-million dollar art by names like Picasso and Monet, for just a fraction of the price. While others have been selling at double-digit losses, Masterworks has exited six positions for a net return of 21.5%+ each.*

As a trusted partner, The Tonic readers can skip their waitlist to join with this exclusive referral link. 

*See important Reg A disclosures.

Just An Idea

A few years ago, Andy Frisella published a short article on his website titled, It Was All ‘Just An Idea’, where he muses about how everything that humans have achieved started out as just an idea in someone’s head. 

It’s something I enjoy revisiting every once in a while:

Take a moment and grasp this concept…

Every fucking thing around you was once just an idea in someone’s mind.

The screen you are reading this on…

The shirt you are wearing…

The car that you drive…

The plane flying above you in the air…

The house that you live in…

All of it…

…was just a figment of someone’s imagination at one point in time.

It was all “just an idea.”

So, why do you think that whatever you have in your mind isn’t possible?

Whether it’s the amount of money that you want to make…

The kind of life that you desire…

Or the new product you thought of that could change millions of people’s lives…

This concept applies to everything.

Dream big … and develop a solid belief that you can do that shit.

Then go after it every single day…

And keep working on it until you make your ideas a reality.

All of the greatest inventions & advances in society have come from “crazy” ideas that were impossible…

…until they weren’t.

Taking Notes

Read a lot? 

Wondering how you can take more useful notes? 

Ryan Holiday has an awesome system. Here’s how it works. 

  1. Read your book and underline/highlight as you normally would, keeping track of anything that might be particularly useful later on — “Read a book or an article and diligently mark the passages and portions that stand out at you. If you have a thought, write it down on the page (this is called marginalia). Fold the bottom corner of the page where you’ve made a note or marked something (alternatively, use post-it flags).”
  2. Once you’ve finished the book, set it aside for a couple weeks. Then come back to it and transfer your more helpful highlighted/underlined sections to notecards — one notecard per idea. Here’s why you should wait a few weeks: “Why wait? Waiting helps you separate the wheat from the chaff. I promise that many of the pages you marked will not seem important or noteworthy when you return to them. This is a good thing–it’s a form of editing.”
  3. Next, organize those notecards based on topics — “In the top right hand corner of each card, put a theme or category that this card belongs to. If a card can fit in multiple categories, just make a duplicate card.” These topics/categories can be whatever you want. Here are some of Ryan Holidays’:
    1. Stoicism
    2. Life (General advice about life)
    3. The Narrative Fallacy (Something I’d like to write a book about one day)
    4. Strategy (Examples of strategic genius or wisdom)
    5. Post Ideas (Many cards here have been turned into articles you’ve read)
    6. Animals (Weird stories about animals. For instance, according to the book One Summer by Bill Bryson, the hotel that Babe Ruth lived in for most of his career had a live seal living in the lobby fountain)
    7. Trust Me, I’m Lying (Media manipulation)
    8. Writing (Wisdom about the craft)
    9. Education (Wisdom and ideas about learning)
    10. Misc (Naturally)

What’s great about this system is that it allows you to access information based on topic, from many different sources… which is super useful if you’re writing a book, article, or hosting a podcast that requires deep information. 

Try it out!

The notecard system doesn’t take a ton of extra time but it makes the things you’re learning easier to access and more useful for future projects. 

Image of The Week

Everything that Liz & Mollie do on Instagram is awesome. Go follow them

This Week’s Riddle

Here’s this week’s riddle — the answer is at the bottom of the email!

When is a door not a door?

This Week’s Journaling Prompt

Take some time to think through the following journaling prompt. 

What are you proud of yourself for? 

This Week’s Challenge

Self-pride leads to wonderful places. Maybe you need to make a new commitment or build a new habit. Whatever it is, do something that makes you proud of yourself.

Riddle Answer: When it is ajar. Sorry. I suppose that’s more of a dad joke.

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