Monthly Archives

May 2018

Why Having a Social Life Can Save Your Life

By | Inspire Ideas, Invoke Passion, Motivate Others

So, the SoapBoxSample team decided to start a new “thing.” We committed to spending 15 minutes each week, focusing on ways we can grow personally or professionally. We call it 15 Minutes of Growth (because coming up with clever names isn’t our strong suit, unless Jacqueline is involved). We all take turns presenting, and it’s led to some inspiring and eye-opening conversations.

A couple months ago I presented on a TedTalk I found about the secrets to living longer. Here’s the secret – social interaction is good for your health.  Turns out, I’m already taking this speaker’s advice (*brushes off shoulders). My wife Sarah laughed when I showed her the video. She joked that I’ll most likely live to 100 given my network of friends and my active social life!

Surprisingly, it’s not the close relationships (people you go to for a loan or visit you in the hospital) that matter the most, it’s the social integration that matters. Meaning – do you stop to chat with people, or do you talk to your neighbors? (Hopefully you don’t have a horror-movie type of neighbor who could actually shorten your life in a violent manner.) Assuming that the people you would integrate with are generally not psychos, having more interaction with them has long-term benefits.

You may be thinking to yourself, I’m super integrated. I have like 700 Facebook friends. Before you go congratulating yourself, I have to break the news to you —  social media interaction is not the same thing. If you want to achieve the health benefits of being social, you have to meet people face-to-face. Going online and liking 1,000 baby photos will not help you. (Except if they’re pictures of my new baby Charlotte. Her cuteness will definitely lengthen your life.) But if you’re just looking at regular baby photos, and vacation photos, and grammar police commenters, and all the other aspects of social media interactions, it won’t help (according to science).

If you want to live longer by being social, here are some things you should do:

  • Eye contact
  • Handshakes
  • High-fives
  • If you’re a salesperson like myself, meet your clients in person instead of over the phone
  • If you can’t meet someone in person, call them on the phone instead of emailing them. When someone can hear your voice they automatically think you are smarter. (Again, this is according to science. Don’t ask me how they know this stuff.)
  • Get to know your co-workers by going out for Happy Hour (Be careful with this one, as you may find out waaaay more than you ever wanted to know.)

Basically, it’s the stuff that happens in-person, face-to-face, and in real life that matters. Social media is great, but it can’t take the place of looking into someone’s eyes and sharing a moment. So instead of forwarding a link to this blog to your friend or co-worker, call them up and tell them how great it is with your voice. And find out how their real lives are going.

Who Are You? Who? Who? Who? Who?

By | Be Genuine, Have Fun, Take Risks

What is the deal with this random album cover featuring grown men munching on bananas? You’ll have to read to the end of the blog to find out.

Hopefully you all have the Who song stuck in your head now. I like to be annoying like that. I mean, it might not be annoying to you, but may get annoying to those around you. Oh well for them. Our Director of Marketing has been wanting to do this Ask Jax series. I keep putting her off thinking she will forget or go away. She is pretty persistent.

Recently, we got an email from one of the programs my daughter is involved in and they had a series of questions to get to know their staff better, so I finally caved. When we are doing business with clients or vendors, we can often forget we are all humans. I know I enjoy getting to know people – especially people who are authentic and trying to live the best life possible. So here goes.

What is your happiest memory?

Definitely the day my daughter was born. Ha! Juuuusssstttt kidding. That day sucked. All kinds of pain and bodily fluids. The result of the day was decent, but can’t say happiest memory. But equally as cheesy, albeit more honest, was the day I met my husband. I was smitten by him immediately. We were engaged 6 months later. We have been married 15 years this year. I can still see him turn around, smile and say in his really strong accident “No thanks, I can buy my own beer.” While it doesn’t sound super romantic, it was at Senor Frogs in Cancun so….

What are your hobbies?

When I am not injured, I love to workout. ANYTHING intense or a little crazy that pushes your body to the max — running, obstacle course racing, ultra-distance road biking, bootcamp, mud runs – well you get the picture. I love to do outdoor activities with my family like skiing, hiking, biking and rock climbing. The old lady side of me loves to cook (in a crockpot), plan parties (as long as someone else cleans up) and scrapbooking (which has honestly been on a 4-year hiatus pretty much).

If you could be one animal, real or fictional, what would you be and why?

I would be a dinosaur. Can you imagine? Picture this. It’s LA. Rush hour. On the 405. And, me, the dinosaur, just comes out of nowhere like “Hey, look at me! I am a dinosaur”. And then people would go crazy, and I would just yell repeatedly, “Distinction is a myth!!” while stomping on all the cars (not hurting any people of course). I would want to be a flying dinosaur so I could then just fly away after.

If you could change one thing about yourself, would you? If yes, what would you change?

No. I would not change anything. OK. That is a lie. I was being lazy and didn’t want to come up with an answer.

I sometimes hate exploring these things. Like what if I changed X, and then all this other stuff changed. That was a movie wasn’t it? Anyway, I would change my ability to fall asleep more easily. I basically want more sleep. It seems better to want to fall asleep more easily than to want it to be harder to wake up.

What are the qualities you look for in a friend?

Funny. To clarify, I don’t really care if they are funny, as long as they think I am funny.

If you were granted three wishes, what would you wish for?

Great hair.

Self-confidence, self-love, respect, kindness and happiness for my daughter.

To be turned into a funny dinosaur who can fly.

Name three things you find beautiful.

My husband, my daughter, the forest.

If you could have one super power, what would it be?

The ability to cure those who suffer from chronic pain. Whoa. Got all serious there for a quick second. But for real. I personally deal with this as do others I love very much. It is a tough life. And I think chronic pain patients have a tough time battling against opiates and pain management. I wish I could solve this crisis by curing everyone.

If you could master any skill or talent, what would that be?

There many things I still want to learn and master. If I had to pick one, I think it would be photography.

A close runner up would be the ability to annoy my tween daughter with a single code word she never figures out.

Quick. First three songs that come to mind?

James – Laid

Elton John – Tiny Dancer

Bob Seeger – Turn the Page

Now that, was SUPER random song selection. I shall go listen to all three right now….