☝️ Upwarding #19: Handshake alternatives, 3-minute mindfulness, Replicating whole life, The end of the rope…

Welcome to this week's Upwarding newsletter. My blog, with more in-depth content, can be found here.


Can we just agree to be done with handshakes? And what should replace them? Here are a few alternatives:

The footshake, aka the Wuhan shake:

Just wave.

Live long and prosper.


Ebola handshake

Which do you like best? I’m leaning towards Shaka!


Recent recommendation – do this 3 times a day for 2-3 minutes (don’t obsess over the length of time) – inhale saying “Soft”, exhale saying “Belly”, breathing in and out of your diaphragm instead of chest. Simple but VERY effective. Good for pre-meditation as well.


If your prescription drug doesn’t get great coverage under your health plan, try goodrx.com. Their simple slogan is “stop paying too much for your prescriptions”, which they achieve by giving you price comparisons at local retailers as well as coupons from manufacturers. In this time of coronavirus, they also show you how to avoid the store completely by doing mail order…which is often even cheaper!

Bonus: Here’s a great at home workout, no equipment required.


I totally get the appeal of whole life insurance – it just seems very “safe” with its annual dividend and guarantees.

But you pay a LOT for this privilege – big fees to the broker, big expenses to the life insurance company, and big penalties if you try to pull your money out any time in the next decade. PLUS if you read the fine print its not truly guaranteed...there are ways for them to slip out of their commitments.

I decided to research how these funds are invested, and you can track their returns pretty closely with something as simple as:

The above since 2003 has achieved a real return of about 4%, relatively low volatility, relatively good tax protection, and decent income (a little over 3% yield in recent years). It’s a nice middle ground between an emergency fund account and retirement accounts, with good liquidity.

Random Thoughts

I was a big early proponent of outsourcing, having worked with pioneer Zia Chishti at Align Technology when we moved a lot of work to Costa Rica and Pakistan.

My thoughts have evolved dramatically, and now I make the most use of a platform called Fiverr. Some examples of what I’ve used it for:

1) A list of diet compliant recipes

2) Editing a sound file, and adding music to a meditation

3) Digitally staging a rental

4) Painting custom artwork to my specifications

5) Converting between difficult file formats for documents

6) Creating a custom website for upwarding.com

7) Creating a custom database of properties I was researching

The possibilities are endless. If you have a discrete project that falls outside the normal scope of what you do, I highly recommend Fiverr!


For those of you getting driven crazy by kids, isolation, and more:
“When you come to the end of your rope…tie a knot and hang on” – Franklin D. Roosevelt

Stay well,