A Happier Story…For Difficult Times

Yesterday afternoon I was able to help my neighbors pack up their moving van. They left this morning for Alabama. They will be missed. My wife and I were able to help in the afternoon and some other neighbors helped earlier. During the packing we learned that while the other neighbors were helping, someone had walked into their garage and stole 2 new bicycles. #SelfishSelflessSynergy Although this is not a great start to a happy story, it gets better…

Later that evening, after we had finished packing their truck to move, my wife and I and took our dogs on their nightly walk. As we passed another neighbors house, we saw what  appeared to be a nice bike sitting by a tree outside. Concerned, thinking they may have mistakenly left their bike outside, I rang the doorbell. When they answered, I shared my concern about their bike because we just learned that another neighbors bike had been stolen. In this conversation they explained the bike was not theirs. They said the bike was on their lawn in a heap. They said it looked like someone had crashed on it and left it on their lawn.

The thoughtful neighbor picked up the bike, repaired the damage, and put it by a tree in front of their house. They thought someone may have been hurt and the owner would come back. They put the fixed bike in front of their house by a tree so the rider would be able to see the bike and retrieve it when they came back. After the discussion, thinking this may be related, they suggested I walk down the street to the neighbors whose bike was stolen. As it turns out, it was one of the stolen bikes. The boy was very happy to get his bike back.

In addition to getting the bike back, we all got to know each other better then we had previously. This incident helped us see our similarities. We all wanted the bike returned and each of us, though my part was minor, helped make it possible. Everybody, though a bit disappointed by the theft, was able to leave feeling a bit better knowing that we all are looking after each other. And yes it was a mix of people, young, old, middle aged, male, female, brown, black and white.

All in all, we were able to experience a net positive by taking actions to generate comprehensive improvements. We now have a better, more caring neighborhood, by creating pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits. We all feel more secure knowing others care. 

It was fun to realize that we were able to Practice Paneugenesis and generate comprehensive improvements. I look forward to hearing how you do the same. Please share…

Be Well’r,

Craig Becker

Be selfish, selfless, & synergistic so everyone and everything benefits!


Please share your thoughts and questions below.
Contact me: BeWellr@gmail.com


Tom Hanks Agrees: Masks Generate Comprehensive Improvements

Wearing masks is a way to generate comprehensive improvements by creating pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits.

Tom Hanks explains this perspective:

Wearing masks, in other words is a way to Practice Paneugenesis to create all good.

… it generate comprehensive improvements.

Pervasive = it sends out a positive example that may encourage more to do the same

Reciprocal = others are more likely to do the same, we mirror others

Selfish = the protected wearer can live a more varied and active life that does not endanger others or self. It is an example of how to create more good, not Just less bad during this difficult times.

Selfless = enables wearer to do enjoyable, health promoting activities with others while alsolimiting risk to self and others. More good, not just less bad.

Synergistic = engaging in society while also not risking self and others can benefit our economy enabling others to work. In this way the whole is more than the sum of the parts

FastCompany article supported this with their article, “Masks don’t just save lives. They boost the economy: Researchers find that wearing masks can help avoid devastating economic shutdowns.”

Very prophetically W. Edwards Deming declared:

Defend your rights, you lose…

By this he was saying that if one just fights to make their part of the system better without understanding how it negatively effects the whole system, we all lose.

As John Muir, the first elected president of the Sierra Club, explained:

When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe.

Wearing a mask acknowledges that you are part of an interconnected and interdependent system and that you want to make a contribution toward improving the system upon which we all depend.

People have a right to not wear a mask, however that right takes away from everyone else. As Paul Collier noted in the The Future of Capitalism: Facing the New Anxieties, reciprocal obligations are what builds a better society. Obligations help improve because they yield more revenue and more positive feelings for generating contributions.

And: Fast Company’s Article: The 21 best arguments for wearing a mask

If you are interested, I discuss these ideas from a different perspective  in A Way Forward Provided in “The Future of Capitalism”. I also discussed it in MLK Day FOR Everyone’s Benefit and in Gender Equality is about Making Things Better.

I encourage you to wear a mask so you can Practice Paneugenesis and generate comprehensive improvements by creating pervasive, reciprocal, selfish selfless interactions so everyone and everything benefits. Make it a Great Day & Week!

Be Well’r,
Craig Becker

Be selfish, selfless, & synergistic so everyone and everything benefits!

Please share your thoughts and questions below.
Contact me: BeWellr@gmail.com



Making a Better (+3) New Normal

John Oliver convincingly suggests getting back to normal after the pandemic…

         …is just not going to cut it. And honestly, it shouldn’t have taken  pandemic to expose the need for a better system.

He is saying we can’t just make it Less Bad, we must Make it More Good! I encourage you to listen and share your thoughts.

The ideas discussed by John Oliver, an imagined better world, is the type of thinking I promote and ask of my students and myself. I continually suggest we stop focusing on the problem and imagine a better future. A better future will of course eliminate the problem, or it wouldn’t be better, but more importantly it must be better than it would have been had no problem happened. If we prepare for a disaster, the world should be better from those preparations even if the disaster doesn’t happen. To do this this better future must be clearly understood so we can figure out how to create it.

To guide this thought process I use the Paneugenesis Process that starts with an imagined picture of a better future that would be the Idealized Outcome, or what I call a new +3 reality. (video clarifies)

This +3 future would Exceed Expectations by incorporating the concepts discussed by John Oliver that should become our new normal. The new normal must include basic human right Precursors like education, healthcare, retirement, income, and safety nets as Global Public Goods – FOR EVERYONE.

Global Public Goods can create an even better world because it means Maslow’s Hierarchy basic Physiological and Safety needs are met and humans can improve and move toward self-actualization. Really this is something you have heard every time you get on an airplane.

When you fly on an airplane, the flight attendant instructs you to “put your oxygen mask on first,” before helping others. This an important rule because if you run out of oxygen yourself, you can’t help anyone else with their oxygen mask.

If you die, you can’t help anyone else.  If people are fighting get their basic needs and just survive, this means they do not have the ability to contribute to society and thrive. Putting your oxygen mask on first is practicing paneugenesis by being selfish, selfless & synergistic.  It is Selfish – take care of self so you can be Selfless – take care of others, which creates Synergy – because all are better.


Making the basic needs of education, healthcare, retirement, income, and safety nets global public goods will improve man and society because they can.  It also will give us the to create a bette world  This “New Normal” could also enable the development of what Robert Green Ingersoll called the “Improved Man”. In his words…

The Improved Man will be satisfied that the supernatural does not exist – that behind every fact, every thought and dream is an efficient cause. He will know that every human action is a necessary product, and he will also know that men cannot be reformed by punishment, by degradation or by revenge. He will regard those who violate the laws of nature and the laws of States as victims of conditions, of circumstances, and he will do what he can for the well-being of his fellow-men.

The Improved Man will not give his life to the accumulation of wealth. He will find no happiness in exciting the envy of his neighbors. He will not care to live in a palace while others who are good, industrious and kind are compelled to huddle in huts and dens. He will know that great wealth is a great burden, and that to accumulate beyond the actual needs of a reasonable human being is to increase not wealth, but responsibility and trouble.

The Improved Man will find his greatest joy in the happiness of others and he will know that the home is the real temple. He will believe in the democracy of the fireside, and will reap his greatest reward in being loved by those whose lives he has enriched.

The Improved Man will be self-poised, independent, candid and free. He will be a scientist. He will observe, investigate, experiment and demonstrate. He will use his sense and his senses. He will keep his mind open as the day to the hints and suggestions of nature. He will always be a student, a learner and a listener – a believer in intellectual hospitality. In the world of his brain there will be continuous summer, perpetual seed-time and harvest. Facts will be the foundation of his faith. In one hand he will carry the torch of truth, and with the other raise the fallen.


Be strong, be smart and be safe as you work to generate comprehensive improvements by creating pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone you can safely interact so everyone and everything benefits.

Thank you for reading, please comment below and contact me:
Email: BeWellr@gmail.com

A Way Forward Provided in “The Future of Capitalism”

In a very interesting book, The Future of Capitalism: Facing the New Anxieties, Paul Collier addresses capitalism and explains how it can work better.  Bill Gates provides an interesting review in his GatesNotes Blog, Is there a crisis in capitalism?, as does Bloomberg news in The Future of Capitalism, and the New York Times review, Saving Local Communities in a Globalized World.

To me, it provided many good ways to move forward so we are more likely to generate comprehensive benefits from pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits. In the book he indicated that Social Democratic approaches worked from 1945-1970 because this was a time where these societies created policies for health care, pensions, education and unemployment. He suggested these methods moved society forward but it does not work anymore because our thinking became overrun by oppositional ideologies. In other words, as I noted in the post MLK Day FOR Everyone’s Benefit, people were more concerned about individual rights than benefiting the whole. He connected this with how many had adopted Milton Friedman’s proclamation that the only goal of an organization was profit. As we all now know, this type of thinking is incomplete and harmful.

He repeatedly emphasized how pragmatism, the practice of determining the best way to get things done, had been overtaken by the ideologies of “utilitarianism”, “populism”, and “Rawlsian”. From my understanding, utilitarianism is about maximizing individual parts without regard the whole and therefore does not account for system effects. “Populism” presents the people  as a morally good force and contrasts them against the elite who are portrayed as corrupt and self-serving. And “Rawlsian”, something I do not fully understand, sees fairness as equal basic rights, equality of opportunity and promoting the interests of the less advantaged members of society. He suggested that a problem with ideologies is that they often create an enemy and an us vs. them mentality. These ideologies make it difficult to find beneficial approaches.

He explained that ideologies are problematic because they are often blind and do not change course when reality does not match what the ideology predicted. For instance, although it has become abundantly clear that “trickle down” economics is ineffective, some ideologies still promote it as a solution. He explained, ideologies were incomplete because they generally offer either an incomplete headless heart or a heartless head solution. We are all in this together and nobody will make it alone so we must develop better ways to cooperate so we all benefit.

He cited that we must create a society that generates belongingness and esteem because these are our basic hardwired human drives. He also suggested we develop better narratives because it is stories, thus emotions, not facts, that move people because stories become the new facts. He also convincingly documented the need and benefit from government. We need regulations. Just as Dov Siedman analogized, we could not move on our streets without regulation. Governing signs and rules of road that we have all agreed to follow allow traffic to move much quicker and better than if there were no rules of the road.

With regard to his recommendations, he emphasized the need to reinstate reciprocal obligations. As he explained, obligations are to rights what taxation is to public spending. Obligations yield more revenue and more rights yield more spending. As W. Edwards Deming dictated,

Defend your rights, you lose

Reciprocal obligations, after all, help us feel that we are a part of society because we contributed. Fulfilling these obligations generates both belongingness and esteem, our basic drives. He even demonstrated how obligations, and the need to fulfill obligations, are more important than our wants. In many ways this parallels how workers now have greater and greater specialization. Paradoxically, specialization makes people more, not less, dependent on the complementary skills of others.

He helped me better understand our current big divide in people. He showed how the divide is now between the educated and the non-educated and how this then leads to higher and or lower paying jobs. These jobs also, because of automation, relate to the amount of contributions that they can make from their job which then impacts belongingness. When people are able to contribute to society, they feel more ownership in society. This also supports esteem. It also supports the need to protect what we have because of innate “loss aversion”.

Through the book he explains the need and value of an Ethical Family, Firms, State, and the World. Although many may disagree, he explains the current world is more ethical than the world of 1945. Even though it is better, to improve on our current state, he has many good suggestions.

To improve he suggests building commitment and putting more taxes on activities, such as financial transactions, that are zero sum interactions. With this he is suggesting when funds or assets are just changing hands to enrich the winner, these activities should have higher taxes than transactions that benefit society. To help close the divide, he also suggests we should work to build capacities of inequality more than address income inequality because if capacities are improved, the situation can right itself.

He supports capitalism because it is the only economic system that has been able to produce mass prosperity. Despite the value of capitalism, he says it needs to be put right again with more pragmatism and less ideology. Overall he suggests building relationships because relationships mean reciprocal obligations and reciprocal obligations can generate belongingness and esteem. To help make this happen, laws and regulations that had changed to favor the individual over the family and the “economic man” led to weakened employer/employee obligations. These laws can and should be shifted to support the use of reciprocal obligations. Along with these, he suggested it would be vital for leaders to share better narratives to build a shared identity. He cites a shared identity as the foundation for far sighted reciprocity.

His analysis indicates building belongingness and esteem with better laws and regulations will help people be more engaged and fulfilled.  Fulfilling these obligations can help generate comprehensive improvements from the creation of pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits. The by-product…a Happier Society.

Be Well’r,
Craig Becker

Be selfish, selfless, & synergistic so everyone and everything benefits!

Please share your thoughts below. If you have questions or ideas to share, please contact me:
Email: BeWellr@gmail.com

Asking Better Questions Can Generate a Better Tomorrow

For us to create a better world, we have to ask the right questions. If we don’t ask the right questions, it is impossible to get the right answer. Asking the wrong questions means no matter how hard we work at getting the answers, we still won’t get what we want because we asked the wrong question.

Of course, if we are asking the wrong questions, the data we collect to answer the question will be wrong. Working with the wrong data leads to improperly informed data based decisions. We then waste effort, no matter how hard or how diligently we work. As practice continues to illustrate, Dr. W. Edwards Deming forsaw future problems from the existing methods. With regard to this situation, he would say,

It is not enough to do your best; you must know what to do, and then do your best.

We can’t do good work if we don’t answer appropriate questions and have bad or wrong data. Additionally, working this way leads to more problems. Using the wrong data and asking the wrong questions means we get wrong answers. Relatedly, Russell Ackoff said it was most important to make sure you taking appropriate action. Appropriate action is impossible with the wrong data and the wrong question. As he explained,

Climate change is a current example where people cherry pick data to support a preconceived view rather than letting data determine the situation. Walter Williams regular uses cherry picked data to support a different pespective as he did in his November 20, 2019 column, Scientists: Dishonest or Afraid?. A response to his column pointing out that he used bad data can be seen at, Climate scientists neither dishonest nor afraid. In my view, it is important for us to get perspective. To get perspective, it often requires us to take a step back and look at the bigger picture.

From a larger perspective, there are no problems just a reality to improve. In other words, things are functioning, all we can do is improve what we are doing to have  a more beneficial impact.

This issue was brought to my attention as I listened to the first episode of the Solvable Podcast.

In this episode, which is also on Malcolm Gladwell’s Revisionist History podcast , Gladwell interviews Rosanne Haggerty about homelessness. Rosanne explains how we are asking the wrong questions about homelessness. She explains that we believe the homeless problem cannot be solved because we are using the wrong data. She also explains how we are spending more to keep the status quo than it would cost to provide a solution to the housing problem from which everyone could benefit. She suggests a sticking point may be an issue of fairness. I encourage you to listen to this episode on #Solvable and share your thoughts here.

With regard to cost, once again this is the wrong question. It is not how much will it cost but how much can we save by providing housing. A positive benefit would be calculated even before related benefits such as what those people can contribute to society are considered.

This is another “True Cost” example (see True cost is all about The External Ripple). True costs for homelessness must include the widespread burden put on public service workers, police, teachers, EMT, court systems, doctors, librarians, emergency rooms, and the healthcare systems. We can provide an investment in housing for less then it costs to maintain the status quo and this investment will pay societal dividends that benefit everyone and everything.

If you are interested, Roseanne Haggerty indicated that the article in the New Yorker by Malcolm Gladwell, Million Dollar Murray helped inspire her work. The article outlines the huge costs of just one homeless person had for society.


The issue about the wrong question and the wrong data resonates with me because it has been my life’s work. My work has focused on improving health. While most believe better health is accomplished by minimizing and or preventing disease. That line of thinking is once again asking the wrong question which means that associated work provides inappropriate data. Of course decreasing disease problems is helpful and good, but better health cannot be answered by focusing on disease. Please see Prevention Can’t Work and Problems are Irrelevant!.

Currently we have an acute disease care system which is helpful, useful and important to treat problems for the short term. This system, however, is insufficient and inappropriate to generate a better life for all. To create a better life, we must ask about how can we not just have better health, but how do we create a better life for everyone and everything, not possible as things are now.

Health is important, not as an ends, but as a means because it enables a better life. As James Clear explains,

Having health isn’t everything, not having it is.

To create this better life, we must consider everyone and everything because we are all connected and we all rise and fall together.  The question cannot be how do we fix disease and or infirmity, but how do we cause health. We also must be sure that health is understood as the World Health Organization defines it:

A state of complete physical, mental and social well-being

and not

merely the absence of disease and infirmity.

This concept can be applied to everything. I use it for all I do. For example, I have applied this idea to Higher Education when I sought to discover What Helps Students Thrive? not just survive. The questions cannot be about how we prevent failure but how do we facilitate higher levels of success, not possible otherwise. This is what I call Exceeding Expectations, +3. (see video)

I continually challenge myself to exceed expectations. I ask myself, how can do my best in my roles as a husband, parent, friend, co-worker, professor and citizen? My question for myself is how can contribute more as a member of society, not just how do I avoid causing problems. I know when I do this, generated benefits are widespread. Doing this helps others, it helps me feel better about myself, and these actions provide data to support the positive feeling generated about myself. It is a no lose proposition.

If we don’t ask the question, better answers will only be discovered by accident. I recommend we make a concerted effort to ask the right question. Asking the right questions will help us get the right data which will help us make better decisions which can benefit all. In other words, we should be asking ourselves, how can we…

Generate comprehensive improvements by creating pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits?

For those of you that follow me, you know this is how to practice paneugenesis or create all good. Don’t we all want to be contributing members of society? Doing this enables us to be who we want to be. As more of us do this, we create a better life for ourselves because we live a life of purpose and meaning. A by-product from living this way, as more of us do this, a better society for everyone and everything evolves.


Please share how you practice paneugenesis. I encourage you to practice paneugenesis to make it a Great Holiday season for yourself and everyone else. Enjoy and feel good about the beneficial interactions you create with friends, family and the environment.


Terrorism Cannot be Prevented Or Eliminated

As we have learned, we cannot kill all the terrorists. Of course when we do, as with Al-Qaeda, a new version of it, as happened with ISIS, evolves. In other words,

Terrorism Cannot be Prevented Or Eliminated

Killings, sanctions, and or isolationism cannot get rid of terrorism any more than angioplasty or stents can get rid of heart disease.  These approaches are as illogical as saying not having an aspirin caused your headache or not having a doctor made you sick. Right now all we are doing is reacting bad situations with techniques to treat the symptoms. For a short time, some times, they end the symptom but then, eventually, usually in short order, the symptoms and more reappear.

The original issue, terrorism, heart disease, or anything we try to prevent, eliminate and or treat, will reappear because the Precursor’s or causes of the issue are still present. The conditions that led to that outcome are still present so it has to reappear. Unless a new reality is created, old symptoms have to reappear.

As we have learned, education and women’s empowerment are the best ways to move society forward, and as a by-product, also effectively end terrorism. This works because education and empowerment creates a new, “Idealized” reality where more is possible than what existed previously. The same is true for health. When people discover a plant strong, usually near vegan eating style, develop stronger relationships with people and the environment, and become physically active, they create a better life. In addition, the secondary by product, as demonstrated by Dean Ornish and Caldwell Esselstyn’s study’s have shown, the also reverse heart disease.

This is a backward way of saying working to create something better, a new reality using the Paneungenesis Process is also a more effective way to prevent problems than efforts aimed at only eliminating undesired outcomes. In other words, a focus on Creating More Good, Not Just Less Bad isa  more effective way to have less bad. Which also, most importantly, if done correctly, benefits everyone and everything.

As a reminder,

Practice Paneugenesis using this 4 Step to Process

  1. Operationalize Desired Idealized Outcome
    • Determine an Idealized outcome that is better or improved from what is possible or able to happen now
    • Must incorporate Systems Thinking so the outcome benefits are on multiple levels without any seen harm to other levels
  2. Discover and Develop Necessary Precursors to make Desired Outcome Possible
    • Research to discover what must come before idealized outcome, what must be true for desired outcome to occur
    • Assess current process to discover and learn current processes used or must be created to manifest ideal outcomes
  3. Optimize the Process to Develop Skills and abilities that make Precursors possible(this is Green Grass philosophy, its designing a process to help grass grow)
    • Develop good practices (append existing or start new processes)
    • Forget about what you should avoid
      • ONLY Focus on doing what makes desired things happen
    • Nurture, encourage, engage in and reinforce helpful actions
    • Update unneeded, outdated or inappropriate actions to ones that created idealized vision
  4. Plot Progress to document, demonstrate, and celebrate Improvement
    • Measure and document process progress moving forward toward idealized outcome
      • Note specific ongoing processes completed that cause movement forward
    • Plan and develop next steps to enable continual improvement

We cannot prevent or eliminate terrorism, though we can lessen some fo the things that we don’t want. However, if we want a better tomorrow, it can only happen by moving toward a new reality and this is something new that must be created.

Creating something new and better will necessarily push out what we do not want – it has to or the new reality will not exist (see Green Grass Theory)

I have noted this before in Prevention Can’t Work and Problems are Irrelevant! and to move forward we must Create More Good, Not Just Less Bad. I look forward to hearing how you create a better tomorrow, please share your successes.

As you know, I will work for progress by generating comprehensive improvements by creating pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits, or by practicing paneugenesis.  I look forward to hearing about the progress you help generate.

Be Well’r,
Craig Becker

Be selfish, selfless, & synergistic so everyone and everything benefits!

If you want to contact me:
Email: BeWellr@gmail.com

Connected Regeneration for a Better Tomorrow – FREE MOVIE

Without question, all things are interconnected. As John Muir, the first elected president of the Sierra Club, explained:

When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe.

In other words, we are all interdendent on everything else. My paraphrase of what Jane Benyus of Biomimicry Institute demonstrates, a life well lived is one that makes life more livable. In other words, we live a life that make it better for everyone and everything. More about Jane Benyus’s work and Biomimicry is available at this post: Parallel NOT Linear Means Create Positive AND Prevent Negative

This week Ocean Robbins of the Food Revolution Network promoted FREE access to a movie, “The Need to GROW“. This movie demonstrates and emphasizes these interconnection attributes of life on earth and and how they can be used to make life better for all.

The movie demonstrates multiple ways to improve our life that also will diminish problems. To me, it is important to understand, these actions will make our life better today and also make a better tomorrow more likely.

Know that these benefits are not deferred, they are immediate. We feel better right away, we become part of the solution and not part of the problem. It is an emotionally powerful way to practice paneugenesis.

Here is the trailer.

To practice paneugenesis is to generate comprehensive improvements to creating pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits. Why would we do anything else?

I look forward to hearing how you incorporate these ideas into your life and the related benefits you experience.

I encourage you to get the free access and watch “The Need to GROW” at this link.

Rob Herring, the director, shares this:


Please stand with us — telling your friends and loved ones that there is a new film that showcases heartwarming stories and powerful solutions.

You can also give this link to people you know, so they can sign up and join in the free screening too: TheNeedToGROW.com.

Make it a Great Day, Week, Year and Life!

Be Well’r,
Craig Becker

Be selfish, selfless, & synergistic so everyone and everything benefits!

Email me if you want to discuss: 
Email: BeWellr@gmail.com

It is All about the Ripple…

When we drop a rock in a pond it causes a far reaching ripple.  Our actions also cause a ripple that spreads and has a far reaching ripple or impact.  Drawdown is the by-Product of a better tomorrow. By drawdown, in the book edited by Paul Hawken, they are talking about how to drawdown the carbon emissions that are causing problems.

The actions discussed in the book, “Drawdown: The Most Comprehensive Plan Ever Proposed to Reverse Global Warming“, make a better today and a better tomorrow.  Drawdown is the ripple, not the only impact.  A way to make a better tomorrow, starting today, has been outlined by Paul Hawken and a great group of colleagues. The book itemizes 100 examples of how to start to make this happen.

Chad Frischmans TED Talk below provides a summary of the 100 solutions provided in the book.

I always thought my work and focus has been about how to create a better tomorrow by discovering the most effective, efficient and sustainable way to get what we want that also benefits the future.  The concept is similar to how Rory Vader explains how to multiply time.  As he explains, take action today to make a better tomorrow (see Be Fruitful and Multiply – Time That is…).

As I continue to learn, I realized it is “All about the Ripple”.  To feel good for doing good, the ripple, or long term impact, must also be beneficial.  In other words, to add to Vaden’s goal, to focus actions that can be taken today, that will make a better tomorrow…For Everyone and Everything.”

It is possible to create a better today that also makes a better tomorrow more likely, however traditional ways must be improved.  Drawdown is the “Moneyball (also a Movie of the same name)” or better way for the environment, like Upcycle. Better ways have also been found for education, business, industry, health and policy (see Concept: Create More Good, Not Just Less Bad and Create More Good, Not Just Less Bad (described in video). We can ask ourselves, what ripple happens because of the actions taken?

We are not using the ideas outlined by Hawken and Frischman as commonly as we should because skeptics let us doubt ourselves. To instill doubt they focus on the unknown since we can’t answer ever question. Skeptics have been using the idea of doubt to distort our reality for a corporate agenda.

Krugman recently has gotten so frustrated by this he calls the climate deniers depravers.  That is he is accusing them of moral corruption. I encourage you read his 11-26-2018 article, The Depravity of Climate-Change Denial: Risking civilization for profit, ideology and ego.  I am confused by this approach because doing this means they do not get as many benefits either. These shortsighted approaches leave a lot “on the table”.  More benefits will transpire when the aim is to have a positive ripple beyond the initial impact.

What can be done? Dr. Pinillos, a professor at Arizona State University suggests using  probability in his article, Knowledge, Ignorance and Climate Change.  As he explains, because we can’t know everything and we also know that we don’t know everything, he recommends we “…to stop talking about “knowledge” and switch to talking about probabilities”.  As he explains, “…people in the grips of skepticism are often still willing to accept the objective probabilities…”

Plans are not perfect and no matter how smart or educated we are, what we don’t know far surpasses anything we know. Socrates taught us the virtue of recognizing our limitations. The ideas presented by Paul Hawken and Chris Frischman are ones we should already be using so lets get started using them and continue to collect data about those actions and improve as needed. In other words, plot our progress and if it is not happening, we must optimize the process again ( see Improve when Predict, Observe, Get Feedback, and Adjust.

Doing this isn’t always easy.  It is easy to be against something, fight against a perceived injustice or what seems wrong. Although doing this is morally correct and necessary, it is mostly action to stop something.  Then what?  Being for something takes more effort to persistently develop, design and implement and continually improve a better way that not only is initially good, but also has A POSITIVE RIPPLE.

So what am I doing, I am going on offense by working toward renewing, rebuilding, restoring, and building  a better life.  Not just a less bad life, but a better life than where we are.  This isn’t about putting out fires to get us back where we were, it is about redesign to create a new and better reality that makes life better today and tomorrow. We must exceed expectations!

Joining these efforts, not only means you get to experience the benefits a better world, you get the intrinsic rush of knowing you contributed toward everyone and everything doing better. Please share your thoughts. I look forward to hearing about the how you practice paneugenesis so you will generate all good by creating pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits.

Be Well’r,
Craig Becker

Be selfish, selfless, & synergistic so everyone and everything benefits!

If you want to contact me:
Email: BeWellr@gmail.com


Do we need an Independent Referee for Life?

For some time I have been thinking about the importance of perceived fairness.  Evidence suggests fairness is innate because we see it in very young children.  I also believe I have seen the concept of fairness in my dogs.  Is it a law such that even dogs want fairness?

As I had been thinking about it, I learned about Michael Lewis’s new Podcast, Against the Rules. This podcast promotes itself by explaining how it will “…look at what’s happened to fairness.  The podcasts look in financial markets, newsrooms, basketball games, courts of laws and much more.  He asks, what happens to a world where everyone hate the referee?”  I have only listened to a few, however what I have heard have been great!

To me, fairness is a basic necessity or a precursor to being able to do better than what is expected or what have been called best practices. For me fairness is the 0 I emphasize in my exceeding expectations video (below).

Please share your thoughts about how we can build fairness into our daily lives so people don’t feel cheated.  When things aren’t fair, everybody loses something because the cumulative benefits, though tilted toward one party, will still be less for all.  I will continue to work at generating comprehensive improvements beyond just being fair through the creation of pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits, or by practicing paneugenesis.  I look forward to hearing about the how you help generate all good for everyone and everything.

If you want to contact me:
Email: BeWellr@gmail.com

Chronic Wellness Article Published

Planting a Tree Model for Public Health: Shifting the Paradigm Toward Chronic Wellness

  • April 2019; DOI: 10.1080/19325037.2019.1590260

With the leadership of Dr. Michael Stellefson, we were able to publish this article.  Using ideas proposed with Paneugenesis, Dr. Stellefson clearly outlined how these ideas can facilitate “Chronic Wellness” which we defined as:

Persistent positive conditions enabled through engagement in health-causing actions

The article explains how health education can work in the eco-sytstem of health like trees function in our physcial environment to provide a life giving force.

Though the U.S. health care system is among the best in the developed world, access to chronic care remains a problem for many, in part, because the system is not ideally suited to treat long-term conditions. Consequently, economic and societal costs associated with chronic disease are rising rapidly. To complement traditional pathogenic chronic disease management strategies, Health Education specialists should consider incorporating salutogenic methods that promote chronic wellness. We define chronic wellness as persistent, positive conditions enabled through engagement in health-causing actions. This commentary proposes a public health tree model that seeks to nurture inclusive interactions in a health-promoting ecosystem that fosters chronic wellness: Assessment (ie, “roots” of public health interventions that appraise idealized health outcomes), policy development (ie, “trunk” of public health that helps support positive health outcomes), research and evaluation (ie, “branches” of evidence-based public health that apply scientific methods to engage and learn about health in community, school, health care, and organizational settings), and assurance (ie, “leaves” that reinforce policies to nurture continually improving environmental determinants of health). Adopting a public health tree model could lead to more efficient and effective services for many, including those at risk of devloping or living with chronic disease.

Please share your thoughts.  I will continue to work at generating comprehensive improvements through the creation of pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits, or by practicing paneugenesis.  I look forward to hearing about the how you help generate all good for everyone and everything.

Be Well’r,
Craig Becker

Be selfish, selfless, & synergistic so everyone and everything benefits!

If you want to contact me:
Email: BeWellr@gmail.com

Science, Beauty, Evolution, and Progress

This post was inspired and improved by information provided by Kerry Sewell. Thank you Kerry.

I am constantly reading and listening to presentations to learn new things.  As I learn I am awed by what I learn and how everyone and everything is interconnected.  Recently I listened to an interesting RadioLab presentation and 2 TED Talks and they all seemed to tell an interconnected story.

To start the story,  Phil Plait ‘s TED talk, The secret to scientific discoveries? Making mistakes,(see below) provided a fresh perspective on science.  He reminds us that mistakes are part of the scientific process.  He also suggests that many people misunderstand science because they  think that “…science is just a big pile of facts.” He emphasizes the problem with this belief is not only that it is wrong, but that collected facts are not even a goal of science.  He then explains how the process of science provides humans with the best chance to learn about our reality, objectively.  Next he explains what most of us know, but fail to admit, “…people are flawed” and easily fooled. Science is valuable because it provides a method to be objective  (for more about our difficulty seeing things accurately see, Innate Gullibility Highlights the Value of Predictability)

Science helps because it gives us a process that minimizes our biases so we can see reality more clearly. I encourage you to listen to his presentation below.

Next, an interesting RadioLab discussion about The Beauty Puzzle (show linked) challenged the evolutionary scientific idea of fitness as the determining factor.  In other words, it suggests we may have made a mistake.  This hypothesis suggests beauty or aesthetics, not survival of the fittest, is the determining factor, and that the ’survival of the fittest’ paradigm was a deliberate perversion of Darwin’s original theory..



The evidence providedfor this hypothesis,, while it has some merit, for me, provides an unconvincing alternative.  The discussion did not factor in the idea of mental illusions or mistakes in the scientific process as discussed by Phil Plait.  Nor did it take into account mental illusions as outlined by Kahneman and Tversky. (see Undoing Needed because Mental Illusions Impact Us)   As I understand it, evolution is an ongoing big experiment and not all experiments are successful.  Their examples may represent some experiments that may contribute but may not be successful. Possibly, or maybe…

Then I heard Marjan van Aubel‘s TED Presentation about solar energy, The beautiful future of solar power.  She suggest beauty may in fact be the determining factor for OUR survival.  In his presentation she explains the importance of aesthetics or beauty and suggests it as necessity if we are to adopt and use the power of the sun.

All together these interesting presentations seem to recommend for us to progress toward a better tomorrow using study, science, experiments, and mistakes to learn how to contribute to a more beautiful tomorrow.

Please share your thoughts.  I will continue to attempt to push evolution with science by creating more beauty through the generation of comprehensive improvements from the creation of pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits, or by practicing paneugenesis.  I look forward to hearing about the how you help generate all good for everyone and everything.

Be Well’r,
Craig Becker

Be selfish, selfless, & synergistic so everyone and everything benefits!

If you want to contact me:
Email: BeWellr@gmail.com

Boredom & Parenting Vindication – Sort of…

I have been reading and digesting Steven Pinker’s book, “Enlightenment Now“, which is fantastic and will be posting about that and Robert Reich’s excellent book, “The Common Good” soon.  As I work on that post, I am sharing an interesting article about boredom and children.

This NYT article,”Let Children Got Bored Again” by Leo Espinosa , caught my attention because I have often felt guilty for often saying to my daughters when they were bored, “Boredom is a choice.”  I was telling them they can do anything, they must choose to do something of interest.  The article explains this better – enjoy…

Let Children Get Bored Again

Boredom teaches us that life isn’t a parade of amusements. More important, it spawns creativity and self-sufficiency.

by Leo Espinosa













“I’m bored.” It’s a puny little phrase, yet it has the power to fill parents with a cascade of dread, annoyance and guilt. If someone around here is bored, someone else must have failed to enlighten or enrich or divert. And how can anyone — child or adult — claim boredom when there’s so much that can and should be done? Immediately.

But boredom is something to experience rather than hastily swipe away. And not as some kind of cruel Victorian conditioning, recommended because it’s awful and toughens you up. Despite the lesson most adults learned growing up — boredom is for boring people — boredom is useful. It’s good for you.

If kids don’t figure this out early on, they’re in for a nasty surprise. School, let’s face it, can be dull, and it isn’t actually the teacher’s job to entertain as well as educate. Life isn’t meant to be an endless parade of amusements. “That’s right,” a mother says to her daughter in Maria Semple’s 2012 novel, “Where’d You Go, Bernadette.” “You are bored. And I’m going to let you in on a little secret about life. You think it’s boring now? Well, it only gets more boring. The sooner you learn it’s on you to make life interesting, the better off you’ll be.”

People used to accept that much of life was boring. Memoirs of pre-21st-century life are rife with tedium. When not idling in drawing rooms, members of the leisured class took long walks and stared at trees. They went motoring and stared at more trees. Those who had to work had it a lot harder. Agricultural and industrial jobs were often mind-numbing; few people were looking to be fulfilled by paid labor. Children could expect those kinds of futures and they got used to the idea from an early age, left unattended with nothing but bookshelves and tree branches, and later, bad afternoon television.

Only a few short decades ago, during the lost age of underparenting, grown-ups thought a certain amount of boredom was appropriate. And children came to appreciate their empty agendas. In an interview with GQ magazine, Lin-Manuel Miranda credited his unattended afternoons with fostering inspiration. “Because there is nothing better to spur creativity than a blank page or an empty bedroom,” he said.

Nowadays, subjecting a child to such inactivity is viewed as a dereliction of parental duty. In a much-read story in The Times, “The Relentlessness of Modern Parenting,” Claire Cain Miller cited a recent study that found that regardless of class, income or race, parents believed that “children who were bored after school should be enrolled in extracurricular activities, and that parents who were busy should stop their task and draw with their children if asked.”

Every spare moment is to be optimized, maximized, driven toward a goal.

When not being uberparented, kids today are left to their own devices — their own digital devices, that is. Parents preparing for a long car ride or airplane trip are like Army officers plotting a complicated land maneuver. Which movies to load onto the iPad? Should we start a new family-friendly podcast? Is this an O.K. time to let the kids play Fortnite until their brains melt into the back seat? What did parents in the ’70s do when kids were bored in the way-back? Nothing! They let them breathe in gas fumes. Torture their siblings. And since it wasn’t actually for wearing, play with the broken seatbelt.

If you complained about being bored back then, you were really asking for it. “Go outside,” you might get, or worse, “Clean your room.” Was this fun? No. Was it helpful? Yes.

Because things happen when you’re bored. Some of the most boring jobs I’ve had were also the most creative. Working at an import factory after school, I pasted photos of ugly Peruvian sweaters onto sales sheets. My hands became encrusted with glue as the sweaters blurred into a clumpy sameness. For some reason, everything smelled like molasses. My mind had no choice but to drift into an elaborate fantasy realm. It’s when you are bored that stories set in. Checking out groceries at the supermarket, I invented narratives around people’s purchases. The man buying eggplant and a six-pack of Bud at 9 p.m.: Which was the must-get item and which the impulse purchase? How did my former fifth-grade teacher feel about my observing her weekly purchase of Nutter Butters?

Once you’ve truly settled into the anesthetizing effects of boredom, you find yourself en route to discovery. With monotony, small differences begin to emerge, between those trees, those sweaters. This is why so many useful ideas occur in the shower, when you’re held captive to a mundane activity. You let your mind wander and follow it where it goes.

Of course, it’s not really the boredom itself that’s important; it’s what we do with it. When you reach your breaking point, boredom teaches you to respond constructively, to make something happen for yourself. But unless we are faced with a steady diet of stultifying boredom, we never learn how.

The idea isn’t that you suffer through crushing tedium indefinitely like Neville (“N is for Neville who died of ennui”) of “The Gashlycrumb Tinies.” It’s that you learn how to vanquish it. This may come in several forms: You might turn inward and use the time to think. You might reach for a book. You might imagine your way to a better job. Boredom leads to flights of fancy. But ultimately, to self-discipline. To resourcefulness.

The ability to handle boredom, not surprisingly, is correlated with the ability to focus and to self-regulate. Research has shown that people with attention disorders are particularly prone to boredom. It makes sense that in a hyperstimulating world, what at first seems captivating now feels less so; what was once mildly diverting may now be flat-out dull.

It’s especially important that kids get bored — and be allowed to stay bored — when they’re young. That it not be considered “a problem” to be avoided or eradicated by the higher-ups, but instead something kids grapple with on their own.

We’ve stopped training children to do this. Rather than teach them to absorb material that is slower, duller and decidedly two-dimensional, like a lot of worthwhile information is, schools cave in to what they say children expect: fun. Teachers spend more time concocting ways to “engage” students through visuals and “interactive learning” (read: screens, games) tailored to their Candy Crushed attention spans. Kids won’t listen to long lectures, goes the argument, so it’s on us to serve up learning in easier-to-swallow portions.

But surely teaching children to endure boredom rather than ratcheting up the entertainment will prepare them for a more realistic future, one that doesn’t raise false expectations of what work or life itself actually entails. One day, even in a job they otherwise love, our kids may have to spend an entire day answering Friday’s leftover email. They may have to check spreadsheets. Or assist robots at a vast internet-ready warehouse.

This sounds boring, you might conclude. It sounds like work, and it sounds like life. Perhaps we should get used to it again, and use it to our benefit. Perhaps in an incessant, up-the-ante world, we could do with a little less excitement.

Pamela Paul is the editor of the Book Review and a co-author of the forthcoming book “How to Raise a Reader.”

Follow The New York Times Opinion section on Facebook, Twitter (@NYTopinion) and Instagram.

Pamela Paul is the editor of the Book Review and oversees books coverage at The Times. She is the author of five books, “By the Book,” “Parenting, Inc.,” “Pornified,” “The Starter Marriage and the Future of Matrimony” and most recently, “My Life with Bob: Flawed Heroine Keeps Book of Books, Plot Ensues.” @PamelaPaulNYTFacebook


Boredom may create health promotion gains. Please share your thoughts on how you will take action to help create a better tomorrow.

Be Well’r,
Craig Becker

Be selfish, selfless, & synergistic so everyone and everything benefits!

Contact me at:
Email: BeWellr@gmail.com


More about “HOW”…To Create All Good

These are 2 great presentations. Barry Schwartz made a fantastic 2009 TED presentation I encourage you to watch.  It is even more relevant today than it was in 2009.  To me much of what he says is at the heart of Practicing Paneugenesis or generating all good.  The presentation explains what is necessary, possibly precursors to creating pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits.  Enjoy and please write back to share your thoughts.



This next presentation by Chad Freshman: 100 Solutions to Reverse Global Warming.  As he points out, the ideas associated with “draw down” not only does this reverse our problem, they are solutions from which everyone benefits.  As he state near the end,

But here’s the great thing. We would want to implement these solutions whether or not global warming was even a problem, because they have cascading benefits to human and planetary well-being. Renewable electricity results in clean, abundant access to energy for all. A plant-rich diet, reduced food waste results in a healthy global population with enough food and sustenance.Family planning and educating girls? This is about human rights, about gender equality. This is about economic improvement and the freedom of choice..

In other words, reversing global warming is a by-product of creating all good.  Now that is Practicing Paneugenesis.  Enjoy.



Please share your thoughts on how you will take action to help create a better tomorrow.

Be Well’r,
Craig Becker

Be selfish, selfless, & synergistic so everyone and everything benefits!

Contact me at:
Email: BeWellr@gmail.com

Selfish, Selfless, Synergy = Thriving

Actions that result in the best outcome for anyone can often be viewed as selfish acts because they help themselves or selfless acts that help others.  As President BillClinton and then Joey from Friends, explains, selfish and selfless are the same thing…

Most importantly, helping others helps improve the whole system which in turn is personally beneficial. Selfless is selfish.  My favorite NYT columnist Thomas Friedman made this point again in his October 9, 2018 linked Column that I encourage you to read, “Donald Trump Versus the Jungle: The president’s fantasy is that the U.S. can ignore the global forces of nature.”

In the article, Friedman suggests America, for the last 70 years since WWII has been providing a leadership role to encourage countries to make good choices for its citizens instead of hoarding resources and letting their citizens be poor and disadvantaged.  He suggests because of this, “…we have been living in the greatest prosperity ever known — globally — and we’ve witnessed the most widespread booming of democracy and the longest period of great-power peace ever known.”

Why did we do this?  According to Friedman, his writing seems to suggest selfish, selfless, synergistic motives:

We did not do all of this out of an abundance of generosity, or the post-World War II statesmen saying, ‘Gosh, how do we make the world a better place?’” he added. “It actually came from them saying: ‘How do we prevent the world backsliding into the kind of world war we just survived?’” This was not charity for them, but cold, calculating self-interest. They knew any order they created would pay back a hundred times for the world’s biggest economy.

In other words, this liberal world order “is not the product of human evolution” — as if human beings have somehow learned to be more peaceful with one another, Kagan argued. It developed because the most powerful nation on the planet, the United States of America, “was born of Enlightenment principles,” and, after being dragged into two world wars in the 20th century, it decided to use its power to spread and maintain those principles — not everywhere and always, but in many places a lot of the time.

In other words, he seems to be suggesting we should work to generate comprehensive improvements by creating pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits! Please share your thoughts.

If you are interested, here is a short video about selfish selfless synergy:

Be Well’r,
Craig Becker

Be selfish, selfless, & synergistic so everyone and everything benefits!

Contact me at:
Email: BeWellr@gmail.com

Frugality ≠ Morality

Evidence suggests “Reason” is powerful and it is what has enabled humans move toward a more just society.  The most recent example of the power of reason happened for me when a new perspective was presented to me about charity.  I had always thought it was important for my money to go for the cause, not the overhead.  With powerful data, Dan Pallotta (in TED Video below), demonstrates how frugality does not mean morality and that spending money for a charity’s overhead is important and necessary. Reason, therefore, as presented by Dan Pallotta, demonstrates there may be better ways to raise money for worthy causes.

Violence prevalence is something that may be the most misunderstood concept because of our 24 hours news cycle that highlights the opposite.  Reason and data demonstrates we are a far less violent society today than in the past. Startling and convincing data outlined by Steven Pinker: The surprising decline in violence in the TED Video below, explains why we are safer.

The above presentations have demonstrated the power of reason.  If you want to argue the point, doing so suggests reason has the power to change minds. The value of reason was clarified and reinforced in the excellent cartooned TED Video by Steven Pinker and Rebecca Newberger Goldstein: The long reach of reason. I encourage you to watch.

As demonstrated, reason has the power to alter our way of thinking and can help us create a better world.

For me, one of the most powerful TED presentations was this 2005 presentation,Barry Schwartz: The paradox of choice where he used reason to challenge the dogma that having more options was good.  If you have seen it before or not, I strongly recommend his presentation and book, The Paradox of Choice: Why More Is Less.

I look forward to hearing how “Reason” will help you generate comprehensive improvements by creating pervasive, reciprocal, selfish, selfless, synergistic interactions so everyone and everything benefits.

Make it a Great Week for Everyone and Everything!

Be Well’r,
Craig Becker

Be selfish, selfless, & synergistic so everyone and everything benefits!

Contact me at:
Email: BeWellr@gmail.com

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