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Decide to Live

Every day, you make multiple decisions. How you make those decisions will define how your life will work out. Obviously, we all want to make the “right” decision. But what exactly is the “right decision”? How does one define right?

How you define right depends a lot on our environment. In our Western world, this usually means we make decisions towards a successful life. Society tells us, a successful life is a secure life. For example: being a manager, lawyer, or a dentist. Not because it is a job which truly and from all of our heart fulfills us, but only for the reason of having a well paying job. Congratulations, do this, and you will be regarded as a rightful member of society.

But damn, we have been fooled! Instead of living a successful life, we are actually living a quiet life of desperation. The truth is, while we’ve optimized our entire life towards a successful life, we missed to actually live.

A successful life, as defined by society, is a secure and easy life. By definition, a secure and easy life is void of any adventure, void of any life.

We all have been granted a magical life here on earth. To truly utilize and appreciate this life, we truly have to live. And living, by definition, is not secure nor easy. Living is full of adventure. It is full of unknowns.

If we try to make the right decision towards a successful and secure life – as defined by our society – we will miss to live.

Always striving for the “right” decision necessarily narrows your decisions towards the already known, the proven, the right way of doing things. Doing so will work most of the time. Eventually, you’ll live a successful, secure life.

But life happens in the unknown. We start to live when we choose heart over mind, adventure over security, the unknown over the known.

When deciding, never decide for the easy option. Don’t decide for the deceptively right option which leads to a successful and secure life (as defined by your family and society). Instead, always decide for the uncomfortable option. The unknown option. Choose the option of adventure. Go for the option which gives you a strange mixed feeling of unease and excitement at the same time.

By going for the uneasy, uncomfortable, unknown option, you will do things you’ve never done before. You will do things nobody has ever done before. You will fail. And you will succeed. Most importantly, you will feel alive.

If – from now on – you optimize and make all your decision so that you live an exciting life full of adventure, unknowns, new and uncomfortable situations, you will truly live life.

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0% Income Tax for Mothers

There is a simple way to support families – especially mothers – and guarantee mothers a secure retirement: 0% income tax with 30% of the personal income of the mother paid into a personal pension fund.

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Notes

Personal Update: Valenus Course Correction

We are entering the third week of 2022. I have reflected on my personal progress as well as the progress of Valenus. I came to the conclusion that a course correction and reorientation is necessary. Let’s dive into where I want to go, the reasons, and how this reorientation will look like.

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The Mindset of Spending, Earning, Saving

Today’s morning started different from expected. As I unconsciously opened my Amazon app, I saw a notification which informed me of changes on my ‘wish list’. The MacBook Pro 16’ suddenly was €2.388. This price was too good to be true (and ignored) so I pressed “buy”.

After this impulse buy, I somehow thought: “Marius, no matter what, this still is a lot of money. Are you sure?”.

It’s not that I cannot afford it. I easily can. As I just thought about it, I realized it is a more overall mindset that I have.

I like to focus on investing, earning, and saving. Spending – on the other hand – somehow invokes a negative feeling in me. I cannot really describe it. I’d have felt good investing €2.388 into Apple stock, but spending €2.388 on a laptop???

In general, I’d describe myself as a simple and Stoic man. I don’t need any luxuries. I prefer minimalism to consumerism. I still drive a cheap used car – which totally does its job of getting me really reliably from A to B. We still live happily in a simple apartment because we see no point in upgrading to a larger and more luxurious apartment.

For me, it’s not a question of whether I can afford something, but whether I could allocate this money in a better way.

What could I’ve done with €2.388 instead? I could’ve hired a freelancer to program a web app for me, pay my rent for 3 months, or simply invest in Apple stock.

Whatever. I knew that – earlier or later – I will need a new laptop. I’m still working with my 13’ MacBook Pro from 2014. It works fine – as long you restrict yourself to 2h of battery life, writing, emails, and 4 or 5 Brave Browser tabs. Everything beyond that? Not really.

So, the purchase was totally fine.

What I philosophize about is this “scarcity” mindset I have. Which, for quite a while after I pressed “buy” I thought “are you sure?”.

After a while, I realized that the better way to think about (and a better mindset to have) is to say to myself: “Great purchase! Now, how can I earn €2.388 today?”.

This reframing helped me to go from doubting my impulse buy to instantly getting back to work, be productive, and now trying to earn €2.388.

The quintessence is the following: pay attention to your mind and reframe negative connotations to get into an abundance mindset again – as soon as possible.

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Essays

Why I am Not Vaccinated

I am not vaccinated against COVID-19. Just five years ago, in a sane and free society, I’d have laughed at myself for feeling obliged writing publicly about such a personal health choice. Unfortunately, our society is not that free anymore. The personal decision to get a COVID-19 vaccine or not ought to be an absolutely free and voluntary choice. Is this really the case?

Click here to listen to the audio version of this article.

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Getting Started in Longevity: Resource Collection

This is a constantly updated overview of the best resources you may find useful for learning and studying human longevity.

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Notes

Thoughts on Australia

In 2013/14, Christian, a good friend and travel mate of mine, and I travelled and worked in Australia for a couple of months. We loved the country, we loved the nature, we loved the people, we loved the cities. When our stay came to an end, we filed our tax return. We had to choose whether we will or will not return to Australia for work purpose in the future. I crossed “No”. At that time, I did it to avoid further bureaucracy. I questioned my “cross” at that time, as I was pretty certain that I will return and one day move to Australia.

Today, I’m asking myself: what went wrong in Australia? One of the (previously) most liberal countries became totalitarian. Citizens are stranded abroad, citizens are not allowed to leave the country (not even intrastate travel is allowed), not allowed to leave the house. South Australia is even working on an Orwellian app to monitor its citizens. 

So totalitarian that I know, at that time I crossed the right answer: I’ll never return to Australia for work.

However, I wish it were not like that. I hope that Australians will wake up and stand up against their completely totalitarian dictatorship. By doing so, you show me (and the world) that Australian people still stand for freedom and liberal values.

Read more in this article worth reading: https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2021/09/pandemic-australia-still-liberal-democracy/619940/

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Essays Featured

Corruption – Solving the World’s Most Important Problem

We see so many problems around the globe. Experts are warning about massive inflation, we see forests burning. The ocean is full of plastic rubbish. The COVID-19 pandemic halted the world economy. The virus and the lockdown measures are costing millions of lives. What role does corruption play, and why is it our world’s most important problem? Which tools can be design to fight corruption once and for all?

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How to Sell Your Small Business

Successfully selling a small business to an investor, group, or competitor in your industry requires preparation. Otherwise, your business will be less interesting to the potential buyer. Which means that you will struggle to find a buyer in the first place. If you do find a potential buyer, you might be dissatisfied with the purchase price. With a bit of preparation you can achieve both: Your business becomes more attractive to potential buyers and the purchase price will be higher. So, what do you need to consider?

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Bitcoin Ponzi?

Over the last few weeks, the crypto market has suffered from substantial losses. The last months showed once again brutally how volatile Bitcoin – and with it the entire cryptocurrency market is.

Ever since I first read the Bitcoin white paper and learned how the blockchain technology works – I have been a big believer and fan of decentralized currencies. However, for over five years I have been telling people that while the blockchain technology is great and decentralized applications will be the future, there is no value in any of them – neither DAPPS nor cryptocurrencies – unless there is a real-world usage of them.

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Asking the RIGHT Questions

To think about the future of a certain industry, we must start by asking questions. These questions should be honest, and they should be challenging. Right now, we can see entrepreneurs and technologists who are re-inventing entire industries. They do so by identifying a problem and then asking the RIGHT questions.

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The Harm of Vaccine Certificates

It is absolutely ridiculous that COVID-19 passports or vaccine certificates become more and more acceptable in our society. Currently, there are serious efforts to let those who have been vaccinated (and those who’ve been infected) re-enter life. Those who have not been vaccinated yet or those who have been infected asymptomatically are still waiting to regain their basic rights.

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Avoiding Ghettos with Quotas

Denmark announced in March that it plans to limit the number of “non-Western” residents in neighborhoods to a maximum of 30%. The plan is to avoid the emergence of parallel societies and ghettos. This unexpectedly was a great opportunity for the sensational media to formulate attention grabbing headlines. However, in this article I want distance myself from attention grabbing headlines and talk about how quotas might actually establish a more equal and fair society – especially for immigrants.

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Notes

Vinod Khosla: Future of Healthcare

Notes on a talk of Vinod Khosla, the founder of Sun Microsystems and the founder of Khosla Ventures, on the future of healthcare and moonshot thinking.

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SPACs as the Symptom to Reform the IPO process

Special purpose acquisition companies or short SPACs have risen dramatically in popularity. CNBC calls them “one of Wall Street’s hottest trends” CNBC, 2021 But what is a SPAC, and what makes them so popular at all? Furthermore, how can we improve the IPO process due to the SPAC mania?

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Don’t Judge What Your Customer Is Willing To Pay

Yesterday I had a brief but rememberable conversation. I talked to a physical therapist who owns a small but interdisciplinary medical training center. The medical training center is offering physical therapy as the major health service. In Germany, the public health insurance is covering physical therapy. As a result, all patients of her physical therapy are accustomed to getting the health service without paying for it.

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Why I am founding Valenus as a Group

Health, technology, and the power of branding are topics I’m truly passionate about. And when it comes to health services, I’m one hundred percent certain that we can redefine what healthcare means. We are going to create a brand which makes health cool. And we will raise standards while striving for quality guarantees.

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There’s No Excuse for Making Cold Calls

I couldn’t believe what I read this morning on LinkedIn. Somebody proposed, if you see an interesting sales prospect on LinkedIn, to not message him and ask for a demo or meeting but instead do the following (quote):

“You have to warm her/him up first:

  1. go to her/his profile
  2. like and comment something witty
  3. one week break
  4. see 2.
  5. wait…!
  6. get him to answer one of your comments
  7. THEN the message comes with a situational speech.”

Why would I do this? If you want to build a personal long-term relationship with this person, I get it. However, if your job requires you to sell, this is – in my opinion – the lamest excuse for not making a cold call ever.

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Tackle it!

No matter where you look, you’ll immediately see dozens of problems which should and must get solved. If you pay close attention you’ll see hundreds or thousands of problems and issues which should get solved. This is true if you look at an entire industry, a single organization, at politics, the environment or our society as a whole.

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To Create Change, Size Matters

Take a look at our world. No matter where you look you’ll find thousands of things and problems which can and should be solved and improved. You might have a good heart and noble intentions but in order to effectively create change and improve things in this world, you must think and become big. Size matters.

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Not How Many But Who

Several days ago, I posted my latest blog article “Re-Invent Remote Events” on LinkedIn. The post got around 134 views – not a lot. But then a coincidence happened.

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Re-Invent Remote Events

If you ask me – remote events suck. If you ask why – it is basically because they are usually live-streamed. Live-streaming is a technology which is great for democracy and free-speech but not so much for regular remote events. Let’s find out why.

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Essays Featured

Growing Together – The Secret to Successful Long-Term Relationships?

On Amazon you can find hundreds of thousands of books on relationships, marriage, and sex. Which proves that most people are striving for a successful and fulfilled long-term relationship or marriage with a life-partner. But what exactly is the major factor and the basis for a successful long-term relationship?

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Why the Future of Rehabilitation is Outpatient

A rehabilitation can be carried out “full-time outpatient” or “inpatient”. There may be individual factors that speak more in favor of inpatient or outpatient treatment – but in principle, both are equivalent alternatives. So why is a predominantly outpatient concept practical?

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My Learnings from the Corona Pandemic

If there is one thing the corona virus taught me so far, it is that time is an extremely precious asset. Unlike money, you cannot make more time. Wasting time simultaneously means wasting life. And the corona virus pandemic taught me greatly how much life time we are carelessly wasting.