Deadline in Less Than 7 Hours – An Important Bribe (Plus: Happiness Research for Economic Crashes)

167 Comments


Take 10 seconds today to fill up your karmic bank account. (photo: woodleywonderworks)

Part 1 – The Favor and Bribe

This two-part post is interrelated, so I recommend you read both sections. If you take 10 seconds to do the first part, it should — based on the research — make you a happier person.

The first part is simple. I want to give ten of you $150. More on this a little later…

There are less than 7 hours left to help 100,000 public school students get $1.5 million dollars in much-needed funding for their educations. A single click here is all I ask of you, and I sweeten the pot with a bribe below…

First, from the woman who convinced me to put up this post:

Where you grow up shouldn’t determine the quality of the education you receive. To help level the playing field, I propose giving 100,000 children in low-income communities the books, technology, and other materials that they need for a proper education.

The non-profit Donorschoose (who appear on the dedication page of 4HWW) only need 3,000-4,000 more votes to reach first place and receive $1.5 million dollars from American Express. As few as 500 more votes could lock them in for $500,000 (that means each vote is worth $1,000).

Earn some serious good karma and use this as your moment of Zen today.

You can make a difference in 100,000 lives with the click of a button. Please take these three simple steps to move from spectator to player in creating the world you want:

1. Vote here. If you don’t have an American Express Card, please forward this post to a friend and ask them to vote on your behalf.

2. Update your Facebook status, blog, twitter, e-mail or IM your friends either of these URLs:

http://www.membersproject.com/project/view/V8EWJV
http://snipurl.com/3zbdi (Same URL shortened)

A short message like this should do the trick:

“One click here today can give 100,000 students $1.5 million for education. No joke and no exaggeration. Take a second and earn some karma!”

The Bribe

Just do the following no later than midnight EST tonight:

1) Leave a comment on this post and tell me how you spread the word on the Donorschoose voting.

For bonus points:

2) Describe in the same comment which teacher, class, or school project had the biggest impact on your life and why.

Prize 1: Next Monday, I and several judges will pick the the 10 best comment give each person a $150 gift certificate to Donorschoose. The staff at Donorschoose can pick projects for you, if you’d like, and you’ll receive handwritten thank-you notes and photographs from every classroom you help. How cool is that?!

Prize 2:
I will also invite the 10 winners to a private 30-60-minute call where you can ask me anything in the world that you like.

If you need some more solid reasons…

So why DonorsChoose?

Many non-profits sound great on paper and then fail in execution.

I’ve seen inside DonorsChoose, read their financials, and known the CEO for 15 years. They are streamlined like a Silicon Valley start-up, have helped more than 600,000 students with almost no resources, and they have superstars guiding them, including the Chairman and CEO of Sony Pictures, the founder of NetFlix, the co-founder of Yahoo, and Bill Bradley, among many others. Their corporate partners include Crate and Barrel and Yahoo. The Omidyar Foundation helped finance them. It goes on and on.

Why education?

Education is, after much research, what I believe has the greatest long-term potential to solve all of our problems: potable water, AIDS, malaria, racial discrimination, unfair trade agreements for developing countries, and all of the rest. DonorsChoose isn’t just about colored pencils — they’ve already directly helped in preventing teen pregnancies and getting future leaders out of low-income housing and on the path to college.

Adding people without adding the tools — education and confidence — can create more problems than it solves. Increased disease, famine, and war are just three examples. The US, for example, has no problem multiplying its population; it’s training those people to get along and build a better future that’s the challenge.

With $1.5 million, DonorsChoose can change the future of US education. I’ve seen them execute.

I don’t expect them to get everyone’s vote, but they get mine. Get involved and vote, whichever direction you go!

To reiterate:

Earn some serious good karma and use this as your moment of Zen today.

You can make a difference in tens of thousands of lives with the click of a button. Please take these three simple steps to move from spectator to player in creating the world you want:

1. Vote here. If you don’t have an American Express Card, please forward this post to a friend and ask them to vote on your behalf.

2. Update your Facebook status, blog, twitter, e-mail or IM your friends either of these URL:
http://www.membersproject.com/project/view/V8EWJV
http://snipurl.com/3zbdi (Same URL shortened)

A short message like this should do the trick:

“One click here today can give 100,000 students $1.5 million for education. No joke and no exaggeration. Take a second and earn some karma!”

Let us bring power to the people, but let us also recognize that power begins with one simple tool: education.

Arm the masses. Click here.

Part 2 – The Latest Happiness Research – How to Smile During an Economic Crash

Psychologist Martin Seligman came at “happiness” (a problematic term that nonetheless fascinates me) from an unusual source: he’d previously studied depression and learned helplessness.

I came across some of his latest findings — all scientifically verified — in the most recent issue of the Princeton Alumni Weekly:

There are three levels to happiness: pleasure, the delight you get from chocolate, fast cards, and sex; engagement, the feeling of “flow” you get when you’re doing something you’re good at; and meaning, the fulfillment you get from being engaged in an effort greater than yourself. Pleasure is ephemeral and contributes very little to real happiness… but meaningful engagement brings lasting contentment.

For classmates who are headed towards retirement, Seligman offers the following tip: “Material objects have almost no role in positive emotion. As you organize your retirement, spend it on meaningful engagement. Don’t squander your savings on boats and houses.”

It’s pretty simple, actually. Figure out what you’re good at. And then apply your strengths to a greater purpose. And don’t forget to cultivate optimism along the way.

More coming on investment soon…

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Comment Rules: Remember what Fonzie was like? Cool. That’s how we’re gonna be — cool. Critical is fine, but if you’re rude, we’ll delete your stuff. Please do not put your URL in the comment text and please use your PERSONAL name or initials and not your business name, as the latter comes off like spam. Have fun and thanks for adding to the conversation! (Thanks to Brian Oberkirch for the inspiration)

167 comments on “Deadline in Less Than 7 Hours – An Important Bribe (Plus: Happiness Research for Economic Crashes)

  1. Thank you for sharing this information! I received it 3 hours before the deadline and sent out emails to my entire address book alerting them to the opportunity. (Something I had not done in a while . . . ) My 4th grade teacher’s reading assignment of The Kon Tiki Expedition had a major impact on me. He had an entire lesson plan around this sea journey by raft and applied it equally to the boys and the girls in the class. It made me feel like anything was possible.

  2. Hi Tim,

    Robert Heinlein, the American novelist, said that “A human being should be able to change a diaper, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.”

    Thank you for empowering people everywhere with the real life education that shows professionals, entrepreneurs, and students everywhere how to make the most out of their life experience, right now.

    School, teachers, and organizations offer children the opportunity to let their desire, their mind, and their dreams determine where they end up in life, rather than where they start. The teacher who gave me this gift was Professor Ali from Hong Kong University.

    I studied abroad my junior year in college in a business exchange program. Hong Kong was an exciting place that symbolized the convergence of the Old and New, the East and West, and the Past and Future.

    I took keystone business classes with graduating majors, even though I didn’t meet the supposed prerequisites for the courses. I knew I would get further in school and life by skipping steps and going straight to the top. I figured, even if I fail those classes, at least I would have learned something valuable.

    Ali’s classes were like Donald Trump’s Apprentice. To start the class, he would come in and write two words on the board, like innovation and legacy. Then, he would ask us to think about it for ten minutes, and we would have a discussion on the paradoxes of life…those seemingly opposites that are just two sides of the same coin at the highest level.

    Afterward, we would do challenges like go to the local bank and figure out why the line was so long, design the perfect wallet for each classmate, and create a e-commerce prototype that would change the world.

    We would come prepared in class to do our presentations on case studies, then, we would have a surprise negotiation session with another random team. We would close our eyes and listen to Jazz for an hour, and then think about how it relates to business. We would go down to local art galleries and study how painters created their own worlds, and how entrepreneurs expressed theirs.

    Professor Ali taught us much with real life experiential education that changed the core of our perception, and thus, our life. I always believed that the best teachings should be the ones that stay with you all your life, that you know and apply to real situations, that change the way you think, act, and even dream.

    Ali taught me to look at the chaos and order of all life, to appreciate the creation in destruction, to love the truth of paradoxes. He taught us to understand that people do not resist change, but being change. He gave us the chance to go through the entire design process, from concept to reality. I have never met a professor who was so versatile, creative, and interactive as him, using everything from videotaping presentations, designing purses, thinking hats, writing blogs, and moving helicopters to jolt us to a new world.

    It was such a blessing, honor, and gift to have been one of his students.

    I know the fund raising event may be over, yet education is a life-long journey. I will donate some of my student success program to this organization, as well as to many public schools, libraries, crisis schools, and others. I know how one teacher, one comment, and one insight can change a life.

    With greatest warmth and gratitude,

    Andrew B Chang

  3. Tim,

    I’ve been working as a teachers’ aide in the public schools since 2005, I’ve read all of Martin Seligman’s books and the 4-Hour Workweek, and I just became a fan of donorschoose.org on Facebook. Thank you for letting us know about it!

    Best,

    Jessica

  4. Hi Tim,
    Thanks for the chance to raise awareness about a great cause, give my favorite teacher a shout out, and thanks for the $25 gift certificate for Donor’s Choose. You are really a great example of harnessing social networking for positive change and not just putting out useless pop culture garbage to keep your page rankings up. Keep up the amazing work!

    Best wishes,

    Trista

  5. Tim, just wanted to say a huge thank you — first for making me (and thousands of others) aware of DonorsChoose, and then for your generous GivingCard. I just put it to work in a high poverty local school (and will be back to do more going forward).

    Thanks for putting your large audience to good use!

    Robert

  6. Hey Tim,
    Just a quick note of thanks for gifting to DonorsChoose in my name. I just helped out a K-8 school in metropolitan Detroit (my old digs) since on a whole, Michigan has been struggling for the past decade or so. Thank you so much for the generosity and have a great 2009!

    Cheers,
    Tim

  7. With havin so much content and articles do you ever run into any issues of plagorism or copyright infringement? My website has a lot of completely unique content I’ve either created myself or outsourced but it looks like a lot of it is popping it up all over the internet without my agreement. Do you know any methods to help reduce content from being ripped off? I’d certainly appreciate it.