21 days a vegan

I challenged myself for the month of November to eat healthier. In the span of 21 days I eliminated refined sugar, meats and dairy in a quest to do a cleanse of my body and mind. Some benefits from doing the strict vegan diet, even after just one week, include:

Energy gains.

I could wake up easily without feeling groggy in the morning. I never yawned anymore, as I usually do midway through the day. I could run and play sports longer without huffing and puffing. My overall energy was better in every activity I participated in.

Emotional control.

I can be an extremely negative, moody person at times. With the diet implementation, I found myself arguing less and focusing more on the positive things in my life. I felt completely in control of my emotions because my body and mind were being fed healthy foods, rather than the usual calorie-high greasy concoctions I typically consumed. Any signs of depressive or negative thinking went out the door after going vegan.

Weight loss.

I lost 15 pounds in three weeks, due to the lack of fat and sugar consumed (other than from avocados and natural sugars). My abdominal area looked better, I saw a natural six-pack forming and my cravings for unhealthy food actually disappeared after one week. For anyone considering a weight loss program, I recommend going vegan to see quick results.

Sleep improvement.

I could fall asleep at night and wake up in the morning without needing midday naps. I felt well-rested as the quality of my sleeping improved.

Bowel movements.

I won’t get into the specifics, but I must say that things are smooth now!

Improved cooking quality.

I’m by no means an executive chef, but veganism forces you to cook all of your meals. I’d be mixing vegetables and beans together almost every day, and I started to enjoy how everything turned out. Eating out, once a daily occurrence, was uninteresting to me. I started to feel like the restaurant meals paled in comparison to anything I could cook.

Less spending.

Instead of eating out and spending on tips, you’re forced to purchase and cook your own food. Although you’re spending more on quality foods, your overall spending decreases as you eat out less. I used to spend $500 per month on food. Going vegan, I was able to cut my spending in half.

Less waste.

Less packaged, processed foods and more of the compostable kind. I was conscious of consuming all of my food as I’d have about a week before the produce would go rotten.


If you’re considering the vegan diet, I think it’s worthwhile to give it a try, if only for a week. There are some shortcomings to the diet, such as the lack of vitamin B12, which comes from animal products. You can use supplements (I used almond milk), but you’re better off to include animal protein in your diet. I’ve talked with nutritionists and the consensus is that there are more benefits to be had from sticking to the four food groups. Refined sugar, at the very least, can be removed entirely from your diet to reap the same benefits as mentioned above. Would I go vegan again? Yes, absolutely, it’ll do wonders for your body and mind. If you have any questions about veganism, reach out anytime, I’d love to chat with you about it!

21 steps to build your personal brand

After studying marketing experts such as Gary Vaynerchuk and Seth Godin, I’ve compiled the 21 steps necessary to build a successful personal brand for yourself (inspired by Vaynerchuk’s book Crush It):

  1. Identify your passion. What activity makes time go by quickly for you?
  2. Come up with at least twenty awesome blog topics around your niche to ensure this isn’t short-lived.
  3. Answer the following questions:
    1. Is this really my passion?
    2. Can I talk about it better than others?
    3. Why is this my passion? (If you can clearly answer this, you’re ahead of most people)
  4. Name your personal brand. You don’t have to refer to it anywhere in your content, but you should have a clear idea of what it is. For example, “The no-bs real-estate agent,” “The connoisseur of cookware,” “The master of youth entrepreneurship.”
  5. Buy your-user-name.com at GoDaddy.com. Although new domain types are available, .com is still the gold standard. Try not to settle on lower-value domains such as .cc.
  6. Choose your medium: video, audio, written word, photo. A combination of these would maximize engagement, but have a main focus.
  7. Start an account at WordPress, Blogger, Tumblr or any of the new platforms available. For design, I recommend Squarespace. For Evernote posting: Postach.io. For quality writing: Medium.
  8. Hire a designer for the creation of social media profile images, logos, etc.
  9. Include a Facebook Connect link, Call-to-Action button, Share functions, and a button that invites people to do business with you in a prominent place on your blog.
  10. Create a Facebook fan page.
  11. If you’re a minimalist like me and love automation, write your content in one place and auto-post to other sites as a distribution method. Google AdWords or Facebook Ads are excellent ways to gain visibility as well – they come at a usage cost though.
  12. Post your content. Focus on quality, uniqueness and personal voice. I call those the 3 pillars of content creation.
  13. Start building community by leaving comments on other people’s blogs and forums and replying to comments with your own comment. Guest posting is also a fantastic way to drive visitors from other sites to yours.
  14. Use Twitter Search to find as many people as possible talking about your topic, and communicate with them. Try to answer their questions and problems instead of hard-selling yourself.
  15. Find more blogs that are relevant to your subject via Google Search, i.e., “Your-Topic” blog.
  16. Join as many active Facebook fan pages and groups relating to your blog topic as possible.
  17. Repeat steps 12 through 16 over and over.
  18. Do it again.
  19. When you feel your personal brand has gained sufficient attention and stickiness, build in a compelling call-to-action form to begin converting your community to sales opportunities.
  20. Start reaching out to advertisers and begin monetizing.
  21. Enjoy the ride.


The best way to launch something is to make it impossible to fail.

We fear failure. It haunts our sleep and, for the majority of the world’s population, it’s the reason why people never realize their full potential.

You need to start with small wins to help you gather momentum and keep going. If you start out initially with losses, you will be less likely to follow through to the end, even if you know it’s a great idea.

Make the first step as tiny as possible. You will do it.

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