save the world

Save the World Update – You Can Do Good and Do Well at the Same Time

Executive Summary

Karma Sense is all about being healthy, being happy and, oh yeah, SAVING THE WORLD! (ahhhh, that felt good. It’s been so long since I’ve said that). For a long time, the Karma Sense media empire set its sites on subjects revolving around health. But the happy and save-the-world parts are inextricably tied. In this post, I cover some updates on how Karma Sense Wellness is doing with its save the world efforts. But first,…

Save the World? But Karma Sense Wellness is a Business!

The debate on whether businesses should have a social conscience or not will never end. Some believe that the number one goal of a business is to maximize returns for its shareholders. In the case of a sole proprietorship such as Karma Sense, this holds true. I gotta eat. In fact, based on the goods and services I sell, it’s my job to eat (it’s great work if you can get it).

Meanwhile, others believe that obsessing upon shareholder return emphasizes short-term results at the expense of strategic and big picture thinking. The most recent event in support of this point of view was the great recession of 2008 during which the financial industry played hot potato with subprime mortgage loans. Except, replace the hot potato with a steaming pile of poo and you get a better idea of what actually happened.

save the world poo

As I said, this is a never ending debate. It’s one that’s more eloquently discussed in many other places including this article in Inc. magazine about Shark Tank‘s Kevin O’Leary (more like Snark Tank) and Adam Lowry, co-founder and chief global sustainability officer of Method, a maker of chemical-free household products.

After reading that article, I found myself scratching my head. Why is this even a debate? Why can’t you do good and do well at the same time? Why do we have to choose?

save the world homer


More On Karma (As Opposed to Moron Karma Which I’ve Been Told Is Closer To What I Do)

Keep in mind that Live Long Lead Long (L4) was the predecessor to Karma Sense. L4 aimed to help people achieve work-life integration, the mastery of loving what you do and doing what you love. Why can’t this same sort of integration evoke passion for your business and compassion for others?

For Karma Sense Wellness, my dedication to this concept started when I decided to donate all profits from the sale of The Karma Sense Eating Plan to charities that fight poverty and hunger . To this day people think I am being overly (if not naively) generous. This might be true. But I just can’t wrap my head around the concept of profiting from a book that convinces others that performing additional and intentional acts of kindness will lead to better health, better happiness and save the world!

The Karma Sense Eating Plan has this lofty goal but it’s also intended to be my debut and calling card into the world of wellness coaching. And wellness coaching, helping people be healthier, happier and saving the world) is what I want to do more than anything. So I’m in a situation in which I sell a small number of books and therefore donate a relatively small but meaningful amount of money to charity or I sell a crapload of books, make a significant donation to charity and generate valuable buzz about my coaching practice. That my friends is a win-win.

How’s That Working Out For You Davey H?

As of today, I am closer to the first situation than I am to the second.

The Karma Sense board selected the first recipient of donations from the book sale and we’ve already committed $500 to Alice’s Kids, a charity that helps children fully participate in all the opportunities of childhood through targeted microdonations that no other charity currently fills. $500 doesn’t sound like a lot until you understand that this makes a huge difference in the lives of up to a dozen kids. I’d love to help more. You can help by doing what I do, giving the gift of The Karma Sense Eating Plan this giving season.

My Gift of Karma Sense

This holiday season, I’ve allocated a limited number of The Karma Sense Eating Plan Special Editions to help other charities in their fund-raising efforts. The Special Edition is a full-color version of the book that was subject to a limited print run. The book is signed, and I package it with two coaching sessions. It’s a $250 value.

So far, two charities, Carlyle House and SafeMinds, included this package in silent auction fundraising efforts. The Carlyle House auction is closed but you can still bid on this package at SafeMinds by going to their online marketplace.

If your charity of choice is considering a similar initiative, contact me and let’s see if a Karma Sense Wellness package is a good fit.

And Then There’s This

In addition to book related activities, I’ve been stoking the good karma furnace in other ways.

I continue to work through the bureaucracy of my own local jurisdiction to ensure the kids in my neighborhood have access to the services of Alice’s Kids. Alexandria, VA is a diverse community. It has some of the richest people in the Washington, DC Metropolitan area (the DMV) but it also has some of the poorest. We have schools where more than 75% of the kids receive subsidized lunches. We need the services of Alice’s Kids.

I also am providing diabetes lifestyle management coaching to the uninsured population of my area. People with limited resources are the most prone to suffer from chronic diseases like diabetes. It all starts with the relatively low cost of unhealthy food and a lack of access to preventive health care.

All in all, I am attempting to practice what I preach. I’m trying to do good.

OK, I’m Doing Good But Am I Doing Well?

Is this process actually helping my business? It’s still too early to answer using raw data. The anecdotal evidence implies a positive impact. The last four clients that signed up to work with me one-on-one were drawn to some aspect of my giving. My pipeline is full of other clients who also came to me because they heard about the save-the-world work. My partnership with Inspirational Journeys in which we offer wellness retreats at resort locations is also a result of this work.

At the very least, these efforts are forcing an introvert like me (it’s true. I’m an introvert) to network without me having to do so in a smarmy and unauthentic way.

I believe I’m doing well.

Is It Cynical To Expect One To Lead To The Other?

Giving with the expectation of getting back is cynical. But that’s not what I’m doing. I enter in these activities without expectation. In some way shape or form, what we give does come back to us somehow. That’s not expectation; it’s knowledge. It’s a corollary to the laws of physics, the law of conservation of energy, Newton’s laws of motion. It’s karma.

What do you think?

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