Category Archives: Blogging


Selflessness is quite attractive in the online, virtual, and newsletter world.

If it’s genuine, consistent, and vast, you’re in.

But the moment you sense selfishness, all that loyalty and trust?


All your support is gone.

Be selfless. Be pure.

Here’s a simple way to think about blog categories

Creating categories on your blow is tough.

  • Everything could be a category.
  • Categories overlap.
  • Categories shmategories.

It took me three years, but it’s now clear.

Think of categories as book topics.

If you were to write a book, what would it be about?

If it wouldn’t work as a book, it won’t work as a blog category.

blog categories

Hey Instagram, I think we need to talk

A few months ago, I was visiting my friends at Vitamix HQ.

It was a wonderful, inspiring, and exciting visit.

My lunch session with the Social Media team, however, was not.

Now, let me be clear: the food and company were good. Great, even! I hope to do it again.

But as expected, the advice was no surprise: Do a million things for a million different social networks despite little to no identifiable return on investment.


And for Life is NOYOKE, that means do all that stuff myself (or hire which make zero sense given the previously mentioned zero ROI thing).


One lunch attendee, though, suggested something that seemed doable. It was advice for which I was most grateful.

She suggested, “More Instagram!”

She was already one of my few followers and wanted more. Selfies, food, workouts, travel, whatever.

Me: How often?

Her: Daily.

Me: Wouldn’t daily Instagrams be annoying?

Her: No way. Anything less than daily is not enough. More than daily is the only way it can get annoying.

Easy enough. I can do that. One Instagram, daily. Monday – Friday.

So I did just that – Instagrammed daily

Easy enough.

Plenty of food pics, dog pics, and selfies to go around.

I even threw on a hashtag #wwmw at the beginning of the first few to tell Melissa I was taking her advice. What would Melissa want?

Easy enough.

But soon, there was a problem.

I ran out of original material

We are all creatures of habit.

Me though? I find something I like and stick to it.

I wear the same thing every day. #nonewclothes.

I eat the same ten things. #nonewfoods

I enjoy playing with my little black dog named Lucy. #yougetthepoint

I have a pretty fiancée and we love each other. #puke

I do travel, but it’s often by car. #cornfieldsfordays

I work from home, and in the winter will go days without leaving the block. #quickwalkswithlucy

Bottom line: My life is not very exciting. Even a single 1 x 1 picture per day becomes like a broken record pretty quickly.

And this is actually a good segway.

Instagrams are easy (and pretty fun) when life is exciting

My favorite, and not coincidently most “liked” Instagrams are from travel or special events. This wedding, our engagement, Lake Tahoe, my new nephew, a selfie during a talk I gave.

These are moments at which I want to look back and cherish. Captured moments of joy, awe, and wonder at the beauty of life.

But when life is boring, so is posting on Instagram (unless you fake it)

And I can’t fake it.

I’m not excited about showing you the same simple dinner I eat every night. I know you don’t care about my dog. And I’m not proud of my latest selfie.

Life is boring sometimes.

Pretending that it isn’t by posting a filtered 1 x 1 of some basic crap I’ve done a million times doesn’t make it exciting.

It makes it annoying.

Moreover, what happens when life is neither joyous nor boring? What happens when it gets legitimately sad?

What happens when someone get sick. Or when relationships go sideways? Or money is tight?

Am I supposed to show you my #vegan dinner pretending like it means anything to me?

You could be #raw with your Instagrams when times are tough, but you really have to dig deep.

Because as the cliche goes…

Pictures are worth 1,000 words

They are.

A really good picture can embody so much emotion and complexity and meaning.

Usually, though, they don’t. And they aren’t worth the bandwidth the rode in on.

If you want to tell a story with a single Instagram pic, you have to travel. Get out in the world. Understand what’s behind the picture.

#foodporn tells a story of three words. I ate this.

To tell a story with words (NOT pictures), I, too, must travel. But I can just close my eyes and let my brain do the flying.

On this blog, I promise to publish something (just words) daily. I can always find something that’s profound, even if it’s brief.

It’s really tough to connect in that kind of way with a daily Instagram.

And then, of course, there’s the ROI thing…

Instagram drives zero traffic (and, therefore, makes me no money)

Let me begin by saying Instagram is important for some people. And it’s important for some businesses. (Hi, Mom!)

But here’s the deal:

People don’t visit Instagram to visit websites. They use it to kill time. They go to satisfy curiosity. They go to take a break.

Now, this blog generates zero revenue. But I enjoy doing it. It’s cathartic. It’s like daily exercise. And who knows? Maybe parts of it will turn into another project (a small book or a podcast mini-series).

Point is this: I don’t write this blog for the money. I love it.

Instagram, on the other hand?

Well, I think I’ve made it clear that it feels like a chore to me. I enjoy producing one out of 20 of the posts I’ve done in the last few, daily-posting months.

Moreover, it’s a chore that fucks with my head. I get way too wrapped up in the quality and quantity of the “likes” I get from my Instagram posts. It’s almost always disappointing. Maybe it’s what someone in an abusive relationship feels like? The harder you work the less positive feedback you get, and when there’s negative feedback (silence) you’re dejected.

Point being: Instagramming daily is not only a job that I loathe, but it also doesn’t pay!

Why the poor ROI?

So many reasons…

Daily Instagrams surely are not helping increase demand for anything I do

Daily Instagrams have done a lot of nothing.

It has not increased my Instagram followers.

It has not increased Life is NOYOKE newsletter subscribers.

It has not convinced anyone to buy any product I sell or promote.

In fact, it’s done the opposite.

Why subscribe to Updates, the Life is NOYOKE newsletter when you can see a daily dose of Lenny on Instagram?

And not only does it dilute what I do, it dilutes what I do. (Yeah, you read that right.)

Productivity equation: 1 + 1 + 1 + 1 = 8

Every Instagram post takes two hours of my day.

Time to find a pic. Time to edit it. Time to write a caption. Time to edit said caption. Time to look and see if people liked it. Time to see what other people are Instagramming.

For what?

So I can dedicate less time, effort, brainpower, creativity to the things I actually care about? The things I think actually make a difference?

And this isn’t even counting the time it takes to switch gears to another task.

(That’s how 1 + 1 + 1 + 1 = 8. The gear switch and fending off ensuing distractions adds to the task duration.)

With this math, giving up Instagram means I could put an extra ten hours per week into things that actually matter.

Things for you (Updates, ULB, Minimooning). Or things for me (the gym, personal projects, etc.)

Or, how about just BEING?

Wait, let me take a pic

Life has taken a back seat to Instagrammable moments.

Can you pass me a fork? Always makes the pics look better.

Can you take a pic of me playing with Lucy? Try to get her jumping.

Hang on. Can I use your phone? I need to snap a pic and my phone is MIA.

It’s like I have a needy child with me constantly asking questions. Now? No, not now. Now? Fine, make it quick.

Real kids are coming soon enough. Can I please just live?

Another way to look at it: I’m my own paparazzi. Just leave me alone!

Yet, the most common question is, “Won’t you miss people’s updates?”

My Instagram feed is almost entirely inappropriate

The other day, I opened up Instagram and saw a common thread among the first ten pictures.


Ones that I’ve been with. Ones that I would be with. Ones my buddies are with. Ones that fall into none of the above (ones I work with, for example) but don’t appear as such to the casual onlooker (my fiancée).


Old lovers, high school acquaintances, blogger friends, super models named Bar Refaeli. What do I need that for?

I don’t.

Of course, I won’t even mention the ads now being served on Instagram. No thank you.

Of course there are some concerns.

The things everyone says when I say I’m done with Instagram.

What will you do with all your great pictures?

Yes, Instagram is a nice way to keep pictures in one place.

But I don’t actually own them. Facebook does.

And Google can’t find them.

No, I’m not exactly sure where I’ll put them all.

But I’m pretty sure Instagram is not the best place. It’s just the most convenient.

How will you stay connected?

The old fashioned way. Visits and requests to see photos while I’m there. Or, FaceTime.

What are you going to do with your Instagram account(s)?

This sign will be posted.

Lenny Gale says bye instagram

Everything you found there can now be exclusively found on “Updates”, the Life is NOYOKE newsletter.

What about just Instagramming occasionally?

Tempting. But I think it’s in everyone’s best interest if those really special ones showed up in my newsletter.

Are you okay?

Never been better! Working harder and living happier than I ever have.

So what now?

Let’s recap.

I dread Instagramming daily, it provides no ROI, and my feed is completely inappropriate.

Why I’m saying “Bye” to Instagram, at least for a while

Although I don’t think I’ll need it, I’m giving myself an out with the caveat “at least for a while.”

Because there may come a time when Instagramming satisfies my soul.

But right now, it doesn’t.

Bye Instagram.

I will always hold a special place in my heart for you.


Here’s where my Instagramable moments will be henceforth.

On “how to” posts

For the longest time, I thought “how to” posts were the only way to go.

They’re helpful, authoritative, and quite simply, they work.

But what happens when you’ve written the manual? You’ve explained all you know?

That moment when you realize you actually don’t know shit.

That’s where the fun starts.


Look at the people above you. Or, the ones you follow. Basically, the people that influence you.

Now ask yourself: Is that who you want to be?

I mean everything. Influence, family life, responsibilities.

If yes, continue on the path you’re on.

If no, quit your job, unfollow, and unsubscribe.

It’s that simple.

It’s Monday

You can ease into the day, reflecting on the weekend that was.

You can jump right in, prepping for the weekend that will be.

Or, you can do neither.

Just enjoy the day.

Viral things

Trying to make something go viral is a great way to guarantee your content doesn’t go viral.

That also takes ALL the fun out of your work.

Have fun first. Attention will follow.

66 things I learned (over the last 2 days)

I got out of my home office. Out of my city. Out of my comfort zone.

I spent two days in meetings with people like me: On a mission to improve the lives of others.

Where exactly I was is not important. For my own records, I was meeting with this partner of Life is NOYOKE.

What is important, though, is what I learned about myself, business and life.

Note: For the happiest, most fulfilling life, strive for regular trips like this one.

Life lessons realized or confirmed

  1. The true competition may not be who you expect.
  2. People WANT to be given the right information. Even if it means spending more money, nobody likes feeling like they made the wrong decision.
  3. Good events are like good speeches. You forget the words quickly. But the feeling you had during the event sticks forever.
  4. Demonstrations of appreciation never go unappreciated. Receiving them early and often go a long way.
  5. Excitement and enthusiasm, if genuine, are contagious.
  6. If you feel uncomfortable, chances are that other people do, too. Being the one that makes people feel comfortable, one at a time, builds friends forever. And, the work required (lots of the exhausting kind) is worth it.
  7. Large group dinners are best when you take breaks. Breaks for bathroom, breaks to get up, breaks to chat with others.
  8. An empty seat at the dinner table is a simple way to make people move around. So easy to have a few minutes with someone else.
  9. When you’re being entertained, saying, “thank you, it’s all wonderful” is welcomed especially when it’s preceded by, “I want to tell you before I have my first drink.”
  10. Hearing “you’re family now” eases all the concerns in the world.
  11. Traditions make for great memories. Especially if they’re explicitly proclaimed as a tradition. And especially if they’re silly and campy.
  12. Traditional ice-breakers are not necessary for a successful meeting. In fact, leaving them out might be sufficient for a successful one. Or, at least, sufficient to get a meeting that starts with lots of energy.
  13. Videos, if high quality, are phenomenal additions to traditional, slide-driven presentations.
  14. A good CEO doesn’t work, per se. She leads the ship with clarity, consistency and unwavering enthusiasm.
  15. Keeping money out of conversations (and thoughts) as much as possible drives true success (and satisfaction).
  16. Nobody wants to feel slighted. Nobody wants to be a slightor. (See above)
  17. Spare no expense when demonstrating appreciation. (See above)
  18. Being a fan of one of your fans is a lot of fun.
  19. If collaboration with team members is the natural inclination, you’re focused on the right things. If competition amongst team members if the natural inclination, you’re not.
  20. At large group dinners, find the guy with the loudest, most infectious laugh. He’s who you want to sit next to. So much fun. Plus, the energy you create radiates across the entire room.
  21. It’s okay to talk about the weather. Sure, it’s boring. But it helps warm up the conversation (as well as cool it down).
  22. Dress slightly better than everyone else.
  23. There’s a question behind every question. “What else do you do” might actually mean “what else can you do for me?”
  24. Scheduling one hour of downtime after a full day of meetings is KEY to a successful night out afterwards. Failing to schedule that hour (and using it instead for yet another PowerPoint presentation) is just that: Failure.
  25. Still can’t say enough about yoga and meditation right after waking up as part of the morning routine. Calming, energizing, focusing. It could be the only time you get it all day.  (See above)
  26. So much of success comes from good timing.
  27. Meeting people in-person that you’ve only previously talked to on the phone can be magical.
  28. Non-obnoxious name tags (like press-pass badge thingys) are great. Good for knowing you’re using the right name. But also great for projecting exclusivity and membership.
  29. Loyalty DOES get rewarded.
  30. Doing the right thing for your customers usually results in the right thing being done for you. That is, when you’re look up and now you’re the customer.
  31. Controversial topics are the only ones worth talking about. Polarization gets you more loyal fans and more attention in general.
  32. Never take yourself too seriously.
  33. Never correct someone during a large-group meeting. It’s like telling someone “you’re wrong” in front of everyone they want to impress. You may be right, but now both of you look like assholes.
  34. Speakers love hearing from individuals right after their talk. There’s a sex analogy here. Perhaps it’s like hearing you’re well-endowed post-coitus. You don’t need the affirmation. But it’s certainly welcomed.
  35. Favors are easy to ask for when you’ve built up goodwill.
  36. Smiles build up goodwill.
  37. Presence, enthusiasm, and genuine interest do, too.
  38. Someone has to be the one to break the ice. Find the person who’s willing and able. The river will flow from there.
  39. The tone at day-long meetings is set right away. Getting people talking has to be priority number one.
  40. Pressing “B” during a PowerPoint presentation turns the screen black. This is one the of the most powerful techniques to gain and keep attention while speaking.
  41. Even the biggest players have to play by the rules.
  42. It takes guts to dismiss those players who don’t. (See above)
  43. But one gutsy dismissal can take you to the promised land. (See above)
  44. Stories move people. Real, genuine, heart-breaking stories. Data and facts, no so much.
  45. Writing is best when you want to. When you need to. Not when you have to.
  46. Hot showers fix petty, but lingering troubles.
  47. Spend two days with a small group of similar people. They’ll tell you more about your brand than you could ever figure out on your own. (Apparently, I’m, suave (pleasantly surprised about it’s positive connotation), a bit looney, genuine, honest, appreciated by some young women, adored by many older women, polarizing for men)
  48. Some people want to keep their identity and work a secret. After much prying, my conclusion is that that’s probably for the best.
  49. If your work is a secret, it can’t be very meaningful. Or you’re in the CIA.
  50. Most people want you to succeed. Like seriously. 99 out of 100.
  51. Offering to help others gets others to help you. Only way.
  52. Social media remains one of the most uninteresting disciplines to discuss, strategize or execute. It’s like sprinkles on cupcakes. They don’t build the cupcakes. But these days, people get into a hissy if they’re not there. Feh.
  53. The smartest guy in the room is never the highest paid. Nor, is he the most respected. But, if he’s passionate about his work, he’s the most loved.
  54. People DO buy products I wouldn’t never buy. And they need them, too.
  55. Having a home office is incredible. Traveling to conferences, meetings, etc. every three weeks makes the lifestyle even better.
  56. When trying to help people with junk food, just think of my relationship with smoking weed. Life is infinitely better without it.
  57. For some people, work is their vice. Life can be infinitely better for them the same way.
  58. Opportunity to make money can be exciting. It can be invigorating. But, remembering that money is a means to the end (and not the end itself) is key.
  59. Poor purchasing decisions can hamper people’s ability to achieve their goals. Help them make the right purchasing decision and everybody wins.
  60. Keep people wanting more.
  61. Always say, “goodbye” even if goodbyes are horribly awkward.
  62. Make a glass of water your last drink before bed.
  63. Wait an hour after your last alcoholic drink to go to bed. Better yet, make it two. The sleep isn’t actually sleep, otherwise.
  64. Pack your cell phone charger immediately after unhooking your cell phone.
  65. Inspiration comes in the most expected places.
  66. You are not alone.

Lenny Gale at Vitamix Headquarters

Day 1: How to start a blog

Bluehost logo.So, you want to start a blog?

That’s great.

By now, you have a topic you’re passionate about and want to share your knowledge with the world.

And since you’re going to be spending the time, it would be nice to monetize it a bit. Something simple to start. Perhaps the Amazon Affiliate Program.

So naturally you want to focus on search engine optimization (SEO) because you don’t have much of an audience yet.

So where do you start?

Well, you start exactly where you thought you should start.

You should start by building your SEO foundation.

Let me explain.

>>Click here to register your domain for free when you signup for $3.95 per month hosting (something you’ll need to do anyway).

NOTE: When you register your domain at Bluehost through me, I get a few cents of the $3.95. It’s not much. But cents add up and are greatly appreciated.

Websites as Real Rstate

Think about architecture. What buildings are admired the most?

The ones that have been around the longest, right?

That White House is a great example.

The same is true with websites. The websites that have been around the longest are:

  • Admired by readers.
  • Admired by customers.
  • Admired by search engines like Google.

And it makes sense.

Search engines like Google want to serve its users the highest quality search results. Generally, the websites that are older are more quality.

Think about it.

If you’re searching for info on Vitamix, who do you want on the top of your search results? An authority on the topic or someone with an unestablished domain?

Thought so.

The good thing is that you are already an authority on your topic. The problem is that you haven’t claimed your real estate yet.

The White House lives at 1600 Pennsylvania.

What about your website?

Claim your domain

So now that you’re mentally ready to start a blog, it’s time to take the next step.

Register your awesome domain name.

Domains are a websites home address. Mine is

Once you’ve claimed your real estate in the proverbial Land of Search, then you’re ready for the fun stuff:

  • Sharing your knowledge.
  • Working on your passion.
  • Earning some money for your efforts.

Go register your domain for free at Bluehost now.

P.S. I recommend registering your domain with Bluehost. It’s free when you sign up for $3.95 / month hosting, something you’ll need to do anyway.

P.P.S. Click here to register your domain (in 4 clicks) now.

P.P.P.S. After you’ve registered your domain, send me an email and we can talk next steps. 🙂

Grocery store of life

Grocery shopping without a cart is tricky.

At first, you think you can carry everything in your arms. Then, you start to stack a little higher until one thing spills. And another. Finally, you can’t talk two feet because your arms are so full, and you’re walking so carefully to ensure you don’t leave anything behind.

This is a lot like the creative mind.

Without a shopping cart for your ideas, you start lose them one-by-one until you can’t proceed.

For this, I use a single Google doc on my phone. Some people use Evernote or the standard notepad app.

Makes navigating the grocery store of life much more pleasant.