Tuesday, March 28, 2017


Beyond Just Surviving Your Continuing Survival
Petero Wamala, M.A., and
Douglas Winslow Cooper, Ph.D.

Copyright © 2017 by Petero Wamala and
Douglas Winslow Cooper.

 All rights reserved.
This edition published March 2017

ISBN 978-1-64007-516-0


Part One: Introduction

Section 1 | Retirement

What This Guide Covers
If You’re Only Going to Read One Page of This Guide…
The Push and Pull
The Perception of Aging
A Questionnaire

Part Two: The Transition

Section 2 | The Dark Side

Why Plan?
The Dark Side
Curving Expectations
The Transition
The Holes We Dig Ourselves

 Section 3 | Attitude

Helpful Beliefs
Letting Go
Your Identity
Finding Space for You
‘New Tricks’

Part Three: Health and Purpose

Section 4 | Health

Hard Facts
Fighting Back
Retaining Mobility
Heart Health
Mental Health
Do I Need A Personal Trainer?
Communicating Illness 


Part Four: But What Should I Do?

Section 6 | Stay Engaged

Daily Questions


Section 7 | Stay Active

Finding Purpose
‘The Bucket List’
Fulfilling Hobbies
Giving Back to Your Community
Daily Questions

 Section 8 | Stay Connected

You and Those Closest to You
Finding Community
Daily Questions

Part Five: Freedom

Section 9 | The Three Freedoms

Those That Can Help
Daily Questions

Section 10 | A Parting Message

Section 11| On Aging and Longevity


About the Authors
Further Reading


This is the beginning of a weekly serialization of this new ebook on active retirement, by Wamala and Cooper, which book is available through amazon.com for $0.99: 

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Frustrated with Life? Introduction

I must admit, this is not the type of book I would normally create.

I’m used to writing educational pieces for business owners that want to grow their business through traditional and digital marketing strategies.

I love what I do, and I have loved it for the past twenty years.

So, why write a book about such a negative subject?

Mainly because it’s necessary in today’s society, and for whatever reason, I’m always trying to fix things. Not that this book will fix how people feel in any way, shape, or form. However, if it at least shines a light on the fact that there are people out there with much worse stories, perhaps you can look at your story and feel that your life is a bit more manageable.

When I first created FrustratedWithLife.com in 2009, I did it because I noticed people needed an anonymous outlet.

People needed to vent their frustrations without prejudice. Anonymity seemed like the best way to do this.

When I created the site, I didn’t really promote it. I didn’t write a press release. I didn’t tell many people about it. I simply asked a few people to go to the site and write a few things that frustrated them.

To this day, I still don’t know who, among those I invited, actually posted something. Of those that I do know who took the time to post, I don’t know which of the posts referred to their situation.

Posting anonymously, in my opinion, makes it easier for anyone to get their frustrations “off their chest” and feel better about their situation. This has been proven by the various posts from people who are thankful for the existence of the website.

It has been 7 years since I created the site, and unlike any of my other virtual real-estate, I have not monetized it in any way. I simply left it alone, and people found it on their own.

No, it doesn’t have thousands, or millions of posts. Therefore, in the eyes of many, this is not a successful venture. It is successful to me. As you read through some of the posts within this book, you’ll see why I feel that this site is indeed very successful.

I invite you to read through each post, and see if any of them resonates with you, or your situation.

Just so you know, I purposely required my editor to leave all posts as they were written. I’m sure he was extremely frustrated to see such bad grammar, incorrect punctuation, run on sentences, etc., and Know that he was instructed to leave them as they are.

I left them as they were posted on the website because I want you to see exactly what was written, the format used, and the words utilized to express their frustrations.

I wanted this book to be as authentic as possible.

So, why, after so many years, did I choose now, to write the book?

With all the frustrations people are expressing on Social Media platforms, many people have shed a light on their darkest side. Friends are de-friending each other. Relationships are ending at a much faster rate than usual. People are losing jobs because of the frustrations they are expressing as themselves.

Yes, sometimes you want to know what people are thinking, and if whether they share the same thoughts as you.

We all want to be on the same page while in a relationship of any type. However, I’ve found that sometimes you don’t want others to know that you feel a certain way about something, because feeling that way does not define you as a human being. Yet, sometimes, we are judged accordingly.

Take the time to read through each post. Is your life similar, better, or worse? Do you have something to get off your chest or confess? Is there a secret you just have to share before you explode, but can’t?

Now you can.

This book is proof that you can be frustrated with life, and still be a functioning, prosperous member of society because people’s judgments can’t affect you.

Oh, by the way, there’s a lot of foul language in here. So, if you’re offended easily, this may not be the book for you.

Edison R. Guzman

by Edison R. Guzman and Douglas Winslow Cooper, Ph.D.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Frustrated With Life?

Product Details

For several years now, my friend Edison Guzman has sponsored an Internet site inviting others to write about their frustrations and to comment on those writings, essentially either sympathetically or analytically.

We recently published a 205-page book, Frustrated with Life? You Are Not Alone!, presenting hundreds of responses along with our comments and suggestions in nine categories listed in the descending order of the number of postings to each: Life, Miscellaneous, Relationships, Family, Work, Money, Weird, School, and Health. The posting folk were anonymous, the posts labelled by number. Many of the posts were profane, clearly heartfelt. We did not edit them. I have chosen not to put them here, only a selection from our quotations and reading list.

Each section starts with a quotation and a statistic and ends with book resources to help the perplexed.


“…fill the unforgiving minute with sixty seconds’ worth of distance run….” Rudyard Kipling

"Life is what we make it. Always has been. Always will be." Grandma Moses

“The trick is to enjoy life. Don't wish away your days, waiting for better ones." Marjorie Pay Hinckley

“Keep in mind that you become what you focus on most of the time.” Edson R. Guzman

One of our recommended books is R. Hanson (2013) Hardwiring Happiness: The New Brain Science of Contentment, Calm, and Confidence


“All great changes are preceded by chaos.”  Deepak Chopra

Recommended: N. Hill (2013) Positive Mental Attitude: The Science of Success by Napoleon Hill


“Outside of a dog, a book is man’s best friend. Inside of a dog, it’s too dark to read.” Groucho Marx

Recommended resources: J. Shufeldt (2014) Ingredients of Outliers: A Recipe for Personal Achievement and D. Carnegie (2010) How to Win Friends and Influence People.


“All that we love deeply becomes part of us.” Helen Keller

Recommended reading: R. Eyre and L. Eyre (2014) The Turning: Why the State of the Family Matters and What the World Can Do about It


“Individual commitment to a group effort---that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilization work.” Vince Lombardi

Recommended reading: J. Goins (2015) The Art of Work: A Proven Path to Discovering What You Were Meant to Do


“If you’re not happy with what you have, imagine not having it.” Anonymous

Recommended reading (a favorite of mine): T.J. Stanley (2010) The Millionaire Next Door


"Getting over a painful experience is much like crossing monkey bars. You have to let go at some point in order to move forward." C. S. Lewis

Recommended: F. Day (2015) You’re Never Weird on the Internet (Almost): A Memoir


“Education is what remains after one has forgotten what one has learned at school.” Albert Einstein

Recommended: A. Duckworth (2016) Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance


“Health is the greatest gift, contentment the greatest wealth, faithfulness the best relationship.” Buddha

“It took a lot of willpower, but I finally gave up dieting.” Anonymous

Recommended: L. Shea (2015) Ten-Minute Yoga for Stress Relief, Focus, and Renewal

The Book’s Final Three Chapters

“Live with Purpose, On Purpose,” which includes Edison Guzman’s trails and triumphs after coming to America alone as a teenager from the Dominican Republic.

“My Heroic Quadriplegic Wife,” my tribute to Tina Su Cooper, who is inspiring to all who know her.

“Pulling the Rug from Under Me,” How Amy E. Alexander did not let the accident that left her quadriplegic in her twenties ruin her life.


Douglas Winslow Cooper, Ph.D., is a former Harvard science professor. He still publishes, and he helps others write and publish their books via his business website, http://WriteYourBookWithMe.com. His life's central theme has been his half-century romance with his wife, Tina Su Cooper, now quadriplegic for over a decade due to multiple sclerosis, receiving 24/7 nursing care at home, as discussed at their website here

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Looks Do Count

Women, including those in our Sixty and Me community, know what research confirms: one is fortunate to be good-looking. Physical attractiveness is a major factor in how we are treated.

The Beauty Bias

Books have been written about this, such as: Survival of the Prettiest: The Science of Beauty, by Nancy Etcoff; In Your Face: The New Science of Human Attraction, by David Perrett; Beauty Pays: Why Attractive People are More Successful, by David S. Hammermesh; The Beauty Bias: The Injustice of Appearance in Life and Law, by Deborah L. Rhode; Looks: Why They Matter More than You Ever Imagined, by Gordon Patzer, Ph.D.

Dr. Patzer’s comprehensive, research-based book is the source for much of the rest of this article.


In chapter after chapter, Dr. Patzer demonstrates the effects of “lookism” as documented by a variety of studies in: dating, mating, marriage; family dynamics and favoritism; treatment in school; advancement in the workplace; before the law, especially in trials; getting elected to public office; belief about marriage and career possibilities; the “dark side” of anorexia and bulimia; the Big Business of beauty.

Biological Bases

The ancients often thought that beauty was a sign of God’s approval and homeliness a sign of disapproval.

Evolutionary biologists explain our preference for attractiveness as part of the battle to pass on more of one’s genes into the succeeding generations. The classic womanly hour-glass figure has been found to correlate with female fertility. Men prefer slender, busty women, just as women prefer tall men with lots of dark hair and even beards.

Partly, beauty is an absence of flaws. Some genetic inadequacies are related to one another, absence of visible flaws may signal the absence of significant unseen flaws.

In general, humans find beauty in symmetry. Again, symmetry also suggests the absence of some genetic errors.

         Attractiveness is having features that fall within the typical ranges for humans, suggesting genetic suitability.

Cosmetics and Clothes

It has been said that “clothes make the man.” Indeed, being well dressed is a plus, but women have been even more focused than men on fashion and cosmetics throughout our recorded history.

Reproductive attractiveness is enhanced by the changes that women undergo once a month. Some makeup mimics these changes; some cosmetics mimic the changes she experiences during sexual arousal.

Friends and Family, Too?

Attractive children and adults are treated better, even by their friends and family, than are unattractive children and adults.

 “…a multitude of studies shows that [physical attractiveness] is by far the most important factor in evaluating both prospective mates and prospective dates.” Women most notice a man’s height, and men most notice a woman’s weight.

Internet dating has shown, yet again, that appearance is generally the most important element in how a potential date evaluates him or her, regardless of résumé. Besides choosing flattering profile photos, some try to enhance attractiveness by adjusting height, weight, and age in any written description.

Birds of a Feather…

We tend to see ourselves as more or less attractive depending on the attractiveness of those around us. Feeling attractive tends to raise self-esteem. Nice to be one of the Beautiful People. However, hanging out with others much better looking than ourselves tends to undercut our confidence. Some seek unattractive friends rather than those who might be more competition.

The Mating Game

Unfortunately, perhaps, physical attractiveness strongly influences success in finding and keeping a mate. Attention to weight and health and musculature can help, along with good grooming, careful selection of clothing and use of cosmetics, and enhancement of those secondary characteristics that play small but real roles in being viewed as all-around attractive.

Less attractive, yet prosperous, men often obtain good-looking women as dates or as “trophy wives” to enhance their own reputations. Some women appreciate the access this grants them to money and connections they would not have otherwise.

A noted marriage counselor maintains that lack of physical attractiveness due to excessive weight gain is a major factor for almost all couples where one partner complains about the appearance of the other.

It’s Everywhere, Everywhere

Hospital nurses give more attention to the more attractive infants. Babies spend more time looking at attractive adult faces then at unattractive ones and will even cry due to the close approach of faces that adults would characterize as ugly.

Children prefer those who are generally physically attractive, and “…most teachers expect better-looking kids to perform better, and they devote more attention to children they think have greater potential.”  

A study entitled “What Is Beautiful Is Good,” summarized its findings: most respondents ascribed positive characteristics to attractive people, negative characteristics to the physically unattractive.

Summing Up

The race is not always to the swift, when looks count, too.

We should do the best with what we have. It pays to invest, within reason, in keeping ourselves trim and well-dressed, and in using appropriate cosmetics. In some unusual instances, surgery may be warranted. What we cannot change, we should accept.

Finally, we should, ourselves, try harder not to judge others by physical appearance.

Have you noticed the significance of physical appearance? How far are you willing to go to enhance your own?                                                                                        
Please join the conversation.
Douglas Winslow Cooper, Ph.D., is a former Harvard science professor. He still publishes, and he helps others write and publish their books via his business website, http://WriteYourBookWithMe.com. His life's central theme has been his half-century romance with his wife, Tina Su Cooper, now quadriplegic for over a decade due to multiple sclerosis, receiving 24/7 nursing care at home, as discussed at their website here.


Published in slightly different form in http://sixtyandme.com/yes-looks-still-matter-after-60/

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Resources for Writers, from WYBWM

Knowledge is of two kinds: we know a subject ourselves or
we know where we can find  information on it.

Samuel Johnson


In the blog by Carol Tice, makealivingwriting.com, guest writer Samantha Drake gave the following source tips so “writers can find facts fast---and make sure they’re true”:
·      Governments: For the U.S. see Centers for Disease Control and the National Institutes of Health, USA.gov, Data.gov, and Government Information Online, which lets you mail questions to librarians. The individual states have many agencies willing to provide reliable data.
·      Major national organizations: Such as the American Cancer Society, the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, the American Institute of Certified Professional Accountants, etc.
·      Trade organizations: Her example of such a publication was Nation’s Restaurant News.
·      Name-brand studies and surveys:  Examples given were Pew Research Center and Gallup.
·      Beware: Wikipedia can be a useful start, but is not authoritative. Use its references yourself to trace the item to its source. “Studies” by organizations with strong views are also to be treated with suspicion.

A truly mammoth source of information on self-publishing is appropriately titled The Complete Guide to Self-publishing, subtitled Everything You Need to Know to Write, Publish, Promote, and Sell Your Own Book. The fifth edition is copyrighted in 2010 by its authors Marilyn Ross and Susan Collier. It is published by Writers Digest Books, Cincinnati Ohio. These authors suggest you also visit the website writersdigest.com/books.

An abridged version of their Table of Contents follows:

·      Your Portal to Self-Publishing: Enter Here
·      Alternatives for Getting Into Print: From POD to Subsidy Publishing --- and Everything In Between
·      Cyberoptions ---Reading between the Lines of Ebooks

·      Scoping Out a Marketable Subject
·      Product Development: Writing Your Own Book or Booklet
·      Establishing Your Publishing Company and Generating Capital
·      Mastering Operating Procedures
·      Must-Do Important Early Activities

·      Wow! Design and Typesetting
·      Affordable Book Manufacturing --- the Printing Process

·      Initiating a Nationwide Marketing Plan with Publicity Pizzazz
·      Using the Web to Rally “Buzz” and Business
·      Provocative Promotional Strategies
·      Turning Book Signings into Stellar Events

·      Milking the Standard Channels of Distribution
·      Creating Ads that Reel in Results
·      Direct Marketing Smarts
·      Tapping into Lucrative Subsidiary Rights

·      Social Media
·      Originating Extraordinary “Out-of-the-Box” Opportunities
·      Seminars, Classes, and Trade Shows Can Multiply Your Profits

·      Bagging the Big Game: Selling Your Self-Published Book to a Goliath
·      Enlarge Your Kingdom; Move up to “Small Press” Status

This approximately 200,000-word guide goes far beyond what we can cover here. It is available through Amazon for $17 for the paperback and $11 for the Kindle ebook version, the one I bought for myself.

Another excellent resource for new authors is the book by J. Steve Miller and Cherie K. Miller, Sell More Books! Book Marketing and Publishing for Low-Profile and Debut Authors: Rethinking Book Publicity after the Digital Revolution. Wisdom Creek Press, LLC. 2011.

Their Table of Contents is as follows:    
Part I
Rethink Book Marketing in Light of the Revolutions
Chapter 1: Four Digital Revolutions that Can Make Nobodies Awesome

Part II
From Nobody to Somebody
Build Platforms with a Marketable Book and a Cool Online Presence
Chapter 2: Why Market Your Book?
Chapter 3: Write a Marketable Book
Chapter 4: Write a Title and Subtitle That Attract Audiences
Chapter 5: Attract People with Your Cover
Chapter 6: Publish through the Most Marketable Channel
Chapter 7: Get Lots of Blurbs from All Kinds of People
Chapter 8: Optimize Your Amazon and Barnes & Noble Pages
Chapter 9: Build a Professional Online Presence
Chapter 10: Submit Your Book to Contests

Part III
Let the World Know about Your Book
Chapter 11: Check Your Attitudes toward Marketing
Chapter 12: Use Guiding Principles to Prioritize Initiatives
Chapter 13: Seek Early Reviews from Respected Book Review Sources
Chapter 14: Seek Reviews and Endorsements from Busy Blogs
Chapter 15: Seek Reviews and Endorsements from Other Publications
Chapter 16: Attract Attention through Social Media
Chapter 17: Optimize Digital Sales
Chapter 18: Sell Your Book in Brick and Mortar Stores (Not Just Bookstores)
Chapter 19: Help Reporters and Journalists with Their Articles
Chapter 20: Consider Radio (Even If You’re Shy!)
Chapter 21: Consider Speaking (Even If You’re Shy!)
Chapter 22: John Kremer’s Twelve Tips for Low-Profile Authors
Chapter 23: Bulk Sales Beyond the Bookstore: An Interview with Brian Jud
Chapter 24: Consider Press (News) Releases
Chapter 25: Sell Even More Books!
Appendix 1: Never Stop Learning! (Further Reading and Resources)
Appendix 2: 200+ Ways that Low-Profile Authors Can Market Their Books

Clearly, this 344-page compendium of useful book marketing information in this new age of publishing is a bargain at $10 for the paperback and $4 for the Kindle ebook through amazon.com.

            Get Slightly Famous: Become a Celebrity in Your Field and Attract More Business with Less Effort by Steven Van Yoder (2012) tells how to become known among your potential customers, and is very favorably reviewed at amazon.com, where it is available for $10 as a Kindle ebook and $18 for the paperback version.

Book Yourself Solid: The Fastest, Easiest, and Most Reliable System for Getting More Clients Than You Can Handle Even If You Hate Marketing and Selling, by Michael Port (2010), is also widely heralded at amazon.com, where it is available as a Kindle ebook for $10 and as a paperback for $11. Techniques for those selling their services are readily adaptable to those selling their books. Many who sell books hope to use them to increase demand for their services, linking the two.

Finally, don’t forget those old standbys: encyclopedias, a thesaurus, and a dictionary.


Excerpted from my book for would-be authors,  Write Your Book with Me.

See also my coaching web site, http://WriteYourBookwithMe.com

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

INFLUENCE: 7 Keys to Shaping Opinions

Softer than raw power, but still very important, influence plays a role in most of our communications with each other. Influence is a two-way street: we want to enhance ours and not be overly swayed by theirs.

It pays to heed the lessons in psychologist Robert B. Cialdini’s widely-heralded book, Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion.

Professor Cialdini starts with this admission:

“I can admit it freely now. All my life I've been a patsy. For as long as I can recall, I've been an easy mark for the pitches of peddlers, fund-raisers, and operators of one sort or another.” One purpose of his book is to keep us from falling prey, too.

Here I list his chapters, along with some of their key ideas:

Weapons of Influence

We often act in strange ways. Tourists were found to be more inclined to buy the same unfamiliar turquoise jewelry at higher prices than at lower, believing “expensive = good.” Some of our rules of thumb make good sense, but not always.

Sales personnel are often counseled to show the more expensive options first, to “frame” the purchase price in the mind of the prospective customer.

Is she beautiful? Men judging a woman’s looks rated her lower after viewing the beauties in Charley’s Angels than after viewing another film. On the other hand, being among a good-looking group can enhance one’s appearance by the “halo effect.”

Reciprocation: The Old Give-And-Take… And Take

If you want something from someone, it’s good strategy to give that person something first, setting up a sense of obligation. Reciprocation has awesome strength, easily abused.

Politicians’ trade votes, “log-rolling,” to get their legislation passed. Lobbyists give gifts to politicians. Politicians give favors to constituents. While dating, some men treat women to expensive entertainment and dinners….

“Free samples” introduce a product while setting up a sense of obligation. Uninvited favors perform similarly; we are advised to limit our acceptance of them to those favors we are willing to repay.

Asking for a big favor (rejected) and then revising the request to a smaller favor is a tactic that often works well, as the revision is seen as a type of gift itself. (The big favor must not seem unrealistic, however.)

Commitment and Consistency: Hobgoblins of the Mind

Philosopher Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote, “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of small minds….” Yet, being inconsistent seems wrong. In most instances consistency is valued and suitable. Inconsistent people seem unreliable, unpredictable, and even dishonest.

We like to be, and to appear to be, consistent.

Getting you to commit to something small has been shown to make it more likely you will commit to a much larger, not necessarily related, request.

Social Proof: Truths Are Us

We cannot test every option, so we observe what others are doing, and we are strongly influenced by that. For birds, following the flock makes sense: food is found more readily, predators evaded. For lemmings, on the other hand….

One advertising exec claimed that 95% of people are imitators following the 5% that are initiators. What is fashion other than social proof?

Beneficently, very shy children were greatly helped by viewing films of other reluctant children joining a group of kids and playing together happily.  

Learning from observing others has value. I think it was Warren Buffett who recommended learning from mistakes…those made by others.

Liking: The Friendly Thief

Cialdini quotes legendary lawyer Clarence Darrow, “The main work of a trial attorney is to make a jury like his client.” So much for evidence and law!

Dr. C. adds, “…we most prefer to say yes to the requests of someone we know and like.” He then explains the selling dynamics of the classic Tupperware party, where most participants leave with goods they did not really need, to accommodate their friend, the hostess.

The man the Guinness Book of World Records once called “the world’s greatest car salesman” had this simple formula: a fair price and being a man the customers liked.

What helps make people like you? Physical attractiveness, similarity (having things in common), giving compliments, contact plus cooperation (familiarity without competition), conditioning and association (Pavlov’s dogs’ bell; good things happen when…).

If you find you are being influenced by a person’s friendliness rather than by the innate value of the proposition, step back mentally and analyze the situation in depth before agreeing.

Authority: Directed Deference

Listen to the expert? Usually. But what makes someone seem expert? What lends authority?

Credentials and titles can do it. Yale psychologist Professor Stanley Milgram found, in his extensive study of volunteers in experiments with a “Learner” (actually an actor) and a “Teacher,” that most people, acceding to the professorial researcher’s authority role, were willing to give increasing, often rather extreme, electric shocks to the “Learners,” despite the Learner’s apparent great discomfort.

Some other factors that lend authority include: looks, clothes, uniforms, and trappings (office, furniture, car, jewelry, and accessories).

Scarcity: The Rule of the Few

The value of something is usually a combination of its utility and its scarcity (e.g., silver versus water). Scarcity elevates perceived value.

Our readers probably do not need to be told the romantic leverage of sometimes being “hard to get.”

Stores may pretend certain items are nearly sold out. “Limited time offers” and “sales” are common. Even while fearing the loss of the freedom to purchase something desired, you are wise to be skeptical.  

Drunks are often said to be “under the influence.” We want to be freer than that.

What steps do you take to enhance your own influence? How do you reduce the influence of others over you?                                                                                        
Douglas Winslow Cooper, Ph.D., is a former Harvard science professor. He still publishes, and he helps others write and publish their books via his business website, http://WriteYourBookWithMe.com. His life's central theme has been his half-century romance with his wife, Tina Su Cooper, now quadriplegic for over a decade due to multiple sclerosis, receiving 24/7 nursing care at home, as discussed at their website here.


Published in a slightly different form at http://sixtyandme.com/stop-feeling-powerless-influence-is-not-just-a-young-persons-game/