The Value Creators Podcast Episode #18. Anthony Iannarino on The Negativity Fast

We all suffer from negativity. That’s a business risk for entrepreneurs, since we are in the business of running lots of experiments, some of which will work and some of which won’t. If we process the learning negatively (“I should never have tried that” versus “One more useful piece of knowledge”) we open ourselves up to unproductive disappointment instead of the energizing excitement of discovery.

Anthony Iannariono knows the problem, and knows the solution: take a negativity fast. Just like cutting bad food choices from your diet to improve your metabolic health, you can cut negative thinking to improve your emotional health. He discussed his book, titled The Negativity Fast, and shared his insights with The Value Creators podcast.

Show Notes:

0:00 | Intro

02:30 | Dangers of Negativity in Entrepreneurship and Evolutionary Biology 

07:06 | Major Triggers: Stress and Optimism Bias

10:44 | Exploring Internal Dialogue in Anthony Iannarino’s ‘Negativity Fast’ 

14:09 | Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

16:28 | Empathy as a Key Exit from Negativity 

19:35 | Detailed Insights on Empathy by Anthony Iannarino

23:44 | Idea of Radical Acceptance

27:04 | Value of Feedback and Solutions in Entrepreneurship

30:47 | Practice Gratitude in detail by Anthony

34:25 | Emotional and Metabolic Health: Keys to Overcoming Negativity

37:38 Positivity and Negativity: A Matter of Choice

39:26 | Does Positive and Optimistic Approach Link to Better Performance?

41:36| Wrap up: Practical Advice and Mind Hack by Anthony Lannarino 


The Negativity Fast: Proven Techniques To Increase Positivity, Reduce Fear And Boost Success.

Knowledge Capsule

Human beings are hard-wired for negativity.

  • Our negative emotions are stronger than our positive ones.
  • It’s a result of evolutionary biology: fear and the flight instinct have evolutionary value in keeping us alive.
  • Everyone has negative feelings at some point – positivity is about balance, not elimination.

Stress and change are triggers.

  • Entrepreneurs must embrace and pursue change – recognizing that change can be a major source of stress.
  • Anthony christened entrepreneurial change ACDC: Accelerating, Constant Disruptive Change.
  • If we allow it to stress us, we risk lower productivity and efficiency in all parts of our life.

We can talk ourselves into a negative state – and out of it.

  • There’s a voice in your head that takes the negative point of view.
  • It may not be your own – it’s a composite voice of the rules you’ve been told to follow and the expectations set for you by others.
  • There’s the voice of the worrier, the critic, the victim, the perfectionist and others.
  • CBT (cognitive behavioral therapy) guides us to talking ourself out of a negative state with positive affirmation.

The entrepreneur’s number one tool – empathy – is the best weapon against negativity.

  • At The Value Creators, we always emphasize the power of empathy in identifying others’ needs we can meet with innovative value propositions.
  • Other people often bring negativity into our lives; empathy helps us regulate our own emotions while compassionately dealing with theirs.
  • You may believe others are pushing your buttons, but often you are pushing these buttons yourself.

Stop complaining.

  • Complaining can cause us to adopt a negative mindset, even if we didn’t have one before.
  • We adopt a victim mentality, which is a forfeiture of freedom and autonomy.
  • Complaining can harm our relationships – and all value comes from relationships.

Focus on solutions, practice gratitude, and learn reframing.

  • Positivity is a choice. If we focus on designing solutions rather than identifying problems, we choose positivity.
  • Gratitude can help us be more positive. It focuses us on positives, and it can be practiced.
  • Anthony recommends The Three Blessings: write down three successes or three good things from your day, including why they went well. Keep this up.
  • Reframe all adverse events positively as your chance to improve and do better.

Eliminate the negativity of politics and social media from your environment.

  • It doesn’t help us to mindlessly engage in politics or social media controversies.
  • We sell our attention, and it has a high cost – fewer conversations and poorer relationships.
  • Don’t get sucked in.

Anthony’s book provides a lot of specific techniques for practicing these principles, and a list of resources for learning more about them and about yourself.

The Value Creators Podcast Episode #17. Jeremy Vesta: Curally, Nurse-Coaching, and Medicine 3.0

Jeremy Vesta is a Value Creator in a field where value creation is intensely focused on the experiences of individual consumers: health care. He’s CFO of Curally, an innovative services company designed to help individuals in a highly distinctive and intensely focused manner: helping every individual to be healthier today than they were yesterday. Curally is bringing a fresh new kind of innovation to an industry with a traditionally closed structure.

Show Notes:

0:00 | Intro

02:14 | A Conversation with Jeremy Vashta: How He Surveyed the Healthcare Field

06:00 | Discussing Healthcare Economics in Detail

10:22 | Defining Nurse Coaching

12:31 | Initiating Relationships with High-Risk Individuals

14:35 | Training Nurses as Coaches

16:24 | The Key Variable in Engagement

18:08 | Jeremy’s Unique Corporate Value Proposition: Promoting Wellness and Building a Cohesive Culture

21:57 | Discussing Measurable ROI in Detail

23:53 | Sedentary Lifestyles and Obesity: Discussing the Biggest Healthcare Problem

26:40 | Embracing Long-Term Health and Behavior Modification

31:34 | Creating a Hospitable Environment Can Prevent Diseases

36:12 | Coaching Definition Beyond the Medical Field By Jeremy

39:01 | Can AI Help With Coaching in the Future?

41:30 | Wrap Up: Reach out to Jeremy at


Knowledge Capsule

The healthcare ecosystem can appear to be intimidatingly closed to entrepreneurial insurgency.

  • It’s a field populated with large, inflexible, highly regulated entities: hospital chains, insurance companies, pharmaceutical companies.
  • They’re all intertwined in a structure that defends against innovation from outside the system..
  • The economic signals to the industry are obscured by the third party payment mechanism and the insurers’ and employers’ drive to reduce costs.

Yet there are significant innovation opportunities if the industry were more hospitable to them.

  • An entrepreneurial focus on improving the end-user (patient) experience quickly identifies gaps to be addressed.
  • The gaps are fundamental: understanding the root causes of many long term health problems such as obesity, diabetes, and lost stability and movement.
  • A new focus on behavioral change and individual responsibility for prevention can lead to long term health improvements for individuals and populations.
  • Behavior from twenty years ago affects current health problems.
  • Insight comes from recognizing the long-term impact of past behaviors.

Curally offers a new Value Proposition to Corporations who provide healthcare programs to employees.:

  • Providing real wellness, not just a healthcare insurance program.
  • Improving employee well-being and productivity and reducing losses of workdays for health reasons.
  • Creating a positive cultural impact within the company.
  • With a calculable ROI.

The innovation is delivered through a creative, human interpersonal medium: Nurse-Coaching.

  • Nurse-coaching offers an innovative approach to healthcare, with a focus on behavior modification.
  • It involves building a strong relationship with patients to help them make healthier choices.
  • It’s both human and scalable – there’s the capability to train and equip a large number of nurse-coaches.

Combination of Digital and Human Delivery in Nurse-Coaching:

  • Authenticity in Coaching is of critical importance in human relationships.
  • But there’s a role for digitally delivered information, expert input and digital behavior tracking, too.
  • There is potential for AI to play a role in coaching but challenging due to the need for authenticity.
  • Balancing the human touch with technological efficiency.

Relationships and Engagement are important.

  • Viewing medicine as a holistic approach beyond just science.
  • Addressing the mental, emotional, and relational aspects.
  • Building trust and authentic relationships with individuals.

Solving the Problem of Sedentariness, Lack of Physical Activity, and Obesity:

  • The need for a more individualized and relationship-based approach.
  • Addressing behavior modification rather than relying solely on prescriptions.
  • The challenge of making the long-term costs of unhealthy behaviors more immediate.

Curally is contributing to the emergence of Medicine 3.0:

  • Shift from the goal of lifespan to the goal of healthspan: longer quality of life, not just duration.
  • Recognizing the contribution of behavior to overall health.
  • Shifting from medicine 2.0, which identifies and addresses critical events, to medicine 3.0, focusing on healthspan.
  • Intervening earlier and understanding the long-term impact of current actions on future health.

The Value Creators Podcast Episode #16. Beverlee Rasmussen On Systems For Organized And Profitable Small Business

A breakthrough technique for Small Business: Don’t manage, build systems. 

Many small business owners experience frustration in trying to manage their businesses. So many things can get in the way of organized and profitable implementation. Management is hard, especially when it involves managing other people. Beverlee Rasmussen has interviewed and coached thousands of small business owners all over the world, and spent 10,000 hours developing her small business system of systems.

Systems are how things get done. If you build systems, you don’t have to manage people. Beverlee offers systems for every facet of small business: Leadership Systems, Operations Systems, Financial Systems, Team Systems, and Marketing Systems. Those titles might seem like something for big businesses only. But they’re not. Every business owner can design and implement their own systems – and doing so will bring back all the joy and freedom and success that you expected from becoming an entrepreneur.

Don’t manage, build systems.


Beverlee’s latest book: Small Business, Big Opportunity: Systematize Your Business.

Small Business Coach Training

Small Business Field Guide: Organized and Profitable

The Small Business Coach Gameboard

Knowledge Capsule:

Leadership Systems:

  • Leadership systems are essential for maintaining consistency and stability in a small business.
  • Having a leadership system means paying attention to what you measure, control, how you allocate resources, and how you react to incidents.
  • Leaders need to ensure they don’t favor certain employees over others and maintain fairness.
  • Leadership systems are about creating a consistent experience for employees and customers.

Financial Systems:

  • Understanding financial concepts like cash flow, profitability, debt, P&L (Profit and Loss), and balance sheets is crucial for entrepreneurs.
  • Entrepreneurs often struggle to differentiate between cash flow and profitability, which can lead to financial problems.
  • Borrowing money for a small business is acceptable but comes with rules; avoid high-interest traps.
  • Tracking real expenses accurately is vital for borrowing and financial stability.

Operations Systems:

  • Effective operational systems enable a business to run efficiently and independently of its owner.
  • Having documented processes and checklists for various operations ensures consistency and reduces errors.
  • Adaptation and change are part of small businesses, so having systems in place can help pivot and respond effectively.
  • Operational systems are crucial for scaling and maintaining high-quality service.

Organization Systems:

  • Organizational systems include structure, job roles, and defining how things are done within a business.
  • Position agreements and clear expectations for employees help in reducing frustrations and improving productivity.
  • A system for compensation is essential for profitability and stability.
  • Understanding your target market and catering marketing efforts to specific customer segments is part of organization systems.

Marketing Systems:

  • Effective marketing systems require a deep understanding of your target market and consistent messaging.
  • Avoid falling into the trap of chasing the latest marketing trends without understanding your customers.
  • Making and consistently keeping promises to customers is crucial; going above and beyond creates a memorable experience.
  • Marketing should be based on a value proposition and understanding customers’ emotional and product needs.

In summary, Beverlee emphasizes the importance of systems thinking in leadership, finance, operations, organization, and marketing for small business success. Systems provide consistency, stability, and adaptability, allowing entrepreneurs to achieve prosperity and freedom in their businesses.

The Value Creators Podcast Episode #14. Josefine Campbell on The Personal Energy Of Agile

Agile is the most important and most impactful management innovation of the 21st Century. It’s the approach of stripping away all bureaucratic and processual obstacles to fast delivery of superior customer experiences. Agile emerged from the sneakers-and-jeans world of software development and overwhelmed and obviated the suit-and-tie world of management control and hierarchy. It’s an organizational breakthrough that opened up a whole new realm of productivity. 
The principles of agility can apply at the individual level as well as the organizational level. Our guest Josefine Campbell delivers agility as an act of self-awareness and self-management.

Find her book, Power Barometer, here, and benefit from the major points she shared with us on The Value Creators Podcast Episode 14.


Power Barometer: Manage Personal Energy For Business Success.

Knowledge Capsule:

Practice Personal Energy Management:

  • At the fundamental level, spend some time learning about the role of the amygdala in the brain’s fight-flight-freeze response.
  • This response impacts both behavior and bodily functions.
  • Raising your awareness helps control reactions and behaviors.

Action: Be aware of your personal energy level and actively manage it.

Use The Power Barometer:

  • The “power barometer” is a tool for quantifying personal energy levels.
  • Use it both individually and within teams.
  • Experience the benefits of monitoring energy levels, such as improved meeting efficiency and better team dynamics.

Action: Every act of management can be improved by using tools. Find one that works for you.

Identify Your Own Top Values:

  • There’s great significance in identifying and living in alignment with top values.
  • Select two or three core values for personal and professional life.
  • Living by these values can prevent energy drain and contribute to well-being and success.

Action: Know your own values and apply them in everything you do.

Live Forward and Reflect:

  • Life is lived forward, and understood better in hindsight.
  • Challenging experiences lead to valuable lessons and personal growth.
  • Reflection and learning from past experiences guides personal development.

Action: Entrepreneurship is action. Learning comes via feedback loops.

Navigate Change:

  • Acknowledge people’s resistance to change, especially when it requires substantial energy.
  • Manage change in a way that individuals can absorb it.
  • Infuse change initiatives with energy to facilitate smoother transitions.

Action: Continuous change is necessary, but often hard on people who prefer stability. Help them to feel comfortable, without loss of commitment.

Build Organizational Culture:

  • It is absolutely possible to build an organizational culture that embraces energy management.
  • Josefine’s book presents an extensive case study illustrating successful integration of energy management into the culture.
  • Focus on those who embrace the change to create a positive movement within the organization.

Action: Culture is emergent from people and their interactions, but it can be guided with positive energy.

The Value Creators Podcast: Episode #13. Ben Johnson On The Evolution of Software Entrepreneurship

It is evident that in today’s economy, AI & software are extremely powerful tools in business, creative pursuits, and innovation. 
In this episode, Ben Johnson, co-founder of Particle41 and other successful software companies, joins to discuss the integration of AI from enhancing customer support to aiding software development, the ethical considerations of AI usage, and its simulation of empathy.


Ben Johnson on LinkedIn

Knowledge Capsule:

Agile and Lean Methodologies in Software Development:

  • The adoption of agile and lean methodologies in software development has enabled faster and more efficient processes.
  • These methodologies involve iterative development, user feedback, and continuous improvement to align with market demands.
  • Continuous adaptation and flexibility are crucial components, as they allow software to evolve according to user needs.

Action: Observe software development in action, and ask how you can transfer its methods to other parts of management.

Challenges and Rewards of Continuous Improvement:

  • Embracing continuous improvement in software development requires a thick skin, humility, and openness to user feedback.
  • While it can be intimidating and unstable, the process focuses on efficiently achieving business goals rather than merely creating perfect products.
  • Businesses must be prepared to adapt and evolve software as long as it remains relevant to users’ needs.

Action: Make continuous improvement a commitment in all parts of business management. Set challenging goals and don’t be deterred.

DevOps and AI Integration:

  • DevOps involves platform engineering and continuous integration/deployment, streamlining software development and deployment processes.
  • Infrastructure as code and robust assembly line processes are key components of DevOps.
  • AI, especially natural language processing, is being integrated into customer support and development workflows to enhance efficiency and provide novel solutions.

Action: Make use of DevOps experts like Particle41 for robust provision of digital operations.

Ethical Considerations of AI:

  • Businesses must establish policies around AI usage, especially when sensitive or private information is involved.
  • Integrating AI tools requires a thorough understanding of how they work to ensure quality control and ethical use.
  • The use of AI for customer interactions and support should be accompanied by clear communication and expectations.

Action: A.I. is coming. Develop policies in advance.

Empathy and AI:

  • While AI can simulate empathy through language patterns, it’s essential to understand that AI’s responses are correlated patterns rather than genuine emotions.
  • AI’s capacity for simulating empathy and emotions is a tool, not an end in itself, and users should be educated on its limitations.

Action: Entrepreneurship is subjective, empathic, human-to-human. Use A.I. to help, but not for human-to-human understanding.

Innovation and Economic Changes:

  • The current shift in venture capital dynamics could impact innovation and startup culture.
  • Smaller companies might need to adopt cash flow-based models similar to historical entrepreneurship, favoring incremental growth and learning.
  • Larger corporations could potentially support smaller startups to foster innovation, possibly through divisional startups or collaborations.

Action: The VC funding world often chases fashions and fads. You may have to spread your net wider for funding if you are not part of the current fad.

The Value Creators Podcast: Episode #12. Mark McGrath On Adaptive Entrepreneurial Management

Mark McGrath of AGLX has developed a management approach he calls The Adaptive Entrepreneurial Method. He combines the insights of John Boyd and the entrepreneurial principles of Austrian economics. 

Boyd was a prolific writer on strategy, particularly famous for his development of the OODA Loop model of decision-making under uncertainty, feedback, and responsive re-orientation, as well as the author of a vast body of work on strategy. 

Austrian economics overlaps in the area of entrepreneurial judgment, which is purposeful action under uncertainty, and dynamic responsiveness to the resultant marketplace signals (ie. feedback loops) that action generates.

He joined The Value Creators podcast to explore the intersection of John Boyd and Austrian economics.



Mark’s podcast: No Way Out

Mark’s Substack: The Whirl Of Reorientation

Knowledge Capsule:

1. Austrian entrepreneurship is a Human-Centered Approach:

  • Boyd’s theories emphasize prioritizing people in decision-making.
  • Human-centered approach over technology-centric focus.
  • Recognizing the role of consumers, employees, and stakeholders.

John Boyd’s insights underscore the significance of placing human understanding and interaction at the heart of decision-making processes. Rather than fixating on technological advancements, his theories advocate for acknowledging the central role of people within any system. This approach emphasizes the vital connections between consumers, employees, stakeholders, and their collective impact on the overall success of an endeavor. The equivalent space in Austrian economics is subjective value.

Action: Always place human values at the center of all business strategizing and decision-making.

2. Continuous Learning and Adaptation:

  • Adaptation and flexibility in ever-changing environments.
  • Shaping strategies based on evolving circumstances.
  • Emphasis on continuous learning to respond to changes.

A core tenet of John Boyd’s philosophy is the value of perpetual learning and adaptability within dynamic environments. His approach encourages a constant re-evaluation and adjustment of strategies in response to evolving circumstances. Instead of adhering to rigid plans, Boyd’s philosophy advocates for organizations to actively engage in continuous learning, enabling them to proactively address shifts and remain relevant. This is perfectly consistent with Austrian principles of continuous change and dynamic efficiency (as opposed to the static equilibrium approach of conventional economics).

Action: Your firm’s knowledge accumulation plan – i.e. learning – is its first priority.

3. Interaction and Isolation Dynamics:

  • Balance between interaction with allies and isolating competitors.
  • Drawing allies through effective engagement.
  • Isolating competitors to disrupt cohesion and effectiveness.

One of John Boyd’s pivotal concepts revolves around the interplay of interaction and isolation. The strategy for success involves effectively engaging allies while simultaneously isolating competitors to weaken their cohesion. This dynamic equilibrium plays a critical role in influencing outcomes and securing advantages within competitive environments.

Action: Choose the right partners as allies and isolate your competitors from these relationships.

4. Strategy as a Mental Tapestry:

  • Strategy as a dynamic mental tapestry of changing intentions.
  • Emphasis on self-awareness and situational awareness.
  • Continuous evolution of strategies based on circumstances.

John Boyd’s approach to strategy departs from conventional thinking by framing it as a dynamic mental tapestry of evolving intentions. He underscores the importance of self-awareness and situational awareness, advocating for strategies that continuously evolve in response to changing contexts. Unlike static planning, Boyd’s philosophy aligns with the adaptive nature of complex systems.

Action: Don’t plan – adapt.

5. Embracing Complexity and Distributed Leadership:

  • Embracing complexity over linear solutions.
  • Acknowledging distributed leadership in multifaceted challenges.
  • Orchestrating interactions to adapt to evolving contexts.

Boyd’s theories encourage a departure from linear problem-solving towards embracing the intricacies of complexity. By recognizing the multifaceted nature of challenges, Boyd’s philosophy promotes distributed leadership. This approach involves orchestrating interactions and collaboration among diverse elements, enabling organizations to respond nimbly to evolving contexts and foster innovation. Austrian economics, in the same way, is complexity-aware and orchestrates through value creation.

Action: Use value as the attractor in a complex business world.