Broker Check

December Digest


A Note From Marilyn

Happy Holidays to you and your Families!

As we deck out our houses, offices, cars and even our pets, with holiday lights, ornaments, and cute clothing, let’s carve out a little bit of time to reflect on 2018 and how we invested our time and energy for ourselves. Please ask yourself, “Did I get to experience and enjoy any of my true intentions we started in 2018?” And while this is not a test, can you recall how much time you spent on daily or weekly tasks that did not fill your cup with joy? Did you spend time taking care of you, so you can be at your highest and best for the people and causes you care about deeply? As you check off your many items on your holiday lists, wrap your holiday gifts with beautiful ribbons and paper, please make sure to take time for you and only you! Let’s experience the phrase. ‘Tis the season to be jolly, and not let the stress, the commitments, overwhelm us as we countdown this season starting with Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, and New Years. Our team, at the Diamond Group, is learning to stay in the moment; taking care of our clients and our projects; and yet we're making time to step back and enjoy the impact of the work that we do for you. I know that I have taken time to enjoy the Holiday Season, with the lights, the laughter, and the love that comes with this time of year. We are deeply grateful for the connections we have with our families, friends and you, our clients and colleagues. Enjoy your Holiday Season and take time just for you! We will talk and connect soon in the New Year! Best Wishes for a Happy and Very Abundant New Year!



Artificial Intelligence Deserves Some Thought

The idea of Artificial Intelligence (AI) may bring to mind movies like Terminator, Wall-E, and Transcendence, but the reality of AI is expected to help people find answers to some significant issues. For example, a PwC survey found:1 

  • 68 percent of respondents believe AI will help with cybersecurity privacy issues
  • 66 percent believe AI will help improve treatments for cancer and other diseases
  • 58 percent believe AI will help educate disadvantaged schoolchildren

 By 2025, it’s likely AI will write a top 100 Billboard song, create a piece of art worth more than $100,000, or write a hit television series, according to the consumers surveyed.2 

As AI develops, it is also likely to play a more pronounced role in our everyday lives. While experts in the field are optimistic about AI’s potential, some have warned of the need for oversight.

For example: 

“AI is hugely exciting. Its practical applications can help us to tackle important social problems, as well as easing many tasks in everyday life. And, it has advanced the sciences of mind and life in fundamental ways. But, it has limitations, which present grave dangers given uncritical use.”

--Professor Margaret Boden, Cognitive science researcher3 

“Just as most chemists and biologists have no interest in building chemical or biological weapons, most AI researchers have no interest in building AI weapons – and do not want others to tarnish their field by doing so, potentially creating a major public backlash against AI that curtails its future societal benefits.”

--Autonomous Weapons: An Open Letter from AI & Robotics Researchers4 

“In short, success in creating AI could be the biggest event in the history of our civilization. But, it could also be the last unless we learn how to avoid the risks.  Alongside the benefits, AI will also bring dangers like powerful autonomous weapons or new ways for the few to oppress the many. It will bring great disruption to our economy. And, in the future, AI could develop a will of its own – a will that is in conflict with ours.”

--Professor Stephen Hawking, Theoretical physicist3 

Whether you’re optimistic or pessimistic about AI and the role in achievements it may support, it’s important to understand the ways it may affect the world around us. The World Economic Forum has predicted AI will usher in a fourth industrial revolution, one with the potential to change the ways in which we live, work, and interact with each other.5


Eat Like Plato and Aristotle

In ancient Greece, mythology tells us, olive trees were a gift from the goddess Athena.6

Olive oil was a staple in the kitchen, but it was also burned for light, applied as a healing

ointment, and used as a base for perfume.7 This recipe for Spaghetti Aglio e Olio is a variation on a classic.8

 Spaghetti Aglio e Olio with Veggies*

1 large bunch broccoli (cut into florets)

1/2 red pepper, diced small

1 medium carrot, diced small

1 pound spaghetti

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

1/2 cup olive oil

2 teaspoons red pepper flakes (optional)

Salt and pepper

Freshly grated parmesan cheese 

Blanch and shock the broccoli, red pepper, and carrot. 

Cook the spaghetti in a large pot of boiling water (add a pinch of salt to the water before boiling), cook al dente, and drain in a colander. 

Heat olive oil in a medium saucepan. Add the garlic, red pepper flakes, and a pinch of salt. When garlic is golden, add broccoli, red pepper, and carrot, and stir until coated. Salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and toss. 

*Use any vegetables you like.

What Do You Know About Greek Gods and Heroes?

You probably learned about Greek mythology in school. At its heart is a pantheon of gods,

heroes, and creatures that populated tales and helped people explain the world around them.

See what you remember by taking this quiz. 

1. Who did Perseus save using the head of Medusa?9

A. Cybele

B. Andromeda



2. Who was known as the “God of Wealth” because he possessed the precious metals of the earth?10

A. Zeus

B. Poseidon

C. Hades

D. Hermes 

3.  What were the daughters of Zeus and the Titaness Mnemosyne called? 11

A. The Fates

B. The Muses

C. The Amazons

D. The Argonauts

4.  Who was known as the ‘Mother of All Monsters?’12

A. Echidna

B. Medusa

C. Arachne

D. Scylla

 Quiz Answers:

  1. B – Andromeda
  2. C – Hades
  3. B – The Muses
  4. A – Echidna

Trending Now in the United States

At the turn of the 20th century, most Americans lived in rural areas and traveled a couple hours by wagon to reach the nearest town with a railway station. The railroad could take you from New York to San Francisco in five to 10 days, which was a lot faster than walking alongside a Conestoga wagon for six months.13, 14 

It’s fair to say times have changed. Each year, Mindshare North America publishes Culture Vulture, a report that identifies big changes – demographic shifts, sociological insights, and more – that may be shaping our country. So, what’s trending in 2017?15 

  • The Boomaissance: Millennials have been gaining influence in recent years, changing culture and work in some significant ways, but Baby Boomers are still a force to be reckoned with. “…Boomers are taking on a ‘Middle-Age Millennial’ mindset, driving tech growth in many areas. Over the past several years, they’ve shown the sharpest increases in e-commerce activity, time spent in mobile apps, and social media penetration.”
  • 21st Century Success: “We once viewed the American Dream as owning a home, a car, and nice clothing to keep up with the Joneses. However, over the years, this definition has changed drastically, becoming less about material goods and more about self-fulfillment.” Baby Boomers may be savvier about tech, but their definitions of success are being supplanted by those of younger generations.
  • Open Lives: Data mining is becoming more and more important to companies and marketing companies. “Social media has opened us up to the world. As technology continues to evolve, we’re both accepting and fearful of our openness to it…However, consumers are wary of technology and companies using their personal data, fearing leaks that can compromise their information.” 

What trends do you believe will influence the United States in the coming years? Identifying and understanding trends can help people find opportunities in their personal, professional, and investing lives.



Make a Plan; Take Action

Your family or individual finances need structure, starting with goals, values, and an honest look at your current and future financial picture. Each of us has a unique story and background that requires custom strategies and tactics. It’s never too soon to start planning for your future. 

Plans can be changed and usually do. It’s the action taken today that will put you on your unique path on the

Yellow Brick Road.

Start today… done beats perfect every time! 

Don’t wait. The time will never be just right.

Napoleon Hill 

There are risks and costs to action. But they are far less than the long-range risks to comfortable inaction.

John F. Kennedy


LifeStyle By Intention

How many of us set goals and have lists of projects, action items that have completion dates and interim steps in our journals, whether on our computers or some other electronic device or system? Most of us are “trained” to set life goals and keep track of how we are progressing, day to day, month to month and year to year. But how many of us set INTENTIONS and set goals and truly understand the difference? Goal setting and project management are “hard science”; action-based functions that keep us focused on a future event; keep us on plan; to stay on track. Goal setting is very good, and we all need that skill, but there may be a nuanced difference, as goals usually mean that we are reaching for something we don’t have, yet. And for some, who may not reach their goals, it can lead us to feeling like failures. What if we could set our daily and weekly intentions to keep us focused and in the moment, while we are stretching to meet or exceed our goals? What if we can set our daily intentions that will help us reach our goals? Intentions that speak to our purpose, our passions and natural gifts/strengths that can support our action-based goals. It’s a small difference in the way we think and feel about our work and our impact on the world around us.

Intentions aren’t to be confused with goals: They are about who you want to be, your values, and what you wish to share with the world around you and how you want to impact the lives of your clients, your neighbors or your family. Intentions are not measured in the same way as goals. There is no timeframe set, per se. If I set an intention to feel more gratitude in my day and do so daily, that feeling will be pervasive in all that I do. It may give me positive energy that just may make me complete one or more of my daily goals!! Intentions aren't to be confused with goals: They are about who you want to be, your values, and what you wish to share with the world around you. Intentions can be set to allow us to see beyond our goals that are time-based and action based. An intention to continue to learn and grow in a certain field of work, can support you today and five years from now, perhaps helping you move ahead in your business or career in ways that you could not see at the time. My intention to seek more information about the neuroscience of language and decision making has changed my wealth management business in ways that I could not have imagined just 3 years ago! Frankly, I did not know that a specific science could impact my world in the way that it has! Finally, setting intentions can “soften” the hard-driving world around us and yet, keep us focused on reaching out for success, and with that success, will come a feeling of both gratitude and abundance as we have set daily, weekly intentions that speak to our personal passions and purpose and our WHY we want to reach those BIG goals. Give it a try and see how Intentional Living can impact your Success!

 The above material was prepared by Peak Advisor Alliance. 1_618410