Love Stinks

John Misha 6

Monday, 2:33pm
San Diego, CA
“If you see my little red rooster, please send him home…” (Howling Wolf, master of innuendo)


I’m actually starting this blog in longhand, sitting in the Southwest terminal in San Diego…

… finally dragging my exhausted butt homeward after logging a full week here putting on the now-fabled Action Seminar.

It was a spectacular success, if you’re keeping score.

We directly challenged every seminar model out there… and delivered two frighteningly-on-target days of specific advice, techniques and life-transforming revelations.

Both the roomful of attendees, and the small army of Big Dog experts we assembled, loved the experience.  If you’re following the social media threads of folks like James “Schrak” Schramko, Mary Ellen Tribby, Big Jason Henderson, the Halbert boys, Harlan Kilstein, Brian Johnson, Kevin Rogers, Lorrie Morgan-Ferrero, and the other stellar names who participated…

… then you’re already hip to how the event went.

Excellent buzz.

Shame on you for missing it.


I haven’t got a lot of time here, so I need to focus on what I wanted to share with you here in this post.

There was a ton of practical info for everyone’s “To Do List” at the seminar…

… but there was also a very intriguing element of spirituality, too.

I wasn’t planning to go down that road.

However… … when I stepped onstage to begin Day Two, I told Stan I wanted to talk about something not on our schedule for a few minutes before we re-immersed into the planned sessions.

The subject just settled into my mind as I addressed the crowd.  It was important, mostly ignored by the marketing community, and absolutely NOT what anyone expected to hear from the Marketing Rebel.

Can you guess what I talked about?


So much of what entrepreneurs (and wannabe entrepreneurs) talk about when they discuss what they do, involves emotion.

Loving what you do, splitting from the awfulness of a J-O-B and super-charging your batteries with passion, generating good vibes that resonate in the universe, and so on.

And you know what?

While most folks talk a good “love” game…

… few really have looked at it critically.

And they fail to realize what they’re dealing with.

I asked the crowd to call out the most powerful emotion humans possess.

Many, incorrectly, said “love”.

Now, I personally thrive on love.  It’s fueled my career, and keeps me motivated.  I may be the only guru out there who openly tells his colleagues he loves them, and who hugs my favorite friends, colleagues and co-workers with genuine warmth both arriving and going.

(When colleagues first meet me, they often balk at the manly hugs.  But once they realize it’s just a tribal greeting — maybe one small step above a firm handshake — they usually loosen up.

(Unless they’re terminal uptight cases.  Lot of them around.

(You can make fun of it if you like… cuz it IS kinda funny to see grown men and women, accomplished in their fields and generally maintaining a dignified attitude, eschewing the offered handshake of a close pal and going in for the “I luv ya, man” hug.

(Tell you what, though.  That’s how you know you’re on the inside.  That’s how you know you’ve been accepted into the pack.)

I haven’t retained much from my hippie days.  (Jeez, we were naive.)

But I believe younger generations have been cheated, mostly, with the overwhelming cynicism and sarcasm and hyper-critical bullshit of our culture.

Screw what you believe is “cool” or “dignified”.  Get over your bad self, stop pretending you’ve got to be aloof to be respected…

… and come here, gimme a hug.

You goofy bastard.  Lighten the fuck up, will ya?

There really is a kind of love out there that isn’t sexual, isn’t whimpy or goopy, and won’t hurt your perceived status in the world.

It is, in fact, the exact kind of love that successful Big Dogs are referring to when they talk about “passion” in markets and marketing.

Now… here’s what you may have wrong about this specific brand of love:

It’s NOT the most powerful emotion out there.

Not even close.  The really powerful ones are fear, rage and greed.

Those monsters grow without being nurtured, thrive in all conditions, and consume entire realities like an invading predator.

And they will swamp love, barely registering a burp after devouring it.  If you let it happen.

No, love is not powerful.

It’s fragile.

You gotta want it.  You gotta pursue it.  You need to understand it, realize what it is and what it isn’t, what it can and can’t do, where it can be found…

… and, especially, how easy it is to lose.

Love withers without constant nurturing.  It’s a needy thing, full of contradictions and almost perverse in the way it will constantly test you, challenge you, and even dare you to abandon it.

When entrepreneurs talk about loving what they do, they are actually delivering — on a silver platter — the one big damn secret to being successful.

You have to be critically aware of your love, embrace the unpredictable nature of it, and commit to it.

The kind of love experienced by entrepreneurs who make it past the rough stages, and burst into the heady worlds of success and fame and wealth…

… is something that, I’ve realized, most people never get to feel.

It’s the love of creating something, committing to adventures with no guarantees, standing outside yourself and murdering your ego in order to better feast on life…

… and allowing yourself to be consumed by a hidden lifeforce you cannot measure, cannot fully control, and cannot summon only when you can “use” it.

Love has no power beyond its ability to transform your experience within the world.

You can’t force it on others.

It will die without constant nurturing.

And it can be a huge pain in the ass when it runs up against the snarling emotional predators out there, hating and snapping in fear and living in cynical denial.

And yet, the successful entrepreneur just shrugs, knowing that love is the secret to earning your seat at the Feast.

Not easy to figure out, difficult to please, infuriating in its irrational tendencies.

But you wouldn’t want it any other way, once you’ve sunk deep into its embrace.

No one is going to invite you to the Feast of Life.   There isn’t room, really, for anyone who isn’t “with” the program anyway.

If you think it’s hilarious to see grizzled veterans of the business wars giving each other powerful embraces, and really meaning it…

… then, sorry, but you’re alienated from the core of human existence.   It may be a long way you need to go to get back (if you even want to try), or it may be a simple shrugging off of your meddling, too-cool-to-live ego…

… but the first step is the same:  Figure out what your relationship with this kind of life-loving experience is.

Not what other people’s relationship is.

What YOURS is.

Then, the REAL adventures can begin in earnest.

Come on.  There’s someone close to you who needs a hug.

Get over yourself, and rise above the suspicious, eat-its-own culture all around you.

The Big Dogs breathe deep, and welcome love into their lives and business and dreams.

Just think about it.

I got a plane to catch…

Stay frosty,


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  • There are probably thousands of your followers huddled in the fetal position because of your emotionally open post. I embrace it.

    You continue to be a beacon in the often razor-backed world of marketing. You have heart and caring along with being gifted, and that’s why I ‘love’ you so much as a marketer, mentor, and colleague. I am crazy about the people you attract…always cool peeps with integrity, smarts, and open to learning. Keep it up. You are unique.


  • First of all, great event. I was lucky enough to be there, and it inspired me in the most total and effective way possible.

    As for the love thing, you nailed it. We’re surrounded by uptight people who spend their whole lives and large portions of brainpower trying to hide their thoughts and feelings.

    These people are the majority.

    But I think if we aren’t doing that – if we’re NOT working hard to keep it buttoned down, not only are we more whole as people, but we’ve got a lot of juice to spare in the old noggin as a result. So we get to think more, and be more “open” to life in general.

    I’ve always thought that passion/love has a lot to do with seperating the guys who are just going through the motions as writers/marketers, and the guys who are in the trenches making breakthroughs and riding the wave as far as it will take them.

    That’s my take anyway.

    Great post John, inspirational.

    -David Raybould

  • Susie says:

    Hi John;

    I know I didn’t get notification of this post – and this one (as all of them!) is too good for people to miss. So perhaps another eblast??

    I’ve never met you in person – hope to soon (did I see something about a session by the green river in Chicago on St. Patty’s day??). But, due to the strength of your writing, I feel as though I know you.

    I have to admit it – this post did make me sniffle a little – much better than a chick flick!!

    Big hugs,
    Susie Nelson

    • John Carlton says:

      I’m sending out another blast today — we’ve gotten such good feedback on this, I’m leaving it up until more people have had a chance to see it…
      … though, I’m not sure how I feel about writing chick-flick posts…
      In exchange for Michele watching Sherlock Holmes with me, I’ve agreed to start watching more of the chick-flick stuff coming out of Hollywood. Good grief, there’s some strange, weepy movies plowing emotional grooves through the culture…

      • Susie says:

        Sounds like you and Michele made a fair trade! I really enjoyed Sherlock Holmes – would highly recommend “It’s Complicated” as a “not-too-chicky” chick flick.


  • Mike Singer says:

    Hi John, really nice post. (And a great event!)

    Your thoughts here remind me of the weirdest, most deliciously juxtaposed thing I ever witnessed in the corporate world.

    I was in a meeting, and someone had brought a “Grapple” … a freaky genetically-modified apple that tastes … and smells … like grapes. People began passing it around, sniffing it. Everyone else in the room focused on the Grapple. But I sat back observing.

    In the middle of a contentious discussion about product features, specifications, and schedules … in a room full of office furniture, laptops, and papers … I watched in fascination as some of the brainiest people I knew sniffed a piece of fruit. And in that moment … one by one … they were each momentarily transformed into primal beings doing what primal beings do.

    By the time the Grapple had made its way around the table, I couldn’t help thinking that the feeling in the room had somehow changed a bit. I had to wonder: how different would EVERY meeting be if we always started that way … by doing something to remind us viscerally that despite our differing knowledge, opinions, and skills … we are at root just animal beings all searching for something that smells, tastes, or feels good.

    Sniffing fruit, getting hugs, it’s all the same. If you keep your eyes open as you move through the world you’ll see this happening everywhere. The simplest things can make the carefully constructed cerebral facades that we THINK make us human melt away … and for brief moments we’re completely exposed as the emotional beings we really are.

    Those moments are comforting and scary at the same time, and I think there are huge lessons in them for anyone trying to market something, persuade someone … or just feel the love.

    Thanks for the eloquent reminder that … if we’re brave … we can just head straight for the love, man!


  • Lina says:

    Hi John

    I love writing, eating fish ‘n chips and traveling. I love meeting people who WOW me and having conversations that change my life. I’m still muddling my way through this being a budding entrepreneur thing. But while I can live my dreams doing the stuff I love, then I think I’m on the right track. Too bad about the daily fear confrontations though.

    You write with a wisdom that makes me feel there’s a lot about life I don’t quite get – yet. So thanks for the heads up. Thanks for the love. Hug to you from Sydney.


    • John Carlton says:

      Hi Lina. Hell, we all have more to learn. It never stops — the notion that life can ever be “simple” is seductive, but total BS. However, the constant learning and engagement doesn’t have to be a drag — it’s actually a better way to live, I’ve found, being totally engaged and going deep on things. It’s a big world…

  • Alecs says:

    This ????? dogs speaks us of that that only dogs can present love gratis, but people it is necessary this learns Love frail – an awe ,greed,anger- monstrym

  • Kevin Rogers says:

    The long hugs are nice, John. It’s the reach around that creeps me out.

    I keed.

    My best friends have always been big huggers. Always funny the looks from strangers when we reconvene after months — or years — apart in public places like restaurants over a monster man hug.

    Really challenges the core homosexual tension most folks keep simmering just under the surface.

    Have to draw the line at the Sicilian double-cheek smooch though. Not because it seems gay, but I can never remember if you’re supposed to start on the left or right… and I’m pretty sure guessing wrong can buy you a perma-nap in the trunk of a Cadillac.

    Congrats on a great event once again, John. People can’t stop raving. Here’s to many more.


    • John Carlton says:

      Thanks, man. You did great on the stage…

    • Doberman Dan says:

      I’ve been laughing so loud at this, I woke the Colombiana up. I translated it into Spanish but she just grinned and went back to bed. Must not be chick humor, I guess.

      Seriously, I haven’t laughed this hard in a long time. Thanks, Kevin!


  • Depak says:

    You aren’t turning into an old queen are you?

    Hugging and such…next you will be kissing cheeks!


  • […] As always it’s taken from his encyclopedic blog, which if you don’t already read, then I highly recommend that you check it out here. […]

  • Timothy says:

    Reading posts like these from your blog is like a breath of fresh air. Being an entrepreneur can often be a lonely existence. You have clients and employees, neither of which you can be truly open with. Many relatives, friends and even spouses have 9-5 clock punching jobs and really can’t relate to what it means to be the boss. Your colleagues are really competitors so no joy there either!

    No concept that the boss gets paid last and that crap rolls uphill.

    Also difficult for them to empathize with the elation and sense of accomplishment when what you have created (holy crap) actually works!

    So when you can find someone of like spirit, who you know will not stab you in the back, a hug is just an expression of appreciation and gratitude. Just a great post that resonated with me. Thanks.

    You can always to the man-hug where the handshake turns into the hug (keep the arm between and naughty bits the regulation 3′ apart)

    • John Carlton says:

      I keep coming back to the idea of the tribal thing… we are able, now, to live our entire lives essentially cut off from other people, and it’s not healthy. It’s not the hugs that matter… it’s the connection, and the sense of belonging to the tribe. There is deep psychological comfort there that you cannot measure.
      And yeah, I’m not into close body-slams, unless maybe you just finished a gig as a centerfold in Playboy or something…
      Thanks for the note and the laugh, Timothy.

    • I have to come back to a statement made by Frank Kern, in one of his videos. He talked about in his early business, he was “afraid someone would learn his address,” then, he said. “Now, I don’t mind.” To me, it’s nearly the same thing. When my site goes up, I won’t be afraid of my list, or my employees. If we aren’t part of a community, then why are we there? My list, and my employees are a part of a community that I started, but we all own.
      If we’re afraid to share a meal, or show our community, why are we a part of it? I consider myself the “seed crystal,” in the solution of my business. Like a seed crystal, I lose my individual identity, in the larger crystal. But, that doesn’t matter because the larger crystal is more useful.
      My point is that Love is the hallmark of any community, in the form of easy friendship. If it’s missing, something is badly wrong.

  • David Sharp says:

    Well John that certainly got me thinking, it is not often that you here love talked about as a requirement of becoming successful. It doesn’t mean I don’t agree with it though as it is the most important emotion to focus on in our lives. In fact it’s the first thing we should think about everyday starting with ourselves and extending outwards via our closest family and friends to finally embrace the whole world.

    Great post keep them coming.


    • John Carlton says:

      Thanks, David. The main thing I was trying to get across is how we almost criminally fail to comprehend our own emotional lives. You really can run the entire ride without having a clue what or why you’re feeling… just as you can ignore the biology and the intellectual parts.
      It’s not easy to figure it out. We tend to believe that, since we’re human, we MUST understand intuitively what that means, and how it all works. And that’s just not true. We gotta work at it, and care about it.
      Hope I made that point at least a little bit…

  • […] This post is so good I am going to send you to it, and I really urge you to read it. Go here: Love Stinks […]

  • Ms. Liz says:

    I’ve gotta say, it’s refreshing to hear you speak of the importance of love as you do here. I think love is a requirement for success, the love you give is the love you get back. Thanks for the great words of wisdom 😉

    • John Carlton says:

      I really think that, as a culture, we’re just starting to lose it big-time. Mass insanity, and an almost swooning acceptance of rage and fear as motivational emotions. This is how the world goes to war.
      Still, I think many people are waking up from their long, anger-filled slumber, and are at least starting to realize how fucked-up that kind of negative vibe really is, and how much of their life it’s eating up.
      Love won’t conquer all. But it sure can put a dent in the nastiness. And yes, at the upper levels, it’s a requirement for real success…

  • Gregg Zban says:

    Wow….I use to make and drink that cool-aid! Nicely done. Damn…to go there again…ahhh!

  • Barishna says:


    Who is the elusive Stan who writes some of the emails and that you refer to often. Seems like an interesting fellow.

    Seems like we would have more connection if we actually saw what he looked like. You should put a picture of Stan in a post. Make it funny or something lets see him.

  • Hey John,
    YOU are right.
    Love is what drives us and gets successful folks out of bed in the morning. And you’re right about success needing love. Most of my friends and family call me crazy to my face and while it slow things down it doesn’t bring the show to a grinding halt. The people that I don’t understand are those who have no primordial passion for life , for what they do and who they do it with. I think it is sad that most of the planet does stuff because they think “I have to” as opposed to “because this is what wakes me up and gets my juices running”

    The thing is that most folks can’t get past the conversations and beliefs that the man has put into their head. Keep up the work John…

    Your cool John and if you were here I would probably give you a hug.

    Love ya,


    • John Carlton says:

      You’re right, Mike — there’s an entire vocabulary used by entrepreneurs with words like “juice” and “passion”… and they mean very specific things. Outside the biz world, the words are more vague, and used haphazardly.
      Thanks for the post.

      • Hi Guys,
        I have been thinking about this post now for a few days and there are few more nuggets of wisdom I have come up with…
        The way that the human brain is wired is complex. Research shows that it’s more about nurture than nature. If you spend your whole life being told it can’t be done then guess what you get…?
        If however you spend the years of your life when your neural networks are forming ( age 0-7 years approximately ) being told “Hey that’s great what you just did…keep it up AND only do stuff that you love” then your chances of success are greater because what you believe is what happens. It’s what you get !! …..once you ad in the mystery ingredient which is hard work and persistence.

        I work with people all over the world and they get the best coaching and mentoring I know how to give on stuff as diverse as SEO
        and network building, leverage etc plus cultivating the right mindset and actions for success.
        HOWEVER If they can’t be arsed to take the actions they just wasted their time and I get to keep their money. Those that do get what they want and want what they get .

        Success can be defined as getting what you want. Happiness on the other hand is wanting what you get..!!
        Subtle difference but important…
        Back to the topic of your post John…
        Until such times that you know what success ( and happiness ) looks like for you you aint gonna be motivated to go do it.

        That’s me done.

        have fun at Yanik’s seminar. ( I’m jealous man )

        Mike the Thai guy…NLP trainer and general SEO wizard

    • Shrinky Dinky says:

      you guys are right.

      Love rules all and is the foundation of success.

      I guess that’s why I’m homeless today.

  • Dave Doolin says:

    This is exactly what I needed to read right now. Exactly.

  • Ben says:

    I thought this post was lame. Sorry.

  • Hiya John

    Hugs are a good thing – no matter what age.
    As demonstrated by miss 3 this morning, she had the crankies bad. All it took was asking her if she wanted a cuddle and the tantrum stopped.

    Hugs are a way we can be friendly. Nothing sexual intended – a way of saying hi and geez its nice to see you or meet you. Long time no see – thing 🙂

    When we someone hugging we may think its odd, also wishing we could be more that way, even if we wont admit it to anyone.

    We are taught in many ways not to show affection as it could be taken the wrong way. Not to ask for affection as its needy. Come on
    people even the ice berg melts.

    As humans we are emotional and creative. We thrive on live, chaos, tantrums, hugs, heroic deeds and more. We are an eclectic bunch that bear the markings “HUMAN”.

    Thats enough of me rambling from Downunder.

    Have a great day!

    Susan Connors

    • John Carlton says:

      Hi Susan. The one thing I did right, as a young punk in college, was re-introduce hugs and saying “I love you” constantly to my family and friends. Some took to it right away, and others balked and were uncomfortable. But I wore ’em down, and now we all use emotional phrases and meaningful gestures like hugs, without self-consciousness.
      The Easy Path is to continue to shrink emotionally in life. You will not be ridiculed or mocked, you can sit with the cynical majority in the bleachers and never have to expose yourself as a human with vulnerability or emotions.
      It’s an easy path, but a really dumb one to take.
      Thanks for the note.

  • Nathan Segal says:

    Hello John,

    Thanks for your post. In my experience, there are many types of love in the human realm. The one I’ve found to be most powerful is the love that comes from within, for no-one yet everyone. It is impersonal in that there’s no opposite. One of its many qualities is that it loves equally in all directions – no one is excluded. In this love there are no highs or lows and no barriers. It simply loves. It comes and goes of its own volition, apearing and dissolving in its own time. I’ve felt it many times and the best way I can describe it is that it feels like a hot, viscous transparent liquid, which fills up my entire being, so much so that bursts from the confines of my physical body and I can see/feel the energy of it flowing in all directions. I have often wondered how many people are affected by it.

    Again, thanks for your post.

  • gary says:

    It isn’t the love so much as the feeling of being loved. When you send out the love you get it back in such a big and wonderful way. YOu maybe totally dead ass tired from giving your all wondering if you gave them the “thing” they were needing, just that one little thing. And then that one piece of mail comes in that tells you that they are “no longer are afraid, or worried about what its going to take to get their life back” that they got that “thing” and it did for them what it did for you. Now they are part of the tribe you belong to and can see through the fear that is out there and can bring someone else in. It grows because of the love you put out and got returned back to you ten fold… and it doesn’t get any cooler than that.

  • Jon says:

    Love IS the most powerful emotion a human being can feel because it ALWAYS exists, within ALL of us.
    LOVE can NOT die.
    It maybe be deeply hidden by seemingly (illusionary) powerful emotions like fear, but when you break down the fear, LOVE is always there waiting.
    Love is the infinite core of our very beings, fear has an end !
    Return to the Love:)

  • Sal says:

    It took me a long time to realize what love actually is…trust based on truth….or at least that is the core of what it is supposed to be…from what I understand…and yet there would be disagreement and that is the way it is supposed to be too. Anyway for the most part I love what I do and it does make things hard at times especially in business (and using logic). As we all know, business and logic has nothing to do with emotion, but Thank God love covers all things! 🙂

  • Great post, John! I disagree about Love being fragile and know my love can ‘beat’ Joe Schmoo’s rage or greed any day… and still I find your message right on! 😉

    I love ya, man
    –Mary K

    ¸..· ´¨¨)) -:¦:-
    ¸.·´ .·´¨¨))
    ((¸¸.·´ ..·´ -:¦:-
    -:¦:- ((¸¸.·´* Light


  • Bernd says:

    Pleasure to read you and thanks for the e-mail blast. Awesome to feel your sphere growing towards a much-needed melting of the power-emotions reigning in a dog-eat-dog world. (Imagine a comma in there.)

  • Steve Reeves says:

    Pretty interesting that you picked today to talk about the power of love.

    I just started re-reading think and grow rich and in the chapter that I just finished last night it talks about how mixing any thought with faith or love has a greater effect in impressing your subconscious mind.

    I find it fascinating that you said…

    “Love won’t conquer all. But it sure can put a dent in the nastiness. And yes, at the upper levels, it’s a requirement for real success…”

    To me, it confirms that Napoleon Hill knew what he was talking about.

    Thanks John

  • I’ve always been a hugger…. that’s just me. Learned a long time ago that even those who freeze or balk when you lay a hug on ’em, don’t really hate it – they’re just scared. The whole notion that humans should keep our distance is silly…. loving is what we’re all about – it’s our power. Thanks for putting this energy out there and for your fresh, honest approach…. nice!

  • Elisabeth says:

    John, you asked the crowd to call out the most powerful emotion humans possess.

    You did not suggest that the question was answered in the context of “possess for what purpose?”

    Love IS the most powerful emotion we possess in the context of producing change. And I believe THAT is what it’s going to take for the type of change you allude to in your post.

  • David says:

    It’s so great reading important stuff like this. One question though: are fear, rage, and greed really more powerful than love, or is it just that they are so much easier to experience, and therefore more abundant in the world?

  • John,
    We haven’t met, but I’ve been following you for awhile now, and have always been impressed by your stuff. My hat is totally off to you for having the conviction and balls to bring this subject, these observations, and your passions about it all into the public eye…particularly in the realm of marketers. In all the technique, tools, and methodologies for growing lists, getting more business, making a shitload of money, etc., the LOVE word doesn’t show up much; in fact, you and Kevin Nations are the only two people I’ve personally run across that are writing posts like this one. We all know that relationship is a key factor in successful marketing AND successful living. Without love and connection (which hugs can be a good way of establishing and/or supporting), there is NO relationship…whether it be love for ourselves and/or love for our colleagues, clients, and prospects. My experience fits yours…fear is one of the most powerful emotions and motivators out there, and the most destructive (if not profitable for marketers). Your post is a call to sobriety and a call to faith…not necessarily religious faith, but a spiritual faith in the ultimate power of love and connection to create change, happy customers, and the transformations that create happy customers/clients. Thanks for your candor and your heart…if you were here, I’d have to offer you a hug, but gratitude will do for now.

  • Leslie says:

    The thing about love is that we can learn to live without it if necessary. We can stuff and stifle and sit on our hands so we don’t offend strangers or come across as needy. But those other bad boys – rage and greed – they have explosive lives of their own and don’t stuff well. Love can be elusive and shy, requiring subtle coaxing like a skinny stray cat darting under your deck, starving but scared. We have to know how to coax each other to come closer and trust in order to share love. That takes calculated patience and wisdom. You, John, seem to have a lot of both!!!

  • Lee says:

    This is a perfect opportunity to quote Kahlil Gibran: Love has no other desire but to fulfill itself. To melt and be like running brook that sings its melody to the night. To wake at dawn with a winged heart and give thanks for another day of loving.

  • Gerri says:

    Hi John,
    Loved your blog on ‘Love.’ I practice it everyday and it makes me feel good! There’s an affirmation that I quote (from a Chinese teacher of a Qing Gong training I did) and would love to share it:
    “I love my heart and soul,
    I love all humanity.
    Join hearts and souls together,
    In love, peace and harmony.”


  • Mark M says:

    Gotta agree that love can be a pretty lame emotion. But as a verb it’s got no equal.

    Which is, I guess, what you’re talking about. Not that 60s “free love” BS we grew up with, but a real expression of the life-passion spark that resides in us all.

    Whether it’s a manly embrace (OK, hug) or some mountain-moving feat, the expression of love sets in motion a chain of events that keeps our species pushing the envelop. (Great movie, that Top Gun.)

    And I think you are spot-on. Scratch a entrepreneur and s/he bleeds love. There’s no other way they could “birth” their passion.

    Powerful, ballsy stuff, John, coming from the Big Dog himself.

    Thanks for sharing.

  • Steve Haase says:

    John– fantastic post! Thanks.

    The fear, rage, greed thing is cool… way to stir things up. I’d like to offer a way of seeing this that helps me tremendously:

    There are lower perspectives and there are higher perspectives. And at each level, one experiences the full range of emotions. It’s just that one’s relationship to these emotions changes.

    At lower levels, the “stronger” emotions hold sway and love is a very rare flower that peeks its head through only for brief moments. Even then, it’s still mostly self-centered.

    But from the highest level , love is unbelievably powerful… in fact, the way I understand it, it’s the very source and fabric of existence itself. So in that sense, the emotions that were stronger at lower levels literally can’t touch it.

    So the purpose of life, and of business, and of our relationships, is to get to that place in our own development where the kind of love you were speaking about in your post becomes our *only* reference point.

    Then it will be a force that can and will change everything.

    Thanks again,

  • Val says:

    Hi John,
    Great thought. Nothing is as powerful as genuine love. The Bible says faith, hope and love are important, but love outstrips them all and is the basis for everything else. Genuine love, that is, which comes directly from the God Who Is Love. Man’s attempts are usually self-centred and selfish and a shadow of the Real Thing. When men allow God to love through them, that’s dynamite!
    Keep thinking along these lines and keeping giving!
    By the way, John (you can delete this if you like), you have a lot of Christians following your advice and teaching. Would you consider hugging us online by toning down the language, please? And thanks.
    You are out of the top drawer in your niche.

  • susannajade says:

    what’s so funny about peace, love and understanding? it’s the truth inside the truth, the one abiding force that will shake up the present paradigm and create a world with the Power of Love instead of the Love of Power. Thanks for speaking about it – you and Tony and Frank and so many others. We’ll reach critical mass and the Hundredth Monkey soon with all the help from cyberspace.


  • Hi John

    I really LOVE aspects of my work, but not so much other parts. That qualify? And while you ponder that, can your hugs reach the far away South Pacific to this small sized dog?

    It’s summer here – that might help 🙂

    Stop by Sir – you’d always be welcome.

  • I think it was Rich Shefren that talked about loving your customer, in his blog last week. I believe he was right. If you do not “Love” ypour customer/client enough to give your best effort, you won’t survive in business. It’s love that makes us put in the incredible effort it takes to make a business work. Yes, we can structure things to have lots of free time, but we still put in the time required. It may be concentrated, but it’s still there. And it takes love to make us do it.

  • Carlton, you are so TOTALLY fuckin spot on, it makes me shiver.

    I TOO am a notorious “Hugger”, and I agree- if you aren’t secure enough in your Manhood AND your LOVE for your life and your business to give up a hug, then you are totally LOST.

    Excellente’, my friend…


  • Ellery says:

    Great post John! My heart is now full of love because of your blog post.

    I will learn this lesson of love in my heart and really thank you for delivering this to me.

    I love you, John, thank you.

  • Lesa says:

    John, this post is tremendous and I have to say this past year, whether it’s due to me being in my 40’s or just everything going on around us, you really hit home when you spoke about fear and greed being a powerful force around us. I don’t think I’ve ever seen or recognized so much greed and people’s need for power as I have in the last year or so. I do believe is it’s coming from a root of fear because of everything going on around us and they are reaching in desperation for any type of security they can find to lessen the fear. It saddens me greatly. I agree wholeheartedly that “Love” is something we have to nurture and pay attention to. It’s takes an investment on our part to make it a part of who are all the time.

    I could go on and on about this subject, but the other point I wanted to make is because of your expertise of writing copy you immediately hooked the reader to the emotions of this subject and as I took the time to read each of the comments before mine I couldn’t help but think gee, he could write a book about this just by keeping the topic going and engaging your followers. As you reminded us “love is the glue” that will keep great companies at the top because it’s all about the people connection that keeps us there. People can do alot of things to get to the top but it will be all about the love and investment in people to keep them there. Thanks John!

    • Janet says:

      That’s such a great point, Lesa. It is fear that brings out the worst in us. I know it does for me. I’ve heard there are only two emotions, love and fear. So when you make a decision, pay attention to which one you’re basing that decision on. I usually forget to do that, but it makes a difference.

  • Victoria says:

    Hi John,
    Great subject…thinking from the heart.
    Great day to you!

  • Hey John,
    I was at the Action Seminar as you know and as many others will quickly attest, it was in fact jammed to the rafters with countless strategies that anyone can use to build their business quickly…
    On top of the plethora of technical notes I feverishly scribbled — I also left with some great overall reminders…
    But here’s the thing… I’ll be honest John and say I’m happy to see this blog post has little to do with that.
    The fact is… If you went to the event and you left with even a large “tool bag” of tasty tricks and that’s what you remember most — then you missed out on some really cool moments…
    I remember one the first times I ever truly felt the “Love” you’re talking about, or at least that night I could really put my finger on it…
    In the mid 90’s I had the chance to serve my community as Firefighter… I remember each night setting my tone alarm and radio on the nightstand next to my bed with the subtle hope it would never go off — but as fate would have it, it always did.
    At about 1:42Am I was kicked from a sound sleep by the fluctuating screeching sound of my tone alarm, directly followed by the dispatchers voice “Engine one — Rescue one, please respond to Deerfield road for an automobile VS telephone poll…
    As we arrived on scene we found a small passenger car mangled in a tightly bound heap and in those first moments we determined… it held two people inside.
    With hearts beating and the feeling of fear quickly creeping in due to the unknown, we began cutting away at the twisted metal to find that a small boy had been lodged deep in the passenger seat — his arm woven tightly in what was left of the jagged metal of the door…
    In the driver’s seat lay a stunned, bleeding and now obviously guilt ridden father –screaming out to please save his son first. Amidst the screaming and obvious cries of agony we continued to carefully extract both father and son, in the hope of giving them a chance to do this day over.
    45 minutes later… we pulled both father and son from the wreck and transferred their tattered and bruised bodies into the awaiting rescue – but still breathing.
    That wasn’t the moment… We were just doing what we promised to do on day 1, it was…
    Two months later as we all sat in the firehouse talking budgets, equipment and bi-laws… and in walks that same small boy and his family. 15 surgeries later and saturated with love and the will go on…
    That was the moment I remember… every Firefighter in the building HUGGED not only that boy and his family but each other, we shared a Pride… A Passion… A Love, we shared a common purpose we all understood and embraced. I enjoyed the Action seminar and I’m implementing the action plan I created after being there but honestly my biggest take away was the “LOVE”.
    I shared some great moments with some great people, and I look forward to the next big “GROUP HUG!” Action seminar!

    • Janet says:

      Wow. Thanks for sharing that, Scott.

      • You’re welcome Janet 🙂

        It’s funny, As I’ve come to know this writing community, the bond in many ways resembles the Fire Dept….

        The passions run deep — the thinking is meaningful — and when everything’s on the line, it’s the love that drives us to keep pushing through…

        And when the power of our written words are infused with that LOVE — well, it doesn’t just “Unite the tribe”, It has the power to change the course of someones life forever… for the positive!

        So I say , the cynics — the nay sayers and the all around too macho to huggers, stay on the other side of the room, quit breathing my air — and stay there until your open to the sharing the love… because this group of marketers get it!

        I’m glad the DUDE’s talking about it!
        🙂 Scott

  • Sean Breslin says:

    I can rely on you to be different John! Enjoyed todays call for action.

  • Andre says:

    Hey John! 🙂

    Thanks for this honest statement. Because love IS what makes us really successful – it is the holy grail of really following through. When we got larger projects or though times (ain’t that the same somehow sometimes..?! 😉 ) – we need the love for what we do – otherwise we won’t keep going.

    And it’s what keeps that smile on our faces… 😉

    Thanks again and giving you a big hug!


  • Cheers John…
    Here’s to love and passion…

  • Bryan Aucremanne says:

    That post really shows me the strength of your character.We can only hope that the other so-called “gurus” have a lick of sense to put into practice what you so plainly but eloquently said.We can only hope…?!

  • Edmund Dell says:

    Hi John, I take the time to report an illegal distribution of your products and what reply do I get in return? Nothing! At least nothing from your assistant that indicates you take counterfeiting seriously. Oh well, I guess you’re loaded beyond belief.

    (Weak response from John’s Office) Hi Edmund. This is Diane, John’s assistant. Thank you for bringing the ebay
    listings to our attention.

    Marketing Rebel Support

    Ticket Details
    Ticket ID: TRE-538171
    Department: Returns
    Priority: Urgent
    Status: Closed

    • Steve Reeves says:

      Don’t you have anything better to do than to come here and talk smack about Diane?

      Ridiculous.. Didn’t you just read Johns post about Love??

    • Steve, I agree… Ridiculous.
      Here’s the thing people have a hard time grasping… And often the reason they miss out on the “Love” connection…

      When you do something with the expectation that the response will fit your exact model of appropriate… Well, you are almost begging to be let down. “Human Glitch”

      Edmund, I too have been “Let down” but if you take the time to see it for what it is… and not what you thought it would be… well, you’ll save yourself a lot of stress…

      And unless I’m wrong… which I know I’m not… I think Diane was simply saying in so many word’s…
      “Hey, Edmund we have our shit together over here, we’re also really busy and sometimes things sneak past us -like the Ebay listing you were cool enough to point out — so I wanted to take a moment to say we really appreciate your heads up on this matter, we’re on it and your the Man”

      See, It’s all in how you see it!

      Take a deep breathe Edmund — John , Diane, Stan and the rest of the bunch do care and without question are appreciative of your guard dog diligence.

      We’re Glad your here but there are other places to bring this stuff up… we’re trying to share some love here…
      As a matter a fact…. Cmere man give me a HUG !

  • You wrote:
    “It’s the love of creating something, committing to adventures with no guarantees, standing outside yourself and murdering your ego in order to better feast on life…”

    McKinley Morganfield (aka Muddy Waters) wrote:
    “I let a mule kicking in my stall
    Let a mule kicking in my stall
    I gonna kill that mule
    Have no trouble at all”

    The link (I think):
    Our ego is our mule. Once we recognize that… kill the mule.

  • Randi says:

    Well said John. You are a one-of-a-kind leader.

  • Hi John,
    What a breath of fresh air. You know, I was one of those hard ass, don’t hug me, dont tell me you love me and don’t expect it from me type of person for years.

    When I turned about 27, I just couldn’t stand it any longer. I was miserable, alone, and bitter. The dam burst wide open at the point.

    At 42, I smile easily, laugh heartily, and hug generously. I also discovered my passion in the process.

    “What a wonderful world”…..

    With Gratitude,

  • TheWordless says:

    The Big Three:
    Love, Truth, Beauty.
    Are they synonymous?
    A most worthy post.

  • Doberman Dan says:

    Wow, John!
    I did two blog posts so far about your seminar. Your post makes mine look like what a 3rd grader would scribble in crayon after the teacher asks him to write the report, “What I Did On My Summer Vacation.”

    This post is a good example of the kind of high level stuff you can only get by being there in person. Those that chose to miss it REALLY made a big boo-boo.


  • Edgar Tucker says:

    Excellent content, as love is the fine thread weaving the Tribe together.

  • Jacob Bear says:

    John, you just saved my life. I’ve been a moderately successful copywriter for the last several years, but I’ve never really felt passionate about it. In fact the only thing that (barely) keeps me going is the money, which is far more than what I used to make as an English teacher. But I really was passionate back in my teaching days, I loved my students and peers, I gave and got a lot more hugs than I do now, and your post is a timely wake-up call. I’m going to turn my bike blog hobby into a business, get back into teaching, and finally have a life that I really want. There are plenty of mediocre copywriters in the world, but not enough dreamers. Thanks, John, for helping me find the way back.

  • […] John Carlon: Love Stinks AKPC_IDS += "145,";Popularity: unranked [?] Categories: Emotion, John Carlton […]

  • Dana says:

    Great post! It’s this kind of brutal honesty & openness I wish I would’ve experienced earlier in life to help me find wtf I’ve been looking for. At least I’m only 38 & have found “it”. A big thanks to you & your material. Keep ’em coming!


  • Paul says:

    Acknowledging the good you see in others however its expressed, only helps to elevate that state of being in all of us and makes for a better world in general. The people who think it’s strange to do so are like zombies walking around in the vanity of their own minds, never realizing that we are all connected, all one. I’ve also noticed that its those same people who tend to cause most of the problems in this world and help make it a little darker.

    Thanks for shining your light John, always appreciate it.


  • Ana says:

    John your latest blog on love surprised me purely based on your appearance, as in my experience based on bearded guys that I know, lead me to always believe that men with beards are not the huggy type and tend to lack affection. James Schramko for me is my real people’s person who demonstrates love and affection and it was through James’s recommendation that I became an affiliate of yours and got to know you through what you do and have no problem in promoting you as you come across as my kind of person. I did my best to get seats sold for you at the seminar but alas failed as I am still an amateur IM. I myself was reared on a lot of love and as a result always look on the bright side of life and always willing to hug and love wherever and whenever. So make your way over to Ireland where you will meet lots of willing huggers and lots of people who are not afraid to love each other and love what they do. Keep doing what you are doing cause you are making a very positive difference to lots of wonderful people in this world. Love and hugs… Ana

  • John Heuzo says:

    Great post! I believe a lot of people are disconnected from love, simply because in the modern era they are ‘internet connected’ and they believe that sending a message of love, saves them from having to do it in person. They call it social media, but i believe our social interactions are going to hell!

  • Greg says:

    Good Try John… Keep Trying

    I never have written much in blogs, though I think I am about to change all that. I will bet I have not written 1200 words in total on blogs in the past 11 years. Not a pride point, just reality.

    But you are talking about something that has grabbed me. I suppose that was the idea.

    Sorry in advance for the indulgent length.

    I love your stuff John, and I religiously study and restudy your training. It is world class.

    And I love (what I call) your strategic point-of-view, and your passion, and your inner commitment to live; vulnerably, sensitively, authentically–and professionally immersed in your “Jones” skill set.

    I love what you said too in your blog; actually I am a hugger too. I tell my BigCo CEO and Director clients that I love ’em quite often.

    I have actually become a back office legend of sorts in my small hidden community of corporate executives.

    Every now and then I look my colleagues and clients and people I connect with right in the eye, and say “hey, Fred, Bill or Michael… Have I Told You That I Love You Yet Today?”

    So John, I getcha man.

    And oh by the way, have I told you that I LOVE my work yet today?

    I am one of those really privileged people who after 29 years in the trenches, have finally landed on my calling and have become successful doing my unique thing in my specialized field, in my unique way that delivers mega value to my clients. And, in a personally stylized way that no one else can or should do like me and my team.

    I love movies, I love learning, I love my clients. Hell, I love lots of stuff now that I am clear and committed to my narrow path.

    And, to be sure I have been desperate, fearful, and needy… and I have accepted that part of my journey too.

    I have answered those things by picking up my scepter, sword and shield of passion (one of the secret ingredients in my secret sauce) to go where no man has dared go before, on a 30 year journey to call out and fight hubris, greed and selfish-ambition in the “inner sanctums” of the corporate fabric of the western commercial universe…

    Taking with me a personality that somehow allows me to do this without getting fired, but in fact get… loved.

    But, But, But…

    I must take issue with calling all this Love; Love vs love that is.

    The love that I think you are talking about does indeed retain a fragility. An unassailable vulnerability in fact, in its retention of fear; in its rugged self determination to conger or take or possess authority in the world, while never quite being able to take full responsibility for outcome when the heat inevitably comes pouring down. Been there, done that too!

    No judgment here, as I am on the journey to figure it all out too. I am out there to fight the good fight and cut through the bull shit and artifice and stuff that diminishes authentic connection between people; that perpetuates dysfunction of any one kind or another.

    I am striving in my heart and my mind and my body with all I have; to stay real and establish ‘functional’ healthy relationship with my kids, my wife, my friends, my associates and… my clients. And, I have paid some dues to get here; having made a mess of ALL of these things from time to time to time; over and over again it seems in my 52 years of life. Business failure, divorce, estranged relationships in and outside my family and work environment are not strangers to me, damn it!

    But, But, But …

    While I have indeed found refuge in my passion as it appears you have, and I have–out of it been able to spread a little bit of love all around and that simple step having made a HUGE difference to my business and life and familial success over the last decade plus some …

    I have also come to know that Love is not love, even if love is a great place to start.

    Love, transcends our striving commitment to love and to reject greed, hubris and selfish ambition. For me Love lands on a couple of lines that I swiped from a book that I stole from the library once when I was sleeping around and not being very functional:

    Love is patient, Love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

    Love never fails.

    There is no fear in Love; but perfect Love casts out fear.

    I cannot say that I understand how this really works, or that I am or should be any kind of role model for *anyone*. But, you have shaken me out of an 11 year blog sleep to step up and say what is on my heart.

    Okay, I guess that’s cool.

    I love and respect ya John.

    Stay warm,

  • Andrew says:

    Love it and stoked to hear how fantastic the action seminar was. Looking forward to hearing how people got into putting it into action.


  • D. Jones jr. says:


    I’m glad John loves me.

    He should…he has gobs of my money.


  • Love reading this blog John. Hope you are well.

  • JamesHT says:

    Hi, all ,

    i include at most joined here,.

    and i am happy that i develop account this forum..

    looking precocious to learn something remodelled here..…...


    sorry for my bad english, i m from russia.

  • Phil Squires says:

    I love the passion you have for writing and getting the message to those that are ready to hear you.
    Thanks for the inspiration and reminding us not to be scared of the truth, that nearly everyone loves to be Loved!


  • Dan says:

    Well done Mr. Data!
    P.S. You know what I mean.

  • Hilary says:

    Hi John, greetings from Ireland. I loved your post and think you will love what I am working on. Please see the website I sent you. It will be finished soon but you get an idea from the pics – I would LOVE to collaborate with you on this and have you write the copy as you are passionate about such ( win win of course )
    I just committed to make a million dollars in 90 days. I love mark Victor Hansen, and brought him to Geneva and London to speak. I am living the story in his book the One Minute Millionaire – it’s a scarey challenge tho I am doing it out of love.
    I would like to interview you as part of this project I am doing with the top internet marketers and the logo I sent you. As Helen Keller said ” life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all.”
    Keep loving……

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