How I Got My First 1,000 YouTube Subscribers: My Sneaky 5 Step Formula (Based on Kindness and Capitalism; Quantity and Quality)

This month I celebrate reaching that magical (and marketable) milestone of 1,000 YouTube subscribers. What is interesting is that just a year ago in February 2016, I only had a little over 100 subscribers. This nearly 800% increase happened because of a specific 5 step formula I figured out and began applying. And today, I shall share it with you:

1.      Make 3 videos every day for a month; about whatever random topic that interests you. Every that 30 day period, see which particular video is outshining the rest in regards to views and comments. That video topic is now your specialty.

2.      Make 3 videos every day, from now on, mainly on that specialty topic, which is now your shtick. People will begin assuming you are somewhat of an expert on that subject, and from there, your true followers will naturally latch on to your work.

3.      Reply to all comments you receive on your videos; which forms a bond with the people spending their time to watch your videos. For the negative comments, sincerely thank them for spending time to watch your video and spending energy to comment on it, which ultimately draws more attention to the video, which ultimately makes the video seem more interesting and attractive to other potential watchers.

4.      Start making videos in direct response to the most relevant comments you receive. That shows your subscribers (and potential subscribers) that you are personal and involved; and therefor a passionate expert on that specialty topic. Read their screen name and quote their comment at the beginning of the video, then simply reply publicly to their comment; which will often encourage more comments.

5.      Always be honest and direct, yet positive. People naturally follow confident people, yet they also value vulnerability; which reinforces the personal quality of your video channel.

As for me, my “specialty topic” is helping younger men psychologically deal with hair loss. Believe me, I was as surprised as you are to learn that I could become an expert on that topic.

Like the prophet Jonah, I ran from the truth at first. I kept making videos that I enjoyed making (and that honestly, required more time and talent), yet no one was watching.

I realized I had to respect the free market. People were coming to my channel for encouragement about losing their hair. I simply learned to capitalize on that, in kindness, pouring my creative passion into what other people care about, not necessarily what I care about.

In a way, “quantity over quality” was working me. Instead of focusing on the quality of my videos with editing and music and moving fonts, I transferred the concept of quality into my personal interactions with my viewers; not the videos themselves. But since I now have nearly 1,000 videos along with those 1,000 subscribers, I by default am able to incorporate both quantity and quality.

While casual viewers will occasionally accuse me of being “obsessed” because I make 3 videos every day, my faithful subscribers appreciate my dedication- after all, my subscribers are the ones that matter. Perhaps they are the ones obsessed with the topic- I know this and therefore use that to my advantage, by not only catering to their desire but also attempting to help cure them, as well.

Granted, hair loss videos are not your shtick. You have to discover what random topic that people will assume you are an expert on.

Now, get to work. Begin with the first step…

How I Got My First 1,000 YouTube Subscribers: My Sneaky 5 Step Formula (Based on Kindness and Capitalism; Quantity and Quality)

7 Benefits of a Man Shaving His Head as Opposed to Having Hair

7 Benefits of a Man Shaving His Head as Opposed to Having Hair

Unless you are Anthony Bourdain, Tony Danza, or Don Henley, chances are you haven’t won the “follicle lottery.”

Most men, myself included, find that by the time they near the age of 35, not only does their hairline recede, but almost even worse, their hair on top begins thinning out significantly.

That combination begins limiting hairstyles for a man. The best response is to start cutting it much shorter on the sides and the back (anywhere between a 2 and 4 guard on the clippers), so that the top looks fuller.

Even then, the top has to be fairly long to distract from the fact that it is indeed thinning. Notice in this picture (below) from this past summer, how you can see how my hair in the front is thinner; I can see scalp in the midst of my hair.

It’s important to me that I am not in denial when it comes to my hair. I embrace reality and don’t try to hide it from the outside world.

So for my hair to look the best, I have to grow it fairly long on top, then pay nearly $20 a month to pay to get it maintained.

7 Benefits of a Man Shaving His Head as Opposed to Having Hair

But what’s the real advantage of a nearly 35 year-old man having hair anyway?

On the contraire, I have learned it’s actually better, in many ways, to choose to be bald.

1)      Many women like the look of a man with a shaved head. My wife is one of them. She’s never liked my hair when it was longer. But when I keep it short, she never has any complaints. Perhaps the psychology is this: “Bald equals masculine, and therefore, equals attractive to women who are attracted to masculine men.”

2)      It’s free to shave your head. A pair of clippers is all you need; no need to go out pay someone at least 20 bucks for a traditional haircut every month. I prefer the 1.5 guard on the clippers as it perfectly matches the thinner area of my hairline; looking more aesthetic all over.

3)      Men with shaved heads look more confident. Those of us who choose to bald show a strong level of confidence in ourselves in being able to commit to such a fairly extreme, yet butch hairstyle.

4)      Men with shaved heads appear to be taller. By no means am I insecure about my completely average height of 5’9”, but sure, I’ll gladly accept the concept of people thinking I’m an inch and a half taller than I actually am.

5)      It’s less maintenance, both physically and psychologically. Based on the number of hits I effortless earn each day on my YouTube videos about receding hairlines, it’s very obvious that most men A) suffer from thinning hair and B) spend a lot of time thinking and worrying about it. Instead, they could just choose to opt out of that game as I have.

6)      Wearing hats is more practical. When you don’t have any hair to be matted down after wearing a hat, you never have to worry about looking sloppy after removing a hat in public.

7)      It’s officially cool to have a shaved head. Perhaps never before in human history have men who choose to be bald been cooler. It’s sophisticated rebellion. It’s edgy yet classy.

7 Benefits of a Man Shaving His Head as Opposed to Having Hair

I’m not saying I won’t grow my hair back again, because I know I sporadically will.

But really, I’ve yet to see any incentive to. I’ve yet to how having hair benefits my life at all, whatsoever.

Instead, I only see benefits of choosing not to have hair.

But let’s not simply take my word for it…

I hereby invite you to decide for yourself. I just made this video which contains back and forth footage of me: with a buzz cut, then with hair. Vote which you think looks better by leaving a comment on the video.

Let’s settle this once and for all!

How to Know If Your Hairline is Receding

I remember when I was 19, asking the lady who cuts my hair if my hairline was starting to recede or not. She looked closely at my scalp, and confirmed:

“Yes, it is. See how this hair right here up front is shorter than the rest? That’s how you know.”

Like someone having just heard their own death sentence, I asked, “How much time do you think I have before it starts becoming obvious that I’m gradually losing my hair?”

(Because to a 19 year-old boy, the issue seems to hold that much weight.)

I took it like a man when she told me: “I’d say about 35. You’re probably safe until you are 35 years old.”

Vegans Don’t Get Enough Protein and the World is Still Flat

Being just 19 at the time, I remember what a scary thought it was to imagine that if she was wrong, since my receding hairline had definitely begun, that I could be a victim of early male pattern baldness before I was even in my mid-20s.

Fifteen years have passed since that day.

I’ve made it to age 34, just 7 months away from that fateful birthday when I turn 35. My genes have been good to me.

While I won’t make it to my 50s and still have a full head of hair and a “straight across hairline” like Brad Pitt or John Stamos, or Tony Danza in his 60s, I reached my goal of making it until at least the time I got married.

With all that being said, I now realize how it didn’t even matter anyway, as this video I made explains:

Life experience has taught me that hair loss is one of those things that guys allow themselves to worry about and even become preoccupied by.

Like worrying about your height. Or your size; I’m being discreet about that, in case you’re reading between the lines.

There are companies across the world who are eager to make money off you by selling you the false hope of giving you the “cure”.

They play on your emotions related to you losing your hair, or not being tall enough, or big enough (again, I’m being discreet); they will try to scare you with “the ladies agree size really does matter.”

That’s all garbage.

Are you a man who is sincere, hard-working, creative, caring, passionate, funny, and emotionally intelligent?

Those are the things that make you attractive and respectable and cool as a man.

It’s not about that other stuff.

Just imagine how liberated your mind can become once you accept this as truth, instead of the lies you allow yourself to believe.

I wish someone would have explained this to me when I was 19.

What Not to Say If You Want People to Like You 101

Exploring the unspoken rules of conversation.


As an avid fan of clear communication and healthy human relationships, I have made myself overaware of the common courtesies of speaking in North American culture.  The problem with being so sensitive to the unwritten rules is that it can be much easier to become annoyed when other people break these rules.  Yet still, these rules exist.  Until now, they have remained invisible- but it’s time for a review of what we already know and hopefully live by.

Knowing when not to talk to a person. It’s not so much a “not before I’ve had my coffee” situation, as it is that many people (even if they are indeed “morning people”) do not enjoy engaging in conversation for the first hour of the day- especially if it involves hearing petty stories involving pet problems or car trouble.  Also, if a person seems quiet like they may be upset or stressed, do not say “Well, what’s wrong with you?!”  Instead, politely ask them if they want to talk about it.  If they say no, then say, “I’m here if you need me” and don’t talk to them until they talk to you.

Knowing what not to say. Refrain from pointing out obvious cosmetic flaws: recent weight gain (this includes pregnancy), hair loss, acne, scars.  The person may not ever forget your comment if it involves any topic like those.  They may never refer to you as a “nice person” again after that- but instead, you’ll be forever engrained on their “rude” list.

Knowing how to have an opinion yet not preach.  Many people are into healthy lifestyles these days, being much more aware of organic eating.  When asked by someone about your own lifestyle choices, simply answer their questions.  Only continue the conversation from there if they sincerely show interest.  Do not debate with them or become their “food judge” by saying, “Wow, you’re actually gonna eat all those carbs?” as they walk by with a big bowl of spaghetti.

Knowing how to be positive. No one likes a whiner.  While the poor economy and the Gulf Oil Spill Crisis are common knowledge and therefore make easy topics, avoid initiating a conversation about them.  Look for ways to “make a person’s day” by what you say instead of simply adding to the noise.  You’ll stand out, in a good way.  Needless to say, for more reasons that one, please never get caught saying, “I got a case of the Mondays!”

Knowing how to actually compliment someone. Make sure a compliment is truly a compliment.  If there is a casual criticism thrown in there, it voids out the positive vibes.  Like this: “I really like that purple shirt you’re wearing, even if it makes your skin look a little pale.”  Not cool.

These starters are only the tip of the iceberg.  But they are real reasons why some people are “good with people” and others aren’t.  Either way, good communication is a learned skill- it’s just that some people are more observant than others.

Unsolicited Advice is Like Fruitcake

Like fruitcake, it’s a popular gift.  And like fruitcake, it’s usually not received with sincere grattitude.

Yesterday I read someone’s facebook status update saying they are “sick and tired of getting unsolicited advice about how to raise my kids”.  A flood of comments followed from people who agreed, along with several “likes this”.  Good call.

Because there is actually a difference between constructive criticism and unsolicited advice- the “unsolicited” part.  And of course I’m not referring to family or close friends- it’s their job to give you unsolicited advice, because they’re more apt to “get through” to you in their approach, as well as knowing you well enough to give relevant advice.

And “relevant” is an important word.  Because part of the reason unsolicited advice is so obnoxious is that it’s often irrelevant to to us.

There are many times in my life where I really want someone’s advice.  So I ask for it, specifically from the people who I believe have the most intuition and wisdom on the subject.  The irony of receiving unsolicited advice is that the people most likely and eager to give it are often the ones who I would never ask anyway.

Which means sometimes I have to stay strong to resist from giving others advice when they haven’t asked for it, lest I be “that guy”.

It all comes down to a social cue that many people feel is disregarded- like their personal life is being intruded upon when someone gives me advice they didn’t ask for.  Because giving advice (warranted or not) is a form of giving criticism.  And when it comes to receiving criticism, most people aren’t truly that open to it- unless they are directly asking a specific trusted individual for it.

Granted, there are times when people put themselves in a situation that invites advice, indirectly.  Any kind of public facebook message will do the trick.  Anything I write about on my site is always open to criticism and advice; that’s why I allow comments.  I like hearing others’ perspectives on raising a kid and I welcome comments on my “dad from day one series”.  That’s intended as a shared experience.

But it’s those people in our “outer circles” that tend to be the key offenders.  The ones most likely to bring to your attention that you’ve gained some weight, got a big zit on your forehead, are starting to lose your hair,  or announce in front of everyone that you appear to be in a bad mood.  These people obviously don’t intend to offend us; they honestly mean well.

It’s just that no one taught them basic social behavior lessons.  And the thing is, they’ll probably never get a clue.  So what do I do when I get unsolicited advice from a person who isn’t too keen on social clues?  Give ‘em a half-sincere smile, shake my head “yes”, and change the subject.

And I’ve also noticed that these same people so eager to help us are often the most likely to go into details about their personal life, telling everyone stories that no one asked to hear.  They are eager to “help” us because they need help themselves.

I guess ultimately, being given uninvited advice is in a way like someone telling you who to be.  And for those of us who definitely know who we are, it’s if nothing else, plain annoying, to be told we are going to become like someone else who lives their own life by a different code.

There’s something that keeps us from wanting someone else to be able to figure us out.  It’s accurate to say that there’s nothing truly new under the sun.  But still we thrive on the freedom to live life as an individual, not based on both the idiots and geniuses who have done this thing before us.

P.S.  By the way, in my opening I had to use fruitcake as a universal example that most people would relate to- when in fact, I am actually a big fan of fruitcake.

New News

I live by an invisible list of things I will never do. Here is one of those things: “Never become involved in a quick sale unless I am the one pursuing the salesman or the store, not the other way around.” The fact is, calling in the next 10 minutes isn’t what entitles a person to a double order or a bonus gift, as they advertise in the commercial.

Those things are included either way. It’s just that the marketing department knows statistics show that the overwhelming majority of people who call in to order the product, do so in that time frame. It helps the fence riders to do business or get off the pot.

And that is just part of the dirty art of the Quick Sale. There is a reason certain salespeople are so aggressive. It usually is because of the high mark-up of the item. Or they are paid on commission. Or because the item plays on the potential customer’s emotions or wishful thinking.

If the “cure” for male baldness is ever found, there won’t need to be a commercial to advertise for it. Word will get around. Until then, there will always be desperate souls who respond to the infomercial and buy spray paint for their heads.

There is a shortage in the world for new information. People are desperate for it. On Monday the local news channel kept showing advertisements for the 10 O’ Clock News saying, “Find out how Kanye West may have hurt others besides Taylor Swift in the Nashville area…” When it finally aired, the story was simply that some girls from Taylor Swift’s high school didn’t like seeing their hometown hero deprived of her full award speech.

Two words: That is totally lame and no one cares.

I am supposed to be a Twitter fan. It is a great networking tool for writers, yes. But constant, pointless status updates totally annoy me. The deeper issue is this- I want to learn something new. My brain is a sponge for new perspectives and hidden agendas. Twitter isn’t the best place for that. It just constipates my flow of thoughts like the equivalent of junk food.

When I was a kid I remember one day asking my dad if the news reporters would ever run out of news to report. He said there would always be weather and crime, even if nothing else was going on. And that is true.

But what the world does run out of is interesting news. When Kanye West is the highlight of both the local and national news, it says something to me about what news really is. Just like the fact that not every summer has a huge blockbuster movie, not every week has a world-changing news story. Sometimes the news is simply a social blunder. It may appear petty on the surface, but if it is worth of capturing the attention of the entire nation for a week, it obviously holds some serious value.

Regardless, I took the bait. Especially once I heard what the President called him.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BqtTESz24gU

And from there, I add to the noise, helping to put Kanye West into the same dreadful category as Paris Hilton, Octomom, and Jon & Kate. The category of “you’re so annoying, why are you everywhere I go?” which in turn sells the most magazines and gains the most clicks on website links.

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“That which has been is that which will be and that which has been done is that which will be done. So there is nothing new under the sun. -King Solomon (Ecclesiastes)