Tuesday, February 24, 2009


As a longtime observer, reporter, investigative journalist, it always does my heart good to see some of my earliest ideas and pronouncements reconfirmed in the events of today. Over and over again, we are seeing economists and commentators talk about how what is needed to bring America back to a state of fiscal responsibility and solvency is a new psychological attitude, that restoring confidence isn't so much about finance as it is about emotions. On the PBS News Hour last week, one of the few conservative pundits who always seems to make sense, David Brooks of The New York Times, had this to say on the subject:

"We call it an economic crisis, but it's a psychological crisis. People don't have trust in the banks, the banks don't have trust in each other; but, primarily, people don't have trust in the future. And if you don't have trust in the future, why should you invest, why should you spend? The problem is we have very few people who know how to marry economics and psychology."

This immediately reminded me of what I said about investing in stocks over thirty years ago in

"Most of the upward and downward swings of stocks have more to do with emotions than any change in the company's value. Investing your money on this basis would be like betting on whether an overworked executive was going to have a heart attack or nervous breakdown. Putting your money into a stock in the hopes that the majority of people will feel better about the economy a year from now than they do today is just plain dumb. You'd be better off going to the racetrack and picking horses at random."

There should be a basic rule of thumb when it comes to getting investment or business advice:
Anyone who tells you they know for sure that things are going to get better is lying to you.
The truth always has to do with your efforts producing the results you want, and can always be affected positively or negatively by circumstances outside your efforts. What often determines an individual's success in investing, in doing business, even in playing poker, is that person's ability to react swiftly and intelligently when things fall apart. It isn't always making the right decision so much as it is being capable of making a decision calmly and intelligently, and being willing to admit when things aren't happening the way you would like or had expected them to happen. This skill is what allows you to move forward with confidence, optimism, and momentum.
It really goes beyond whether you see the glass as half-full or half-empty, it's being able to
quickly clean up when the glass falls, breaking and spilling its contents all over your expensive carpet.

When I was in prison, there were two kinds of friends I had on the outside. One kind kept on commiserating with me, "How terrible it must be, Jerry. I couldn't handle it. Isn't there any way you can get out before your parole date?" The other kind kept telling me how amazed they were at how well I was doing, that I was an inspiration to them for overcoming adversity. In other words, the first group emphasized and kept their focus on how bad things were, the second group praised and drew attention to how well I was dealing with my circumstances.
Which group do you think was most supportive? And one group of people mostly stopped keeping in touch with me. Which group do you think that was?

And if you're an entrepreneur looking at what makes the most psychological sense today, you could do much worse than look back to the period so many observers and commentators are comparing to this current situation, The Great Depression, that started with the stock market crash of October, 1929. This was an economic nervous breakdown of epic proportions. The 1920s and 1930s have always fascinated me, and I've read extensively about both decades.

The Great Depression has become mythological in the minds of most people who never lived through it. It was terrible, but there was also a lot of camaraderie and commiseration and even joy as so many millions had the shared emotional experience of hard times. And some people with vision, strong emotional foundations, and maybe even some who did know how to marry economics and psychology prospered. So we could do worse than look at what succeeded when most other ventures were failing.

You know what historians found? The three growth industries during The Great Depression were chocolate, alcohol, and cigarettes! At the time, all three were "known" to be bad for you, one of them even started out the decade as illegal. Another big winner was lipstick, which may have been part of that old adage to put on a happy face when everything's going to hell. Of course, in recent years, chocolate--or at least dark chocolate--has been proven to be immensely beneficial to human health, as has some alcohol in moderation, like red wine. Cigarettes still kill, though back in history tobacco was sometimes used for medicinal purposes, and if it didn't contain many of the poisons put into it by humans and wasn't used in such destructive ways, it might someday be rehabilitated as chocolate has been.

So why were chocolate, alcohol, and cigarettes so popular that people bought all three in ever-increasing numbers though money got tighter and tighter? Well, the same dynamic is happening right now. People are giving up major luxuries, so small pleasures are even more precious to maintain. And all three products make you feel better, have a positive effective on the emotions. But dark chocolate made from raw, unprocessed cocoa powder is the only one that has no physical or psychological downside.

So in difficult, stressful, depressing times, people reach for chocolate, and a great tasting chocolate is a mood elevator in and of itself. Scientists and psychologists even argue about whether it's the sensual sensory experience of seeing, smelling, and tasting delicious chocolate, which then releases the feel-good hormone serotonin in the brain--or the mood-enhancing chemicals actually contained in cacao. These include phenylethylamine or PEA, which is often called "the love chemical." PEA is found in higher levels in the brains of happy people and has been found to reverse the symptoms of depression in 60% of people who ingest it.

Then there's anandamide, which is often called "the bliss chemical." A neuroscientist, Daniele Piomelli, discovered it in chocolate in 1996. It's very name comes from "ananda" a Sanskrit word meaning "bliss." Love and bliss, no wonder chocolate defies economic downturns!

And there's lots more, scientists don't even know all the positive effects of the hundreds of chemicals contained in the cacao bean. But, amazingly, no negative effects have been found. And the closer to that raw bean, as with raw, unprocessed cocoa powder, the more these effects are to be found. A third substance in chocolate is the essential amino acid tryptophan, an important precursor for the brain's production of serotonin. Is it any wonder a leading scientist has called chocolate the "last legal drug?"

In prison, I found very few inmates willing to admit they were "drug addicts." But here in the outside world, no one seems to mind confessing to being a "chocoholic," myself included, though I sometimes use the more accurate term, "dark-chocoholic."

And remember, during The Great Depression, chocolate was thought to make you gain weight, rot your teeth, and produce acne. All of which have been disproven in many research studies.
In fact, healthy dark chocolate combats obesity and is a great appetite suppressant, contributes to healthy gums, and the antioxidants are wonderful for the skin.

The only thing that could probably make chocolate more popular than it is now would be if the the government declared it too intoxicating and made it illegal. In the meantime, it is not only an anti-depressant, but a new term I just invented--an "Anti-Recessionant." And if chocolate isn't your thing,  just use it as a metaphor and find something else that makes people feel good in bad times. The time is ripe.

If you would like to find out if you are a good fit for the team I am putting together right now to market healthy dark chocolate and laugh all the way to a bank that hasn't failed, get in touch at jerrygillies@gmail.com You can also check out the short video at:

Monday, February 23, 2009




The ultimate secret of prosperity is to find something valuable that most other people haven't yet discovered the value of--and introduce them to it!

Is that too simple for you? Can it really be so easy? Yes!

You want to find out how the great fortunes were made, just ask those who made them one simple question: "What important and valuable truth did you know or notice that other people didn't know or notice?"

We all like discovering or uncovering secrets, and one of the definitions I like most for the
word "secret" is:
Remote from human frequentation or notice.

And it doesn't have to be something most people never knew. It could simply be something people always knew and then forgot. Or like Poe's The Purloined Letter, it could be something in plain sight, and you see it in a way most others don't.

I remember thinking that back in the 1960s while enjoying a cheesesteak in my hometown of Philadelphia. I thought, "It's amazing they don't have these everywhere--someone's going to make a lot of money selling cheesesteaks in other cities." When's the last time you recently visited a city that didn't have at least one cheesesteak shop? And outside of Philadelphia, most of them are mediocre at best--but they still are producing big profits. That wasn't so much a secret as common sense. But it definitely was remote from human frequentation or notice. I would guess that jet travel is at least partly responsible for the spread of regional favorites throughout the nation and the world. And wasn't I an idiot for not taking action on my thought at the time? That wildly popular sandwich could have become known as the Jerrysteak! So the important second part of the secret is to take action when you notice something most people haven't noticed.

Look at the dark chocolate business, up 95% in three years. When French chocolate-makers first created a 70% cocoa content chocolate bar in the early 1980s, they were thinking about taste, not health benefits. But then people started reported progress in a wide variety of health issues, and medical studies confirmed these benefits. Remember the first time you heard about dark chocolate being good for you? Something else that was remote from human frequentation or notice was realizing this was merely a reawakening of ancient knowledge held by the Mayans and Aztecs about the healing properties of raw cocoa.

But it took a visionary like MXI Corps' Jeanette Brooks to realize that a chocolate that actually was made from unprocessed, unheated, unfermented raw cocoa would probably deliver many more health benefits than any other dark chocolate on the market. More health benefits than any of the other chocolates that were processed, heated, and adulterated with sugars, fats, fillers and waxes. When you think about it, isn't it common sense? But Jeanette Brooks and her associates noticed this and did something about it. Someday, the full story will come out about how she got a Belgian scientist to invent a system for processing raw cocoa without heat, using an exclusive patented cold pressing method she then got the worldwide rights to.

And a secret about this ultimate secret of discovering something of value most people haven't yet discovered? It's a gift that keeps on giving. There are young entreprenuers right now thinking about opening up cheesesteak shops in their city, or maybe a whole new chain, maybe trying to come closer to the flavor of the original, maybe flying in the ingredients from Philadelphia.

And don't you think other chocolate manufacturers are trying to produce a way of processing raw cocoa without heat, other than taking the beans and using a mortar and pestle to do it by hand? Even one of the multi-billion dollar chocolate giants has been trying to do this for years without success. Oh, eventually, they'll come up with something. But they won't be first, they won't have the edge on the research and on the market now being created by Xocai chocolate. But there will still be lots of money to be made in the dark chocolate business, even by products that are not quite as healthy or packed with antioxidants or an even more unnoticed component,

I know you've heard about antioxidants and how they have great health benefits and may even increase human lifespan. But have you heard about or noticed epicatechin? Well some doctors say this compound found in raw cocoa may rival penicillin and anaesthesia in terms of its vital importance to progress in human health. Dr. Norman Hollenberg, professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School has spent years studying and noticing the benefits of cocoa consumption on the Kuna people in Panama. And here's something worth noticing:

The risk of 4 of the 5 most common killer diseases--stroke, heart failure, cancer, and diabetes--is reduced to less than 10% in the Kuna.

How important is this to human health? Dr. Hollenberg says, "We can say without blushing that they are among the most important observations in the history of medicine."
The Kuna have certainly noticed this, they've been known to drink 40 cups of cocoa a week. And more and more health professionals are noticing it, which is why so many are
recommending and dispensing Xocai pure dark chocolate to patients.

So let's go out on a limb here and say you decide to explore the possibility, just the
possibility of getting involved in eating and sharing this delicious dark chocolate. How many people do you think you know or will meet who have already noticed all this news about the epicatechin component? No matter how much they have heard about antioxidants and that more of them are present in raw cocoa powder and the Acai berry, the two main Xocai ingredients, wouldn't you guess that dark chocolate's epicatechin content is largely a secret for them? Something remote from human frequentation or notice?

How valuable is this secret? How excited and happy will people be when you reveal it to them? How big can your personal chocolate business grow?

Wow! When I started this essay, I had no idea I'd even mention the healthy dark chocolate business. Maybe I'm addicted to this yummy stuff. Oops, there's another secret.


By the way, there's another secret about Xocai healthy dark chocolate. If you'd like to know what it is, or join me in a fun prosperity venture, or even get some of it to taste with no strings attached, e-mail me at jerrygillies@gmail.com

Thursday, February 19, 2009


I was just looking at my book, FRIENDS: The Power and Potential of the Company You Keep.
My basic premise was that the people you choose to have in your life are a reflection of your
self-image, your hopes and dreams and aspirations--and how strong your belief is that you will achieve success in your life.

I look at this now because of my current involvement in building an organization to work with me in telling the world about Xocai, the healthy dark chocolate. The parent company, MXI Corp, which stands for Marketing Xocolat International Corporation, calls its form of direct sales "relationship marketing," and that's a much more accurate description than the old "network marketing" or "multilevel marketing." As in any successful sales venture, relationships are at the center of it all. And as the friends you choose can be a predictor of how your life will turn out, the business associates and partners you choose can predict how successful you will be in any particular venture.

It's all about discernment. They say that a love of dark chocolate comes to a more discerning palate, to someone who has evolved from simple to more sophisticated tastes. It's probably why children are not particularly fond of dark chocolate, their taste buds have not evolved yet.
Well, we have to be discerning in our choice of friends, too. And picking people to work with in this chocolate venture, for me, demands the same level of discernment. I have prided myself over the years in often having people say, "Wow, what fantastic friends you have!" And it's true.
A few chose to leave my circle during my 12 years of imprisonment, but the solid, good ones created a wonderful support cushion for me during that challenging time. And these are the
types of people I want to invite into my healthy dark chocolate business.

I talked to my old friend, the late Leo Buscaglia, as I was writing FRIENDS, and was smart enough to have a tape recorder running. One thing Leo said: "I think it's important that people use their chosen family not as a refuge, not as a place to hide, but as a place in which they can safely grow." And that's the kind of family of friends I want to be in business with. I'm off to a
great start with some terrific people on my Xocai team. Above me, my sponsor, Susannah Lippman, CEO of her own successful company, producing the best subliminal tapes and CDs
available, and marketing them at www.alphasonics.com--I dedicated FRIENDS to Susannah; her sponsor is Hope Kiah, who has the most respected web design company in Santa Fe, at www.santafe-webdesign.com. Upline from both of them is the famed naturopath, Dr. Shauna K. Young, the person who inspired Susannah to join the Xocai team when she talked about how she used this dark chocolate in her practice at the Assertive Wellness Center in Durango, Colorado--www.assertivewellness.com.

Then, as I started to build my own team, and its two "legs" in the binary marketing model,
I first chose Bonnie Weiss, a longtime friend of mine and Susannah's. Bonnie founded Musical Theatre Lovers United--www.mtlu.org, and is a musical theatre historian, who does her Curtain Up Broadway presentations for many organizations. For my other "leg," another unique friend with entertainment industry connections, Linda Seger, top script consultant
and author of nine books, including HOW TO MAKE A GOOD WRITER GREAT. www.lindaseger.com What do these women all have in common?--they all really love fine Belgian dark chocolate and the health benefits they get from Xocai products. And they are all accomplished and recognized success stories. And they are representative of the kind of people I want to attract into this business.

One of the trainers mentioned a key question during a recent Xocai training conference call.
"Would I want to attract people into my organization who do it exactly the way I'm doing it?"
In other words, are you satisfied enough with your performance that you would want to work with people who are performing at the same level? I would take it a step further--I want to attract people into my life and business who are doing it better than I am. People I can safely grow with and learn from. As just a small example of how much better my team members are at some things: Susannah runs a company much more efficiently than I can, and is much better at details. Hope stands head and shoulders above me in computer skills and has helped me a lot in this area. Bonnie is great at editing copy as a former PR person, and builds very strong networks of interesting and creative people, and Linda has mastered the art of discernment as well as being a fantastic editor in all areas of writing.

I talk in FRIENDS about the need we all have for a "supportive interpersonal environment," and this is vital not only in our personal friendships but in our business activities. As we moved
into this 21st Century, in an increasingly mechanized and computerized world, the danger of dehumanization dramatically increased. That's why personal people-to-people contact is so critical. The Internet has fostered this with so many sites devoted to building social networks.
The more you can provide human services in this kind of world, the more successful you will be. And is there anything more human than saying, "Do you like dark chocolate? Would you like to taste some that is amazingly healthy?"

You know who you are, those of you interested in joining with me in this venture adventure. So contact me at jerrygillies@gmail.com, and I'll send you some sample chocolate and answer any questions you might have.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009


I had the sudden realization that none of the postings so far specifically talk about our current economic crisis in the United States, and how to deal with it. Well, being the old codger that I am, I remember quite a few other recessions. I even vividly remember my parents and grandparents talking about The Great Depression, and how people were on every corner selling apples because they had no other way to earn money. And how my grandfather had a clothing factory and lost everything when his two banks both closed and there was no way to get his savings back.
And yes, the seeds of many of today's great businesses and great fortunes were first planted during those years. Because some people understood the most important thing to understand about money in hard times:

There's still lots of it out there and you just have to be smarter to get some of it.

A friend was recently telling me how drastically her IRA stock portfolio had decreased in value, and how her condominium had lost approximately 20% of its value. And I said to her, "Well, I
guess I'm lucky then to not have any money invested in stocks or real estate." When a recession hits after a long boom period as this one has, we are not educated or prepared to deal with it.
For example, have you ever considered this simple fact: If your home has gone down in value, chances are some other homes and other assets have gone down even further. And maybe you can even trade up in these difficult times. In other words, sell your home and buy something that has dropped even further in price. Unless, of course, your home has been the single biggest loser in the plummeting real estate market. And the same with your stocks. I would get out of
many of those investments and keep most of your cash liquid (thankfully, you can keep money safe in banks with federal deposit insurance--which came about because so many people, like my grandfather, lost their entire savings in the early 1930s). There are wonderful bargains to be had in the not-too-distant future. People with cash will have a great advantage in the next couple of years.

I'm in a different situation. I have no cash, no assets, no investments, and am living on my $1030 monthly Social Security check as I start to build a business marketing healthy dark chocolate and work on a book on those health benefits. It may be six months before I see any money from the book advance. It may be three to six months before I start getting any significant income from my Xocai business. I am just barely getting by after my rent is paid.
And yet, I continue to have robust expectations.

You see, I understand something that most people don't. An economic downturn is the best time to build a fortune. Warren Buffet, Donald Trump, and many other billionaires say this is so, and I've seen it to be true. But you need to be aware of the times in which we now live, and put that awareness into action.

First of all, and I feel I should charge you at least $10,000 for this piece of information, but I am finding out that the more I am willing to give out free, the more comes back to me. First of all, STOP COMPLAINING ABOUT THE ECONOMY!

You are just one paycheck away from homelessness, you lost your car, you're not able to go out to eat in nice restaurants or take vacations any more. Great! That means you have more time and more incentive to start doing it all differently. You're lucky if you've been hit hard by this economic downturn and probably don't even know it.

You do have to be more discriminating in these times. Lots of hungry people out there means that some of them would like to grab your money and run. You see, I am giving everyone reading this the benefit of the doubt, and assuming you are of superior intelligence and able to perceive what is best for you in your current situation. Just the fact that you found your way to this blog means you are someone who realizes you can build a better life for yourself. So I'm not talking to the millions out there who are dumber than tree stumps. Who are waiting to be rescued. Who think things will get better in two or three months. Well, every economic expert I've talked to thinks we'd better prepare for the long haul. This next five or ten years may go down in history as The Big Slump. But as always, some smart people will survive and thrive.

What does it take to succeed in a depressing economy? It takes what it has always taken, knowledge, information, and finding something other people want that you have. In terms of knowledge and information, boy, are you lucky to be going through this right now, during the time of the greatest technological breakthroughs in the dissemination of free information in the history of humankind. Yes, I mean the Internet. One dictionary definition of "dissemination" is to scatter widely, like seeds. And that certainly is true of the Internet.
Of course, I have a unique perspective on this, as I only have been online for a few months after having no access whatsoever during twelve years of incarceration (check out that story on my first blog posting). So I got hit with the magnitude of this phenomenon all at once. And I have a feeling that even most really Internet-savvy people don't grasp the full scope of possibilities available. Do you realize that just a generation ago, when billionaire John Paul Getty wanted to find out something, he had to hire dozens of people to do the research and it took a long time to gather all the information? And he still wouldn't have near the full picture that you can get
right now just by typing in some key words to Google. All the rulers, potentates, religious leaders, and geniuses in history did not have access to the huge amounts of knowledge and information you have right now. So what are you doing with it?

I'll tell you what I'm doing with it, which may be a model you can emulate or not. I am learning as much as I can by studying tutorials, reading blogs and websites, and studying the subjects that interest and reward me the most. Right now, huge amounts of information is coming into my little Apple Powerbook about health and dark chocolate. I think a great book will come out of it, because one of my main skills is finding the essential truths in large amounts of information. It's how I built a successful career as a broadcast journalist/investigative reporter.
If I had had the Internet then, I probably would have won a Pulitzer.

And before I even understand all the ins and outs, I am test marketing ads on Google, to get people to read this blog and to find out more about the healthy dark chocolate business. I am
also starting very selectively to choose certain people to approach and enroll in what I think will be a very long term successful dark chocolate business. I am trying to do it right rather than fast. And I am staying focused on my main goal: helping other people become prosperous.
I figure if I can work with ten or twelve people directly in this business, my income needs will easily be met. And if they are as successful as I intend, I can write still another book about that.

And am I lucky. I have gotten involved in the one proven recession-proof business that is the most fun to be involved in. Chocolate. One of the few businesses that grew during The Great Depression, one that is still booming today.

Depressed about the economy?--have a piece of delicious dark chocolate--it is a proven mood elevator. Want to start earning some extra income?--sell a piece of chocolate. And when times start getting better--throw a chocolate celebration!

And how much did real estate prices drop in your neighborhood in the past six months?

And if you had told me even fifteen or twenty years ago that someone could get their own business going with a product that everyone loves and half the population craves, and is the most powerful health food ever discovered, and that it would cost you--at most--about $1500
and almost all of that for inventory rather than business expenses, I would have laughed.
And now I'll be laughing all the way to the bank, where I've started passing out chocolate to some of the more personable staff members who are facing being in a career in a horribly dysfunctional industry. Everywhere I look in this current economic environment are more
opportunities--I love it. And so should you.

Not to belabor the point, but to be a part of my prosperity team in the healthy dark chocolate business, get in touch: jerrygillies@gmail.com Check out the video under Chocolate for Health at www.alphasonics.com, or the blog at www.darkchocolatebenefits.net And think what great fun it will be proving the naysayers and doomsters wrong.


After I did the posting before this one, I was pretty sure what I would include as I moved from
talking about individuals to the culture of chocolate and how it was exploding. But so much has been happening in just these few days, that my content is probably 75% different than planned.

And I can see this a my only real obstacle/challenge as I write CHOCOLATELOVE, my book on the health benefits of dark chocolate. By the time it gets into print and into bookstores, a lot
more stuff in the world of chocolate would have happened. So I will have to be even more careful that I only pick scientific and medical information that will hold up over time.

When I wrote PSYCHOLOGICAL IMMORTALITY, I was aware that the science of longevity was fast approaching critical mass, and figured the book's first third, all about science, including the first real discussion of free radicals and antioxidants in a mainstream book, would be outdated in two to three years. It took less than a year for many of the things these scientists predicted would take place in 5 to 10 years to happen. The science moved faster than it could be reported on.

In just the past week, TIME had a full page article on the efforts to save the Venezuelan criollo cacao bean. This article says the demand for fine, dark chocolate has increased almost 40% in the past three years.

Then, another full page article, this time in the February 14th San Francisco Chronicle (a lot of media coverage on chocolate in general for Valentine's day when almost 50% of all chocolate is sold) about something a friend recently told me, the creation of a brand new chocolate factory on Pier 17. More proof that smart people know dark chocolate is recession-proof. One of the
partners in TCHO is an actual rocket scientist, or at least designed software for NASA, Timothy Childs who said, "The whole premise of starting the company was that I wanted to do something that is profitable, fun, but also that touches people. I wanted to tell a story around a bean." I like that combination--Profitable. Fun. Touches people. It's exactly why I'm doing my Xocai business. I plan to talk to Timothy and his partner for my book, and tour their plant. His partner, Louis Rossetto, is the entrepreneur who created WIRED magazine and is using some of the $30 million he got by selling that to fund this new chocolate company TCHO (I love that Xocai won't now be the only chocolate with an exotic name!) Rossetto says,
"You have to invest humanity into your product."

And right after that, I came upon an ABC News report on the dangers facing the cocoa bean, which conceivably could become extinct without conservation measures. In a television report by ABC Newsman Bob Woodruff on Planet Green's "Focus Earth", the Nature Conservation Research Center was quoted as predicting that chocolate may become as rare and expensive as caviar in twenty years. Climate change is one of the factors affecting the farming and production of cocoa. At this point, I sure felt good about MXI already having purchased all the cocoa they need to produce their Xocai products through 2012.

As this show pointed out, cocao is not your traditional farmed crop. Unlike, for instance, most other crops grown commercially in the rainforests of the world, cocao does not involve clearing of the land. What you see when you visit a farm are cocoa trees underneath a forest canopy, underneath shade trees that are necessary to protect the cocoa beans. It's why I will be talking in my upcoming book, CHOCOLATELOVE, about how the increasing demand for dark chocolate may be the major factor in saving the rainforests. For cocoa to thrive and flourish,
the natural eco-system must be maintained and protected.

And finally, again a big coincidence, just as I had decided I must include a chapter on how dark chocolate can increase longevity--a sort of follow-up to my earlier book, PSYCHOLOGICAL IMMORTALITY, I came upon by serendipitous accident on Canada.com, the story of the two ladies who have been certified as the longest living people ever, and both of them were chocoholics. Is that sweet or what?

Sarah Knauss of the U.S. died at the age of 119 in 1999. In France, Jeanne Calment died
in 1997 at the age of 122. Calment ate two pounds of chocolate a week until her doctor talked her into quitting at the age of 119. She was, by all reports, a feisty, witty lady until the end. One of my favorite quotes of hers, and a good ending to this post:

"I only have one wrinkle, and I'm sitting on it."

And if you'd like to explore being my prosperity partner in my Xocai healthy dark chocolate venture, or would just like a sample to taste for yourself, contact me directly at jerrygillies@gmail.com You can also see a short, great video on the website of my friend Susannah Lippman, at http://www.alphasonics.com, click on Chocolate for Health, or check out my other friend Hope Kiah's blog at

Sunday, February 15, 2009


Spring is just around the corner and the smell of chocolate is in the air. Something seems to be happening in the past few days to create a sense of momentum around the chocolate business.
Okay, let's get specific. First about people.

If you've been reading my postings, you know I am involved with MXI the company marketing Xocai (show-sigh), the super-healthy dark chocolate with the highest antioxidant content to be found on the planet. I've been using this venture as an example to point out lots of things I've learned about success, network marketing, building a prosperous team, and having fun. As I expected, my own particular journey is a slow one. I've always preferred the "get rich slow" way of doing things. It all came about because I decided my next book will be about the health benefits of dark chocolate, a longtime passion of mine (almost 40 years). Then, having spent 12 years in prison (Read about it in my earliest posting), I did not have a network of friends, neighbors, co-workers to use as my initial source and referral system to build a person-to-person team.

What I did have was a superior list of friends who supported me throughout my prison stay,
and who mostly are creative people with full and successful lives. Most of them do seem to love the Xocai chocolate for its taste or its health benefits, but have no desire to be a part of the business, or, in fact, any network marketing company. I can't be too upset about that. Until my dear friend, Susannah Lippman, heard Dr. Shauna K. Young, the famed naturopath who runs the Assertive Wellness Center in Durango, Colorado speak about specific health benefits, she
had tasted the chocolate and loved it, but wasn't interested in the business opportunity.

Susannah and I had both sworn off network marketing opportunities forever. We felt that most companies just didn't fulfill the promise and possibility of this great way of doing business.
Susannah had such a thorough knowledge of this industry that she had even drawn up the original standard and practices ethics document for the entire network marketing industry back in the 1980s. She had seriously considered network marketing her phenomenal subliminal tapes and CDs, but decided to go another route as she created Alphasonics International, now
considered one of the top companies marketing subliminals.

So I decided I would take it slow and hope to develop two strong leaders, as this is all you really need in this company. It's a binary system, meaning you have two legs, or organizations,
and after you sponsor the first two people, one in each leg, you place everyone else in your
organization under them. You can build a thriving business even if you never sponsor another person, though it is more rewarding if you do. Anyway, I sent out and passed out samples of the healthy dark chocolate.

Three examples of what I encountered. One, a writer friend we'll call Linda, loved the taste and wanted the product for her high blood pressure. She lives in Colorado. Another,Mary Ann, is also a writer and very involved in church activities, and lives in Florida and is also a longtime good friend. Both of these women are very involved and comfortable with their current lifestyle, and didn't feel like sharing the story of this powerful health food with friends and contacts.

Then there's Irene, who just a few weeks ago wrote me an e-mail after discovering this blog, to let me know a seminar of mine she attended over twenty years ago in Phoenix, made a big difference in her life and finances. I contacted her and, as I do with everyone of the exceptional people on my list, offered to do most of the follow-up work if she had some people who loved dark chocolate, could use the health benefits, or were looking for some extra income. Irene got back to me with the rather shocking information that she had tried Xocai and for some unknown reason, it gave her a headache.

Wow! This was the first negative reaction I'd ever heard of. Who knows what it is, maybe she's allergic to the Acai berry in the product. By the way, as part of my declared policy of always telling the whole truth, even when it hurts or isn't convenient to do so, I think I'm probably the only person who ever mentioned a negative reaction to a product they were marketing. Irene also said none of her co-workers were interested in getting involved in another network marketing company. So I felt I had a new friend, but definitely not a new Xocai distributor. These three women were at the top of my small list of people I never intended to approach again about the business of dark chocolate.

But this past week, something amazing happened, which is part of what leads me to suspect a Xocai breakthrough is happening, accompanied by the smell of rich, multi-scented
pure dark chocolate. First of all, Linda decided to sign up as a distributor and go to the
Colorado Springs event launching the new Xobiotic, which delivers a billion healthy bacteria in three delicious 11 gram squares of antioxidant-packed dark chocolate, and which Belgium researchers have found is three times higher in its survival rate in the digestive system than any of the current yogurt or dairy probiotic products.

Then, Mary Ann told me her son might be interested, as he could use a good income opportunity and then, when I told her about the very successful launch of Xocai in England,
she said her sister who lives in London might be interested.

And finally, the biggest surprise, Irene e-mailed me asking if she could change her mind and
have me send her some samples. One of her co-workers might be interested, as well as a close friend of hers.

Now I don't know how any of this will work out, but the valuable lesson for me is that the best policy is to never try talking someone into something. If what you present has genuine value, they can talk themselves into it, or into at least trying it, if you just allow them the time and space to do so.

And it's confirmation of something I've known for a long time, and one of the keys to understanding the man-woman relationship, be it love or business: Women change their minds.
This can be very exasperating for us men, but we also find it fascinating. I remember George Burns once saying that when a woman marries a man, she spends the rest of their years together trying to change him, while the man keeps trying to prevent her from changing herself.
I don't know why this should ever surprise me, I've seen it happen countless times over many years. It's one of the reasons many women are successful--the willingness to quickly adapt when circumstances change. It probably has something also to do with the fact that so many women are so successful in the healthy dark chocolate business. Almost all the top distributors and trainers are women.

I do promise to report on what happens with Linda, Mary Ann, and Irene. Right now, Linda
is the only one of the three actually sponsored (she's at the top of my left leg--I hope her husband doesn't misunderstand). But all three have triggered some robust expectations on
my part. I think they could have a lot of fun and a lot of success in the healthy dark chocolate
business. Unless, of course, they change their minds.

I decided to save the other part of this topic for the next posting. It will be about some of
astonishing developments in the world of chocolate garnered from the amazing amount of information and research reports I am receiving on a daily basis as I prepare my book.
And as part of my commitment to do or say or write something brand new every day--I don't think I've ever used the word "garnered" in a sentence before.


And by the way, if you'd like to join my Xocai team and work personally with me, contact me at jerrygillies@gmail.com You can check out a couple of videos
first. One is to be found under Chocolate for Health at www.alphasonics.com
Another at the blogsite at www.darkchocolatebenefits.net
And for health benefit information from a medical doctor:


Monday, February 9, 2009


Okay, I admit it, you've got me--guilty as charged. I started this piece with just a title because it is a title I can't resist. In fact, I love it. And I didn't even come up with it--a Unity minister by the name of Sonya Milton did. And by an amazing coincidence, she decided to do a sermon about that debilitating concept, "I can't afford it," the day after I had written the essay just before this one, about...and a drum roll would be appropriate here...the concept of "I can't afford it."

This fascinates me for a whole bunch of reasons. First of all, because the reason I've been attending Unity San Francisco at all is because of my treasured friend Dr. Rachel Harris,
a brilliant clinical psychologist in Princeton, New Jersey. I first met Rachel, a real kindred spirit, when she was with and assisting Mark Shane, my Rolfer (a former of deep tissue manipulation designed to realign the body in harmony with gravity) in Miami, Florida in the 1970s. She's written a number of books, including a great one entitled, 20-MINUTE RETREATS, which served me well during my prison stay. We had been out of touch for a few years when I rediscovered her by reading her essay in the MY TURN section of NEWSWEEK, coincidentally enough again on the subject of the importance of friendship. I had included her in the acknowledgements of my early book, FRIENDS: The Power And Potential Of The Company You Keep."

So when Rachel told me a few months ago that a woman, whom I had met way back when in Miami, was taking over as interim minister at Unity, and I must go and see her, I was, not being much of a churchgoer or synagoguegoer (I just like the way that last word runs together), surprisingly nonresistant to the idea. It helps that Rachel is one of those rare people in my life who has never steered me wrong. Her clarity and commonsense know no bounds. She is often the friend I will first show something I've written Her opinions are always right on target, and she is willing to tell the truth even if it hurts my feelings in the moment. Boy, is that a rarity nowadays! So I went to Unity and Sonya and I found each other vaguely familiar, but we couldn't remember exactly the situation where we had met so many years ago, though we had Rachel in common and it felt as if we had known each other all along for all those years.
And Sonya's a Rolfer, and a Jewish girl from the Bronx (one of the things I really like about Unity, and also about Unitarianism, and the Church of Religious Science, is they are the embodiment of ecumenism, and were so long before most traditional churches ever heard of it.), and one of those people who epitomizes one of my favorite descriptive phrases,
"down-to-earthiness," meaning she has her feet very firmly planted on the ground (she's "grounded" to use one of the most popular terms from the 1970s) with a special spicy zest for life, and as such, a gifted speaker.

Unity is not a "superchurch", though it is a super church. It only has about a hundred members, though slightly more than that show up each Sunday, it's mission statement is "We Empower The World through Spiritual Growth." It's had its financial struggles, but it feels like a place of abundance. Part of that is due to Sonya, but a big part of it is the people it attracts. And the most opulent spread of food downstairs in the lounge of any church in the world I've ever visited doesn't hurt. I know some great and generous folks are responsible for that delicious repast, but I really would rather imagine it appearing by magic every Sunday. I found myself this past Sunday almost uttering a sacrilegious exclamation out loud, "Oh my God--crabcakes?"
(I have found myself not telling friends about this feast for fear they would think it was the main reason I go to Unity, and they would be only partially right. And isn't it all the same, the way we choose a church, a friend, a favorite restaurant--we avoid the one who leaves us with an empty feeling, we embrace the one that makes us feel "full.")

I was first attracted to Unity by the writings of one of its most famed teachers, Catherine Ponder, who wrote extensively and brilliantly about prosperity long before I ever conceived MONEYLOVE. Catherine Ponder was writing and talking about The Law Of Attraction long before it became fashionable to do so. I became friendly with another great Unity minister and teacher of prosperity, Edwene Gaines, often quoting her in my seminars, even inviting her to appear on a prosperity video with me.

And Sonya Milton carries on that tradition, her sermon with the great title was about prosperity and about the concept of tithing, giving back to your source of spiritual sustenance.
I remember Zig Ziglar, that legendary motivational speaker, telling me that he liked MONEYLOVE, but was disappointed that I didn't talk about God in it. And I said to him,
"But Zig, it's all about God--isn't everything?" I 've never believed that the amazing higher power that created this magical universe is ever going to reach down with a celestial finger, tap me on the shoulder, and say in the voice of James Earl Jones, "Jerry, I'm really disappointed--you didn't mention me today."

I've written before about how much serendipity, defined as "fortunate or valuable things you discover accidentally, sometimes while looking for something entirely different," seems to be happening in my current life. Sonya's choosing THE SERMON ON THE AMOUNT just as I was choosing to write about a similar subject is just one of those many events that convinces me of one thing.
And I think this is true whenever a lot of these kinds of things keep happening for any of us, I think it means we are in the right place at the right time doing the right thing.
Oh, and I just got an e-mail response from Reverend Sonya, after I had sent her one telling her how much I enjoyed the sermon and the title:
I do believe I "borrowed" that title - I seem to recall hearing it years ago and
parking it somewhere in consciousness.

Well, that's O.K., Sonya, I had already decided that I would definitely borrow it for something I write or speak about in the future myself. Don't you find that it isn't whether or not, as Ray Bradbury once said,
something is original with you, but your knowing how to use it in a new way--in other words, again, being at the right place at the right time, doing the right thing.
Jerry Gillies

And here's the commercial, which you are free to skip if you've read other postings, as a form
of it is similarly at the end of each. The New York Times Magazine just had an article yesterday on how the chocolate business seems to be recession-proof. And now that it's been proven healthy, that is even more true. Well, if you have any need or desire for extra income, and would like to be personally involved on my team marketing healthy pure delicious dark chocolate, including the world's first probiotic in a dark chocolate square, contact me directly at www.jerrygillies@gmail.com You can also watch a great video by logging in to my friend
Susannah Lippman's subliminal tape site, www.alphasonics.com and clicking the link called
Chocolate for Health, or check out the blog at www.darkchocolatebenefits.net for more videos. But this is the most fun-oriented company with the most skilled trainers and warm support I've ever encountered, you would be fortunate to be a part of it at any price.

Saturday, February 7, 2009


I'll admit it, as long as I've been doing this, I still get frustrated at some of the small stuff. And that's what I consider someone telling me "I can't afford it." Small stuff. Small thinking, small imagination, small hopes, smaller results and smaller future.

Have I gotten your attention? Good--I'll try to keep it. When I wrote MONEYLOVE, I titled the first chapter, DO YOU REALLY WANT TO BE RICH? I did that for a reason, one that still holds up and is still very relevant. Many people say they want financial independence, but are not willing to walk the talk, to set the goals and make the realistic decisions it's going to take. I know what I'm talking about because I've been studying this for over thirty years, and I've been guilty of this poverty consciousness myself. In fact, just recently someone asked me if I could fly out and visit them at the other end of the country. I said, "I can't afford that yet." Which is still better than "I can't afford it." At least I was willing to declare my inability to afford it was temporary, was going to change.

I say in that first chapter that "I can't afford it," is often a lie, almost always an untruth. It's a bad habit many of us get into to avoid saying what we really think. What I really was telling my friend (and sorry, friend) was I had too many things on my plate right now, things I was excited about doing, and did not think spending time with her, as pleasant as it would be, would help me with my current goals, would be worth the struggle it would take to come up with the money. The truth is, if I really wanted to make that trip, I'd find a way.

I quote Dr. Wayne Dyer in that chapter of MONEYLOVE
from a comment he made to me when I used "I can't afford it," as an excuse for something he suggested I do to promote an earlier book. Wayne said, "You've really got to stop thinking about what you can't afford to do, because you can really afford to do anything that you decide you want to do." I've decided that bears repeating with stronger emphasis:


And my life would have been a lot bigger and better if I had said that one
sentence to myself over and over again as an affirmation through all these years.
We each know our own truth. I know that I always have managed to come up with the money for those things I really wanted. And you know what? You probably have too.

I sometimes notice an anomaly when I discuss my healthy dark chocolate business with someone, be they friend or stranger. They often will say they can't afford $110 a month for chocolate they've just told me they love the taste of and are impressed about the truly astonishing health benefits of (that's probably bad English, but I still like it). And I've just told them there is a tremendous opportunity to earn extra income in one of the only growth industries still thriving in this economy. To own their own business for almost unimaginably low overhead. Hey, as little as $270 to get going, and $125 a month with shipping, and they have a free website, all the training you could ask for, the support and personal attention of some of the top earners in the business, plus all the inventory they need in the form of the chocolate they are buying with that overhead. They also get to personally work with the author of the book many call
the best one ever written about prosperity consciousness. (Goodness, I think I
hear the "Toot Toot" of my own horn here.)
And with the new product being launched this month, a probiotic delivering over a
billion healthy bacteria in three squares of daily chocolate, plus all the antioxidants,
adding another dimension to the health benefits of this venture, it does seem like a no-brainer to me. How can someone still use "I can't afford it," as an excuse, when
here is an opportunity to never have to say that again. I wonder if some of the people I've talked to in this business, earning $20,000 a month and more after a year or less still have "I can't afford it," as part of their vocabulary.

Just tell me the truth, folks. Tell me you don't have the time or inclination to eat and share healthy dark chocolate. Tell me you don't believe the health results people are reporting and doctors are validating, they just seem too fantastic. Tell me you don't believe I really want to personally work with a small group of people who are willing to prosper in this business while having lots of fun. Tell me you don't believe I am serious about writing a book on the health benefits of dark chocolate and including the stories of some of my team members, even putting some of their contact information at the back of the book to let readers get directly in touch with them. Tell me you don't feel comfortable being in a business partnership with an ex-convict.

Tell me "no" in any manner or form you like, but please don't tell me you can't afford it!

And I'm just using my Xocai chocolate business as an example, it goes far beyond that,
with people using the current economic crisis to almost gleefully announce what they can't afford now. Look, some of you ought to be ashamed. Really--I know that's strong language and I don't apologize for it. There are people out there who are actually on the verge of losing their homes, who have to leave their families and move to another state in order to find employment, or who are swallowing their pride and
applying for food stamps or cash aid. And those of you who own a home, or have a fair-sized chunk of money in your retirement account, or have a nice car, and good credit, or steady income, ARE STILL SAYING "I CAN'T AFFORD IT."

It reminds me of a friend of mine, or maybe he's now a former friend. He got rich by
writing a bestseller. And while I was in prison, for several years, he was very generous.
He paid for my books and magazine subscriptions, even a TV and typewriter. And then one day, he wrote me that book sales were down and his recent divorce was costing him a fortune, so he had to cut out the $500 or so he was planning to spend on my stuff in the next year. In other words, he was telling me, "I can't afford it." I don't think he had to sign up for food stamps, or sell one of his cars or homes. And I'm sure his income actually did go down. But I am also absolutely sure he could afford to keep doing what he had been doing for me--more than the friend who quickly stepped in to fill the gap.

It's like the difference between being broke and being poor. Broke is a temporary situation, poor is a more permanent condition. "I can't afford it," is a poverty conscious statement that really doesn't have anything to do with your current assets. It's more a description of your state of mind, or your belief in yourself.

Because I am putting most of my current attention on writing this new book, with a working title of CHOCOLATELOVE, and seeking out leaders to build a strong healthy
dark chocolate business with me, and choosing to do both of these because I am loving the process in both situations--along with the way they interconnect, and because I
recently paroled from Folsom State Prison with $200 gate money, no assets, and no
credit because I have no credit history for 12 years. Because of all this, I honestly can say there are things I can't afford right now. But I'm hereby promising not to let those words pass my lips. Are you willing to make the same promise?


e Give yourself a present right now. Go to the website, www.alphasonics.com and click on the tab Chocolate For Health and watch that short video. And then go to
www.darkchocolatebenefits.net, and check out those videos. These are not my sites, they belong to Susannah and Hope, two of my upline partners. If your curiosity is not stirred, don't bother getting in touch with me to discuss it further.
But if you can see just a glimmer of the amazing possibility here to change your life forever, e-mail me at jerrygillies@gmail.com, or phone me directly at (650) 989-4501. It may just be that we belong together.

Thursday, February 5, 2009


As those of you following my blog know, I have only been out in the "real world" since the end of August, 2008, after paroling from Folsom State Prison and 12 years of incarceration--the details are in my first posting, WHERE IN THE WORLD IS JERRY GILLIES? As I work on my
book on the health benefits of dark chocolate, I am also thinking, from time to time, about the book I will eventually write about that prison experience and about what it is like to reemerge into a society that has dramatically changed in 12 years.

Well, one of the big things I notice, and even a lot of reading and watching TV did not prepare me for this, is the nation's profound shortening of its attention span. Or maybe it's a case of collective Alzheimer's. Symptomatic of this is that cultural icon, Jay Leno's Jaywalking segments, where he goes to a public setting, like Universal Studios in North Hollywood, and talks to passersby, often college students, sometimes college graduates or teachers. And they display the most astounding ignorance about things most people should know--if they paid
attention and remembered. But they don't. So you have a history major who can't name who
the combatants were in World War Two, or the last Vice President, or identify the photograph of any famous American who isn't a movie or music star. It isn't really stupidity, it's more a case of so much information coming at us so rapidly, we don't have time--or the inclination--to take it all in.

The news media are possibly the worst offenders. I have often advocated not watching or reading the news--it's a false picture of what's going on in the world, a small slice of reality,
and more so in recent years, and usually negative. The major network anchors commit almost daily offenses for which I would have been fired when I worked at radio stations in New York, Philadelphia, Richmond, Virginia, and even Dover, Delaware. Sins of commission and omission that indicate they haven't done their homework, have not checked the back story, and don't remember major events from the past that should be reported along with the current story.

The few times I watch the news, it is almost inevitable that I want to slap my palm against the anchor's forehead for an egregious offense against accuracy. Of course events are partly to blame, they are happening so fast and furious, the world is changing so rapidly, that it is hard to keep up with it all. Probably media news operations should have research departments to check all this stuff. At one time they did, but budget cuts got rid of most of them.

To give one example, a few years ago a major story was Viacom taking over CBS. I checked a
lot of the coverage and did not find one mention of a fact that was one of the most interesting
parts of the story. I assume it was because no one reporting checked on the history of Viacom.
But I was working in the media in New York at the time the company was created. And it was
a spinoff from CBS, which was told by regulators that it could no longer own and market its
own syndicated shows, like I LOVE LUCY. So Viacom was created to be the syndicator of all the CBS Television shows. I found it fascinating that this little company that was an offshoot of the giant media corporation grew so powerful it eventually, some thirty years later, swallowed its
founding entity. But no one else got to feel that fascination, because hardly anyone else knew
about it. Oh, I did find one sentence referring to that part of the story in one newspaper.
Why does it matter? Who cares about these long ago details? That's not the significance of
this--what does matter is that we are not getting the whole story about anything anymore.
We get bits and pieces. The whole world is reduced to instant messaging abbreviations.
People shocked by something can't even bring themselves to say "Oh my God!" nowadays,
it's almost always "OMG". The less we take in and the faster we get it, the less there will be to
recall tomorrow.

People used to compliment me on how I could stand in front of an audience and speak spontaneously for an hour or two or three without notes. But I could only do that because I
had studied and thought about my subject for dozens of hours, and practiced speaking in my head or out loud for many hours more. Now people can't be bothered taking the time. Everyone
wants a shortcut. We have speed dating, one or two minute encounters with strangers, in which time we're supposed to figure out if they can make us happy. I suggest we take it to the next
level. We sit down opposite someone new, introduce ourselves, make a commitment to be in a relationship together, and then break up--all in two or maybe three minutes. After all, most relationships do eventually end, why not save the time and heartache? And who's paying attention anyway? If you do go out for a longer date with one of those people, they'll probably bring their iPhone or Blackberry so they can text the person who was their second choice at the speed-dating event, or maybe you were their second choice and the first person turned them down, but could still call when their first choice turns out to be a dud. It's so scattered and confusing out here.

But you know what? It's still better than being locked in a cell for the night with someone you
wouldn't ordinarily choose to have as a friend, let alone spend 24 hours a day with. And after
some of the cellmates I've had, a two minute date actually doesn't look bad.

And I remember when shopping was a much slower and more entertaining experience. Take bookstores, for example. When I was a kid in Philadelphia, we had Leary's used bookstore, and everyone who worked there read books and loved to talk about them. If you expressed an interest in one author, they would tell you about several others you might like. The other day,
I went into one of the giant chain bookstores. The woman in charge of "Customer Service" could not even tell me if they stocked any books on chocolate, or where they might be. She found a couple on her computer, but that was the full extent of her service. Online shopping does give you a lot of information, but it lacks that personal touch, and eliminates the art of
discovering a salesperson who has similar tastes and can turn you on to something you never would have thought of, and certainly a computer wouldn't think of. Oh, didn't you know?--they really don't think, they just do a great job of imitating thought.

One of the things I admire about Jeanette Brooks, the founder of MXI, who produce the dark chocolate I am helping to market now, is that she turned down an offer from Wal-Mart to put her product on its shelves, a $30 million offer. Because she knew that when it came to a product with so many health benefits, there had to be a conversation between the buyer and the seller, an actual human discussion. Can you imagine a Wal-Mart sales clerk who could do that?
"Healthy dark chocolate? Oh sure, try aisle 28."

The amazing growth of network marketing, and small specialty shops, and online services that provide the human touch merely confirm a trend I first predicted in MONEYLOVE. I talked then about how we had gotten away from the personal touch, and said that as
the corporate and financial world became more mechanized and dehumanized, people would be looking for human-to-human services.

And I predict that trend will intensify in this current economic crisis. What service or knowledge can you provide that people used to take for granted, but is no longer easy to
find? Make that connection and make your fortune. And don't forget where you read it!

And by the way, if you'd like to find out more about tasting and sharing delicious and
astoundingly healthy dark chocolate, I am putting together a prosperity team I will work with closely. Contact me directly at jerrygillies@gmail.com. Or check out the videos on my partner's websites. www.darkchocolatebenefits.net, and www.alphasonics.com, (look at the video under Chocolate For Health.) We could have a lot of fun together providing that personal touch.