Big Announcement: A new Facebook Group for Readers

I’m starting up a Facebook group for my readers.

Come hang out with me and the like-minded here.

BONUS:

Fans who join the new page will be entered into a draw to have a character in a future book named after them. With your permission, immortality (of a sort) is now possible.


One of the struggles of being a writer is connecting with an audience. I have a newsletter I don’t put out often enough. The newsletter format feels artificial and I want the interaction to be more organic and fun. Besides, aren’t we all sick of newsletters? I’m still signed up for a bunch I hardly read. Newsletters don’t allow me to interact with readers. The signal goes out but who knows what that means? Building a base of 10,000 true fans* requires more and I’m going to give you more. 
There’s an easy solution and it’s a lot more fun for both of us.

Major changes are coming for both of us.  If you dig what I do and want to know more about the stories I sling and the ideas behind them, join me in the new Facebook group:

Fans of Robert Chazz Chute

Yes, that Facebook group title feels a like a bit of douchebaggery to me. However, a linear title is called for when launching a new endeavor. I considered, “Chazz Chute Fan Cave” but I didn’t want to hit the spelunking demographic. I want to talk with readers. I want to hang out with you.

Think of it as a daily mini-blog of my writing, publishing and life progress.

I’ll be posting every day about SFF, writing, new books, old books, updates and upcoming events. Expect movie reviews, book reviews and my usual brand of nonsense, shenanigans and whatnot. You’ll get sneak peeks at what’s new, what’s fun and what’s up. Join me in the group and get a lot of whatnot!

I look forward to seeing you on the inside.

(Um…inside the collective mind. I didn’t mean inside your rib cage. Really!)

*Yes, I know the marketing cliche is 1,000 true fans. I aim for 10,000 true fans because to hit the target, you have to aim beyond the target.

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What’s up with Rob?

FYI: I don’t work at Kit Foster Design anymore.

Occasionally someone contacts me looking for information regarding KFD but I haven’t worked with Kit since early 2017. I had four jobs, then. I’m now down to two jobs: my publishing company and my clinical work.

Depending on a bunch of variables, I may be down to just one job by the end of this year. Working on my series, I’m just as busy doing two jobs as I was working four. Crazy, huh?

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Update

Sorry I’ve been MIA. I’ve been ill. I’ll fill you in on everything with my next podcast. 

In the meantime, there’s this to look forward to!

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Overload: How to deal with stress, burnout and all kinds of trouble.

Overload. Overload. OVERLOAD!

This month has been a roller coaster as I got my daughter off to university and dealt with unexpected financial issues. When I say, “overload,” we’re talking sleepless nights, endless evaluation and reiteration. Rent for my business had to be renegotiated and that back and forth still isn’t finalized after weeks. 

How is this relevant to the podcast? In this episode, we dive into:

  1. a fun story,
  2. recognizing overload and burnout, and
  3. dealing with the physical symptoms of mental stress.

Want plenty more strategies to deal with overload?

Get the book full of stress-busting tips: 

Want to support the podcast?

Please toss this podcast (and my books!) a five-star review wherever you get ’em. I need the money and attention.

Click the BECOME A PATRON link at AllThatChazz.com to get lots of nifty rewards. Special thanks to patron of the arts, reader and listener, RF Kacy for his contribution. Cheers, mate!

Happy Distractions

Every time I publish a podcast, I like to curate cool stuff to help you distract yourself where appropriate. (Yes, I mean don’t watch porn while you drink and drive.) This week, when you need a little stress relief, I suggest you check out Atypical on Netflix.

After binge watching Preacher, I was on the lookout for something to help me cool my jets. Atypical is great! It’s about a teenager on the spectrum who is trying to enter the dating world. It’s sweet and funny. I also love the family dynamics.

Jennifer Jason Leigh is annoying in just the right way and Michael Rappaporte is the fumbling dad who wears his heart on his sleeve. There are a few quick, funny and memorable lines between those two that tell you everything you need to know about the strains in their marriage. Atypical is killer. Watch it when you can.

On the other hand, is your life full of too many distractions? I talked about that, too. Here’s the link to that podcast episode! Click here.

The Obligatory Disclaimer:
I’m a writer and a massage therapist. Don’t take health advice from a podcast. The All That Chazz Stress Relief Podcast is for entertainment purposes only. I do this to help, not harm. Use at own risk. Do your own research. Beware of alligators. Your mother dresses you funny!

Cheers!

~ Chazz

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Keto living, saying yes and saying no

Recommendations for the keto life, living better and well:

1. Saying no.
2. Dom D’Agostino, Ph.D. on The Joe Rogan Experience
3. Mark Sisson’s book, The Primal Blueprint

Recommendations about Stress and Money

It occurred to me this week that a lot of people are on a quest to get to “Screw You Money.” That’s the polite way to put it. SYM is the amount of money it takes to own the big house, tool around on a boat just for fun, vacation whenever you want and live the lotto winner’s dream. In other words, when you get to SYM, you get to say, “No,” to whoever the hell you please.

The trouble is, to get to that point, you pretty much have to say, “Yes.” To everybody.

I talk quite a bit about this issue in Do the Thing.  If your aim is to do a thing well, be in high demand and sell to a lot of customers only to turn around and tell them all to go to hell…you might not get to the destination you want. You might not be doing the thing that makes you happy now.

My parents worked very hard for a huge chunk of their lives and it seemed to me they spent a lot of that time frustrated or angry. Their work was valuable but I don’t know if they were in the right spot. My mother became a businessperson but it was her time as an OR nurse that she spoke of most fondly. When my parents finally retired, my mother was not in the best of health and she didn’t get to enjoy it much. They took time off, a week here and a week there, each year. They traveled. But they sacrificed so much for those trips away.

In the end, they got their SYM, but they kind of got screwed, too. Mom was in a wheelchair for a long time before passing away from cancer. They worked hard and “did well,” but their grasp at freedom as a couple seemed too fleeting.

Are You Doing the Right Thing?

Every job has its frustrations but if it’s all frustrating, you might be in the wrong job. As a writer, I wrote for free for years before I turned to freelancing seriously. I loved writing so much it was a compulsion. Early this week I shared on Facebook that I had skipped writing for two days. On the third morning I awoke anxious and eager to get back to work. My books were waiting and I had to get to them. I hope you feel that way about your work, that it brings you happiness and solace. If your work is play, you’ll never work another day in your life.

That’s not an option for everyone, of course. Maybe you need retraining. Maybe you don’t have the resources yet. Perhaps you are doing a job that doesn’t suit you but I sure hope that is a temporary situation and you have a plan to escape. We spend so much time working, we should be doing what we enjoy in the long term. My parents taught me that any job is better than no job. Maybe, but don’t let the job you hate turn into a career. Life’s too short.
Some tough guy (like my Dad) would tell me to suck it up and do a job I hate for more money. That’s not for me. I’d crash and burn. I would hate everything. Besides, the people who succeed seem to love what they do (before they’re successful) and often continue to do the work long after they don’t need more money! Stephen King is still writing. Jeff Bezos is still bent on taking over the world. Pinky and the Brain are still scheming to do the same somewhere, I’m sure. 

So don’t go for SYM. That level of success is a side effect of success. Saying yes, being genuine, entertaining,  helpful and useful: these are the routes to having the option of saying no. Chances are that the habit of creativity and service will continue long after you don’t “have to” say yes, anymore.

Podcast Recommendations: Lots about Keto!

This week’s best podcast award goes to The Joe Rogan Experience for Joe’s guest  Dom D’Agostino, Ph.D. He talked in depth about the benefits of the ketogenic diet. From Joe’s website (which you’ll get at the link above): 

“Dom D’Agostino, Ph.D., is an assistant professor in the Department of Molecular Pharmacology and Physiology at the University of South Florida Morsani College of Medicine, and a senior research scientist at the Institute for Human and Machine Cognition (IHMC). He was also recently a crew member of the NASA NEEMO 22 project.”

When the good doctor talks keto, he mentions “macros” on the podcast. That was the only thing he didn’t explain in depth. If you get a keto app on your phone (there are many) you, too, can run your brain and body on ketones and burn fat instead of glucose. Macros are what you track to make sure you’re staying in healthy ketosis: Carb, Fat and Protein consumption. Keto diets are useful for losing weight and combatting Type 2 Diabetes, but the research suggests keto has many more surprising applications. Keto can be a useful supplement to cancer treatment and ALS as well as a treatment for epileptic seizures! Great stuff from Dr. D’Agostino (who is also an aquanaut who works with NASA!)

Keto Apps

The app I use is MyKeto. I also do intermittent fasting. For a fasting timer, try Vora (for more tracking) or TrackYourFast which is a simpler timer with no tracking. You don’t have to use intermittent fasting to do keto. That’s up to you, of course.  I can tell you that since I started doing it, I don’t get sugar highs and sugar crashes. I feel sharper the more keto I go.

Runner-up podcast this week is Chris Hardwick’s interview with actor Bruce Campbell, star of many movies and TV shows. You probably know him from The Evil Dead or Burn Notice. This might be one of the best interviews I’ve heard because it’s clear neither the host nor the guest wanted the fun to end. Bruce does voices, tells stories and he’s a very funny guy. Listen to that episode of The Nerdist here.

Book recommendations

I’m finally reading Mark Sisson’s book, The Primal Blueprint. He lays out a great case for eating well by consuming plants and animals, cutting out the processed foods and exercising in ways that are not overly demanding. Check out his book here.

BONUS:

I usually recommend buying Do the Thing by Robert Chute. Instead, this week I’m recommending you ease your stress with my criminal autobiography. Brooklyn in the Mean Time, by your buddy, Robert Chazz Chute, is the story of my trip back to NYC in the ’90s, on the run from trouble and heading straight back into a web of lies, danger and stolen jewels. I know! Crazy, right?

Begin your adventure with paperback of Brooklyn in the Mean Time here.

Pick up the ebook here.

 

Please toss this podcast (and my books!) a five-star review wherever you get ’em. I need the money and attention.

Click the BECOME A PATRON link at AllThatChazz.com to get lots of nifty rewards. Special thanks to patron of the arts, reader and listener, RF Kacy for his contribution. Cheers, mate!

The Obligatory Disclaimer:
I’m a writer and a massage therapist. Don’t take health advice from a podcast. The All That Chazz Stress Relief Podcast is for entertainment purposes only. I do this to help, not harm. Use at own risk. Do your own research. Beware of alligators. Your mother dresses you funny!

Cheers!

~ Chazz

PS Revamped the AllThatChazz.com website. Buy some books!

(Just got my new paperback today. The color scheme looks…familiar.)

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Massage Therapy: Top 10 Myths

Massage Therapy continues to evolve as a profession. Whether your needs include stress management, rehabilitating injury or relieving pain, it’s a modality worth your consideration. I’ve been a therapist for 24 years.

Here are the top ten myths about massage therapy:

1. “No pain, no gain.”  

We can achieve great changes without turning it into a test of anybody’s manhood. We aren’t here to torture you. We’re here to help and it doesn’t help to progress to deep tissue massage too quickly. Some people pride themselves on how tough they are but that’s really not part of the equation. Soft tissue is meant to be soft, vascular and pliable. If your muscle is like a rock, rushing into deep tissue work will only make the muscle contract. We try to coax the body toward positive change, not coerce it.

2. “Sorry! I forgot to shave my legs!”

We don’t care and it doesn’t matter. Relax. Few of the guys we treat shave their legs so you shouldn’t worry about it, either, ladies.

3. “Massage Therapy is just passive.”

Not the way I do it and that’s true for many therapists. I look at each treatment as a course correction. I’m trying to help you get your body to a more optimal state but it’s the stuff you do every day that will make a difference. To that end, I frequently suggests remedial exercise and tactics to help you along the road to recovery, rehabilitation and ease of movement.

4. “Massage is just a feel good thing.”

The research suggests it’s much more than just making you feel good. The goals and scope of practice for massage therapy include: “the assessment of the soft tissue and joints of the body and the treatment and prevention of physical dysfunction and pain of the soft tissue and joints by manipulation to develop, maintain, rehabilitate or augment physical function, or relieve pain.” (Massage Therapy Act, Ontario, 1991.)

5. “Anybody can massage.”

Professionals take extensive training to treat the body and to know when not to treat the body. If you want professional bodywork, hire a pro and you’ll soon see the difference between that and the work of an amateur.

6. “Women can’t massage as deep as men.”

Are you looking to get bruised? I tell people if you’re looking for a female therapist to prove you wrong, just tell her you don’t think she can make you say uncle. Of course, torturing you is not the point of therapy and (most) therapists won’t rise to the bait. Therapists typically use body weight and savvy techniques to avoid undue wear and tear on their bodies. They can apply all the pressure you need. Some clients think they need more pressure than they’re getting. That’s a different conversation because, typically. with an well-placed elbow and a lean, that’s plenty of pressure for most clients.

7. “Massage therapists need you to go back again and again before you get results.”

Simply untrue. I get a “before picture” of each client before they get on the table using palpation, testing, observation and subjective measures. When I’m done, I expect to see measurable changes (e.g. range of motion) after the first session and every session after that. If what I’m doing isn’t working, something serious is going on or you need a different approach to the issues treated. I’m not out to soak anybody. If you don’t feel the changes, I refer out until you get the help you need. Most clients, by far, see and feel positive changes right away when we do the “after picture” with the outtake interview.

8. “Massage isn’t for serious problems.”

I don’t cure cancer but I do provide helpful care to people with cancer and other serious conditions. I treat chronic pain and help with a number of serious musculoskeletal conditions. The most common issues I deal with are headaches, neck pain, shoulder injuries and low back pain. Those problems are very serious to anyone who suffers them.

9. “Massage is all fluff and buff.”

If your experience of bodywork is limited to a massage on a Jamaican beach on your honeymoon, I can understand that misapprehension. As detailed above, we do use multiple techniques to help patients with many conditions. That said, there’s nothing wrong with relaxation massage. Maybe a lighter, stress-relieving massage is just what you need. Approximately 20% of my colleagues work in spas and I don’t turn up my nose at giving or receiving a drool-inducing relaxation massage. It’s an hour in heaven where nothing is asked of you. Relaxation massage is a treat for the senses.

10. “Massage feels good but it doesn’t last.”

I can’t control how your body will react to treatment but how you react largely depends on the body you bring to the table. As I mentioned above, I help put the soft tissue in an optimal state. Once I’ve reduced your triggerpoints, pain and and hypertonicity, it’s up to you to keep the good feelings going. I usually suggest therapeutic exercises and self-care tips to that end. The progression of your treatment plan largely depends on what you do after you leave my clinic. (Tip: Don’t get your low back into great shape only to ruin it by digging up an acre of garden on the first day after I helped you make the pain go away!)

I’m happy to help anyone with their pain and stress management needs. If you’re in the London, Ontario area, you can book an appointment at my clinic by going to www.MassageTherapyScience.com.

For plenty of stress, time, energy and pain management tips, pick up my book, Do the Thing! (in ebook or paperback.)

To earn rewards for supporting this podcast, please visit the crowdfunding page on Patreon here.

You’ll find links to all my books up the right hand side of my author page at AllThatChazz.com. I write crime thrillers, suspense and sci-fi. Enjoy!

~ Robert Chazz Chute is a massage therapist who writes science fiction, crime thrillers, apocalyptic fiction and Do the Thing, the last stress-management book you’ll ever need.

Pick up the last stress-busting book you’ll ever need here.

 

 

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Distractions: How to Get Past Them

Distractions are everywhere. Lately, after binge watching a television show and suffering with a headache for two days, I realized I am way overstimulated. Between social media updates, screens, earbuds and everything we really need to do in a day, you’re probably distracted, too. Too much input is coming at your eyes and ears. Time to slow down and dump the distractions.

On today’s podcast:

  1. Figure out what’s important and what’s a distraction.
  2. Dump the distraction.
  3. Focus on what’s important.

Bonus: A word on what clutter does to us.

Clutter gets in the way, figuratively and literally. Since we revamped out living space, the place looks and feel cleaner and if somebody misplaces a cell phone, there are fewer places to search. It’s time to stop wasting time searching for your keys, your files and anything else. Imagine your living space is a ship. Everything has its place. Stuff gets filed. Do that and you’ll stop losing time (and be able to walk in a straight line.)

Little stresses add up

In my book, Do the Thing, I teach many stress management techniques. The irony is that we are often equipped for big stresses. We get a lot of support for the big events which challenge us. However, for the little stresses, we are often on our own. Little stresses are anything that bugs you long-term that irks you on a regular basis: the kitchen drawer that’s off its track, getting help cleaning up, shoveling the driveway, sorting the recycling. Help is on the way.

There’s lots more in Do the Thing, but first I’d suggest getting organized by doing small, regular maintenance tasks as you see them. It’s called swooping. When tasks are not allowed to build up, you don’t have to deal with too much at once. For instance, wash one plate right away instead of letting two day’s worth of plates sit in the sink. Also, get help, outsource and/or assign tasks (whatever best fits your living situation.)

Find more stress management techniques in Do the Thing by Robert Chute.

Like the book? Want to support the podcast and earn rewards?

Click here to head over to my Patreon page to find out what you could get for what you give! 

Want more fun?

Click the links at AllThatChazz.com to my books of science fiction, crime thrillers and This Plague of Days, my zombie apocalypse series.

Thanks for listening to The All That Chazz Stress Relief Podcast. Now go do the thing!

~ RCC

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