August 03, 2020

12-Minute Basics (Revisited)

The 12-Minute Series was originally posted in 2012.

We’ve decided to republish it integrally because we believe it can still help as everyone aspires to make things better.

Let’s hope it stirs up the discussion and stimulates you to change the world 12-Minute at a time!






This article was originally posted on January 12, 2012

Help To Change 

By suggesting simple methods and unique ideas, the 12-Minute Approach will help you implement change and improve.

For exemple, for most people, the optimum concentration period is only 12 minutes. That is, the time they can really focus on a task.

July 12, 2020

12-Minute Financial Makeover Step 4 - Keep Cash Flowing with Crap-Happens Plan

Our Financial Makeover Series talks about personal finance basics and lets you figure out what applies best to your own unique situation.

In Part 1, we pointed out to avoid fees as much as possible, especially the devastating recurring ones. We also suggested to open a no-fee online checking account.

In Part 2, we followed up by proposing to use no-fee savings account to organize the projects that provide you pleasure. We insisted on how budgeting can allow you to spend more on things you truly love.

We continued on a similar theme in Part 3, telling you that budget choices can make you feel awesome and emphasized on how it could provide you more freedom.

This time, we’ll talk about another way to liberate yourself from financial worries setting up a solid custom-made contingency plan.

In the financial realm, we often hear about that basic concept to set up a rainy-day fund. Some might argue that their financial days are already rainy, if not stormy.

But we really believe starting an emergency fund can be a great first step to getting out of the hazardous living-paycheck-to-paycheck spiral.

The object is not to obsess about risks. In fact, your own crap-happens plan could allow you to forget about possible misfortunes and free you up, allowing you to truly taste and appreciate life joys and ventures.

Try to Get Money Worries Out of Your Way

We know many of you worry about money even in normal situations, some even worry about finances all the time.

The main objective of the financial aspect of your contingency plan should be set enough money aside to allow yourself to focus on living through tough situations and fixing things for you and your family. Your contingency fund should allow to relieve financial pressure as much as possible in these bad situations.

It’s impossible to anticipate all eventualities, especially the worst ones. But, having some and enough money stashed away for those bad periods sure may help to cope with any situation. No matter how bad it can be.

For instance, losing your job can be very tough both financially and psychologically. Yet, having money aside should at least give you some time to get your act together and focus on finding a new job.

Another example would be if your fridge or car breaks down. Most people often have to move heaven and earth just to scratch sufficient funds for those kinds of repair. The actual hassle of just getting those things fixed is bad enough. At least get the money part of it out of your way.

Because it’s Much More Than About Money

You don’t have to become survivalists, but your contingency plan has to be more than about finances. For instance, everyone should have a plan in place to survive at home for 3-4 days.

July 03, 2020

12-Minute Principles (Revisited)



The 12-Minute Series was originally posted in 2012.


We’ve decided to republish it integrally because we believe it can still help as everyone aspires to make things better.

Let’s hope it stirs up the discussion and stimulates you to change the world 12-Minute at a time!









This article was originally posted on December 12, 2012

There's more to the 12-Minute Approach than great number 12. Some principles and premises also inspire this revolutionary method.

They are exposed here with some brief explanations:


1-Realize Your Dreams  

Having dreams is essential. Dreams give life a meaning. They give you a purpose and a sense of direction.

Planning to realize your dreams is also important. By setting goals and making plans, you’ll move closer to your dreams.

Your unconscious and intuition will guide you thru the venture even if you don’t possess all the details right now.

June 12, 2020

How I Learned Retirement Could Be Lonely

Please forgive me for being so personal today. In 2019, I completed my third leave of absence. A big long 8 months for that one after shorter but still extended 6-month periods on the first two occasions. You could say I already tasted retirement three times or at least semi-retirement.

I am very grateful for it. My first go at it in 2012 was quite enjoyable, but I have to say I often felt lonely during my last two prolonged stints away from work. I felt less lonely in confinement the last few months than during those last two leaves of absence. Maybe in part because my two ladies stayed at home with me but probably much more because I worked my butt off.

I was lacking the sentiment of making things better. I missed helping others. For me, it’s not just a question of being around people. It’s more about lacking being useful to society.

During our recent isolation, it was completely different. Many facets of that crisis were and still are unusual and tough yet, the fact my position allows me to help out others teleworking makes me feel a lot better.

It’s funning because before that, the psychological aspect of retirement was never on my mind. I would be the last person to talk about it. For me, retirement planning was all about money and accumulating enough of it to stop working. I was not even considering it and secretly laughed about others talking about it. I mean, how could it be a problem to be on vacation all the time?

Being Passionate About Helping Others

So, let’s face it! Retirement can make you feel lonely!

June 03, 2020

12-Minute and Your Career (Revisited)


The 12-Minute Series was originally posted in 2012.


We’ve decided to republish it integrally because we believe it can still help as everyone aspires to make things better.

Let’s hope it stirs up the discussion and stimulates you to change the world 12-Minute at a time!




This article was originally posted on November 12, 2012


The 12-Minute Approach offers you a multitude of techniques to improve your job and career.

Here are some ideas we hope will inspire you on the way to becoming real happy and efficient professionals in your respective fields.

Achieve A Little More Each Day

A quick and easy way to start improving right away is to take 12-Minute to accomplish one simple extra action each day.

May 12, 2020

Portfolio Update May 2020



Another quarter has gone by and it’s already time for a brand new DIY Portfolio report.  For quite a while now, we’ve been doing these about every 12 weeks.

You can access earlier portfolio updates here:


We tried to avoid as much as possible talking about the main thing in all our lives right now. We hear or read too much about it every day. Despite our strong intentions, you’ll see that it won’t be possible to ignore it. At this point, let’s just say that luckily, all our family is doing ok, and we hope yours can also remain safe and well.

So today, after sone comments about the current state of this unparalleled situation, we’ll talk about how our DIY Portfolio fared in these trying circumstances and how we’ve managed it so far during that wild ride. Surprisingly, our portfolio is only down about 3% year to date but the worst of it may still be coming.

You’ll see that despite being well prepared, we probably could have done better buying wise. We’ll also report on our new and recent experience with bonds.

Once more, I’ll remind you that I am not an investment or tax professional of any kind. The intent of this blog is not to give specific investing advice. Before investing yourself, we suggest you do all necessary research and consult a licensed financial professional if need be. 

An Unprecedented Test to Our Resolve

So far, the last few months have been a great test to our resolve. This is a tragic crisis and despite too many losses, Humanity’s resolve is still holding on so far. We are seeing numerous real-life examples of people that have the courage to fight not only for themselves but more importantly, for others. Let’s remain strong and continue combating because we may not see the end of it for another year or more.