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Monday, 20 August 2018


You can build a better mouse trap but if no one knows about it you'll have a garage full of mouse traps.

I recommend "Confessions of an Advertising Man" by David Ogilvy.

Seinfeld might have been new in 1993 ... but Lotus (along with their friends from WordPerfect and Borland and almost every other large Microsoft third party developer in that space) was already well on the way to gone, about to be crushed for good by the 3.1 and later versions of Windows and Excel (really Office).

It's hard to really convey how much of a lock Microsoft had on most of the computing industry between around 1993 and the mid to late 2000s. They even almost survived the Internet, but could not quite figure out how to do phones in a way that would make a dent.

I mean, Microsoft obviously survived ... I just mean their position of great power and mind-share in the industry did not.

Try and persist with the cpap. I found it made a major improvement to my quality of life.

I'm another one with Sleep Apnoea. I have a Phillips machine with the humidifier attachment. The mask is a Res MedQuattro™Air. That's a mouth and nose mask.

I've had to shave my beard off where the mask touches my face. This decreases the amount of leakage, which can, just a few inches from my ear, be noisy enough to wake me up. I breath in through the mouth and that makes my mouth dry, hence the humidifier.

I fairly often wake up in the morning to find that I've taken the mask off in the night, and switched off the machine; I don't remember doing it, usually. This happens less often now I've shaved that part of the beard.

You may find the mask is difficult to get to sleep with, if the room is too warm. Last night, I had to get out of bed, open the window, and wait until the room cooled down a bit.

Sleep hygiene (getting to bed at a regular hour and not too late) is something I struggle with, but it's supposed to help.

6 months. That's how long it took me to get accustomed to the CPAP. I'd wake after just a couple hours and tear off the mask. But the mask-on time increased with each passing week. Eventually, I got to the point where I could not sleep WITHOUT the CPAP.

So, nevertheless, persist.

Fully agree with you, Mike, that most companies don't do a particularly stellar job of marketing themselves. Based on that, I'd love to hear from you, and the TOP community of companies that you think DO do a good job of marketing.

Also agree of the importance of professional photographers having an effective marketing capability as well. I've heard from a number of established professionals that successful professional photography is 95% marketing and 5% photography.

Regarding books along those lines for professional photography, here's two others I can recommend:

Photography: Focus on Profit by Tim Zimberoff (https://amzn.to/2OSb3cq)

The best one I've found, though, is also the most up-to-date:
Best Business Practices for Photographers by John Harrington.

His latest edition is over 300 pages long and the last version was just published in 2017 (https://amzn.to/2wg22lR)

Folks interested in these books should please consider using Mike's affiliate links.


Speaking as a physician (not an expert in sleep medicine) who happens to have sleep apnea and use a CPAP, please use your machine. Go back to your provider to get any help you need with making it work for you. Some people need to experiment with masks and straps but problems are usually fixable. If not properly diagnosed and treated, sleep apnea will shorten your life. Right heart failure is not a trivial condition. Like many "popular" conditions, it may occasionally be over diagnosed, but if you know your doctor and trust her/him, the use of a CPAP machine can be literally lifesaving.

I've been a CPAP user since July 2000, and I've never had any trouble using it. I love it. I'm 100% compliant. To me, the feeling of cool air being gently pushed into my lungs is like leaning over the rail of a ship at night in the tropics. I call it my "Assisted Breathing Machine". I sleep well. Stick with it, it's important.

Yes, getting used to a CPAP can be difficult. At first it may seem a bit like trying to sleep in a hurricane.
Not original to me, but stick with it. Mine changed my life.
Both the "harness" and the pressure have to be exactly right. If necessary, make an appointment with your prescriber and bring in the machine so they can check it over.
In my experience, masks that cover only the nose may work better with beards, one of which I think you may still have.
Use the ramping feature if your machine has it.
Sorry for all the unsolicited advice, but generally I think there's just one thing wrong (the thing varies) that makes people give up too soon. Eventually it will feel entirely natural.
Sadly, it won't do a thing for the other reason us more mature gentlemen have for getting up in the middle of the night.

I woke up at 3 or 4 every morning with the CPAP mask removed (by me) in my sleep. Then I was switched to BiPAP and have been using it successfully for 20 years. (The pressure is lower, and it adjusts for breathing in and out.)

I have minimal Sleep apnea. I had only limited difficulty adapting but I noted little benefit so I quit. My sleep efficiency has gone to the devil so I’m going to retry.
My wife took some time to adapt but she goes nowhere, does nothing, withoutusing her machine during sleep. She still tries new masks 20 years later. Her first mask quest took over a year.
Years ago a partner attended the rollout of a federal malpractice mitigation law by the feds, pres. Bush presiding, in front of a sea of docs in the Alton IL area. There were 2 Afro-Americans in the mostly attentive happy visible crowd on the news photo. One was my friend, nodded off just over Bush’s left shoulder (from missing his CPAP machine the night before) in front of all of God’s creation. He suffered our teasing quite well. His headaches vanished when he used it. I only wish I saved the online image, can’t find it
Years ago, in a family conference about a major illness of a 50s-60s lady, her husband repeatedly fell asleep snoring loudly in the chair about 4.5 feet from me. He did not like his machine.
Sleep Apnea is real. It can kill and it certainly can interfere with your lifestyle. It may well be over diagnosed but if you have compatible symptoms anda moderately positive test I feel one is foolish not to tryto fix the problem.

All these books are great, I suppose, but what if you really hate doing marketing and sales?

Mike, is CPAP fitting okay? You should not hear noise or hissing air. Make sure it's comfortable. It's not unlike wearing contact lenses. It takes several weeks to get used to it. But keep at it, it's very Important that you use it. It could make a fifference between sleeping well and other health problems
Re. Fred

[Thank you Fred. I'm sticking with it, because I had atrial fib problems this past Spring that landed me in the hospital. (Just for tests.) If those problems are being caused in part by OSA (obstructive sleep apnea) then I'm willing to go to whatever lengths I need to go to to ameliorate the problem.

The machine is still waking me up 2-3 hours into sleep, but, oddly, if I can get back to sleep again I tend to sleep for a good long time and actually feel rested when I wake up. Thanks for your help! --Mike]

Well, Robert, you struggle and, if you get lucky enough with big enough clients, then you'll find agents who want to have you on their lists.

As the good book advises, to him who hath shall be given...

Did I hear anyone mention the word fair?

A friend of mine recommends this little device he's been using for years: https://www.amazon.com/Professional-Dental-Guard-Instructions-Anti-Bacterial/dp/B07BBSRFPN He says if during molding it to your teeth you move your lower jaw forward it will prevent snoring and apnea.

I've never used it can't comment (I'm fine with CPAP). If you can't successfully adjust to your machine you may want to try it. However, I think you should keep trying the CPAP. Maybe a different mask can help? I use ResMed Quattro full face mask and shave every day to prevent leakage. It still leaks sometimes when the pressure rises to the upper limit.

During my first weeks with the machine, I often took off the mask in the middle of the night to give my face some rest and then fell asleep without it. Recently it happened again and the next day I felt horrible. The improvement was gradual, not sudden, and once I got used to it even a half night without CPAP makes a big difference in how I feel next day.

Mike, don't give up!

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