Hi Everyone,

As a son, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day have always been special times to show my parents how much I love and appreciate them. Now that I’m a dad, Father’s Day has taken on a whole new meaning to me. Being a father has made me more aware of the world around me. The same thing can happen when we go through every other role and stage in life, such as getting married, graduating from beauty school, dealing with a potentially life-threatening disease, or dealing with the loss of a loved one. Sometimes we have to go through those crises and life struggles ourselves, but sometimes we do not: wise people learn from the experiences of others. We call those people “mentors,” and we would be wise to surround ourselves with all the wonderful mentors we can.

I am certainly grateful for my own father and the example of unconditional love he showed his children. My mentor and best-selling author Leo Buscaglia taught me how to appreciate the profound love that my father has always had for my mother, my siblings, and me. His audio recording about his family’s day at the beach, in honor of his father, brought me tears of joy and helped me embrace and understand my own father.

Now that I’ve become a father, the thought of a kindergarten boy making my little girl cry is quite devastating. You can imagine the heartbreak I felt when I learned about child sex trafficking in the U.S. and abroad; I cannot think of a worse crime. Because I’m a dad, this jumped to the top of my priority list in terms of where to invest my energy and use my influence. After you listen to the Monthly Audio Message, perhaps you too will find it worth your time to take action and sign the petition described in this month’s BE NICE News and Do Something.

This edition of the newsletter is dedicated to moms, dads, sons, daughters, and wonderful mentors everywhere who teach us to love, respect, and appreciate our families. Thanks for helping me live my fantasy of spreading this BE NICE message and giving nice people a voice.

XOXO, Winn

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What Love Means to Little Kids

A group of professional people asked some 4- to 8-year-olds, “What does love mean?” The answers they got were broader and deeper than anyone could have imagined. See what you think:

“During my piano recital, I was on a stage and I was scared. I looked at all the people watching me and saw my daddy waving and smiling. He was the only one doing that. I wasn’t scared anymore.”
— Cindy, age 8

“My mommy loves me more than anybody. You don’t see anyone else kissing me to sleep at night.”
— Clare, age 6

“You really shouldn’t say ‘I love you’ unless you mean it. But if you mean it, you should say it a lot. People forget.”
— Jessica, age 8

And the final one -- Author and lecturer Leo Buscaglia once talked about a contest he was asked to judge. The purpose of the contest was to find the most caring child. The winner was a four-year-old child whose next-door neighbor was an elderly gentleman who had recently lost his wife. Upon seeing the man cry, the little boy went into the old gentleman’s yard, climbed onto his lap, and just sat there. When his mother asked what he had said to the neighbor, the little boy said, “Nothing, I just helped him cry.”

Join Paul Mitchell Schools in Taking a Stand for Freedom

Across the globe, human trafficking is a $32 billion criminal industry. With over 21 million people enslaved around the world at this very moment, there are more slaves today than at any other point in human history. No country, including the United States, is immune … and the nationwide network of Paul Mitchell Schools wants to do something about it.

This July, 16,000 students from the 100-plus Paul Mitchell cosmetology schools are taking a stand for freedom. During “31 Days of Freedom” month, Paul Mitchell future professionals and staff members will help spread awareness about this horrific situation, inviting every guest who visits the schools to sign the 13A Petition – a vigilant reminder of the 13th Amendment that asks President Obama to allocate additional resources to anti-trafficking efforts in the United States. Each school hopes to collect 1,000 signatures or more.

Domestic minor sex trafficking is growing at alarming rates. Every year in the United States, traffickers across the country exploit children by the thousands:

  • An estimated 100,000 American children are currently caught in the U.S. sex slavery net.
  • Trafficking happens to children of all races, ages, and backgrounds; however, it’s the most vulnerable children who are victimized – children of abuse, drug addiction, and runaways.
  • In the United States, the average age of girls entering prostitution is 12–14.
  • Over 1 million children have been exploited in the global commercial sex trade.
  • Every 2 minutes, a child is prepared to be sold.

Brian Shivler, founder of the nonprofit organization Resolution Hope, recalls a story he once heard in Germany: “The tiny town of Weimar is about a mile down the mountain from Buchenwald, the concentration camp where over 33,000 were tortured and killed by the Nazis. The people of the town say that when the trains would pass through Weimar on a Sunday morning, the church organists were told to turn up the volume so the cries of the men, women, and children on their way to the camp could not be heard. Today, there is so much ‘noise’ in our busy lives that it is easy to allow the truth to be lost. We cannot let the noise of our culture drown out the cries of these girls and boys.”

Winn Claybaugh, dean and cofounder of Paul Mitchell Schools, adds, “Yes, we could ‘turn up the organ music’ in our Paul Mitchell Schools so we don’t have to hear that 100,000 American children are trafficked for sex every year, but that’s not who we are. Together, we are powerful and we can make a difference!”

Past generations stood against human oppression and defended the helpless, yet the chains of injustice continue to imprison women and children. Our generation must take a stand for freedom because slavery can and must be abolished in America. The odds are overwhelming, but awareness and education are the first steps in bringing this tragedy to an end.

How can you help? Cast your vote for freedom by signing Resolution Hope’s “13A Petition to End Slavery in America.” Text your full name and zip code to hopePM@13A.me.

Dad and Son Superhero Team Spotted at Hardware Store

(Huffington Post, Jan. 28, 2013) This just in: A superhero boy and his father were recently spotted taking a stroll down an aisle at their local hardware store. The reason for their trip remains unconfirmed, but sources close to the pair speculate that they were shopping for supplies to arm them for their next daddy-son crime-fighting mission.

Paparazzi (er, Reddit user resgestae) posted a snap of the two to the social sharing website with the caption, “I know a good dad when I see one.”

The photo went viral on Reddit, gathering almost 1.7 million comments in just two days. A commenter pinpointed why the image struck such a chord. “A good dad is always a hero to their kids. Capes just let the world see it a little better,” thisisntrelevant wrote.

The shot reminds us of a picture of a cross-dressing father and son that went viral last September. Nils Pickert, the dad in the photo, explained in a HuffPost blog that his 5-year-old boy liked to wear dresses and skirts in public so he wore women’s clothing as a show of support. “It is not OK for anybody to mess with my son about his outfit. Hence I wear dresses and skirts so that any person who has a problem with that and feels the necessity to express his or her resentments can mess with me,” he wrote.

UPDATE: CTV News located the dad and son in the photo. Though they wish to remain anonymous, mom confirms that she was the one who snapped the shot. She told the news station that her 3-year-old son wears his cape “almost 100 percent of the time” at home.

Leo Buscaglia

One of my favorite speakers and authors about love and relationships was bestselling author and university professor Dr. Leo Buscaglia, who taught and preached that we should love everybody. Born in Los Angeles in 1924 to Italian immigrant parents, Leo spent his early childhood in Italy before returning to the United States. He served in the U.S. Navy during World War II, earned three degrees (BA, MA, and PhD) from the University of Southern California, and became a professor there. While teaching at USC, he was moved by a student’s suicide and began a noncredit class he called “Love 1A.” The popular class led to a series of bestselling books and numerous televised and recorded lectures.

I once heard someone challenge Leo at a seminar with, “Love everybody? You certainly can’t love everybody!” Leo theatrically picked up his imaginary clipboard and pen and said something like, “Okay, whom should I remove from my list of people to love? Prison inmates? Well, studies show that 90 percent of inmates were unloved and abused as children, so I can’t remove them from my list. They definitely need my love. So, who else should I remove and exclude from my list?”

Leo was brilliant. He knew that being nice in the world is not only for the world’s benefit; it’s also for your benefit. It’s okay to be nice out of your own self-interests. To close your heart to someone might cause them pain, but it definitely causes you pain.

The beloved “Dr. Love” died from a heart attack in 1998, but his message is more timely than ever before.

CLICK HERE and listen to Leo Buscaglia’s advice for a loving life.

Brian Shivler

Brian Shivler has traveled the world as a business leadership consultant and president and cofounder of the award-winning Human Motion Institute. In 2006, on a flight to Brazil, Brian learned about the worldwide pandemic of child trafficking through forced labor and sexual exploitation. His heart was heavy and he was truly concerned, so he did some homework and sent a small donation to an anti-trafficking nonprofit group to clear his conscience. It did not work. Over the next several years on hundreds of flights, Brian thought about the millions of kids caught in the hopeless net of human trafficking. Often wishing he had never been exposed to the facts, he began to build what he now refers to as his “gap” – the gap between concern and conviction – carefully creating ways to keep his distance from the truth.

In the summer of 2011, through several seemingly random events, Brian’s gap was quickly closed and Resolution Hope was born. That’s when he learned that the worldwide plight of child sex trafficking had made its way to America. He was shocked to learn of a Congressional report saying that 100,000 American girls are caught in this nightmare as modern-day sex slaves in all-American cities like Atlanta, Denver, and Columbus. He could no longer claim ignorance or pretend he didn’t understand the facts. Realizing that his friends and colleagues were also shocked to learn about this, he knew something had to be done to raise national awareness.

On December 31, 2012, in honor of the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, Resolution Hope launched the National 13A Movement to educate and empower Americans to play an active role in ending sex slavery. Through national education and personal empowerment, Resolution Hope’s mission is to bring an end to domestic minor sex trafficking in the United States.

Interviewed by Winn Claybaugh, Brian reveals the terrible truth about child sex trafficking in America. This issue will prove difficult to hear, due to its horrific subject matter, but Brian navigates the story with grace so listeners will have the basic information to become aware and get active.

CLICK HERE for Brian Shivler’s powerful MASTERS interview.

If you enjoyed this month’s audio message, CLICK HERE to join the thousands of subscribers all over the world and receive MASTERS Audio Club, now available in CD and MP3!

Treat Employees and Co-workers Like Family

We all build extended families. We “adopt” and look after certain individuals as though they were our own parents, children, or siblings. That’s amazing, and we should always look for ways to grow our extended families. There might be some people in your life with whom you’ve had weekly or even daily interaction for years, and yet you know nothing about them. After ten years of continuous, close proximity, they could suddenly disappear, and you’d be left thinking, I knew nothing about them, and they knew nothing about me. In your life, who are those people? A co-worker? An employee?

Try these three ideas for turning your co-workers and employees into your family.

1. Create “Family” Traditions
Traditions can take any form or shape. In my company we’ve traveled together to Hawaii, Europe, Mexico, and to see Broadway shows in New York City. We’ve had overnight parties in a mountain cabin, played together at water parks, and hosted a disco roller-skating party. We’ve read books, attended weddings, gotten tattoos, cried at funerals, danced at concerts, and learned at seminars – all while improving our customer service policies, creating a better experience for our staff and customers, getting married, buying homes, raising children, and earning more money.

2. Laugh and Play Together
You can create an environment of fun, laughter, and enthusiasm in your business by making fun a daily priority, not an occasional event. Creating an environment of enthusiasm doesn’t mean, “We’ll have fun a week from Sunday at that company picnic we have planned.” Having fun at work is a day-to-day attitude. Don’t assume that you and your team will occasionally laugh together, and don’t wait for it to happen. All “families” must create experiences and events where people have fun and laugh with each other. Studies show that when staff members laugh together, creativity and production go up and absenteeism goes down. The “family” that laughs together stays together.

3. Show How Much You Care
Let’s say you own a store with hundreds of employees who service thousands of customers. One day, you pull into the parking lot, walk into your building, pass by your hundreds of employees and customers, go straight to your office, and close the door. Now, granted, you’re in a very good mood, but you happen to be very busy. What will the buzz be within about five minutes? “The boss is in a bad mood. Everyone lay low today.” To create that family atmosphere, show how much you care. When I arrive at work each day, it takes me at least thirty minutes to get to my office. I visit every square inch of my facility to show my smiling, happy face and to hug as many people as I can. I want everyone to know I’m in a great mood, I love coming to work, I love my job, and I appreciate each one of them.

No Regrets

Like many people, there was a time when I found myself clocking birthdays with more and more regrets. I regretted not having a good relationship with my father. I regretted my bitterness over pieces of my childhood. I regretted not taking advantage of certain opportunities. Regrets are like old baggage; they weigh you down. A life full of regret is certainly not what you desire, so why not make the proclamation: No Regrets?

To set yourself up to live your life so as not to have any regrets when it comes to your relationships with family members, pick up the phone and make that call now. If you have a damaged relationship, fix it. If it’s been a while since you said “I love you,” call your parents and tell them now. And if Mom and Dad are no longer alive, sit down and write a gratitude letter.

Your gratitude letter can begin with a mention of the most obvious things you’re grateful for, such as family and friends. You could write about the gifts of your heart, mind, and soul. You could express gratitude for worldly possessions, such as your car, your home, or a cookie jar given to you by your grandmother. You can share your gratitude for personal discoveries, benchmarks, and growth. Or you may want to express gratitude for a painful experience that helped you be a better person or appreciate your family more. Write your gratitude letter and acknowledge the experience and lessons you’ve been given in life.

One Last “Do Something” – Sign the 13 A Petition!

Please join the fight for freedom on behalf of thousands of voiceless children by signing the national petition at www.13acampaign.org or text your full name and zip code to hopePM@13A.me.

“My father gave me the greatest gift anyone could give another person: he believed in me.”
— Jim Valvano

“I talk and talk and talk, and I haven’t taught people in 50 years what my father taught by example in one week.”
— Mario Cuomo

Featured Article on BeNiceOrElse.com
No Regrets
A life full of regret is certainly not what you desire, so why not make the proclamation: No Regrets. Read More...

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