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How to become a plastic bag"
January 16, 2018

January 16, 2018 Issue #142

Passive attitude turns you into a plastic bag

You’ve seen a plastic bag outdoors on a windy day. It goes back and forth, whichever way the wind blows. On calm days, it just sits there in a heap, doing nothing.

Single people who have a passive attitude toward life are like that plastic bag. They don’t have much direction of their own because they just let life happen to them. They react rather than taking positive action of their own. Paralyzed by fear or apathy, they have the mistaken belief that luck plays a big part in life.

I know what I’m talking about here, fellow singleton, because I used to be one of those unfortunates. My transformation into a Take Charge Guy wasn’t instantaneous but took place over a period of years as I gradually realized I had become a plastic bag. Well, not literally, of course, but you understand the metaphor. I observed. I studied. I watched people who were getting what they wanted out of life and figured out the difference between them and me.

They were active.

Oh, sure, some of them were scoundrels, and I didn’t want to turn into one of them. I hope you don’t either. But maybe you’re in a rut like I was, and since it is the beginning of a new year, now is a good time to jettison that passive attitude. Instead of letting things happen, it’s time to make things happen. It’s time to reach out for what you want, to ask. To swing when you get to the plate instead of letting the balls whiz by.

This month’s feature article explores what’s wrong with doing nothing and why it’s especially harmful for singles. So please take a look and see if any of it sounds familiar. It could just be one of those turning points in your life, if you’re plagued by a passive-attitude


The guys and girls who get ahead
don’t need to swindle and lie.
What separates them from the rest of the pack
is they get in the game and try.

It’s so easy just to mope on the couch,
and hold your phone to your eye.
But that only gets you a kink in your neck.
You gotta get out there and try.

Trying is scary, trying is tough.
Sometimes it makes you cry.
When your effort goes down in a ball of flames,
it’s not steak and kidney pie.
But lift up your chin, put on a grin,
and give it another try.

Stop waiting around with your lip on the ground.
It’s time to quit asking “Why?”
Hike up your pants, give life a chance.
Get off your doofus and try!

~ Jack Zavada, 2018 ~

Can a book predict your future?

Just because I’m a single person and you’re a single person, that doesn’t mean you’re going to have the identical life experiences I’ve had. But, as we know from the Bible, human nature doesn’t change, even after thousands of years. So yes, you will encounter many of the same types of people I’ve had to deal with. And you’ll also have to battle with your own human nature over the course of your lifetime.

Bottom line? I’ve already been many of the places you’re going to go. I’ve had to cope with the same problems. Sometimes I made wise decisions and sometimes dumb ones. Wouldn’t you like to know what those decisions were before you have to make them?

Hope for Hurting Singles: A Christian Guide to Overcoming Life's Challenges, my new paperback, is a collection of “heads-up’s” on problems you’ll have to face and the best way to handle them. You’ll get wise advice on things like:

  • Loneliness
  • Shyness
  • Rejection
  • Depression
  • Self-esteem
  • Fear
  • Bitterness
  • Peace of Mind
  • Faith

Hope for Hurting Singles comes from over 40 years of experience in the single life. Why muddle through alone when you can learn from somebody who has already been there?

This isn’t about dating. It’s about those emotions that drive you up a wall. It’s about a calm, peaceful, contented existence. Think that’s not possible for a single? Think again, friend! Whether you’re looking for that special someone or not, Hope for Hurting Singles will simply help you enjoy life more. And who doesn’t want that?

Follow this link at amazon to look inside Hope for Hope for Hurting Singles. It’s $15.99 you’ll be glad you invested.

Dale Carnegie is January’s QOTM guy

We turn to motivational speaker and writer Dale Carnegie (How to Win Friends and Influence People, How to Stop Worrying and Start Living) for January’s Quote of the Month:

Inaction breeds doubt and fear. Action breeds confidence and courage. If you want to conquer fear, do not sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy.
~ Dale Carnegie (1922-1988) ~

Do you want your life to change in 2018? Do you really mean it this time? Are you fed-up, no-excuses, this-is-it, double-down-serious-about-it this year? Then it’s time for action.

Action separates the wanna-be’s from the achievers. I believe in prayer. I believe in trusting God. But I also believe there’s a time to step out in faith. If you plan carefully and consider all the possible consequences, mistakes won’t kill you. We learn more from our mistakes than we do from our successes. A sure way to get out of the rut is by taking action. You can wait and wait until the cows come home, and what have you got? A lot of cows! But if you want something else, you have to take action.

This is the year to do it, single friend. Action makes it happen. Action gets things done.

A boring but brilliant resolution for 2018

Money. Can’t live with it, can’t live without it. Jesus talked about it often because he knew it would always be a constant headache for human beings. In ancient Israel, there were no car payments, utility bills, or health insurance premiums. None of those things existed. Today we can’t live without electricity and modern conveniences.

Here’s a no-argument truth of life: Emergencies are always going to come up.

Just when things seem to be going along smoothly, something important breaks or some unexpected bill comes up. You need money, and nothing else will do. Many single people have known the feeling of panic when such a disaster happens. Ugh! Borrowing from parents or relatives? What’s even worse? Going to one of those speedy loan places that charge sky-high interest.

Here’s a great resolution for 2018: Set up an emergency fund.

If you don’t have such an account now, you’ll be wise to start one. I know saving money is hard. I know there are times when you can be short at the end of the month, but an emergency fund is so, so important for single people that only the smartest among us appreciate how necessary it is. So be smart.

When an emergency comes up and you can go to your special fund to pay for it, you’ll laugh like a hyena! Take five minutes to read why you’ll never regret having an emergency-fund

Are you successful? You may be surprised

When I was young, I read every self-help book I could get my hands on. Some were excellent, most were shallow trash. From the books of Napoleon Hill and Dale Carnegie, I learned some important life principles that served me well during my career.

But I was never successful, when it came to money, fame, and fancy things. I had other priorities.

In 2005, I started and this newsletter. I wanted to pass on a few things I had learned over 40 years in the single life, if only to spare young people some of the frustration and heartache I went through.

Over time, I crystalized a goal for readers. I want you to be mature, but by mature, I don’t mean old. I mean wise. A person can be 80 years old and immature or 25 years old and wise. Maturity doesn’t depend on age; it depends on wisdom.

The world doesn’t often recognize wisdom as success. You and I see many “successful” people who are immature and foolish. They may make a lot of money and achieve fame, but that doesn’t mean they have accomplished anything worthwhile.

Some of the most worthwhile things in life go unnoticed. The greatest people I know are not celebrities. They’re everyday folks, providing for their families, enduring the frustrations of the workplace, treating others with kindness and compassion.

If this new year has gotten you thinking about your life and whether you are successful, this short article may help you put things in perspective. I hope it will help you change your definition of success.

As always, if you’d like to drop me a line about success or anything else in this newsletter, the easiest way to do that is through our secure contact form

I’m always trying to give you useful material in these newsletters. If you have any suggestions for topics, please let me know. Remember, I-f-s is not a dating site. If I were an expert on dating, I wouldn’t be single, would I?

Once again, thank you for reading. If you have a friend or coworker who might enjoy this newsletter, please tell them they can subscribe for f’ree at

Oh, boy. We’re heading toward that dreaded winter holiday, Valentine’s Day. Don’t panic. Don’t cry. As a guy who has survived a couple dozen of them, I can assure you you’ll still be here February 15, ready to kick the world in the slats and enjoy your life again.

God bless,

PS: If this issue of your newsletter looks wacky, it's because I'm testing new forms and can't seem to get them to work right. If it appears okay, then I'm smarter than I look.

Jack Zavada
401 Indiana Ave
Streator, IL 61364 USA

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