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2013 20 Mantras of The CS: A Brief Look at What Defines a Magnificent Specimen by Leigh Peele
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"It may be hard for an egg to turn into a bird: it would be a jolly sight
harder for it to learn to fly while remaining an egg. We are like eggs at
present. And you cannot go on indefinitely being just an ordinary, decent
egg. We must be hatched or go bad."
-- C. S. Lewis
---------This is about the full package. This is about expecting yourself to be well-rounded both in
physical love and moral expression. This is not about what anyone thinks you need to be. It's
about what you want to become. No judgments. No siding with a team. No hating a woman for
wanting to squat 2x her bodyweight or a man because he does in fact want bulging biceps. No
hating a woman because she wants to unwind and do yoga or because a man wants to either.
It doesn't matter if you want gauges in your ears, tattoos from head to toe, or princess gowns.
There is a way to make what you desire to be the best it can be for you.
This manual is going to give you a brief view of what science and opinion say about how to start
the course of making your body what you desire it to be.

Eleanor Roosevelt is an icon for thought, passion, and possibilities of what you can become if
you challenge the status quo. When asked if she carried regret in life by a reporter, she stated
"Just one. I wish I had been prettier."
Rodney Dangerfield battled his whole life with depression driven (mostly) by how "ugly" he
found himself to be. He grew famous utilizing a self-deprecating philosophy. It was the ole
"Might as well beat them to the punch!" way of thinking.
Myself? I have self-esteem, but an objective personality. That is my nice way of saying that I
know I am attractive, but I am not pretty or technically beautiful. Remember that cultural rating
scale I was referring to earlier? I am not at the top of it. I am not near the top of it.
There are a lot of myths in all societies as to what constitutes someone or something being
beautiful. Pseudoscience experts, especially in the dating literature community, make statements
about penis sizes and breast fullness trying to convince you of your evolutionary instincts. In
reality animals and humans are not remotely that simplistic. Sexual orientation alone debunks
many tired arguments labeling us as breeders and nothing more. We are not black and white.
Science and anecdotes have uncovered many layers and reasons for why we find things
beautiful, who we choice to surround ourselves with, and what makes us happy.

It has been stated that beauty is an evaluation of objective factors. Many scholars agree beauty is
a physical concept of form, symmetry, and patterns. Studies show frequently animals make
preferences in matting choices due to patterns and symmetry. In humans, we also choose similar
qualities. In multiple cultures, adults, and children studies have been performed on facial beauty
showing an overwhelming response to symmetry and lack of visual detractors (moles, acne,
wrinkles, etc). In animals, things like the length of a zebra's tail or pattern of spots on a leopard
can present selection. The presence of symmetry as a statement of beauty has ground and
It is also true that the technicalities of beauty tie themselves to attractiveness and selection. This
is especially logically since the sight of beauty in both objects and humans can trigger the release
of positive chemical responses in the brain. In laymen's terms we get high on beauty. Even
babies get in on the game. In one study, infants ages 2-6 months would rather look longer at
adults rated as "attractive" than adults rated "unattractive."
What about what the studies don't show? I can hand you hundreds of studies confirming the
same tired mythical principals of beauty. What they often miss is that humans are collective in
their brain processes. No decision is ever made without those instantaneous moments where we
judge and catalog information.
Hair: Dark
Eyes: Blue
Skin: Tan
Skin Texture: Rough
Smile: Small
Presence: Insecure
We process more than this in milliseconds.
Take the example of the infant study. Is it possible that the unattractive people were more
depressed? Maybe they smiled at the babies less? Maybe they had a harder day? Maybe they are
getting over a divorce and are low in confidence? How the world sees you is usually how you see
yourself. How many people do you know that could be on any given day put in the attractive or
unattractive category if they had a shift in attitude for better or worse.
The take home point and crescendo of this piece is this there is no one box to fit into. There is
no defining trait of beauty or attractiveness. Instead there is a collection of efforts and traits
which show you are someone who cares about life, health, and art. And sure it doesn't hurt to
look good in pants. That doesn't mean there is a right size pair.
The looks that you are obsessing about, it just isn't the big picture you think it is. Self-esteem
matters yes, but life it is so much grander than you are giving it credit for.

Let's say that you happen to be the majority of this world that wasn't blessed with the genetic
lottery. It doesn't mean anything if you know what to make of it. Your looks are a small fraction
of what defines who you are.
Getting back to myself, I am one of the non-lucky. I did not win the genetic lottery. My scratch
ticket was a lemon. I have weird to bad skin, can't tan, flat chest, messed up nose, droopy eyes, a
small head, etc. The list goes on. Internally it just gets better. Oh and did I mention the
environmental and social upbringing battles? They are plenty.
Yep, it's safe to say that I wasn't a beautiful stylish human driving a BMW at 16 and riding the
high life. I held no grudge that others had it so good. I just knew I had to do something about it.
I am going to fast forward a lot of juice, drama, and turmoil. I do mean a lot. The middle is
important, but this is not the time for that. The present is what I want to focus on. In the present,
I am not held back by my "beauty." In the present, I am not held back by what I had starting off.
In the present, I write my own check.
I work for myself. I make my own rules. I live by my own code. I devote my heart to those who I
believe deserve it. I waste no time on people who don't matter. I waste no time on events that
don't matter. I wake when I want to wake. I wear what I want to wear. I eat when I want to eat. I
love who I want to love. While I still have a lot to work on and dreams upon dreams to achieve, I
can safely say that I am embarking on the beginning of clutching the life I want instead of the
life I was owed.

Below I am listing a collection of statements to be repeated and acknowledged. These statements

embody what I feel is a start, but core to becoming the ultimate human package. Even these
statements are open to personal interpretation and moral guiding. With that being said, I can't see
how doing any of these things is bad if applied in the right meaning.

Everyone is a fetish for someone. Everyone can be special to someone. It is you who stops that
from occurring, not someone else.
I have never had a problem dating attractive and successful people or finding solid friends. I am
not rich. I do play musical instruments, but far from famous for it. On my best day I could rate a
6.5/7 by those who care to judge. Maybe.
I am not freakishly smart and I have no background that is impressive. None of it matters
because I am blind to what the world expects me to be or expects me to want. I know that the
special group of people whom I fit with will accept me. The rest, I don't care about nor do I
concern myself with. Why should I? They aren't my group.
You will constantly feel unattractive or unaccepted if you are trying to fit somewhere in your
heart you don't belong. You will constantly feel unattractive or unaccepted if you give up on
trying to be the best you can be for yourself. Find where you are supposed to be and the rest
takes care of itself.

Scores of technically gorgeous men and women have found out that being physically pleasing,
but offering nothing else, leads to a wealth of disappointment. Beauty isn't attraction. Beauty isn't
interesting. Beauty is unpredictable.
Most people are lured by their own youth and ease of physical manipulations. They avoid the
realities of life, carry no depth, and thrive on their appearance. Those who depended on it the
most to define them grasp at straws for surgeries or miracle quick fixes. They soon find they
band-aid themselves at best or ruin at worst.
If you actually engage in the suggested activities and mentalities of what makes an overall
magnificent person, you will be more physically beautiful for it. You will embody the ultimate
traits that the cheaters will never come to understand.

Nothing is worse than someone scrapping the bottom of the barrel in a desperate plea for their
past. Maybe I am bias because I have no "glory days" except for what I am living now. If you
make your current the best time of your life, it's hard to worry about how you looked in the past.
I am all for using technology to slow or elevate our physical appearance if it is done for the right
reasons. I am against living in the past and trying to always "look 20." Embrace each decade for
what it is and find your talents and life within that age.

I've been surrounded my whole life with droves of people who believe their life and fun is over
at the ripe young age of 30. If youth (to you) means promiscuity and alcoholism, I can assure you
those things can happen at any age. They are also undesirable at any age. Sure, technical youth
offers with it excuses for behavior at times and copious amounts of hump dancing. But is that all
that defines youth? Irresponsibility and jack rabbit lust?
Youth in my mind is excitability about the possibilities life has to offer and a lack of being jaded.
In my personal life I "grew up fast" for a number of reasons. I have been on my own pretty much
my entire double digit life. I carry with me a gallon of excuses to be jaded to this world and all it
has to offer. But I am not. I see the potential in myself and dreams of what can be achieved. I see
many more new friendships and late night conversations. I see many of the things that excited
me in youth and none of it has to do with being irresponsible or living in the past.

Mobility is the ability to maintain your bodies balance and control within a state of gravity.
Posture is the stance and hold of your body during seated and moving states. If you see an older
man slouched over in a hunched position using the aid of a cane to walk, he is in a state of poor
mobility and posture. The same man would likely feel less age both mentally and physically if
his state of mobility and posture were better.
Over the years our bodies give way to the slouching, sitting, and muscle atrophy. All that is left
is a negative alteration in appearance and performance. Some people don't even carry it in youth
they never had it. Poor mobility and posture has been constantly correlated to low self-esteem
or chronic weakness.
Attacking mobility and posture with training and mental attention is a quick way to alter
appearance and attitude. It can also take years off your appearance.

The more physical strength you have, the more freedom you carry. It's as simple as that.

How you treat people and the honor of your character certainly helps define your appearance.
Differing opinions on life and morals is one thing, but oppression and judgment are another.
Spending your time being filled with rage over others serves no one. Focus on your own life,
happiness, and connections. Let others live.

There is a small amount of people who define their success by their body fat. Unless you are
competing in the arena bodybuilding or figure competitions, the need for low body fat is an issue
conceived by yourself.
Shocking Statement: Some people look more attractive at higher body fat levels. I am not telling
people to embrace obesity because I don't agree with that concept from a health perspective. But
there is a huge gap that separates 9% body fat and obesity.
You also have to think about need. For example, in person one may enjoy their appearance at a
higher body fat, but need more definition or refinement for film or picture. Unless you are a film
star, screw the pictures and keep to the mirror.

Unless who you are is a card carrying member of the Hitler fan club. You might want to
apologize for that.
If you treat yourself as if you are constantly in the wrong, other people will follow suit. Take
pride and faith in your instincts and intelligence. If you walk and speak confidently, people will
treat you as such. If you walk and speak as guilty, don't be surprised if everyone follows suit.

The amount of people you have in your life doesn't define you. The amount of people others
carry in their life doesn't give them credibility. If you are looking for social proof and credibility,
look for it in those who offer sincerity over popularity. That doesn't mean all popular things are
bad, but being popular doesn't make it good either.

I get astounded by how hard people find it to be to take care of themselves. The "Aint nobody got
time for that!" philosophy, while funny, is hardly a mantra to live by. It is rare someone's day

doesn't have room to ensure a good meal or training even in intermittent bursts. It isn't always
about spending a hour training. Take a 15 minute walk. Fix a salad by hand. Breath and release
for 10 minutes. Just do something every day that says, "I give a damn!"
Let me caveat that statement for all those single parents out there in crap jobs. I wouldn't dare
high horse myself. At some point when life gives you a breather, do embrace it. Try not stay in
that self-sacrificing lull. I also encourage you to do anything you can to change your
circumstance so that time is no longer your enemy. You are worth it.

Boring is far more tragic than being out of shape or unhappy with your "BMI" chart status. I
truly believe we get busy living or we get busy dying. You live with purpose or you might as
well buckle in and welcome the death unabashedly.
Read literature. Go to museums. Engage in the people that surround you. Listen to new music.
Go to plays. Most of these things are desperately cheap or free. Having things to talk about and
experiences to share will help you be more rounded emotionally and less rounded physically. It's
easier to not stuff your face at parties because you will want to talk!

Anne Bancroft was so bad ass in that movie. Go rent the movie "Point of No Return."
Being calm and collected about life and the funny abusive games it throws your way is attractive.
You don't have to walk around with a sociopathic nature or flippant attitude, but seeing the big
picture helps. Here are some examples of what I mean:
- Are you upset because you have access to too much food?
- Are you panicking during the renovation of your soon to be beautiful home?
- Did you have to walk at least 20 rows away in the parking lot to get to the store?|
- Did you get a ticket for not wearing your seat belt?
- Are you mad at your DVR for not recording your favorite show?
While these can be legitimate heart aches, they fall perfectly in the category of "First World
Problems." Illness, death, and cruelty I can understand. Just remember to keep some
perspective and not let these things shake you.

Don't fall for diets and lifestyle schemes that preach being scared of all that is around you.
Disordered eating is on the rise due to lots of sensationalists, but little science. If something

legitimately hurts you, of course stay away from it. But, if you just read that something is "bad"
then you may need to stay away from the people who wrote that article.

If you think constantly "starting over" doesn't affect anything but what you are trying to do
you're wrong.
Let's say you have a friend named Steve. Steve is supposed to pick you up daily for work. On
Steve's best day he is late and a few times he hasn't come at all. Every time Steve says, "I swear
next time I will be there on-time!" Would you trust Steve? Would you believe him?
Do you believe yourself about your diet plan? Do you believe yourself about your training plans?
What about the career dreams you have? Lifestyle goals? Do you think that a diminishing selftrust is going to affect you in other places?
Are you going to think Steve is trustworthy in other departments? No. You are going to think,
until proven otherwise, that Steve is unreliable.
Pick realistic goals and things you can stick to easily. Consistency and self-trust are more
valuable than winning some race you have created in your mind. Don't be "Steve" to yourself.

Survival and mental toughness are one thing; cruelty is another. Rocky didn't go around beating
up people for fun. That would have made him a schmuck. We celebrate the hero who shields us
from harm, not the villains who reign down the darkness. Strive to help people be the best they
can be, not to prove how better than them you are.
The same is true for animals. Humans shouldn't torture animals simply because we can. There is
an honorable way to act, even if the end result is your dining table. The moment of death is
something we all will understand and fear when it happens animal or human. Let's hope it can
always be as quickly and peaceful as possible. There are fates much worse than death.
Support humane treatment to animals. Don't be a bully to others physically or intellectually. Let's
hope you never have a moment of fighting for your life to shock you into perspective. We should
all work to minimize fear in others as much as possible.

I consider myself an "answer" person more than a positive person to some degree. What I mean
by that is I believe that for everything there is a choice and answer. We might not always love

the options, but choice is our ultimate power. I feel because of that my adult life has been filled
with a lot of amazing and positive things.
What I dislike is when positivity is turned into an open door policy. I know a lot of positive
people who I am positive have no quality control. They love everyone, will accept anything, and
support anything. They will rationalize left and right how to compromise stance to further their
career and money. Somewhere along the positivity train they unhitched the integrity car.
People trust you when you can say no. People trust you when you can stand by something that is
important and not waiver. Don't confuse being positive with letting anything happen.

I am not going to pander to you and say the good guy always wins or that shallow (technically)
beautiful people don't get what they want. They do, all the time.
What would happen if beauty stopped being such an illusion? What would happen if there were
more challengers for the bold and beautiful? If the "average" stopped letting themselves get
defeated and made the extra effort, they wouldn't be average anymore. What if the underdog
vowed to become a top dog? The end result might provide a better pile of people to choose from.
Sadly, there are always people who will put aside trying. There are more of those than we might
care to admit. And yes, there will always be the genetic and economic lottery few who get their
way. What about that gap left open between? Will you stand there?

I want you to sit there with your eyes closed for thirty seconds and think of the people who have
affected your life. Who are the people you think to be amazing? I want you to think of the
people or creatures that have touched you and made you laugh, cry, and cheer.
Go ahead.
Make a list of the reasons these people reach you. How important is their physical appearance?
I would bet money that the majority of the factors you selected had nothing to do with technical
beauty. It likely had to do with character, action, and heart. If it was physical, it likely wasn't
because of their perfect cheek bones or symmetric eyes.
Know who you want to be, not just what you want to look like.

I challenged my members to deliver me a mantra of their own. They really put their hearts and
minds on the line. My favorite came from a member named Brendan:
"Having been bullied throughout my childhood for my weight and even for smiling and laughing
at the littlest of things, I learned to lie low off to a distance so as not to be noticed by anyone.
Obviously this isnt the answer. In high school, I educated myself about nutrition and exercise
and went to a gym. I gained confidence and finally blossomed! I was the 17 year old who
climbed trees whenever wherever, not for attention, but because I was never able to before.
The aforementioned quote really hits home for me because I will always have that meek scared
former fat boy within me. Some days his voice is loud and a pint of ice cream beckons me while
I watch a movie by myself feeling utterly depressed and lonely. Again, the above mantra reminds
me that Im in control of the direction of my thoughts, actions, and life. Which is why today I am
able to live 98% of my life the way I want to without the hindrance of any of lifes potential

I have good people around me, I do. But, I want more. I am not talking about "yes men" or
people who have all the same opinions I have. I want people in my life, in my world, who have
the X factor. I want people around me who thrive off passion, original thought, freedom,
dreaming, and fighting for a future they deserve. I want people in my life who don't settle. Who
would rather sit on the pumpkin alone than crowded on the velvet cushion, as Thoreau would
I don't just want these people in my physical daily presence, I want them everywhere. I want to
know we are everywhere in the world on the same team, fighting for the same cause.
Clutch means to grab, grip, and grasp. I want to be part of gathering a group of people who go
after life. I want to be part of a group of people who aren't just waiting to die.
I want to surround myself with flawed human beings who are desperate to be more than who
they already are. Human beings who are desperate to make this world a better place through their
actions and examples.
We are fit, but not narcissists. We are smart, but not pompous. We are strong, but not bullies. We
are kind, but not doormats. We are brave, but not stupid. We are critical, but not cynical. We are
doers, not only dreamers. We are likely underdogs, but not counted out. We are the apex of
personal endeavors.
To put it poetically:

"We are the music makers,

And we are the dreamers of dreams,
Wandering by lone sea-breakers,
And sitting by desolate streams;
World-losers and world-forsakers,
On whom the pale moon gleams:
Yet we are the movers and shakers
Of the world for ever, it seems."
- Arthur O'Shaughnessy

Death should never be a deadline.

Jack Nicolson and Morgan Freeman made the phrase "The Bucket List" go from being a country
clich to inspirations for New Year's resolutions lists everywhere. Just as we have "1000 Recordings
You Must Hear Before You Die," we now have bucket lists. The problem? Death is the deadline. In
the end, procrastination sets in, and you lose urgency and fail to focus on one particular goal. People
write things on a list, or pin them to a board, only to find it withers just like every other resolution
they made.
Clutch is an action word. It has energy and (I think) inspires more towards action now, not later.
To take it up a notch, I've added a time specific challenge to the situation. By doing this, I hope to
achieve the following:
1. Create a sense of urgency
2. Isolate goals into more logical/sensible chunks
3. Relieve the urge to overwhelm ourselves with this "never ending" list of things to do.

We are wasting so much time. We could be doing so many things with our lives and testing our
boundaries. There are people who naturally get this. Maybe they had an easy life growing up, had
lots of financial means, and are just the lucky folk. I don't hate their ease. It didn't come naturally to
me though, and that's okay. I have to work for it so don't think there is something wrong with you
because you can't fall into the ease of a good life.
Most people watch others living their lives as if it is a catalog towards another reality. A catalog they
would never have the guts to shop from. I'm here to say to you, "What are you doing?" This is life
we are talking about! Do you know how hard it is, from a scientific manner, to become human? On
top of that, to become a human in a remotely developed country with means and the ability to
complain about first world problems?
Forget about all the reasons why you can't do "this" and start to embrace what you can do.
-The above information about The Clutch List comes from the Clutch List manual. If you want more
information on that, you can download the manual here.