10 Ways to Unleash Your I-Pump

Pumped up for Pumptitude

How does one find their individual and internal drive and ambition, and then unleash this ultimate I-Pump (Internal Pumptitude) every day for the rest of their natural life?

You will find the answer in Internal Pumptitude, the newest book by furniture retail giant Kim Yost.

Here are just 10 of the 68 ways to unleash your Internal Pumptitude so that you can inspire, grow and become more. You’ll find them in Chapters 4 and 5 of the book.

#17: Anything is possible

“The true learning, experience and benefit to your life is the journey, it’s not the destination.”

#18: Risk-taking – nine new stores in 91 days

“There is huge energy that is generated by new ventures that touch even those people who are not directly involved.”

#19: Ignore the naysayers

“If people are thoughtless with you, don’t put any thought into what they say or do.”

#20: Lifetime of achievement

“Unless you constantly refresh yourself, you don’t become great, you become stale.”

#21: Miracle morning

“If you want things to change in your life, you must first be willing to make those changes.”

#22: Schmonday

“We need to carve out our own time and focus on what’s really important so we can take it on.”

#23: Put on your shorts and go – rise and shine!

“You give me one hour, every day, of any type of activity, and I guarantee it will change your life.”

#24: Discipline – passion for the grind

“Without a passion for the grind, the grind will wear you away. We have to get up every morning and know that we will face challenges.”

#25: Compounding benefits – a win is a win

“By winning in one space, your confidence is expanded in another space.”

#26: Goal setting – set yourself in motion

“Make a list. Only include the goals that will truly change your life.”

Pumped up for more? Check out Internal Pumptitude

Becoming Certified Celebrants

“Grief delayed is not grief denied,” Glenda says to the room. I write it down on my hotel notepad. She pauses, tilts her head forward, peering down her nose and out at her students, as if to say, I’m talking to you. It’s not too late. We aren’t there to simply sit back and take notes. She’s challenging us to look inward. When has your grief been set aside or dismissed? What unanswered grief do you carry around?

We are the latest class of InSight Institute Celebrant trainees. From Alabama to Oregon we’re a motley crew; There’s the former pastor in his tweed jacket, the funeral director with her cat-eye glasses, and the Baptist minister in her purple pantsuit – along with a dozen others. Out of everyone in the room, I am likely the least acquainted with death. Even so, I have experienced my share of disappointment and regret after attending family funerals that were generic and cold. They left me feeling cheated out of my grief. And while it may never be too late to grieve, Celebrants can help families with their grief in a real way when they need it most and, as a result, put more meaning back into the funeral.

What Does a Celebrant Do?

  • Meets with the family to collect stories of their loved one.

  • Writes a one-of-a-kind service that incorporates participation and ceremony.

  • Provides a guiding presence; acknowledging the death and giving permission to grieve.

It’s been a month since Donna and I completed the Celebrant Training. I learned so much in those three days. The final day, after being assigned a scenario the day before, we each performed the service we put together to the class. I was so impressed by how everyone weaved together such beautifully rich stories for hypothetical individuals. Now I feel incredibly inspired to encourage others, at the very least, not to see a funeral as an obligation but instead an opportunity. An opportunity to celebrate the life, honor the death, and say goodbye in the absolute best way possible – by making it personal.

For more information on celebrants please visit: https://www.insightbooks.com/celebrants

Combat Injured Troops: We Salute You!

Combat Injured Troops Logo

COMBAT INJURED TROOPS was formed to support our military veterans and their families through our Therapy in the Air program that makes you smile! With now three programs to assist Veterans, Combat Injured Troops goal is to be able to help military men and women including their families. There are no paid salaries in the COMBAT INJURED TROOPS organization and they are an approved 501(c) Charity. 

Therapy in the Air

The All Veteran Group (AVG) through Therapy in the Air, in support of Combat Injured Troops, helps warriors thrive through post-traumatic growth (PTG).  PTG refers to positive psychological change experienced as a result of the struggle with highly challenging life circumstances.  Therapy in the Air offers an unparalleled sense of freedom mingled with excitement unlike that of any other sport.  

Hometown Heroes

Our Hometown Heroes Program is designed to showcase someone from the community who has sacrificed time and effort to better his or her community. A local hero may include but not be limited to: an average citizen who saved a life, a renowned teacher, a community humanitarian, a firefighter, a paramedic or police officer.  This program is not an award but a way to say thanks to Americans who have done great things. 

22 a Day

The 22-A-Day project is an awareness program that exposes the little known fact that 22 Veterans a day commit suicide.  This is a staggering number that is often overlooked.  Our military serve and protect all of us and deserve our deepest appreciation, respect and care.  By educating the public, the 22-A-Day project hopes to inspire more people to get involved and work together by joining our resources to eradicate this problem.

The Life Chest supports Combat Injured Troops and the All Veteran Group and is proud to work closely with CIT board member and AVG Founder and CEO Mike Elliot.

Watch Mike Elliot's Freedom Life Chest Testimonial:


Grandpa Willie the Navy Man

Last week we proudly co-hosted an event with Louis Vuitton and had the pleasure of hearing singer and song write Ajia perform with her incredible band. (See the previous post for more on this amazing event.)

Here is a Life Chest story about Ajia's gramps.

Grandpa Willie the Navy man. First, he was great friends with Lou Rawls they golfed together all the time. He was also the first black detective SanBernardino and when a rookie white cop was promoted over my grandfather even though he had everything in place tenure etc to be promoted he sued the department and won. That was unheard of especially back in those days. He was the SanBernardino Chapter President of the NAACP as well as a high-ranking Mason. He although never smoked or hardly drank outside of a few beers passed from cancer many years ago.

The Life Chest and Louis Vuitton for Fisher House

At The Life Chest™ we are incredibly honoured to have co-hosted an elegant party Saturday night with Louis Vuitton at the Somerset Collection store. The party featured cognac, cigar rolling, casino games and a variety of entertainment for the evening. The highlight of the event was a musical appearance by the smooth and sultry Ajia Clark accompanied by her soulful band. The purpose of this event was to showcase the potential collaborations between The Life Chest™ and Louis Vuitton, which includes the potential launch of a network for the Fisher House Foundation in the area.

Luke Song with Donna and Kim Yost , Chef Bobby and Chuck Bennett , Rhonda Walker with Donna Yost 

Casino Games at The Life Chest™ and Louis Vuitton Event in Somerset Mall,

Ajia Clark and Her Band at Hitsville U.S.A.

The Life Chest featured on Funeral Celebrant Podcast

This year The Life Chest made a commitment to have our team members complete celebrant training. We know families want personalized life tributes, and celebrants are a vital part of that.  They meet with families, learn about their loved one, and craft a ceremony as unique as that individual. If only more people knew about this amazing service! 

By educating ourselves on what celebrants do, we discovered new ways to thoughtfully incorporate The Life Chest into Life Tributes. We connected with other trainees, many of whom were funeral directors and religious leaders, who share our passion for helping families leave a legacy. Together The Life Chest and celebrants can make a real difference in the way families grieve, heal, and remember their loved ones. 

Listen to this special episode of Funeral Celebrant Podcast featuring The Life Chest's Julie Donegan. One of the youngest students to complete celebrant training, Julie shares her personal experience with loss and how becoming a celebrant gave her a new perspective. 



Julie Donegan with her Life Chest™

James Megellas

James Megellas with Mike Elliot, Founder of AVG All Veteran Group

James Megellas with Mike Elliot, Founder of AVG All Veteran Group

James Megellas, born March 11, 1917, is a retired U.S. Army officer who commanded a platoon in Company H of the 3rd Battalion, 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment (PIR), 82nd Airborne Division during World War II. He is "the most decorated officer in the history of the 82nd Airborne Division," having received a Distinguished Service Cross, a Silver Star and a nomination for the Medal of Honor. Megellas was born in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, and attended nearby Ripon College. He participated in the school's Reserve Officers' Training Corps program and, upon graduation in May 1942, received a commission as a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army.

He first experienced combat in the mountains outside Naples, Italy, where he was wounded and hospitalized. In October 1943, while the remainder of the 82nd Airborne departed Italy to recoup before the invasion of Normandy, the 504th PIR remained behind and took part in Operation Shingle. On Jan. 22, 1944, the 504th took part in an amphibious assault at Anzio. The fighting took a heavy toll with Megellas being wounded again. Due to the losses at Anzio, the 504th did not participate in the D-Day Normandy landings, but they did parachute into the Netherlands as part of Operation Market Garden.

Megellas took part in the crossing of the Waal River near Nijmegen, where American forces crossed the river in flimsy boats while under heavy machine gun fire. He single-handedly attacked a German observation post and machine gun nest during the engagement. For these actions, he was awarded the U.S. military's second-highest decoration, the Distinguished Service Cross, and, in December 1944, the regiment was rushed into the Battle of the Bulge.

On Jan. 28, 1945, Megellas' platoon was advancing toward Heresiarch, Belgium. Struggling through heavy snow and freezing cold, they surprised 200 Germans who were advancing out of the town. Catching the Germans largely off guard, the attack proved to be devastating, with the Americans killing or capturing a large number and causing many others to flee. As they prepared to assault the town, a German Mark V tank took aim at them. Megellas ran toward it and disabled it with a single grenade. Climbing on top of the tank, he dropped another grenade into the tank, eliminating the threat to his men. He then led his men as they cleared and seized the town with no casualties to his team. He was nominated for the Medal of Honor, but the account of his actions was not included in the original battle reports, and he was instead awarded the Silver Star.

Throughout the war, Megellas served with Company H, 504th PIR, which he would later command. In January 1946, he led his company down Fifth Avenue in New York City in the Victory Parade. He left the active Army service that year with the rank of Captain and served an additional 16 years in the Army Reserve. He retired as a Lieutenant Colonel and wrote a memoir of his wartime experiences entitled “All the Way to Berlin: A Paratrooper at War in Europe.” Megellas and his wife currently live in Colleyville, Texas. Maggie was nominated for the Medal of Honor seventy years ago, it was reviewed by the Senate on 01/30/2017 and referred to the Committee on Armed Services.

Vietnam Veterans of America host Operations Christmas event

Freedom Military Life Chest Donation to Veterans

Remember our new Life Chest Lifer Claude Wood? Well, The Life Chest and Claude’s story had the privilege of being featured in local newspaper The Macomb Daily by Linda May!

Read the full article here!

“Freedom Military Life Chests –- repositories for treasured memorabilia –- were recently presented to 55 veterans from the Tri-County area. They received them the day before Veterans Day at the Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 9 building in Detroit.

The Life Chest company of Troy put on the program and donated the chests.

“Veterans were selected based upon their service both during and after their military time,” Mike Sand, of Fraser, said.

Macomb County vets who received chests included Al Opra, Laura Rios, Jerry Van de Vyver, Dave Trevino, Phil Gannia, Paul Palazzolo, Steven Mrozek, Tara Perez, Keith Edwards, Joe Rheker, Steven Gerebics, Robert Slavko and Therese Wrobel.

Sand received one, as did George Sheppard III.

On Veterans Day, Sheppard gave his chest to Claude Wood who is the Fraser-Reid Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 6691 charter commander. Wood celebrated his 97th birthday on that day. Sheppard’s father was also a charter member of the post in 1946.

“George gifted his chest to a special friend and fellow veteran, Claude Wood. Claude is a 97-year-old World War II veteran and a 1946 charter member of the Fraser VFW Post 6691. George’s father, George Sheppard Jr., was also a charter member. Claude and George III have both dedicated their lives to supporting our military and veterans. At a surprise birthday recognition and celebration, George presented his special gift to Claude. A very emotional moment indeed,” Sand said.

The chests have pewter emblems representing each branch of the armed forces and the Great Seal of the United States.

“This is definitely a family heirloom to be passed from generation to generation, one of the finest holiday presents anyone could ask for. We cannot thank The Life Chest company enough for such a gift,” Sand said. “It was a very nice gesture on their part and I kind of look at the chest as a cross between a footlocker and a hope chest. I have put some very special things in mine such as the pen Governor Engler used to lend the State of Michigan’s support to the Michigan Vietnam Memorial Monument.

Sand’s chest contains a U.S. flag displayed by four Detroit mayors, an autographed book depicting Vietnam memorials in all 50 states, keepsakes from his parents, challenge coins, military patches, audio tapes, DVDs, and books related to Sand’s Vietnam War experiences.

“It’s sort of my personal time capsule,” he said.”


Thank you to Linda May for the great article!