When I landed on this New Blog Of The Week (NBOTW) the first thing I thing I read was “…this is my blog about becoming who you were meant to be…..”

That opening line intrigued me to read more. Here’s what I found:

On his Welcome page, he writes about our journey to self actualization. In part, he says:

How do you get there? By taking small steps, healing our wounds, mending our brokenness, raising our inner children that got lost and stuck somewhere on your walk. …..

In his post titled “Path Over Destination: A Little Known Secret To Satisfying Life”, he shares these words of wisdom:

The element that can give you your life back is the love of the act. Not output, not objective, not benefits. Life is what happens when youโ€™re engaged in that act. You owe it to yourself to choose an act where the act itself is your reward. This is the most essential and effective way to live a satisfying life.

The Folly Of Being Likable is a short snappy post filled with tons of value. He ends it by saying,

Be a good person in your own eyes.


The rest of it is a truthful eye-opener. Read this, and like me, you’ll be hooked on this blog.

This blog is the result of a double nomination. One from Al of 7P Productions, and the second from Bamboo Forest of Pun Intended. Thank you Al and Bamboo for a great find.

This NBOTW is titled “Our Best Version”. The tag line reads, “Big Picture of Healing and Growth: From Depression to Self Actualization”. The author is Ari Koinumra.

Please join me in welcoming Ari to the BWAB community.

Welcome, Ari!

Photo Credit: Cyklista Dalibor’s photostream

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  1. DavinaNo Gravatar says:

    Our Best Version looks like yet another jewel Barbara. I just popped over there to check it out. That’s some gentle wisdom he’s sharing. Thanks Al and Bamboo Forest for the recommendation.

    Davina’s last blog post..I Dreamt I Died

  2. Scott McIntyreNo Gravatar says:

    Another great personal growth find, Barbara.

    Good on Bamboo Forest and Al for recommending it. I love the way everyone is so supportive of each other here ๐Ÿ™‚

    I wish Ari every success for the future as he develops his blog. You’ll get loads of advice here!

  3. RobinNo Gravatar says:

    I have been enjoying Ari’s blog for a couple of weeks now – I think he has a lot to offer. All the best with it Ari!

    Robin’s last blog post..Reincarnationโ€ฆ A Scenario

  4. Hello Ari. Welcome to our community. Now I need to go scope out your site.

    Thanks Al and Bamboo, oh yeah, and Barbara ๐Ÿ™‚

    John Hoff – eVentureBiz’s last blog post..Welcoming Theresa Hoff – Director of Incorporation and Living Trust Services by eVentureBiz

  5. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi All,

    Thank you so much for supporting my choice. It’s not often I find a personal growth blog that meets or surpasses others I see/read, but Ari is giving them a run for the money.

    Like all of you, I’m so happy Al and Bamboo nominated him.

  6. Cath LawsonNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara – I was just checking out Ari’s blog. It is interesting. I really enjoyed his post on goals. Another great choice for NBOTW.

  7. Welcome Ari, you’ve done a great job on your blog and provide intriguing writing. I’m sure we all are looking forward to future posts and insight.

  8. I haven’t come across Ari’s blog before – thanks for highlighting it in NBOTW. The posts that I looked at were great reading. I am definitely going back for more.

    What I really liked was his about page – one of the best I have read in a long time – what an interesting story!

  9. Dr. CasonNo Gravatar says:

    Welcome Ari,

    I find that life is our best teacher. You needn’t hold a degree or license to live life and teach something you’s learned along the way.

    How wonderful that you are able to reach out to others and help them.

    Great choice Barbara!


    Dr. Cason’s last blog post..The Ugly Side of Being a Doctor

  10. RitaNo Gravatar says:

    Having read Ari’s blog a number of times – and followed some of his comments on other’s blogs, I KNOW you have picked a winner. Ari is bright, articulate, and flexible.

    Great choice, Barbara. Thank you – and congratulaions, Ari. You deserve it!


  11. Al at 7PNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara – you indeed have a community. Thanks for listening to our feedback for NBOTW ๐Ÿ™‚

    I’ve been following Ari’s articles recently and he really has some great thought-provoking posts. Congrats Ari!

  12. Writer DadNo Gravatar says:

    I had no idea Ari was new. He has a great site.

  13. Ari KoinumaNo Gravatar says:

    Hello Barbara and everyone —

    Just a quick note to say hello and thanks! Glad to hear you found value in what I’m sharing. ๐Ÿ™‚ And extra special thanks to Al and Bamboo for their recommendation!

    I must say, this kind of recognition gives me great motivation. I am originally a musician, and I always thought that audience plays just as much part as players in making performances memorable. We can play all the music we want to ourselves, yet it’s not the same if we don’t have anyone to play it TO and receive energy FROM. I write and make music primarily to please myself, yet magic happens when what I’m transmitting finds a recipient, and bounce back to me.

    So thank you for giving me the energy to continue creating.

    I look forward to getting to know you all, and being active in this community.


    Ari Koinuma’s last blog post..Blog Carnival: 10 Posts about Realizing Your Potential โ€” August 2008

  14. I never would have suspected that Ari was new either. He certainly doesn’t show it. Definitely a good choice for NBTOW!

    Hunter Nuttall’s last blog post..Good News From The Doctor

  15. Barbara,

    This is exciting! Ari is a new find for me. I just wnet over there and read his about page and three atricles and subscribed. That’s for the recommendation! I look forward to meeting him here in your community and in his.

    Hi Ari Welcome!

    Wendi Kelly- Life’s Little Inspirations’s last blog post..For the Love of Words

  16. VeredNo Gravatar says:

    Welcome Ari, and thank you Barbara for the introduction. ๐Ÿ™‚

  17. Congratulations Ari. And I’m happy you selected his blog for NBOTW, Barbara. And thanks for the link love.

    Bamboo Forest’s last blog post..How to Live a Life of Freedom

  18. JenniferNo Gravatar says:

    Great choice! I have been reading some of Ari’s work and he seems very wise and has some very good things to share. I believe he has a wealth of knowledge to pass along. I also appreciate him very much as he is a regular commenter at my blog always adding value (like you Barbara).

    Jennifer’s last blog post..Change Your Life – One Thought at a Time – Part 1

  19. MarelisaNo Gravatar says:

    I’ve been subscribed to “Our Best Version” for a couple of weeks and Ari has a great blog. I especially like his post about setting process-oriented goals. Great pick Barbara!

  20. Fantastic! Went over, had look, and ended up commenting on his last two posts. From one NBOTW Club Member to another, welcome Ari!

    Urban Panther’s last blog post..Cry me a river

  21. @Ari: You stated: “audience plays just as much part as players in making performances memorable.””itโ€™s not the same if we donโ€™t have anyone to play it TO and receive energy FROM.”
    This is SO true. I find that when I get up in the morning to make my daily post I am very affected by the comments that I had received from the night before. In other words, if I feel that “the audience” is showing interest through participation, I have more confidence and motivation to write clear, concise content. But it’s those days where it seems like no one is interested that I struggle the most with effectively getting what’s in my head onto my blog.

  22. This blog looks like it’s right up my alley, Barbara. Sounds very inspirational. And with Al and Bamboo Forest writing it, well it has to be great doesn’t it? off to check it out now.

    And I really believe focusing on the actions we’re taking now and feeling the joy of the present is the key to a satisfying life. I just wish I didn’t have that tendency to always be thinking ahead…


    Kelly@SHE-POWER’s last blog post..The Smiling Dog in the Mirror

  23. I have one question (this is for anyone with an opinion on the matter). As a new blogger myself I’ve been bit by the blogging bug. I really enjoy it and seem to have ideas going off in my head all the time. As a result I started a second blog that is completely different than my current motivational blog. As I started working on it I realized how much time it was going to take away from my first blog. I do have just enough time each day to post on both and do some basic admin. But what I’ve found is that one of the differences between a good blog and a great one is the amount of time and thought that goes into it. I truly desire to make the best blog I possibly can and wonder if my second blog is just going to keep me from doing that. Or, playing devil’s advocate, are two good blogs better than one great one?
    I’d love to hear your input. @Ari: Are you working on any other blogs or is this your only focus right now (as far as blogs go)? Thanks for any input and I hope this isn’t too off the beaten comment path. Eric.

  24. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi All,

    Thanks for welcoming Ari to the BWAB community.

    Ari, Thanks for stopping by and joining in on the fun!

    Eric, I’ll be back later to answer to your question as I have two blogs.

    Work is keeping me busy, so I’ll be back later. ๐Ÿ™‚

  25. Ari KoinumaNo Gravatar says:

    OK — kids tucked in bed, I have some time to reply! This is not my blog, but in this case, I feel compelled to respond to everyone.


    Thanks! This is the first time I run into you — I’ll be by later to check out your blog!


    Thanks! Well, I wasn’t aware of this blog until Bamboo mentioned it to me. I’m looking forward to digging around and getting to know everyone.


    Thanks! I’ve been enjoying the little discussions we’ve had.

    @John Hoff

    Thanks! I’ll do the same to your site!


    Thanks for visiting and leaving a comment! Looking forward to getting to know you.

    More on the next comment.

    Ari Koinuma’s last blog post..Blog Carnival: 10 Posts about Realizing Your Potential โ€” August 2008

  26. Ari KoinumaNo Gravatar says:

    @Motivate Thyself

    Thanks! I hadn’t come across your blog yet, either — I’ll be by later.


    Thanks! I’m glad to hear my About page worked for me. I keep tweaking it, and I just re-read it and need to tweak it again. That prose has too much emphasis on psychology. My blog is still a work in progress — but as I continue to write and refine my content strategy, I figure out a better way to articulate what the site is about.

    @Dr. Carson,

    Thanks! I’d like to think so. I don’t want to come across like too “know-it-all” but I am trying to dig deep and come up with fresh stuff. Though I’m not a licensed professional, I am a survivor of major mental illness and I do feel that I have something to share about that. I’m working on that post right now, though it’s been a tough one to write.

    That said, as I said above, I need to chip off some of the language about psychology — at earlier point I got excited about my psychology angle and sprinkled words about that all over the place, but as I look at my list of drafts, I think I leaned too far in that direction. I’m still in the process of figuring out what this site is about.


    Oh, really? I have never come across your blog before — I am looking forward to getting to know you! Thanks for your kind words. I particularly like being described as “flexible” — though I wonder what made you use that word.


    Thanks for the recommendation! I’m so flattered that not just one but two of you put in good words for me. And thanks for the good discussions we’ve had lately.

    @Writer Dad

    Thanks! I’m glad you think so. I think it’s still kinda “blah” — nothing to write home about. The site did become more tolerable when I finally got rid of double sidebar on the right — I’ve been meaning to do that, but I hastily made that change when Bamboo told me that I may be getting featured here. It’s still missing many features I hope to build — one of which is a good “popular post” plugin — so hopefully it’ll get better as I go. This is my 4th month with this site, so it’s about time the site looks presentable.

  27. Ari KoinumaNo Gravatar says:


    Thanks! Well, the secret is that I am a web developer by day — though I suck at design — so I really have no excuse for having an unpresentable site. But like I said to Writer Dad, the site was looking terribly clattered until recently. One day I’ll hire a proper designer.

    Incidentally, my music site, http://aries9.com, has a better “look” — though that site is much worse in terms of functionality. Knowing how is half the battle — having the time to actually make a great web site is another.


    Thanks for visiting! I look forward to checking out your blog and getting to know you!


    Hi Vered! It’s good to see you here, too.


    Thanks again for putting in good words. Let me know when it’s a good time to return the favor.


    Thanks! It’s good to see you here as well. I do enjoy your blog, so it’s really easy for me to add something to it! I’m a terrible passive audience. If I see a good band playing, all I think about is “hey, I wanna play!” — and the same thing happens when I read a blog I like. It gets me excited and I just have to say something. ๐Ÿ˜‰


    Thanks! It’s good to see you here. Yes, I do feel proud of my work on the process-oriented theme. The other post I consider to be my pillar post is the piece on self esteem. Check it out if you haven’t:


    I really need to write a better pillar post for self actualization, as my first attempt became a sprawling mess, but before that, I’m working on telling the tale of my brush with depression.

    @Urban Panther

    Thanks! I have seen you else where on the blogosphere — you and your counterpart has an interesting scheme of screen name. I’ll be by shortly to check out your sites!

  28. RitaNo Gravatar says:


    Afew weeks ago, you and I had a wonderful “disagreement” session on someobdy’s comments – I wish I could remember who it was!

    You were so articulate and flexible there, that I’ve been sneaking peaks over at your blog. No more sneaking!

    Maybe rose-colored glasses?


  29. Ari KoinumaNo Gravatar says:

    @Motivate Yourself

    Now responding to your 2nd comment — well, while the motivation to create ultimately comes from within, it’s hard to really develop and grow without that exchange of energy. Think of ourselves as knives, for example — we constantly sharpen each other, becoming sharper as we grow and more effective at cutting through.

    That said, the first few months of blogging is really an exercise in believing in what you have to say, as you don’t get that feedback, isn’t it? So we do have to learn to create on our own. But once you learn to tap into your inner fountain, then you become able to overflow and fill others, while getting filled.


    Nice to meet you! I don’t know you yet so I’m going to go off on some assumptions here, but I, too, have a bad habit of always getting ahead of myself. I have a pretty active imagination, so when I see 1 I can imagine 100,000. But next time I see it I see 1.1 and get discouraged about how far I still have to go. That’s why I wrote about the whole process-oriented paradigm. And I stopped watching my own blog’s traffic. (gasp!) Yes, it’s a business, but I really need to do it for the love of blogging and sharing what I learned — and I always feel ecstatic when I’m working on a post. It’s when I look at traffic numbers and being the beginner I am, start dismaying about how it doesn’t stack up against other blogs, that I feel my energy sucked out. The same thing happened with me and my music. With the process-oriented mindset now in place, however, I feel like I finally removed that road block, and ready to grow into a bigger version of me.

    In addition to the post Barbara mentioned about path over destination, here’s a series I wrote on the topic:


  30. Ari KoinumaNo Gravatar says:

    @Motivate Thyself

    OK, here’s my response to your 3rd comment.

    I do have another blog, though it’s really more of a diary/thought log and not a focused content delivery business. It’s at: http://aries9.com/blog/

    I’ve been blogging since 2002 or so, though OBV is my first and new attempt to pursue it professionally. (I started in May) I am still a musician first and foremost, and while I have a day job like everyone else, I’ve been trying to find a business vision that would enable to me to have the time and resource to pursue making music. When I discovered Steve Pavlina last year and what he does with his blog, I got very excited.

    OBV was a bit of experiment — I wrote this type of “my observation on life” posts on my music blog to begin with, but the idea was to just take that type of posts and create a dedicated site, and see if I can make it grow. And so far it’s working, and I’m enjoying it immensely (especially after I stopped watching my traffic! ๐Ÿ˜‰ ). I get so jazzed when I’m writing, that time flies. It’s not just music that engages me — writing is my creative outlet, too.

    So now I am developing a much more ambitious plan to combine my music with blogging. I can tell you more about my vision else where if you’re curious, but I do plan to start more music-related blog/sites in the near future. Next on the list is a music review site, and after that, a site on songwriting. But I’m glad I started with OBV, as self improvement is an established and thriving niche and it’s simply easier to market.

    As for your question of multiple blogs vs. one, I think it depends on who you are and what your goals are. If you are the type of person who feels fulfilled pursuing a singular vision, then I think one is fine. On the other end of the spectrum, you may be one of the “scanners” who have broad interest range, and have a hard time confining yourself into one.

    If your goal is to make income from your blog as soon as possible, I imagine it’s better to focus on one, as 2 blogs with 5k visitors a month is probably less income-generating than 1 blog with 10k visitors. It’s easier to monetize larger traffic. But that said, if you feel confined or restrained by having to focus on one niche, then I think you may be happier to allow yourself to expand. You just have to know what potential consequences of that decision is, and live with that.

    I’m curious to see what everyone else says about it. But ultimately, I think it’s up to you. You have the power to make any choice “right” for you. Good luck!

    Ari Koinuma’s last blog post..Blog Carnival: 10 Posts about Realizing Your Potential โ€” August 2008

  31. Ari KoinumaNo Gravatar says:


    Disagreements? Really? I don’t recall — rose-colored glasses don’t ring a bell.

    Well, in any case, I’m greatly tickled to be considered “flexible” as that’s something I’m consciously working on. Thank you very much! I look forward to getting to know you.


    Ari Koinuma’s last blog post..Blog Carnival: 10 Posts about Realizing Your Potential โ€” August 2008

  32. RitaNo Gravatar says:


    GOT IT! It was on Al’s post “Do You Know What You Don’t Know.” Now THAT was going to bother me for DAYS if I didn’t figure it out – lol

    Best to you,


  33. J.D. MeierNo Gravatar says:

    I think it’s another great example of “find your voice” and “help others find theirs.” I like it.

  34. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Eric,

    You asked about having more than one blog. I have two active ones and a third, which is my test blog (I test plugins, themes, and practice on stuff before I’ll add it here). My biggest problem is time. This blog fills up most of my free time. I’ve now gotten way behind on my second blog, but it has nearly 200 posts on it, so it still gets traffic and is seeing steady (slow) growth. For me to stay abreast with posting 5 days a week, answering comments and emails, visiting other sites, etc., by days end, I’m beat.

    Many have multiple blogs and it works great for them. Like Ari said, it really depends on what type of schedule you can live with.

    Hi Ari,

    Thank you so much for addressing all of the comments. Now that I’m done reading several posts, and grabbing links off of your blog, I’ll be over to comment. ๐Ÿ™‚

  35. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi J.D.

    You must have been commenting the same time I was. Ari has a good blog, doesn’t he?

  36. LanceNo Gravatar says:

    Great choice Barbara! And congratulations Ari! I stopped by quickly, and I’ll be back again to visit some more – looks great.

  37. […] things that happened to my still-toddler blog: Barbara at Blogging without a Blog chose OBV as the New Blog of the Week, thanks to recommendations from both Al @ 7p Productions and Bamboo Forest of Pun […]

  38. jan geronimoNo Gravatar says:

    Aha – now, I have another great blog to check out. I particularly love the lovely quotes you’ve culled from Ari’s blog. I will check him out. Thanks.