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The Blog of Philip Nowak is Now, PHILosophy

13 Jan

I’m back.

It’s been a long time.

I completely abandoned my personal blog last year.


It became a chore for me to write.

I felt like everything I wrote was forced.

For whatever reason, I thought that I had to write every single day.

Like Seth, Gini, Jonathan, Danny or so many other RIDICULOUSLY consistent, entertaining and well-respected bloggers out there.

The thing is… I don’t really want to write everyday on this site.

I always meant for it to be an outlet for my thoughts, ideas, experiences, articles, travels and funny short stories about crazy Russians (I love you honey).

My best writing comes to me naturally on the spur of the moment.

Something randomly triggers my thought-process and I feel compelled to share it.

When I started this site, I named it ‘The Blog of Philip Nowak.’

I couldn’t think of a better name.

But now I think I have it.

Let’s call it,


Recipe: Orange Glazed Cashew Chicken w/ Mixed Vegetables

3 Jan

I tried a new stir fry recipe for dinner last night and it was absolutely delicious.


2-3 Chicken Breasts (cut into bite sized pieces)

Mixed Vegetables (preferably steam in a bag for ease of preparation, reduced cleanup & less oil absorption)

Macadamia Nut Oil or Olive Oil (2-3 tablespoons)

Cashews (1/2 cup)

Iron Chef Orange Ginger Sauce (or other similar sauce) (1/2 cup)

Wok or Large Nonstick Frying Pan

Recipe Instructions

1) Cook the vegetables separately from the chicken, preferably in microwave while cooking the chicken on the wok. Time: 5-6 minutes

2) Warm up the wok with macadamia nut oil on medium-high heat.

3) Throw the chicken into the wok and cook until white on the inside.

4) Lower heat to medium and pour orange sauce over the chicken. Mix well.

5) Add vegetables into the wok and cook for another 2-3 minutes.

6) Top everything off with the cashews for 1-2 minutes.

Feel free to serve the chicken and vegetables over a plate of rice if you’d like.

Time to eat!

How to Captivate Your Blog Readers Through the Perfect Image

20 Dec

Photo: (Bethan)

One of the best ways to capture the attention of your blog readers is through a really interesting image.

Although the image should be related to your content, don’t be afraid to shock the system of your readers if you find an image that might be a stretch.

It’s always a thrill for me once I find that perfect image and I’d like to share with you how to find them as well.

The secret is Flickr.

1) Create a Flickr account.

2) Enter a keyword, related to your blog post, into the search bar at the top of the Flickr homepage and click ‘Search.’

You should now see thousands of photos, but don’t get too excited just yet.  We have to limit the search results to those images that we are allowed to use freely through a creative commons license.

3) Click on advanced search, which you can find next to the search bar.  Scroll all the way down to the bottom of the page and check the box next to ‘

4) While you will certainly find images related to your search term under the ‘relevant’ section, the real thought-provoking images are under the ‘interesting’ section.  These images are the highest ranking images within your search parameter, according to the Flickr ranking-algorithm.

5) Don’t forget to credit the source of your image with a caption and link.

TIP:  You must click on advanced search and make sure that the creative commons box is checked after each new search, even if you enter a new search term on the results page.  For whatever reason, Flickr always reverts back to its default settings.

Happy image-hunting!

Movember Has Been One Sweet Mustache Ride

30 Nov

Photo: (Mr. iMaax)

As November draws to a close, it also caps one wild mustache ride.  For those of you who have no idea what I’m referring to, I’ve spent the last 30 days growing a mustache to raise awareness and funds for prostate cancer.  I joined thousands of other men worldwide in a campaign enthusiastically known as Movember, a fun wordplay on November and Mo–Australian slang for mustache.  Movember takes a decidedly less serious, more fun and very competitive approach towards making men’s health a top priority in every man’s life.

If you’d like to learn more about my Movember experience, check out my original blog post ‘Why Philip Nowak is Growing a Porn Star Mustache.’  If you feel like you missed out on the fun and are feeling especially charitable, you can still help by making a generous donation to my Movember fundraising campaign.  Otherwise, please feel free to enjoy the following gratuitous mustache pics from the last 30 glorious days of getting suspicious looks all over Chicago, especially while riding public transportation, from my parents, my future in-laws and at stores such as Build-a-Bear.

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Happy Movember! I know you have some funny comments to share below!

Bucket List: Things To Do Before I Die

24 Nov

Photo: (Stuck in Customs)

This is my bucket list. This list will never be complete as it is a living and breathing document that will change constantly as I add, delete, edit or cross-things off of my list.

Learn to Juggle
Benchpress 225 lbs, 5 sets, 15 reps
6-pack abs
8-pack abs
Get down to 20% body fat
Get down to 15% body fat
Get down to 10-12% body fat

Grow a mustache

Find girl of my dreams
Get engaged
Get married
Have kid #1
Have kid #2
Have kid #3
Have kid #4
Have kid #5
Get a puppy
Get a cat

Fluent in Polish
Fluent in Russian
Fluent in Chinese Mandarin


First member of my family to graduate from college
Switch careers
Volunteer on a political campaign
ite a book
Speak at a conference
MBA from Harvard Business School (HBS)
Speak at a Tedx Conference
Speak at the main Ted Conference in Long Beach, California
Attend Davos

Launch an online business (Firmology and Firmology Reviews)


Single family home
Range Rover
Mercedes Benz S63 AMG
Amazon Kindle
Apple iPad

Chicago Bulls season tickets (the girlfriend LOVES basketball)

Chicago Bears season tickets (my favorite team of all time, but the girlfriend hates football)

What’s on your bucket list?  Leave your list in the comments below!

Why I’m Growing a 1970s Porn Star Mustache

8 Nov

Alright, so maybe I lied a bit.  I’m not really trying to grow a 1970s porn star mustache.  After one week, I probably resemble more-closely an ex-convict straight out of prison or perhaps even the stereotypical image of a trucker.  The point is that I’m growing a ‘stache for the entire month of November, no matter how ethnic, pervy or dangerous I end up looking by the end of the month.  It’s definitely going to be an interesting Thanksgiving at the Nowak family residence, but hopefully I can convince my brother to grow his ‘mo as well.

Why am I growing a mustache for the first time in my entire life?  Simple, I’m trying to help change the face of men’s health by participating in Movember.  Movember is a rapidly growing annual campaign to raise awareness for prostate and testicular cancer as well as raise funds for Livestrong and the Prostate Cancer Foundation.  Learn more about Movember in the video below:

There really isn’t one main reason why I decided to participate in this campaign.  I haven’t suffered any family, friend or personal tragedy related to men’s health (knock on wood, keep my fingers crossed) as others may have.  I do know that it is easier to diagnose and treat many health problems when they are discovered earlier rather than later.  That seems pretty straight-forward, doesn’t it?  The problem is that most men don’t take their health seriously, especially as they get older.  I’m 100% guilty of this; I went to the doctor for my annual check-up for the first time in four years a few weeks ago.  It had been so long that I had to seek approval from my doctor to be accepted as a patient again in his closed practice.

I checked out just fine, but still have to do my annual blood work this upcoming week to check for health problems such as diabetes and to make sure that my cholesterol level is in order.  Surprisingly, I think part of the reason why men don’t take their healthy seriously enough stems directly from the lax attitude of their healthcare providers.  When I apologized to my doctor for not coming in for an annual physical for the last four years, he said it was completely fine and that I didn’t have to come in that often as a young person.  I thought that was pretty strange, but he did confirm to me that men are more likely than women to ignore initial warning signs that may lead to serious healthy problems later down the road.

I’d like to change that.  At the very least, I’d like to change the stigma of the annual checkup.  The first step is to not be a hypocrite and to practice what I preach; I have to finish the second half of my annual physical by getting my blood work done this week.  I will post a note about that experience next week in my weekly update.  The second step is to get involved in a fun campaign such as Movember to create an incentive for myself and others to raise awareness and funds for men’s health.  The whole mustache-growing aspect of the campaign may seem stupid, but it’s fun and competitive at the same time.  Not only did I decide to participate in Movember as an individual, but I joined a team of coworkers for an extra bit of accountability.  The third step involves you; please get involved any way that you can whether you decide to reinvest time and effort into your own health, join a movement such as Movember or even help raise funds by donating to someone else’s campaign.

You can donate and track my progress on my Movember profile here:  You can also take a look at my daily photo update on DailyBooth:

Welcome to The Blog of Philip Nowak

12 Oct

Hi. I’m Phil.

Welcome to ‘The Blog of Philip Nowak.’

I tried to come up with a cool name, but failed miserably. It’s probably better this way and actually quite fitting.  I created this blog because there was no other place for me to aggregate my random thoughts.

It’s really meant to be a personal outlet for me, a place to jot down my thoughts, vent, share links/articles, post photos/videos as well as provide an inside look at my thought process.

That’s pretty much it.  We’ll see where this blog takes me.

Want to know what I do professionally?

Connect with me on LinkedIn and Twitter:

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