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I need to get at least 10 reviews on my People Smarts book, before I can even run ads for it.

Here’s the email I just got from the ads guy:

Our agency can definitely run BookBub and/or Amazon Ads for your book.
Only problem is, we’ve seen that these ads work best when a book has at least around 10 reviews, and is ranking ok – around 30k I’d say.
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I currently have 4 reviews on the book (thanks to every single one of you, may God bless you…)

And my ranking is currently around the 700,000 mark…. i.e. totally cack.
Now, I’m not asking you to solve my author problems, I need to go away and figure things out a bit more myself. 
But, I am asking if there is anyone out there who is happy to write a review, either because they were doing the course, or have already been sent the PDF, or even are happy to buy the book and read it (ooo, now I’m getting really controversial.)
No problem if you can’t, really, I totally understand.

But if you can, and you could and you will, that would be fantastic.

 

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Here’s a little of what some of the existing reviewers said about People Smarts – it’s honestly a really helpful system, that will transform how you relate to dealing with your stress – even of the COVID-19-stuck-in-the-house-for-15-months-going-crazy-with-kids-at-home-24/7 variety:

Review #1:

[I]f you’re looking for a system that has stood the test of time, a system used by some of the greatest Torah Sages and hinted at in Psalm 148 (in which God is praised using the 4 elements) and mentioned in the ancient Midrash Bamidbar Rabbah 14:12 (the elements are referred to in Hebrew as the four teva’im), a system that explains the human psyche in a way others don’t, then [People Smarts] provides a great introduction to an extremely complex & insightful system.
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Review #2:

I took the People Smarts course given by the author herself online, several months ago, before she came out with the book. The course was very helpful and gave broader perspective of stress and stress response and management than I had before….Do not read the book – study it!

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Review #3:

[People Smarts] employs a simple but comprehensive personality quiz to identify your typical stress response behaviors. It describes what these behaviors look like when they are balanced and healthy, and more importantly, when they are unbalanced and unhealthy. And most importantly, it offers practical advice on how to balance your stress responses and work towards having them be more useful and less disruptive to your physical and mental health.
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Review #4:

Rivka Levy has a journalist’s flair, making complex subjects easy for even a novice like me. Moreover, the advice is clear, easy and practical. After mastering the material, was suddenly able to sail through the snags in family relationships and whatever else was blocking this reader from reaching life-long goals. Highly recommended!
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You can review the book here:
And I appreciate any little help you can give me. Let’s be clear, no-one is going to be retiring on the amount I make from writing my books (both my teenagers are out-earning me by a factor of about 1000%….), but it would be great if more people could use the People Smarts information to really get a handle on their stress and their relationships.
Thankenchou.
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https://rivkalevy.com/do-you-need-some-help-with-stress-relief/

A billion, million years ago (aka, last week), I sent the draft of my new People Smarts book to get laid out.

Two days ago, he sent it back to me, and I uploaded it to Amazon. Then I held my breath, to see if the only books they are banning are by Rabbi Eliezer Berland, or whether I’m also now on the hit list.

Whaddya know?

They approved it within 24 hours, and it’s now up for sale on Amazon, as the paperback, with the Kindle version hopefully being available later this week.

That’s important, because Amazon has now stopped deliveries to Israel while all the Coronavirus hysteria continues, which basically means I can’t even get a hard copy of my own book. Such are the times we live in. But, once the Kindle version is ready (it’s being worked on by my designer, who is currently locked down in the Philippines….) it’ll be available for instant download.

Alternatively, you can also get the PDF to download, and print it off yourself at home, if you send $12.99 to my paypal here: paypal.me/RivkaLevy , and then drop me an email to let me know you want the book.

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Two billion, million years ago, I was teaching the prototype ‘Crush Your Stress’ Masterclass for women, that is meant to go along with this book.

I’m still trying to get that course completed and uploaded. As you can imagine, all these plans kind of got totally disrupted the last few weeks. But, with God’s help, I’m still planning to get that completed, and then to figure out some live group coaching slots for any women out there who are hanging on to their sanity by their fingernails, and would appreciate some time hanging out online with other women to ‘destress’.

I will keep you posted.

And in the meantime, if you live in the US or UK, you can still get this book hardcopy, HERE.

It’s probably more timely than ever now. But I appreciate that few people have the headspace to read it at the moment.

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The ravberland.com site is also doing a special offer on the Prayers for Health book at the moment, which includes a prayer to be saved from the Coronavirus, where someone donated 50 copies free, for the first 50 people who download the book.

Go HERE for more information.

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And lastly, I highly recommend you read THIS, if you want to start doing something practical to get on top of the emotional, spiritual and financial destruction being wrought by the Coronavirus.

The forces of evil are using this whole scene as an excuse to shut down mikvas, shuls, yeshivas and Talmud Torahs all over the world, including in Israel. Every day, my husband hears more rumors of the police in Israel showing up at more Torah institutions and trying to arrest and fine even more people.

This is an unprecedented attack on the Torah, by people who are trying to play God and control the whole world with fear tactics and manipulation.

Mamash, I have to pinch myself at the moment, because I keep feeling like I’ve stumbled into some Kafkaesque nightmare where Jews in Israel are being threatened and punished for trying to go to shul… and for trying to learn Torah…and for trying to pray.

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Three billion, million years ago, when all the police persecution started up again against Rabbi Berland and Shuvu Banim, so many people thought there was some justification to it all, however warped. At that time, we were told starkly in a number of different ways that Shuvu Banim was only the start, and that this was part of a much wider campaign against the Torah world:

When is the religious community in Israel going to wake up, and to realize that what’s going on against Rabbi Berland and Shuvu Banim is just the prototype for a much wider campaign of suppression and persecution aimed at the Torah world?

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Barely six weeks have passed since the Rav was arrested for the ‘crime’ of doing pidyon nefesh and accepting donations, and now look what’s going on.

A couple of days ago I actually had a big attack of yeoush, or despair, at the situation, because if more of us would throw our weight behind the Rav, and add our prayers to his, and make the teshuva required for slagging off the Gadol HaDor, and lacking emuna and emunat tzaddikim, all this would turn around overnight, and Coronavirus would completely disappear off the scene.

But even at this stage, and even after we’ve seen the Rav make so many correct predictions of what was to come, and seen so many disastrous situation turn around and sweeten after following his instructions, and even after so many kabbalists and rabbis have spoken out publically about what is really happening here….

Most of Am Yisrael remain totally oblivious.

Sigh.

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We can get this to change, we really can.

I sit here alternating between panic and emuna, because I KNOW that once more of us get the message, and make teshuva about all our arrogance, and all our control-freakery, and all our lashon hara, and all the poisonous ‘news’ we believed over our own true rabbis, the redemption process will start to proceed in much smoother, nicer way.

But until that happens, things are going to be really, really hard.

I’m already seeing what all this ‘social distancing’ and quarantine is doing to a lot of my kids’ teenage friends, and there is going to be a mental health epidemic that could easily see people start to kill themselves, if we don’t get this decree sweetened ASAP.

Tachlis, we can’t keep our families at home for another 4 months – I don’t think most people will manage more than another week, before they literally start to crack-up, emotionally and mentally.

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SO, HERE’S A PLEA FROM THE HEART:

Am Yisrael, please, please, stop being so stubborn and arrogant, and stop believing all the heretical news headlines and false accounts of what’s going on here, and what the response should be to it. There is only one way to get this Coronavirus destruction to stop, and that is teshuva, prayer, and binding ourselves to our true tzaddikim, especially Rabbi Eliezer Berland.

If this doesn’t turn around by Pesach, as Rabbi Berland is trying to do, it’s going to be really, really bad.

That’s the reality.

And each one of us has a part to play, and a responsibility to fulfill, to put more effort into our prayers, our teshuva, and our hafetza.

PS: Baruch Hashem, I got day 21 at the Kotel done this morning. Hashem only knows if I’m going to be able to reach the 40 days, but each day is its own miracle.

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I want my site to be for stressed-out women, not conpiracy-minded men.

Two weeks ago, I kind of had an ‘epiphany’ moment, about my life and my writing.

For years, I’ve been writing blog posts and articles and even books that have often been very serious, and very ‘justice warrior’-oriented, and where I’ve really tried to do my bit to expose evil and go after the bad guys.

Where did that approach get me?

Honestly…. Not so far. I have a couple of thousand readers of my blogs, the majority of whom Google Analytics tells me are men….

Those men don’t buy my books. They aren’t really the ‘tribe’ I want to interact with, or write for, however nice they actually all might be. So once I took the time to actually read my Google Analytics report (for the first time in 8 years!) I realized that something fundamental has to change here, in the way I’m trying to write for and interact with my audience.

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Part of me really loves all the buzz of reporting news, and ‘badness’, and unmasking the truth.

That’s my investigative journalist side – the side that lost me my job all those years back, on one of London’s Jewish papers, and has gotten me sued a couple of times, and has kept me awake on countless nights, fighting the dark forces in my head.

But really, where did that part get me, or get anyone else?

I’m pondering that a lot at the moment.

Nearly all the baddies I’ve exposed are still going strong… the bad people are still being protected and defended by the other bad people… No-one really did any major teshuva as a result of what I’ve written about this stuff, or changed their life in any fundamental way.

And I don’t know what I’ve really got out of blogging about these things, all these years.

Honestly.

So much effort, for so little anything much.

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Two weeks ago, I was ready to start ripping a whole bunch more lies and masquerades to shred in print, and to set out ‘the bad’ in that obvious, hard-to-argue-with way that clears up so many questions, and brings sterling clarity to an issue.

But God kept stopping me from doing that, in my hitbodedut.

And for two weeks, I didn’t know why.

But in the meantime, I had this course on the backburner about reducing stress I’m trying to do for women, so I’ve been turning my attention to that, while I’m waiting for the clarity to descend about where I go to next in my writing.

Yesterday, I think I started to get my answer. Yesterday, I taught two classes on how to start de-stressing over Zoom, and I learnt something profound:

I totally loved interacting with those women.

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I totally loved teaching about something that really help people tachlis, in their real life, to stop feeling so stressed and anxious and to start to feel like they really can cope, with all the cack we all have to deal with, and that there is fundamentally nothing wrong with them.

All stress is really just a call to action, a message that something needs to change – and that something, nine times out of ten, is internal.

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So, I came back on to rivkalevy.com yesterday, after doing the usual rounds of the 4 blogs and sites I read every day, once, just to stay up on things.

And that’s when it hit me:

I don’t want to be writing about politics or current affairs anymore.

I don’t want to be trading barbs with nutso bloggers who get all their life force from taking provocative stances online and making dumb statements guaranteed to rile people up.

I want to be a force for good in the world.

So, I am hoping to be taking my writing on this blog in a different direction. More along the lines of the Secret Diary of a Jewish Housewife – but way more upbeat and actually helpful!

I have been through so much stress, so many crazy experiences the last few years, that God has really shown me how to deal with, using the teachings and advice of Rebbe Nachman of Breslov, and his students.

I want to help other people – and specifically, other women – to access that light more easily, and to enjoy it in their own lives.

And I can’t do that, if I’m constantly picking fights with nutso bloggers, or opining on pointless politics, or trying to deal with negative commentators who have massive chips on their shoulders. It can honestly ruin my week.

I don’t want to deal with those people any more, I don’t want to cater for them. I don’t want my site to attract that sort of person, because they have been tying up my energy and my headspace for years and years, and preventing me from doing what God really created me to do in the world.

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So, I’m going in a different direction here on rivkalevy.com, where the focus is going to be far more on stressed-out WOMEN and far less on conspiracy-theory-enjoying men.

And far more on putting together real, practical EMUNA EXPERIENCES to help my readers navigate their lives as happily as they can, holding God’s hand, and far less on self-righteous, impractical rants about what everyone else needs to do, to fix the world.

I’m nothing special, not at all. But I do have a bunch of very bad middot that God has helped me to get a grip on (mostly….). If Rebbe Nachman’s advice worked for me, it can work for anyone – and that’s what I’m going to start focusing on doing, sharing that stuff out, as best I can.

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I was so stoked yesterday, to teach those classes.

I was so thrilled, when another reader called to tell me how much the ‘stress exercise’ had helped her sort something out, in her actual, real life.

So guys, you can carry on reading this blog if you want, but I’d much prefer you tell your wives about what’s going on here now, and let them take over. And nutsos, you can also carry on reading this blog if you want, but I’d honestly much prefer that you don’t, because we are about to blast off into the realm of EMUNA EXPERIENCES, where humility, caring and compassion for others are going to be the name of the game.

There are plenty other blogs out there providing a steady diet of propaganda, fake prophecy, self-righteous opinion and scare stories.

I’m retiring from that field.

I have much bigger and better things to do with my time, a lot of ladies out there who I know I can really help, bezrat Hashem.

And that’s the focus going forward, to build a tribe of LADIES who are trying to bring geula really the only way we can, i.e. by working on ourselves, and our emuna and our stress, and our relationships with our fellow Jews.

This blog, my writing, me  – we’re ready to evolve out of the pupa, and to start doing something useful in the world.

I have to say, I’m pretty excited.

TBC

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Photo by Ian Parker on Unsplash

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It’s a funny time, isn’t it?

Here’s what’s going on my life, right now: on the one hand, I am gathering more and more information together on a whole range of subjects that shows that most of the modern world we live in is based on a pack of lies. And on the other, I’m trying to sort out the most ‘real world’ business venture I’ve embarked upon for close to two decades.

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If I touched on everything I’ve found out is a lie over the last few years, it would be a very long list. But when you really look at it, all our problems really just boil down to this:

We are scared to be real, and to really face up to what’s going on in our lives and our middot, and to have a real relationship with ourselves, other people and Hashem.

100%, this is the only reason that we’re still in golus, and still spinning our wheels, living superficial lives that are generally making us pretty miserable, and scared to open up and connect in any real way to anyone – including ourselves.

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Over the last 15 years, I’ve had a mighty struggle to try to develop some of that REAL in my own life. When I got to Israel back in 2005, I was still so caught up in all the materialism and competition that the secular world is built on.

God had to keep giving me some sharp raps across the knuckles to really bring my attention to the fact that my ‘wonderful life’ was actually making me totally miserable. I was doing everything the magazines told me to do – I had a career, was making good money, owned a house, had a nice husband, two  nice kids – what’s the problem here?!?!?

I didn’t know the answer to that question in London, where I was feeling more and more anxious, depressed, stressed, miserable and overwhelmed before we made aliya.

I’ve been through so much the last 15 years, as part of the process of getting re-educated about what life is actually really meant to be about, especially if you’re a Jew. I don’t own a house anymore, I don’t have a career, I don’t spend Shabbos lavishing entertaining, or trying to stuff every spare minute with ‘action’, so I don’t have to spend any time in my own head, just being.

And I am so, so happier because of it.

And my relationships with the people who really count in life – i.e. my husband, my kids, myself and Hashem – are doing so much better than they were back in 2005.

And what made the biggest difference?

Learning to talk to Hashem, and to be real, and to stop running away from the truth, especially about myself and my own limitations.

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You know why it feels so ‘weird’ right now? Because the light of Moshiach – the light of truth – is slowly rising in the world, and it’s that ‘sun with healing on its wings’ that is going to burn all the wicked up, but heal all the righteous.

On the blog here, and over on spiritualselfhelp.org, I’ve been pretty honest about the bad middot I’ve got, and the issues I’ve had in my relationships, and what I’ve had to do and acknowledge and work on, to stop being a bona fide psycho to my husband and children.

I’m not telling myself any fibs that it’s ‘ok’ to try and control other people via rage fits and insults; or that it’s ‘ok’ to act like a hypocrite, dishing out advice from that place up on high that I myself can’t hold by in a million years. As soon as I realized that it’s not ‘ok’ to go around trying to control people, or trying to force my children to be ‘perfect’ so that I’ll look good in front of my neighbors, I got to work trying to live that truth.

I’m still falling down on my middot a million times a day, let’s be clear.

But that’s OK. I know I’m on a low level spiritually, and I also know that Hashem just wants the effort, but the outcome is up to him.

But I look around, and I still so many people who seem to be stuck in the lies – and as the light of Moshiach continues to rise in the world, those lies are starting to weigh heavier and heavier. It’s getting harder and harder to believe that politics is the ‘answer’ to anything. It’s getting less and less credible to believe in ‘man-made global warming’. It’s getting way harder for us all to keep pretending that all the problems are just because of ‘everyone else’, and their bad middot.

All of us are down here to work on one person:

OURSELVES.

And the main work to be done is to be real, and authentic, and to start to serve Hashem joyfully from that low place of knowing we are totally imperfect – but that there is actually nothing fundamentally ‘wrong’ with us!!

God created us this way, with bad middot, and gave us the job of working on those bad middot over 120 years, to try to rectify them.

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This is a bit of a rambling post, I know. It’s because I’m trying to blast through the ‘head fog’ that seems to keep descending up on everything worthwhile and meaningful and true, and that keeps sucking us all back into that superficial, nasty space where nothing really matters, and no-one really cares about anything or anyone.

Here’s what I’m really trying to say.

Over the last few years, so much of the public discourse, so much of society, has been shaped by self-absorbed ‘go getters’, who constantly talk about themselves and what they think, and who cow everyone else into falling in line behind them. I have some aspect of that myself, and it’s something I’m continually monitoring and working on, to do my best to ‘use it’ for Hashem, instead of just for myself.

In common parlance, these types of people are often referred to as ‘narcissists’, but I prefer to call them ‘motivators’.

They have a ton of energy, they are very focused, and they often get a lot done. But when they aren’t balancing all their ‘fire’ with humility, and a genuine desire to serve Hashem, they usually just end causing a lot of arguments and destruction, instead.

Then, there are all the quiet, gentle, ‘nice’ people out there – so many of them!! – who generally feel too shy to share their views, and are often too gentle to want to wade into the cut-throat business of taking a stand or having a real opinion, or being authentic.

Over the years, I’ve met some of you in person and over email, when you had the courage to reach out and say hello.

Here’s the thing:

You guys are the people who are really going to bring the geula, and really going to fix the world.

It’s you, that silent majority, the salt-of-the-earth types that don’t really believe in your own goodness, your own importance, and who lack confidence in your own ability to change things for the better, who are really going to bring the geula.

Not the big mouths, or the firebrands, or the holier-than-thou preachers and gurus.

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Gosh, I’m finding this so hard to put into words, which is very unusual for me.

So let me just cut to the chase.

After 15 years of going through SO much stuff, emotionally, spiritually, career-wise, health-wise, relationship-wise, you name it, baruch Hashem, I now have a lot of insight into how people really work.

And I want to start teaching it to others out there, but particularly, the salt-of-the-earth women, who are finding it hard to say ‘no’ to others, and to make their voices heard, and to set healthy boundaries, and to put their quiet goodness out there in a way that will really shape the world in a profound way.

In the next month or so, BH, I will be launching a pilot program to teach this information to a small group of 10 women. I’m still figuring out the packaging, but I already know what this program is going to do:

It’s going to help those ‘good’, but quiet women to finally find their voice, and the confidence they need to stand up for themselves and for ‘right’ without being steamrollered by all the mouthy, self-obsessed ‘motivators’ out there.

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Why is that important?

Because these women are the ones who are going to bring the geula.

The world needs them, and it desperately needs for them to to start expressing their inner wisdom, and their inner goodness, and their inner clarity to start countering all the lies, and to help get us ready for Moshiach.

What is going to bring Moshiach is being real, and doing our best to work on ourselves, and to create an authentic environment in our homes and communities where the voice of the soul – the voice of peace, love, humility, emuna and truth – can start to shine out and be heard.

Phew.

If this speaks to you – at all – please drop me an email, and let’s discuss how to really do this.

I’m not pretending I have all the answers, or that I’m totally fixed, anything but. But Hashem has given me a lot of information that I know could help a lot of people, and especially the gentle people out there, to start putting down the boundaries they need to in a loving way, and to stop enabling ‘bad’.

And once more of us start to put that light out in our own dalet amot, the ‘bad’ that is preventing Moshiach from coming will disappear by itself.

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Just as the women brought the redemption in Egypt, so they will bring it again in our days.

One lasting marriage at a time, one loved kid at a time, one honest and caring conversation at a time.

That’s really the only thing that matters, and not who becomes president, or who is going to end up being Moshiach, or all the other pointless things we waste so much time and energy debating.

I know ‘real’ is scary, but facing up to our ‘real’ – with tremendous compassion and understanding – is how we actually get out of galut, personally and nationally.

So, if you’d like to join me, either take the minute required to fill in the survey HERE, or drop me an email HERE.

It’s time for the ladies to start roaring.

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UPDATE:

Baruch Hashem, I’m starting to pin this down more already.

I basically want to do ‘Azamra’ as a practical course, which will give concrete, tangible ways for:

1) Understanding the 4 main ways our yetzer hara takes us out, based on Likutey Moharan, as reflected in cutting edge science
2) Taking down bad middot like: anger, yeoush, depression, people pleasing, fear and anxiety – in ways that actually totally work in real time.
3) And perhaps most importantly of all, this is the main focus of the program:
Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to feel good about yourself, and feel good within your relationships, in six weeks or less, so you can wake up happy, and enjoy being yourself around other people.
Because I think that is really the key to giving Hashem what He really wants from us, and bringing the geula happily, the sweet way, in both our private and public spheres.
How does this sound? I’m VERY open to feedback and ideas.

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Do you want join me, and see where this goes?

Drop me an email!

This could start to get pretty interesting, with God’s help!

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