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BOOK RELEASE/2nd Quarter 2014

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  • Have you ever really looked at a spider web?

    We’ve all seen them, strung up between bushes in the yard, or maybe in the corner of the basement, dangling from the rafters. Maybe you’ve gotten an unintentional close-up look at one as you walked through one on a wooded trail, the silk wrapping around your head while you scramble to free yourself from the sticky entanglement.

    But have you ever taken time to truly see a spider web? The intricate, systematic construction. The purposeful design, with threads radiating out from the center and crisscrossing the spiral, again and again, like tiny support beams holding the web securely in place. It is beauty and purpose perfectly intertwined. It’s a wonder of nature.

    The spider web is not only beautiful, it’s practical. It’s the ideal trap, a model of efficiency, fashioned over millions of years of evolutionary improvement. What’s more amazing is that it only takes the spider a few hours to create this one-of-a-kind masterpiece.
    For years scientists have been studying spiders and their webs, trying, unsuccessfully, to duplicate the incredibly strong silk that spiders use to make the frame lines that anchor their web and suspend it in mid-air. This natural protein is one of the strongest and most flexible materials known to man. In fact, some silk is as strong as Kevlar—the material used to make bulletproof vests.

    Now you’re probably thinking, this is all very interesting, but what in the world does a spider web have to do with me? More than you’d think. Just ask George C. Fraser.

    In 2005, Fraser, the chairman, CEO, and founder of FraserNet Inc., spoke at the State of the Black Union conference in Lithonia, Ga., which focused on the economic disparity that exists in the African American  community. During the conference, Mr. Fraser took out a chart showing a series of dots that symbolized this disparity. By themselves, said Fraser, African Americans have done some wonderful things; however, as a group the African American community remains disconnected and powerless. Then he flipped the chart to show those same individual dots connected by lines. “This is where all the power is,” said Fraser.
    The image was that of the perfect network: a spider web.
    The spider web is the ideal representation of the strength and power found through interconnectedness. And when you harness its strength and power and apply it to your life, amazing things can happen. You can catch your dreams.

    There’s an old Ethiopian proverb that says, “When spider webs unite, they can tie down a lion.”
    Think about that for a moment. Sometimes in life, that’s what your goals and dreams can seem like—a fearsome, untamable lion. And there you are, a lonesome spider; a minuscule speck of dust in comparison to the formidable King of the Jungle. No matter how hard you try to catch the lion by yourself, you keep failing. It’s not for lack of effort; it’s just that you are out-sized and outmatched.

    But when you connect with others through authentic relationships, i.e., ones that are transparent, honest, and nonjudgmental; when you are given access to their skills, wisdom, and resources, you can grow and strengthen your web until it becomes a giant, far-reaching, impenetrable web that will help you catch whatever you want out of life.

    When spider webs unite, they can tie down a lion.
    A web, simply put, is a network. It is a series of points connected by silk that forms a powerful, effective tool for accomplishing a goal—for catching something. Why do you think the Internet is called the World Wide Web? It’s an electronic “web” for connecting people and sharing information.

    If you consider your own network as a web, your connections are the individual dots or points where the lines of silk come together. These points may represent your family members, friends, coworkers, church members, etc., and they all represent other “spiders” in the larger web of your life.

    Maybe you’ve never thought of spider webs in this way before. That’s OK. One of our goals in this book is to open your eyes and your mind to a new way of looking at things; a way that will help you get where you want to be in life by showing you how to catch your aspirations instead of trying to chase them down. We want to help you build the perfect web; one that will take you to the next level and help you find and achieve your true purpose in life.

    When George Fraser used his spider-web analogy, he was speaking to the African American community. But there is a deeper message there; one for all races and all genders. As individuals, we may find happiness and success, and we may get what we want out of this life. But when we are united; when we collaborate and cooperate with others and tap into their skills and resources, our chances of finding success and catching our dreams grows exponentially.

    You have many webs in your life. Your family is a web. Your coworkers and professional connections—another web. Your friendships form another kind of web, and so do the members of your church family. Each of these webs is unique and important in its own way, and each serves a different purpose.
    But can any of these webs alone get you to where you want to be in your life? Your family web may provide unconditional support, but would you trust your family members to make your career decisions for you? And what about your friends? Some you can count on for anything; others, not so
    much. Your church family may share your same faith and values, but do they really know you and what makes you tick? And as for your professional connections, would you trust them to give you marital advice? Probably not.

    But what if you had one rock-solid web that was anchored by your most authentic relationships; those individuals who know you inside and out—your strengths and weaknesses, your passions and goals? What if you had one focused web with a solid, dependable core? With this kind of web, you could stop wasting valuable energy chasing the wrong “prey” and instead begin to catch your dreams, goals, and aspirations.
    Sound too good to be true? Trust us, this is real. It has worked for each of us, and it can work for you, too. We call it The Spider Web Philosophy™