10 Ideas For The Interested This Week

“Connectivity enables transparency.” — Bill Gates

The world hasn’t gone crazy — it’s gone transparent.

A society that operated for decades with little transparency has suddenly been transformed into a world where secrets are virtually impossible to keep.

The game changed and lots of people are deservedly finding out the hard way.

It’s making for a chaotic moment, but ultimately it’s a step forward.

We’ll come out on the other side of the chaos and be better for it.

Now, on to this week’s ideas…

1. A 10-POST, FIVE-WEEK CONTENT PLAN TO GET YOUR WORK NOTICED

“The most important thing to do in your introductory post is explain how the content you create will provide value to your audience.”

This is an actionable post.

I put together a simple content plan you can follow to create 10 blog posts, videos, podcast episodes, or social media updates that will attract your target audience and get your work noticed.

The suggestions include to write a post that explains why you do what you do, interview somebody relevant to your audience, and admit something you’ve never admitted before.

2. STOP WANTING TO BE, START WANTING TO DO.

“If all you want to do is be someone who started a business or finished a creative project, that’s going to be bad for you. You can’t go into business thinking you want to be an entrepreneur. You have to go into it thinking that you want to build something.”

This is a short post, but it expresses an important concept.

Jon Westenberg urges you to stop wanting to be and start wanting to do when it comes to creative or entrepreneurial projects.

He points out too often people embark on projects because they like the idea of what it means to be a creator or entrepreneur as opposed to being excited by the actual work involved in those pursuits.

3. THE 30 BEST PODCAST EPISODES OF ALL TIME

“Our version of the 30 best, or at least different, episodes that might take you on a journey across time, space, consciousness, and your own life.”

It’s unlikely these are actually the greatest podcast episodes of all time since that’s a subjective topic, but this is still a great place to start.

The Mission list of the 30 best podcast episodes of all time includes a wide range of topics and sources including episodes about food, art, storytelling, technology, and music.

4. YOU SHOULD ENCOURAGE YOUR KIDS TO ARGUE

“The skill to get hot without getting mad — to have a good argument that doesn’t become personal — is critical in life. But it’s one that few parents teach to their children. We want to give kids a stable home, so we stop siblings from quarreling and we have our own arguments behind closed doors. Yet if kids never get exposed to disagreement, we’ll end up limiting their creativity.”

Creativity rarely comes from people who always get along with each other — it’s often birthed from tension between opposing ideas.

That’s why Adam Grant believes you should encourage your kids to fight as opposed to ending their arguments.

He also suggests parents not try to hide their own disagreements from their kids. As he explains, “When parents disagree with each other, kids learn to think for themselves. They discover that no authority has a monopoly on truth.”

5. HOW TO DIFFERENTIATE YOURSELF AS A WRITER

“Even if your primary source of income is not writing, becoming a good writer can lead you to success in any area.”

Being a good writer is as much about differentiating yourself as it is knowing where to put the proper punctuation.

This post can help you figure out how to do that.

Todd Brison shares a 4,000 word guide to differentiating yourself as a writer that includes tips about how to write with your true voice, how to write a viral post, and how to write great headlines.

For more on the subject, check out these previous ideas I’ve shared about writing.

6. THE NEW MOZART IS A 12-YEAR-OLD GIRL

“I love Mozart and I would have loved him to be my teacher. But I think I would prefer to be the first Alma than to be the second Mozart.”

She played piano and violin at three-years-old and wrote her first opera by the time she was ten.

This 60 Minutes profile of musical prodigy Alma Deutscher offers a look at an incredibly gifted girl whose talents nobody can explain.

7. CONTENT ISN’T A PRODUCT, IT’S A RELATIONSHIP

“All storytelling begins with deciding what kind of relationship you want to have with your audience.”

There are a lot of reasons people struggle to create compelling content, but one of the biggest may be they misunderstand what content is meant to do in the first place.

Steve Bryant urges brands to “make relationships, not things” and points out relationships are based on trust, which can’t be built without honesty.

8. HOW TO SAY NO WITH GRACE

“You don’t have to change what you want just because someone else wants something different. All you have to do is clarify — with grace and firmness — that your goals are different. And they’ll get it.”

Saying no doesn’t have to be as hard as it seems and it’s likely many of the people you say no to will actually thank you for it if you approach it in the right way.

Jocelyn K. Glei shares a story about how she said no to a recent request and what happened as a result. She also offers specific examples of how to say no and suggests the upside of everybody being so busy is that nobody wants to waste their valuable time.

9. HOW TO POSITION THE OBJECTS AROUND TO HELP YOU BUILD A HABIT

“The desk, the computer on top of it, the chair you sit in, and the space they comprise are all repositories for memory. But these things don’t just store our memories; they store our behaviors too. The sum of these stored behaviors is an object’s habit field, and merely being around it compels our bodies and minds to act in certain ways.”

Here’s a take on memory, productivity, behavior and habits I’ve never heard before.

Jack Cheng explains the concept of “habit fields” — the idea that we embed memories into objects and contexts without realizing it.

But where it gets interesting is the ways in which you can control and reprogram these fields to ensure your desk helps you be more productive or your chair makes you more relaxed.

10. 50+ BLOGS THAT WILL MAKE YOU SMARTER

“If you only read the stuff that everyone else is reading, you can only think what everyone else is thinking.”

This one doesn’t need much of a description.

Lauren Holliday compiled a great list of 50+ blogs to make you smarter across a variety of categories including career blogs, social media blogs, personal development blogs and more.

Unfortunately, For The Interested didn’t make the list.

(But you can always tell Lauren on Twitter to consider FTI for next year!)