“When the going gets tough, the tough take a nap.” — Tom Hodgkinson
Doesn’t matter what you would do.
Doesn’t matter what you might do.
Doesn’t matter what you meant to do.
Doesn’t matter what you couldn’t do.
Doesn’t matter what you were told to do.
Doesn’t matter what you want to do.
All that matter is what you actually do.
Now, on to this week’s ideas…
1. 10 TIPS TO GET YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA STRATEGY APPROVED
“Every successful social media campaign starts with a key, often overlooked step — getting approval to try it in the first place.”
This post is about social media, but the tips I share can just as easily be applied to any marketing, business, or creative idea you need to get approval or budget for from somebody else.
These 10 tips to get your social media strategy approved include to make sure your idea matches their goal, make it safe-ish, and show why nothing (and everything) is new about your idea.
RELATED: Eight not-so-obvious concepts that will improve your social media posts.
2. HOW TO FIGURE OUT WHICH OF YOUR HABITS TO CHANGE
“There are no good habits or bad habits. There are only effective habits. That is, effective at solving problems. All habits serve you in some way — even the bad ones — which is why you repeat them.”
Habits are powerful, but the ones we develop don’t always work in our favor.
In this excerpt from his new book Atomic Habits, James Clear shares an exercise to show you how to figure out which of your habits to change.
The exercise involves scoring your existing habits as positive, negative, or neutral based on the long-term outcomes those habits are likely to generate.
RELATED: How to quit bad habits by creating friction.
3. HOW TO FALL ASLEEP IN TWO MINUTES
“When I began the technique I was heartened that the Army found that it worked for 96% of people who tried it.”
Something tells me everybody’s going to want to read this one.
Fast Company explains how to fall asleep in two minutes based on a technique developed by the military to help people fall asleep in difficult and stressful circumstances.
The technique involves a series of muscle relaxation, breathing, and visualization tricks to employ before bed.
RELATED: This is what happens when we sleep.
4. HOW TO REDUCE YOUR DECISIONS
“To perform at our peak, a clear and sharp mind is required. Yes, there are numerous ways and techniques to strengthen our willpower and maximize our energy by training them regularly. However, the best way to optimize your decision-making is by avoiding decision fatigue.”
One of the best ways to make better decisions is to make fewer of them.
Dean Yeong breaks down the concept of “decision minimalism” and explains how to make fewer decisions.
His tips include to track every decision, measure effectiveness, and automate repeated decisions.
RELATED: What happens when you automate your decisions for a week.
5. HOW TO USE FACEBOOK ADS TO PROMOTE YOUR MUSIC
“Make sure the video features your music and that the music starts immediately as soon as the video starts — don’t have a 20-second intro to the video. When your video appears in people’s Facebook feeds, you’ve got less than three seconds to grab their attention before they scroll on by so get to the good stuff ASAP.”
Over in our For The Interested: Social Media & Marketing Facebook group a reader asked me for advice about how to use Facebook ads to promote a band.
That led me to create a post about how to use Facebook ads to promote your music that’s applicable to any creative work you want to promote.
In the post I discuss what your ad should contain, who it should target, and how to make sure your message resonates with your audience.
RELATED: Five Facebook ad mistakes to avoid.
6. THE FOUR NEW RULES OF PERSONAL FINANCE
“Consider whether the industry you’re planning to enter cares more about skills and experience than it does a college credential. Also, consider the cost of a brand-name school versus a (likely much cheaper) state or community college.”
Times change and when they do it can be necessary to reassess how you handle your finances.
Kristin Wong suggests four new rules of personal finance including that renting a home can be a smarter move than buying, that you should calculate the ROI of a college degree before you pursue one, and that it’s not always the best idea to pay off your debt before investing.
RELATED: How to start investing in 2018.
7. FIVE TIPS FOR WRITING A BETTER COVER LETTER
“Aim for two paragraphs (if you end up with one or three it’s okay). There is no rule that says cover letters need to be lengthy to lend insight into your background and your interest in the role.”
A well-written cover letter may not get you a job, but it will help you get noticed in a stack of 300 other applicants.
A recruiter at famed design firm IDEO shares five tips for writing a better cover letter based on examples of great cover letters she’s received in the past.
Her tips include to show personality in your writing, explain why the position makes sense for you in your career, and make it an introduction — not a manifesto.
RELATED: Four ways to improve your resume.
8. 30 LIFE LESSONS FROM A 30-YEAR HARVARD CLASS REUNION
“Nearly all the alumni said they were embarrassed by their younger selves, particularly by how judgmental they used to be.”
You can learn a lot in 30 years and comparing notes with others likely reveals many of the lessons we learn are similar.
That’s evident in this post from The Atlantic featuring 30 life lessons from a Harvard 30-year reunion including that every teacher and doctor seemed happy (and most lawyers didn’t), nearly all the alumni who had kids were pleased with their decision and many of those who didn’t regretted not having done so, and many of the shyest class members went on to become the alumni class leaders and reunion organizers.
RELATED: 14 life lessons college students should be taught.
9. HOW TO LEAD FROM JOY INSTEAD OF FEAR
“Leading from fear is the easy route. Leading from joy is pure magic. When you realize your job is to show up and love your job, to project pure positivity even on one your worst days, to love the people that work for you, you might find that even during difficult times, you start enjoying it more too.”
This post will make you a better leader, manager, and probably a lot happier in your job.
Andy Dunn shares what he learned the hard way about how to lead from joy instead of fear.
He warns against making key mistakes such as to assume people are motivated by the same thing you are, criticize instead of inspire people, and forget that ultimately it’s your fault.
RELATED: A manager’s pledge.
10. PEOPLE THINK I’M CONFIDENT, BUT HERE’S WHAT THEY DON’T UNDERSTAND
“Confident people feel as much fear as everybody else. But they don’t allow fear to prevent them from action.”
People tell me I’m confident, and I don’t disagree. But, I do think most people misunderstand what confidence is and how it works.
In this post I share nine things I’ve learned about confidence including that it’s not the absence of fear, is fueled as much by failure as it is success, and is generated by you as opposed to being given to you by others.
RELATED: Don’t let anybody tell you what to do.
BONUS: ANOTHER NEWSLETTER WORTH CHECKING OUT
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WHERE I FOUND THIS STUFF
I got some of this week’s ideas from Creative Mornings, Kyle Westaway, DO Lectures, Further, and Claire Lew — they’re awesome and worth checking out.
Image via Alexandra Gorn.