“Cynics are simply thwarted romantics.” — William Goldman
When we talk, we discover.
I was recently interviewed on a podcast (see link #10 below) and in the process stumbled on some new ideas.
That’s not a new phenomenon.
Because no matter how much time we spend thinking or writing, something different that happens when we speak.
So the next time you’re stuck or searching for a new idea, here’s a simple solution: Talk about it.
You never know what you’ll discover.
Now, on to this week’s ideas…
1. FIVE WAYS TO INCREASE DEMAND FOR WHAT YOU DO
“Make something specific for someone specific.”
It’s not enough to just make something great — you’ve also got to create demand for the great thing you made.
In this post I suggest five ways to increase demand for what you do including to make your products, services, or creations simpler, more relevant, and more unique.
RELATED: You need specificity in marketing if you want it to work.
2. THE 21 MOST IMPORTANT QUESTIONS OF YOUR LIFE
“The right question at the right time can spark the right answer that changes your life.”
Never underestimate the power of a good question.
Darius Foroux shares the 21 most important questions of your life across a variety of categories including life, career, and productivity.
The questions range from how meaningful is your work, to what tasks should you stop doing and what questions are you not asking yourself.
RELATED: Three questions to ask yourself each night to make your next day more productive.
3. HOW TO LAND YOUR DREAM CLIENTS
“If your dream clients aren’t coming to you, go straight to them. The worst that can happen is nothing different than what you’ve got now. The best that can happen is a complete transformation into a freelance career you enjoy profoundly and cherish every day.”
If you want a step-by-step guide on how to land your dream clients, you’ve come to the right place.
Benek Lisefski’s process to get freelance creative work is applicable to just about any kind of business in which you do outreach to land new clients.
He includes tips on how to figure out who your dream clients are, where to find them, and how to approach them.
RELATED: How to get your company and clients addicted to your work.
4. BE WHERE YOUR FEET ARE
“Your habits are in fact a choice. You choose your habits and your habits are what dictate your happiness and your success.”
This is a fun one for me to share since it comes from a former high school basketball teammate of mine — Alan Stein, a leadership and basketball performance coach who’s worked with players like Kevin Durant and Steph Curry.
In this 9-minute video he explains how learning to be where your feet are can you help you become more present, productive, and successful.
Plus, he shares a great story about what he learned from watching one of Kobe Bryant’s private workouts.
RELATED: How LeBron James stays healthy.
5. HOW A WRITER ATTRACTED 200K READERS IN 30 DAYS
“Everyone starts out at zero. Everyone. What separates the people who succeed (at anything) and the people who fail, ultimately comes down to how willing you are to share who you are as a person.”
This post is about how writer Nicolas Cole got 200,000 people to read his posts on Medium in his first 30 days on the platform, but it’s really about much more.
He explains what it takes to succeed as a writer on the internet including to combine a personal story with a consistent posting schedule and lesson for readers to take away from each post.
By the way, if you use Medium (and I recommend you do), you can also connect with me on the platform here.
RELATED: How to go from zero to 14k followers on Medium.
6. HOW TO DECLUTTER YOUR HOME
“Reduce the number of surface areas in your home. Humans are very simple creatures: If we see a surface, we will put something on it.”
This seven-minute video will inspire you to straighten up your home and give you some tips about the best way to do so.
Matt D’Avella’s advice on how to declutter your home includes to reduce the number of surface areas in your home, control the flow of new stuff that comes into it, and systematize your things.
RELATED: 10 creative ways to declutter your home.
7. HOW TO GIVE BETTER ADVICE
“People seeking advice are generally not interested in being told what to do, but in gathering information so that they will have more alternatives and perspectives to consider.”
No matter how pure your intentions, the advice you give people likely doesn’t land as well as it could.
Scientific American breaks down research that reveals common mistakes advice-givers make and explains how to give better advice.
The tips include to better understand the perspective of the person you’re advising before giving them advice, avoid giving advice you don’t follow yourself, and don’t pitch the benefits of something without acknowledging its costs as well.
RELATED: Six examples of success advice you should ignore.
8. A JOURNEY TO THANK EVERY PERSON RESPONSIBLE FOR A MORNING COFFEE
“It was overwhelming, but it was also wonderful. Because it allowed me to focus on the hundreds of things that go right every day, as opposed to the three or four that go wrong.”
Writer AJ Jacobs has made a career of conducting interesting life experiments and his latest is a clever one.
In this 12-minute TED Talk video, he explains what he learned from thanking every person responsible for his morning coffee.
He wound up thanking more than 1,000 people and learning quite a lot about our interconnected world in the process.
RELATED: How to improve your life one experiment at a time.
9. HOW TO BUILD YOUR EMAIL LIST WITHOUT SLEAZY TACTICS
“Trust is one of the most overlooked marketing tactics because it takes time. By showing up consistently in someone’s inbox and delivering them thoughtful content you will build trust.”
This is a must-read if you have an email list or plan to start one.
Jason Zook shares an extensive guide on how to build your email list without sleazy tactics that covers everything from why you should have a list and what to send to people, to how to get subscribers and five mistakes to avoid.
Speaking of email list resources, you also might want to join my Newsletter Creators group on Facebook.
RELATED: Five tactics I’ve used to get 25,000 newsletter subscribers.
10. HOW TO GET OUT OF YOUR OWN WAY
“You need to do things. There are a lot of people who do a lot more talking about things than actually doing.”
I was invited to be a guest on the Imperfect Action podcast recently and had a chance to share my thoughts about a variety of topics including why I give away secrets, how to stand out from the crowd, and how to get out of your own way.
You can listen to the 45-minute episode here or on your favorite podcast platform.
RELATED: My Creative Mornings talk about getting weird.
WHERE I FOUND THIS STUFF
I got some of this week’s ideas from Mary Longacre, Tijmen Rumke, Creative Mornings, and Startup Resources — they’re awesome and worth checking out.
Image via Joseph Gruenthal.