10 Ideas For The Interested This Week

“No matter where you’re from, your dreams are valid.” — Lupita Nyong’o

As this newsletter hits your inbox, I’ll be busy working on the Oscars for the eighth year in a row.

A lot of people have a lot of opinions about the Oscars, but too often what gets lost in the hype is what it means to artists who have dedicated their whole lives to their craft.

I hope this video inspires you to work toward your dreams…and someday achieve them.

Now, on to this week’s ideas…

1. THE THING PEOPLE DON’T UNDERSTAND ABOUT LOS ANGELES

“Most people don’t understand Los Angeles, because most people don’t understand the people who live here.”

Los Angeles is misunderstood.

In this post I explain the thing people don’t understand about Los Angeles based on my observations from 20+ years of living here.

It’s a town of people in pursuit of their dreams and surrounding yourself with those kind of people can have a huge impact on your own life.

RELATED: How to handle rejection.

2. THE MOST RADICAL CHOICE YOU CAN MAKE IS TO BE OPTIMISTIC

“Optimism is our instinct to inhale while suffocating. Our need to declare what ‘needs to be’ in the face of what is. Optimism is not uncool; it is rebellious and daring and vital.”

It takes guts to be an optimist.

Guillermo del Toro explains why the most radical and rebellious choice you can make is to be optimistic and suggests we are the balance of our choices which means no hope is ever too small.

RELATED: Four ways to use optimism to create your best work.

3. WHAT NO ONE TELLS YOU ABOUT GETTING OLDER

“Everyone older than you will be ‘adults’ and everyone younger than you will be ‘kids.’ You’ll always feel in the middle of those two stages of life.”

Somebody on Reddit posted the question “What is something no one really tells you about getting older?” and the resulting answers are an interesting read no matter how old you are.

The things no one tells you about getting older include that there’s no life guidance after college, you’ll wake up sore for no reason, and everything you need to repair in your house will cost at least $1,000.

RELATED: Why it feels like life speeds up as you get older.

4. THREE WAYS TO SAVE MORE MONEY

“After bank overdraft fees, the number-one regretted purchase was … eating out. It’s a frequent purchase that many of us make regularly, but, savings-wise, it’s death by a thousand cuts.”

If you’re looking to increase your savings, this one can help you figure out how best to do so.

Behavioral economist Wendy de la Rosa shares three ways to save more money including to take aim at small frequent purchases, commit to your future self, and use transition moments to your advantage.

RELATED: Six easy ways to save money.

5. THE BEST THING YOU CAN DO FOR YOUR HEALTH IS TO SLEEP WELL

“In the spring, when we lose one hour of sleep, there is a 24% increase in heart attacks the following day. In the autumn, we gain an hour of sleep opportunity, and there is a 21% reduction in heart attacks.”

If you ever need a reason to justify going to bed early or sleeping later, this is it.

Matthew Walker explains why the best thing you can do for your health is to sleep well including a breakdown of the impact of getting insufficient sleep and why scientists have started to lobby doctors to prescribe a good night’s sleep to patients.

RELATED: How to fall asleep in two minutes.

6. SIX THINGS TO OVERCOME TO BECOME A BETTER LISTENER

“You have to discard the filters you’ve created, and focus on potential positive outcomes that can only happen when you listen.”

We all want to be good listeners, but in order to do so we first have to understand the reasons we struggle to listen in the first place.

Stephanie Vozza breaks down six things to overcome to become a better listener including our natural desire to talk, ego, and our preconceptions and biases.

RELATED: How to become a better listener.

7. WHY DESIGNING THINGS TO BE SIMPLE FOR USERS ISN’T ALWAYS BEST

“The more users invest in a way of doing things through tiny bits of work, the more valuable the service becomes in their lives and the less they question its use.”

Get ready to reconsider everything you think you know about design.

Nir Eyal suggests designing things to be simple for users isn’t always best and explains how design that requires users to put in some effort can help hook them on your product and be more likely to use it in the future.

RELATED: How user interfaces are designed to trick you.

8. 12 IDEAS TO HELP YOU GET MORE LEADS THROUGH CONTENT MARKETING

“Not every interaction with your content will convert to a sale, but content should always give the reader something to do next.”

If you use content to market anything, you’ll want to check this one out.

Shane Barker shares 12 expert ideas to improve your content marketing for better leads including to require little contact information, distribute your content to niche communities, and avoid creating content no one is searching for.

RELATED: How to use content to improve your business.

9. PAUL RAND’S SEVEN-STEP LOGO TEST

“The goal of a logo is to be unforgettable — so that when a person feels the need your business solves, your logo comes to immediately mind.”

Legendary designer Paul Rand created logos for everything from IBM to UPS and along the way came up with his own system to assess the quality of a logo.

Dave Schools shares Rand’s seven-step logo test which involves judging a logo based on a series of criteria including its distinctiveness, adaptability, and how memorable it is.

RELATED: How to build an iconic brand.

10. DON’T LET “WORK” GET IN THE WAY OF WORK

“What looks like traditional ‘work’ tends to be the least productive part of my day. My most productive moments don’t resemble ‘work’ at all.”

The working world has changed, but not enough people and companies have adapted to what actually matters these days.

In this post I suggest you don’t let “work” get in the way of work and explain why the most valuable elements of most jobs aren’t found in their job descriptions.

RELATED: How to decrease your productivity and increase the quality of your work.

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WHERE I FOUND THIS STUFF

I got some of this week’s ideas from Scott Monty, Khe Hy, DO Lectures, Kyle Westaway, Thomas Oppong, Clint Schaff and Jocelyn K. Glei — they’re awesome and worth checking out.