10 Ideas For The Interested This Week

“Wealth, like happiness, is never attained when sought after directly. It comes as a by-product of providing a useful service.” — Henry Ford

I’ve shared more than 1,500 ideas in this newsletter since launching it three years ago.

And you’ve probably missed a lot of them.

So I’m now sharing three archival ideas a day on the @FTInterested Twitter account.

Follow me there to see what you missed and get a little bit of FTI in your feed each day.

Now, on to this week’s ideas…

1. HOW TO WRITE SOMETHING USEFUL FOR OTHERS

“While snarky, controversial, revealing, or entertaining writing may get you attention, the only way to create true value is to write something that provides it to others.”

There’s not a lot of sure things in this world, but here’s one of them: Useful things create value.

In this post I explain how to write something useful for others including to write things that are more actionable than theoretical, share what others won’t, and write about what you’ve learned from your experiences instead of simply about the experiences themselves.

RELATED: How to write an effective follow-up email after meeting someone.

2. HOW TO DO WHAT YOU LOVE

“The test of whether people love what they do is whether they’d do it even if they weren’t paid for it — even if they had to work at another job to make a living.”

Way back in 2006 Paul Graham published an essay about how to do what you love and it’s a must-read.

Not only does he deconstruct common assumptions about the concept of loving what you do, but he also shares insights about how jobs, discipline, and money play into the equation.

RELATED: Do more of what you love and less of what you like.

3. YOU WILL BE YOUNG FOR A VERY LONG TIME

“I’ve come to regard youth as more than an age range; it’s any time in your life when you still have all the options available to you. You might swerve in and out of youth depending on your life circumstances.”

Age can be a tricky thing, but especially so if you buy into whatever preconceived notions you (or others) have about it.

June Beaux explains how she’s come to realize you will be young for a very long time and suggests because we live multiple lives and morph into different versions of ourselves over time we don’t only get one shot at being “young.”

RELATED: How to use smart exercise to stay younger longer.

4. WHY YOU NEVER SEEM TO HAVE ENOUGH TIME

“Time pressure is the uncomfortable gap between how we wish we spent our time — and how we think that would make us feel — and how we’re spending it and feeling now.”

What if the real reason you feel stretched too thin has nothing to do with your workload or time management?

Kira M. Newman examines the reasons you never seem to have enough time and suggests it’s more about psychology than logistics.

She breaks down research that reveals spending time on things you don’t enjoy, feeling a lack of control over your time, and undervaluing your time can all skew your perception of time.

RELATED: How to get better at estimating your time.

5. DAVID BOWIE’S ADVICE TO ARTISTS

“I think it’s terribly dangerous for an artist to fulfill other people’s expectations.”

I could summarize David Bowie’s advice to artists from this one-minute video, but why bother to read my translation of it when you can just watch him say it himself?

RELATED: How to be an artist.

6. 20 SECRETS TO CREATING MEMORABLE PRESENTATIONS

“Too often in presentations, people are more focused on detailing every single detail of research they uncovered rather than thinking about what they want the audience to remember.”

There’s no chance reading this won’t improve your next presentation.

StrategyU shares 20 secrets to creating memorable presentations across three categories of advice including how to make your message memorable, structure your message, and design your slides.

RELATED: Three tricks to get people to listen to your presentations.

7. THE SEVEN COMMANDMENTS OF THE UNMISTAKABLE CREATIVE

“When nobody does what you do in the way that you do it, your competition becomes irrelevant. You’re not the best, you’re the only. That’s how you become Unmistakable.”

Srinivas Rao wrote this post as a way to define himself, his audience and his Unmistakable Creative brand.

But the seven commandments of the Unmistakable Creative are also a worthy set of principles for any creator to embrace.

The commandments include that temporary circumstances don’t have to become permanent reality, status quo is meant to be challenged, and only is better than best.

RELATED: A manifesto for creative people.

8. NINE SIMPLE QUESTIONS TO ASK WHEN INTERVIEWING SOMEBODY

“Great interview questions aren’t clever. They’re simple.”

Whether you’re interviewing somebody for a podcast, blog post, or just because you want to learn from them, this will help you get more interesting information out of them.

Jay Acunzo shares nine simple questions to ask when interviewing somebody including “How did it feel when…,” “What changed when…,” and “Can you share an example?”

RELATED: How to interview your customers.

9. HOW TO BUILD A BRAND ON SOCIAL MEDIA

“Brand building is about building collective understanding.”

If you like to nerd out about marketing and what it actually takes to build a brand, you’re going to love this.

Callum McCahon shares how to build a brand on social media including the five rules of brand building, how to drive audience growth and engagement, and how to use micro targeting to build a brand.

RELATED: Your audience IS your brand.

10. 10 WAYS TO STOP CHECKING YOUR PHONE SO MUCH

“When I watch TV now, I keep my phone on a table across the room so I’m never tempted to pick it up. Turns out the only thing stronger than the allure of social networks is the allure of not getting up off the couch.”

Our phones can be helpful tools…or a total disaster if we let them be.

In this post I explain how I stopped checking my phone so much and started using it with intention including to stop checking it during TV commercials, choose an end point for every surfing session, and put it away immediately after posting something on social media.

RELATED: How to configure your iPhone to work for you.

WHERE I FOUND THIS STUFF

I got some of this week’s ideas from Austin Kleon, Jocelyn K. Glei, Thomas Oppong, Khe Hy, and Dan Knowlton — they’re awesome and worth checking out.

Image via Gabriel Bassino.