It is a lot more fun, fulfilling and cost-effective to think your way out of a problem than throw money at it. Try to solve problems first before buying solutions. Take a really thorough, genuine crack at it before giving up and tossing cash away. Moreover, the effort behind solving a problem educates you around the situation and helps you appreciate a purchased solution more when you fail.
Vacations should only end after three things happen: 1) you feel rested, 2) you miss home, and 3) you actually want to get back to work. If those three things do not fall into place by the end of your sojourn, your vacation failed. That, or you 1) have health problems, 2) do not feel at home where you live or 3) hate the work you do. Vacations can help you distance yourself from your normal life enough to realize any one of these three issues and tackle problems accordingly.
Of all the seven deadly sins, gluttony is my favorite. We have no excuse to abuse our bodies with regular exorbitant consumption of any kind – but minor infractions cannot hurt every once in awhile. To celebrate, I do not mind eating five meals in a day or downing a hefty dose of alcohol. Mark the occasion as you please. You should not do it every night and you should not do it to pass time. But feel free to do it to bookmark a moment in your life as memorable. Gluttony all the time is not memorable. Gluttony on a rare occasion sticks with you for life. Make it count.
Seems like such a silly little tool, but do not underestimate the power of pros & cons lists in helping you navigate difficult decisions. Simply getting your thoughts down on paper can help you better-objectify the situation. If you take the list seriously and generate genuine pros and cons in your brainstorming session, the visual key to how many thoughts land in each column can really help you clear the air and see the right choice. If you take your time and add to the list over a longer period, you will be surprised how objective the tool can be. I use pros & cons lists to assess almost all of life’s big decisions. As far as I can tell, none of them have failed me yet.
Sometimes it is not easy to pick between the comfortable and the random. We all have routines in some shape or form and find them difficult to break. Only when you break routine can you put your character to the test and grow as a person. The unknown may seem risky or distant from relevant – but you’ll never know for sure until you try. When forced to choose, always opt for the new opportunity (after, of course, you’ve done your due diligence). You have far more to gain from mixing up your life and taking chances on faith than keeping everything normal and under control.
While everyone may suggest that day jobs are the answer, they are not for everyone. Many of us were raised to think there’s no other way. That couldn’t be further from the truth. There are many legal and non-humiliating ways to make an income. You can consult, provide a service or build an empire of your own. Specialize, mix it up, split your time however you want. There are no rules (except perhaps the law).
If you find yourself in a day job, be careful not to get too consumed by it. When all you see everyday is your desk, it’s difficult to believe that there are other options out there. It’s difficult to remember that you made this choice and could have made others. It’s up to you to decide if a job is the right lifestyle choice for you. If you decide that it is, embrace the choice with confidence and be at peace.
Commitment is doing something even when you don’t want to. No matter what. Loyalty is wanting to do something even when you shouldn’t. No matter what. Both can get you into trouble – or pay off in spades. Either way, commitment and loyalty are worth the risk.
It’s good for you. Don’t take life so seriously. As far as we know, you’ve only got one – so don’t waste it with a straight face. Have fun, make fun and enjoy a great day!
Don’t waste time concerning yourself with the choices of others unless they affect the outcome of your own decisions. If you have no stake in the issue beyond your own opinion, opponents are far less likely to hear you. It’s not your problem, it’s theirs. By interfering, you make it your problem and cause undue stress for you and others. If you feel you do have stake in the issue, make sure your opponents understand what’s on the line for you so that you can increase your relevance in the matter. Don’t go to bat without something to swing or a game to lose. Otherwise, you’re just noise.
People do not like too many choices and procrastinate making decisions. Even the most opinionated people I know do not always answer your question in a timely fashion.
The easiest way to get a response? Make your question as easy as possible to answer. Don’t bury it with information, encrypt it in an email or forget the question mark. Provide a concise brief upfront and ask a yes or no question. Make it a multiple choice question if you need to. At the very least, provide the recipient with possible answers so he or she does not need to do the research or draft an elaborate answer of his or her own. Take the opportunity to curtail the list of possible answers to meet your own needs. If the recipient comes up with an answer other than the ones provided, whatever. At least you got an answer.
Busy people (like CEOs and celebrities) are notorious for single-line emails. Help them keep that pace and not bog them down with answering your question. The more you help them and consider their time, the easier it will be to get an answer – and the greater chances you will have at getting an answer you like.