Yearly Archives: 2013

Cultivating your desires 101

How can you achieve something when you desire nothing? Ever wondered about ways to fix this?

This year I had like 4 times when I was googling about how to learn to grow a desire for something and it never felt right. Now I have my own idea, which is based on the assumption that desiring something is a built in mechanism and if it doesn’t work for you, than it’s distracted by something else.

aidel

 

 

 

Below I describe my desire life cycle model and describe fallacies and tricks I’ve discovered while fixing the pipeline.

Attention

It’s not possible to desire something, when your attention drawn to some stuff already. If your life is piled up with some stuff – you’ll need to learn to say no to upcoming and existing items.

Saying no to people was a tricky business first, but now it pays off with improved confidence. I don’t have to be likable person to feel real good : )

Redefining agreements on existing commitments is another thing which may be scary first(I was afraid of being a bad person), but it worked out pretty well for me. It seems that in the end, being predictable and acting transparently(e.g. letting know you won’t meet the commitment in advance) has a greater value to people than actually performing. Actually that feels right given the environment change pace nowadays.

So, learn to leave the cinema if the movie doesn’t feels right ; )

Interest

Interest is a built in feedback mechanism of our bodies. We’re interested in information on preserving our comfort as well as something new to expand the horizons. Feeling joy rewards that physically.

You’ll feel this naturally and the only thing needed here is to recognize the thing and accept it.

Decision

That’s another one going wrong all the time for me. Decision making capability is based on two things – your determination balanced by the fears. There were two problems for me here.screw

Indecision – ‘paralysis by analysis’, I frequently postponed decision forever by trying to gather more information about how the situation will resolve.

Rationalizing inaction – I tended to explain my feelings and switch my attention to something different. E.g. “Wow a nice girl! Let me face her and talk(Here I feel genuinely interested). But wait, why would I want to do that? (Here I’m rationalizing) I don’t need that.(I’ve blown up the thing)“.


“Skrew it, let’s do it” thing fixed the problems for me – when interested in something, learn to decide quickly(e.g. in 5 seconds). Anyway, you can’t predict the outcome, so faster you’ll get the feedback the faster you’ll move forward.

Execution

Usually action phase is longer than the previous ones(otherwise why you’d postpone something doable in a moment?), so it might be tricikier to get your resources allocated for a longer time. Just do. Concentrate on a thing. And don’t fall into fallacies of mine :)

Losing focus – in the age of content, it’s easy to be distracted by yet another new idea, so if you really-really want to achieve something you’d need a couple of tricks here:

  • Information diet – say no blogs, social networking sites, TV series unless you have a clear goal for the use. It’s too easy to get sidetracked
  • Environment – embrace more contacts with people targetting similar things as you do. Competition also keeps you in tonus : )

Concentrating on failure – sometimes(and if you’re learning fast enough, then more often) your actions won’t yield the result you was interested in(e.g. sloppy movie, boring companion). Either discover your way through the situation and execute, or throw the whole idea away.

Giving up quickly – there any many reasons to do that, but you always have a choice of which facts to consider. So use tricks available to omit that:

  • Maintain your list of reasons to continue
  • Publicly commit
  • Burn the bridges : )

Learning

Once done with the goal achievement process, you’re in a longest phase of learning the lessons. Here you can use your experience to boost your next achievements. Now I start it with the following questionnaire:

  • What I felt upon achieving the thing? (I keep a separate doc for this and refer to it for a motivation injection)
  • What went wrong? What can I do to overcome thins next time?
  • What worked well? Can I apply any the ideas to my past situations?

The End

My model is still my model. Make sure you understand how your process works, how to influence it and enjoy the results.

Happy New Year – don’t forget to achieve something challenging in 2014 for the greater good : )

 

Game changing 10 seconds

I’ve logged off my facebook and feedly accounts. Each time I switch to those pages(and I do that dozen times a day), I don’t receive a doze of some content to be consumed, but rather face a login form.

This gives me 10 seconds to ask myself the following questions:

  • Why am I trying to postpone stuff I was doing just a moment ago?
    Am I afraid of something? Do I have everything in place to make that done? Does it feel rewarding to be done?
  • Is there anything else could be done passing the criteria from the above?
    Funny but facebook never was the default answer yet – pull-ups are : )

110% result

Strive to 110% results, then usual 100% of the stuff is more achievable

Hunters know about this in their ‘shoot ahead’ rule.
Oct12Tuition_p10-13.indd

Project managers know about allocating a buffer.
ccpm

And all I know that if I’d like to do do 11 pull-ups, I should strive for 12 from the beginning : )

Alternatively

I can target 90% of my capabilities and achieve them more often as well. But life and self development is all about expanding your horisonts, aren’t they? So make sure your results are not too good all the time : )

Muscules and results tend to grow when you stretch them quite a bit ; )

Cost of not looking dumb

“You never break anything, you’re probably not moving fast enough” (c) Mark Zuckerberg

Being dumb(a person having issues to fix) is a tough business, specially if you’re used to think you’re not the one. By trying not to look dumb, we actually become dumber – we’re protecting out status quo and all the issues are collected throughout our life. Being dumb is just a matter of collecting feedback and using that to make yourself better personality.

For example, I was reluctant to ask people for a favors because I was afraid to discover I don’t have that strong of a relationship with me. That same thing prevented me from doing proper follow-ups and closing deals.

Symptoms

Some of those include:

  • Feeling like you’re the intelligent one and all the problems are inside other people
  • Anger and desperation emotions filling you on regular basis
  • Not doing stuff because “you will LOOK dumb”

Fix

  • Embrace failure – do stuff you’re not good at and learn to accept failure as a natural part of your growth
  • Be open – acknowledge your gaps and convey them clearly to the people you’re maintaining relationships with. Being public is 80lvl of this : )
  • Observe – each time you’re procrastinating(Ha, just not doing) something, you’re trying not to spot a tricky part of yourselfs and thus appear to be cool one

May the force be with you : )

The little guide to un-procrastination

un-procrastination~60 pages, large font. Easy to skim and spot new ideas. One of them seem to be particularly fruitful in my case:

Increase positive feedback from the habit you’re trying to develop. Observe what motivates you to GET THINGS DONE.

And it clicked. I was procrastinating to finish off my Data Analysis assignment, finished that, liked it and can recall the joy of doing that.

Enjoy your deeds too :)

Economics of personality: Part 1

As usual, closing my end of month with a recipts backlog review. That’s 5ths month in a row. On average it is about ~80 records per month. That’s 3 times a day I’m involved in a money transaction. There are hundreds of others deals we all immerse into on a regular basis. We should be conscious of what we give and what we get in those exchanges. That’s what part of the sales stuff is about.

I’ve stumbled upon this awesome series of thoughts called Economics of personanlity, which resonates with stuff from the above, so I’d like to share that with the world.

[ Originally translated from here ]

I don’t really like to write about provoking stuff containing not-yet-bygone emotions and not yet closed situations. Nevertheless, I’d like to share this because writing about rather professional techniques and approaches needs some grounds:

1. We all live(2013, Russian Federation) not in an Elven country, but rather as a part of Resident Evil. Most frequently we play not Elven roles, but rather genuine Legions of Damned

2. Techniques and approaches which I suggest as a trainer and consultant are meant to help us with reverting from the zombie path. That’s not an easiest route, but quite doable.

3. Stuff tolerated by elves and good for humans is not sutable for zombies and vampires. Thus, before proceeding with techniques, I’d like to settle on values and explain when it’s better to follow mine recommendations and when it’s better to learn from someone else.

Below I wrote about the most vulnerable piece of lives for most of us, our attitude: towards ourselves, our life, colleagues and the world, own and relatives health, professional growth, justice and the world peace. Why lots of right stuff doesn’t work out and why truth is not always the winner and, frequently, too late for us.

I’m finishing playing Disciples III now and I’ll use their role system as a metaphore for the story. Let’s start from a slight exaggregation to feel the concept. Then, we’ll look at the real life. So, depending on a type of culture, we have creatures, belonging to three different races:

1. Elves – culture, which grounds on a CONCEPT of unlimited resources(in fact they may have limited resources) and justice, with actions dictated with truth, actively promoting higher values in the world and protecting everything good from everything evil. They’re concentrated on self-development and self-fulfillment with the goal of helping others to do the same or at least to saving harmony of the world.

2. Humans – culture, which is split between higher justice and resource limitation. They always have to make their choice, prefer one thing to another:

– tomorrow versus today,

– to yourself versus your relative

– forgive versus surcharge

– stunning truth or white lies

– wait for wounded to die and get their boots or help and carry to a hospital, or maybe don’t wait and finish them

The smaller resources, time, energy and provisioning available tougher is the choice. Half the times this choice should be protected with a weapon in thy hands.

3. Undead – this culture grounds on inhuman hunger. There are no spare resources and the only way to exist is to take away them from others and turn them in such a hungry creatures as well. The only choice is “who will be eaten now?”. From two colliding undeads, the most hungry wins, but that does not help as each of them has a small black hole inside, demanding for more and more.

A number of characters add up to a system, like a firm, a community, a job market or domestic IT. We can get three different types of such: 1) Elven alliance, 2) Human empire 3) Legions of Damned

Elven alliance implements projects directed at promoting eternal values. Colleagues have a right to mistake, they’re honest and open, client-oriented, they grow professionally and help each others to grow, protect interests of each other, checking if solutions suit them, their relatives and the world as a whole. They’re ready to detect, accept and fix their mistakes. For profanes elven work looks like a magic, like everything just appears from the air. And everything else, what we’ve read about from Tolkien as a children, and in classic books on personal growth and humanists writings in adult age.

Empire is born in fights. Everyone would like to give less and take more. As a result of continous collisions, some game rules are born(like traffic rules), which minimize losses for a system as a whole, by acceptable infringement of interests of each one. Everyone promotes their own truth and the one supported by a greatest power wins. Sometimes, projects are successful and socially useful, in others – unsucessfull and useless or even harmful. Almost everytime, they’re tough to implement and full of conflicts. And on rare occasion participants would like to work with the same team again. That’s normal state of the world – people and their adequate to reality struggle for a piece of bread. Only tiny piece of projects and organizations live in such mode. Aforementioned rules, written with blood, health and lives(no exaggregations) of previous generations now can be observed in laws, military regulations, bureaucratic systems, traffic rules, construction standarts, and other awekward and huge(thus being breached), but working systems of agreements.

Legions of Damned after forming a system are trying to settle who’ll just work and who’ll mmmjust eat. As characters levels raise, those methods get more sophisticated, appearance of physical awesomeness improves as well as methods of suffocating opponents with their own hands. Bunch of 80 lvl vampires fighting is a spectacular show(surely, if you’re protected from them by a thick terrarium glass, or, better with a number of binoculars glasses). Such systems need continous resource inflow from the outside. Sometimes, that’s centralized flow  of resources by means of allocated budgets, or sometimes fresh meat portions being unexperienced elves or younglings, or, at worst, less sucked undead usable for a certain time. Something good can be built only in case of oversight. But if you need to break something or squander a budget – that’s the very case. Unfortunately, modern job market is a great illustration of this type of system. Everyone wants lots of highly-qualified, cheap(or better free) staff, but can’t get anyone as vampires and zombies are around(and those masking not to be eaten), being professionally burned up at 35 and having bunch of irreversible health consequences at 45. Skill of quietly transferring job and responsibility and appropriating another’s results in time is the guarantee of survival and career growth. Ability to properly spread panic around the team and to agree with the boss is the key skill of a manager. The only used management practice – push & kick.

It’s not important which type of system you’ve joined, but rather how it suits you. By looking around and inside yourself, you can decide who are and how you’ve come here.

Next episodes will uncover how characters of different types are born, what happens to them in various systems and how systems evolve and transform between the types and what this all has to do with the Economics of personality.

War story: Persistent sales guy

persistence

Totally loved this story as a vivid illustration of a fundamental Sales principle: do the follow up. I strongly beleive that such examples are the very thing allowing us to throw away inner barriers(like this guy, who had followed up 48 times!). The story is about another one.

[ Originally translated from here (ru) ]

On my last job, we had a salesman, Vitya. He was closing just every deal, clients preffered to pay just to make him gone. Vitya had ridiculously large salary(and that’s only performance part, no base, just his fees). He tracked clients at shows, conferences, seminars, at muni, Ikea, cinemas, jets, was cold-calling, warm-calling. He appeared in person if he was tossed away on the phone, was calling if asked to be gone in person. He wasn’t reflecting, never pedaled back and was succeeding just everytime.

That was funny until that happened to me.

Currently I should transfer part of a job to an agency, they have such a wild Vitya on their side, only called Sasha. I’ve asked him to send me a contract – he brought it personally. I’ve sent him couple of questions – he offered to meet and discuss. “I don’t have time” – I say. “No worries, turn on the Skype, it will last for only half an hour”. The worst mistake was to give him my cell number. The day before yesterday he called, said we need to talk. “I can’t, I’m moving” – “No problems, I’ll get to you soon, we’ll talk and I’ll give you a hand with your stuff, give me your address”. In an hour called to check: “What’s up, have you packed everything yet? Aha, on your way? Tell me your address, I’ll help you to carry. Carried yet? Need help unpacking? Why you’re not telling me your address – I can help.”. Soon: “Where are you? Let me give you a lift to the work, I have the presentation with me”. In one more hour: “Why you’re not answering your mail? Is computer packed? Let me borrow you mine?

Yesterday he woke me up at 9:05, called back in an hour and did that again. Managed to send me 3 e-mails in between 10:00 and 13:00. First had a few sentences sharing new information, second expressed his worries about me not answering the first one, third one warned me that he’ll call if I won’t answer. Then he called. Five times.

Today I’ve turned my cell off. I should have some sleep sometimes.

Was by the office by noon, “Sasha called, call him back urgently, he suffers”. Got to HR, they say “Your cousin, Sasha just called, was asking your home address. Said just arrived from Norilsk but you haven’t met him yet, but promised. He’s at the Kazanskiy railway station, crying out loud near a taxophone.”

“My cousin is an idiot, trains from Norilsk do not arrive to Kazanskiy railway station. Lying should be pre-meditated sometimes”. Going to get some coffee at the kitchen – got called by the boss: “I’ve got called by Sasha, he’s asking if you’re alright? I told you were going to perform a parachute jump but was not sure if you did that or not”.

Checking my e-mail, got 5 letters. In first he’s interested, worried in second, angry by third, begrudging in fourth. Last one has the following: “Svetlana, I beg your appologies for the persistence. In my aspiration to move forward our common business, I might have crossed the line. I promise, I’ll be more discreet. I’m asking you last time. Please, make sure the bills will get paid. It’s very important for me. Make sure it will be payed today. I BELEIVE IN YOU! I BELIEVE”.

If his bill won’t be paid today, I swear I’ll set him on the accountant.