22/24 – What’s your Why?

If you know me at all, you know I have a soft spot for the question Why.

Why makes my heart beat a little bit faster, as I truly believe knowing what lies at the heart of something, a passion, an interest, a purpose, makes a difference. It makes the feeling behind the action and/or words purer, more energetic, vibrant and full of life.heart

So ask yourself – what is your Why?

But don’t stop there. Do it the Toyota Way, asking at least five why’s in a row, really getting to the bottom of it, finding the root-cause.

But it doesn’t have to be a problem that needs fixing. Not at all. Rather. Get to the heart of what makes you happy everyday, and then, DO more of that. Create a life where that Why infuses your day. Every day.

I know my Why. But still. I get prompted by this Advent Calendar to dig deeper. To redefine it. Or clarify it. It’s as if the rough sketch is about to turn into a sharp and well-shot photograph. With great clarity in the details, and unquestionably clear in what it’s showing.

Yeah. My Why is getting sharper. Your’s?

Reflection #22 of 24 from the notes I took and the experience I had at the Seth Godin Q&A-session in London, November 2015. These reflections will constitute my Advent Calendar for 2015, and will be posted daily from December 1st to the 24th.

21/24 – Your elevator question?

elevator question

Everyone has heard of a thirty second elevator pitch. But have you ever heard of anyone actually getting anywhere with one? Making a sale? Catching a big fish, so to speak?

I doubt it. I haven’t heard of any example at least. Maybe you have?

Anyway. Seth has a suggestion, and I love it.

Rather than go down the Ego lane of making an elevator pitch, get an elevator question instead. Questions are so much more invigorating and interesting than any pitch you might come up with.

And once you have you elevator question ready (or two? Three? Ten?), make sure you have this down as well: Be. Honestly. Curious. About. The. Answer. 

Otherwise you don’t have to bother. People who ask a question without an interest in the answer isn’t much fun to talk to, are they?

Reflection #21 of 24 from the notes I took and the experience I had at the Seth Godin Q&A-session in London, November 2015. These reflections will constitute my Advent Calendar for 2015, and will be posted daily from December 1st to the 24th.

20/24 – Podcast 51/52 – The Startup school

I am a fan of Seth Godin. I guess that isn’t a big surprise if you’ve stuck with me these past 20 days or so?

I am fascinated by his mind, marvel and wonder at how it works, because he has an ability to look at things from a totally different perspective that what seems the obvious one, and that is a very valuable skill. He is a great teacher at that, and I learn so much from reading and listening to him.your turn

He is also very generous! At the London Session, everyone got a copy of What to do when it’s your turn, and also a copy of one of the other books he brought to London. Generous with his books. But also, very generous with his knowledge, which he shares freely. So when I went searching for podcasts with or by him, and stumbled upon his Start up school, it feels as if I hit the jackpot!

Here are fifteen episodes of Seth. 

1 – Freelancer or Entrepreneur?
2 – Adjusting the Course?
3 – Creating Scarcity
4 – Appealing to Consumers
5 – Permission and Trust
6 – Raising Money
7 – Advertising and Competitors
8 – Making Ideas Travel
9 – Compromising
10 – Tactics
11 – Cash Flow
12 – The Dip
13 – Building The Truth
14 – The ShipIt Journal
15 – Distinct and Direct

Do what I did. Start at number one and just keep on going all the way to fifteen. Most of these are around twenty minutes long, so it’s doable, and well-spent time at that.

Seth is unrehearsed, as this was all taped during three days of a Startup school he ran with a handful of budding entrepreneurs. Genius as always, sharing wisdom, insight and knowledge, asking questions, the answers of which has the potential to change my life.
If. I. Act. On. It.

As always, that’s the catch. If I don’t take action, it will never change my life. Listening to it, and never ever acting upon what I hear and learn, won’t make a dent in the universe. Not at all. But if I listen. Learn. And act, out of what is mind to do. Now. That’s another story!

Reflection #20 of 24 is a bit of an odd ball, as it’s not from the notes I took and the experience I had at the Seth Godin Q&A-session in London, November 2015. Rather, this is a reflection on a podcast with Seth Godin. These reflections will constitute my Advent Calendar for 2015, and will be posted daily from December 1st to the 24th.

19/24 – Will I be redundant?

linchpin

Are you afraid of Artificial Intelligence? Does it scare you that soon, computers and robots seem able to do just about everything?

I don’t go down that road, deliberately, as I don’t want to live a life out of fear. Fear for myself, for my children and grand-children, for work – will there be any? -, for being extraneous and redundant.

So. I actually try to do that which only I can do (i.e. be me) really really well, letting my onlyness flow freely into the world, sharing what I see, do, feel, know.

And work will never be scarce. Having a job might be a thing of the past, sooner than we think, but work. I get to do work that matters every day. That’s my prerogative. And your’s as well. Life. Work. There’s no difference. Or at least, there doesn’t have to be.

Living a life that matters means doing work that matters.

What are you doing with your onlyness?

Reflection #19 of 24 from the notes I took and the experience I had at the Seth Godin Q&A-session in London, November 2015. These reflections will constitute my Advent Calendar for 2015, and will be posted daily from December 1st to the 24th.

18/24 – Forget writer’s block, just write!

writers block

Did you know? That writer’s block is an invention? (Well. Isn’t everything?)

You sit down.
Take a pen and paper (or a computer, an IPad, your phone or even a piece of chalk and a chalk board).
Then you write.

Voilà.
You’ve created something.
Written something which can be read by someone else.
Write. Then write some more. The more you write the better it will get.

Find your written voice.
And you know what? The less difference there is between your spoken and your written voice, the easier it will be to write. Because then you can just as easily just start to talk. And no one get’s talker’s block, do they?

Have you even heard of talker’s block before?

No. Me neither.

Question is. Should we invent speaker’s block? Or shall we simply see that if we write, as we speak, there is no such thing as writer’s block either?

Reflection #18 of 24 from the notes I took and the experience I had at the Seth Godin Q&A-session in London, November 2015. These reflections will constitute my Advent Calendar for 2015, and will be posted daily from December 1st to the 24th.

17/24 – A pain in the ass

On parents and schools.

If I as a parent have thoughts, ideas and/or concerns concerning the schools my children attend, what do I do?

I’m guessing most teachers, principals and anybody else working within the school system, laugh a bit at what Seth answered: You must understand that parental involvement is a pain in the ass.parents

So he flipped it around. Not saying parents shouldn’t be concerned, shouldn’t contribute with thoughts and ideas. No. Not at all.

Instead – asking myself the question: How am I contributing? How can I contribute?

Not to assume I know what do to, and how to do it best. But offer it up, the thoughts, ideas, good examples. Humbly. Earning my voice, by actually providing value, in one way or another. Engaging in a conversation.

Asking the teacher or principal: What can I do? What do you need? Is there any way I can contribute with this thing?

Reflection #17 of 24 from the notes I took and the experience I had at the Seth Godin Q&A-session in London, November 2015. These reflections will constitute my Advent Calendar for 2015, and will be posted daily from December 1st to the 24th.

16/24 – Is there trust?

wrong

Mmm. You’ve been there. So have I. Too many times.

When that which shouldn’t happen, happens.
A mistake.
A white lie that erupts and turns into the lie from hell.
An unexpected turn of events, when worst comes to worst.

And, oh yes. Is that ever a sure way to know, if trust exists or not.

Close my eyes.
Remember. Back when I was 9 months pregnant with my first child. Another millennia.
Had gotten a phone call from my husband, the father of my unborn child, whom I’d been together with for ten years.

I’m breaking up with you.

Hard to believe. Difficult to take in.
That didn’t happen to someone like me. Couldn’t. Shouldn’t.

When he came home later that day, or possibly the day after, I asked…

Would you stay with me tonight?

I just wanted to be held. To forget. For a moment. That life had just turned upside down, and I was going to become a parent in a totally different manner than I’d planned for.

No. I can’t.

That’s when I knew. Whatever trust had been, was no more. Not there. I never let that stop me from trusting again, though.

I am, at heart, a person who trusts.
Would life be life without it?

Reflection #16 of 24 from the notes I took and the experience I had at the Seth Godin Q&A-session in London, November 2015. These reflections will constitute my Advent Calendar for 2015, and will be posted daily from December 1st to the 24th.