Every year I put together a mega post of 50, or maybe even 51, things that I have learnt during the year in business and in life. Here is the fifth year of this review and this time it is mostly business as there has been a particular business slant in the last twelve months, lots of work. Some of the things may be repeated from previous years, as yet I don’t know because when I am writing this I do not look back on the previous years so, if there are, no problem. However this year I promise, no Fenton the dog!
1) Once moulded into a habit something that seems rather daunting to start off with becomes normal. An example of this is the writing of ten ideas a day something I mentioned I do last year. As sometimes I write many more than 10 a day I reckon that this year I have written down about 4000 ideas: Business, Personal, Observations, Inventions, Ideas for Others, Family etc…. if you had said to me at the start of the year “write down 4000 ideas” I would’ve called you mad of course, it’s impossible… until you do it then it’s reality.
And some of them are good, a few were excellent. (By the way it also helps if you have accountability partners, thanks New Ideas group members, that encourage you to post every day. It’s much easier to stick to the habit when it wouldn’t be only yourself that you are fooling if you don’t do it)
2) Always give yourself the chance to fail, you never know you may succeed. Without that chance you can be sure that you will never succeed anyway.
3) When a problem comes up, write down 10 ways to solve it. There are your ideas for the day, and then act on them or develop them after and you have another day of ideas.
4) Never rely on others as gurus instead become a Guru to yourself alone.
5) When there is something you do not want to do consistently make sure it gets done but outsource it to somebody else who likes doing it.
6) Letting things go for others to do is not only liberating but it also means that things get done which otherwise would be a handicap in your business or your life because you just won’t do it yourself.
7) Sometimes things take time, a lot more time than you would like at times, however don’t sweat it, just let it
8) Allow things to grow naturally and every now and again just give them a little push
9) Give other people a chance and then little by little develop the relationship and allow them to do more. Also make sure they have the ability to make decisions and be responsible themselves which makes them happier in their job or tasks.
10) Whenever possible make sure that your work is built around your life and not your life built around your work
11) Trusting people is essential in your business even when that trust is thrown back in your face and doesn’t work. Remember that only one per cent of the people will treat you in this way, most people will treat you well.
12) Time is elastic.
13) It is possible to build two new businesses on top of two currently functioning businesses without doing any more work as long as it is well enough organised.
14) Therefore, have no fear of starting up more enterprises that complement the original business or even new, unrelated, enterprises as long as other people are doing the heavy work for or with you
15) The more organised you are and the more elastic is your time, the better you are able to support others who are having problems or need your help. And that can be a theme of your life, help your friends.
16) Acting as a connector between people is much more interesting than keeping things to yourself.
17) When you have a good team and a good network in place ideas flow more naturally within that network and grow not only the network but the connections you can see in your own mind to further the network more.
18) Being more present and more aware makes enjoyment of the current situation even better. Time travelling by worrying about the past and the future kill any enjoyment.
19) Even though you have huge issues in the background it is still possible to enjoy the moment (A repeat of last year and the previous one unfortunately)
20) When you know a business deal is going to be difficult and you know the client is potentially difficult just let it go. Do not think about the money, just let it go, it’s not worth it
21) Committing to something that is free for 30 days is easy and can be done every day. Paying for an extension of it later often means that then you do not carry through with what you were doing because you feel you have already paid so you don’t need to do it. I am talking about yoga of course :-). I must get back into it on a more regular basis as it felt good
22) Always go to the source rather than the messenger. The message is clearer and deals are done quicker and misunderstandings are avoided.
23) Short holidays and getting away from it are essential for much better mental health.
24) Finally I get Instagram. But… for me it is a distribution channel for FB and Twitter and images speak louder than words.
25) Work with friends and trust those friends to work with you.
26) Make those calls and answer those emails you don’t want to. Then the mind is clear to concentrate on the important stuff
27) And speaking of important stuff do it every day even if just for a few minutes
28) Defining what is important is therefore vitally important.
29) Podcasts, Rockfm, Audiobooks and Spotify are better in the car than talk radio, news channels and phone calls and form an excellent soundtrack to your life.
30) Comedy is king. Always watch the stupid videos of orangutans laughing, stand up and Laurel and Hardy and make sure the kids watch it too
31) Your close relationships are the most important ones and they should be nurtured.
32) Consistency is the key to success in everything but only when you have set off in the right direction otherwise it’s just flogging a dead horse.
33) The paleo style diet suits me well so continue doing it. However coconut water is king and some paleo diets don’t like it.
34) I should write more as it attracts clients well and continues to establish authority in the marketplace.
35) The Five Bullet Friday newsletter is a good way to spread information about Spain and it doesn’t need to be done every Friday 🙂
36) Calvin and Hobbes rediscovered
37) If something is a regular thing it doesn’t matter if you surprise people by not doing it every now and again. Just don’t make it too often.
38) Giving up on a project isn’t failure it is rationalization when other things need doing or are better rewarded.
39) Playing sport is always better than watching even when the playing is frustrating. Much more frustrating is watching something you have no control over
40) Sticking with things that work rather than going overboard on the shiny new things is important to carry on moving forward
41) When a work tool no longer does the job then change it as the frustration is huge and your workflow is slowed up. The cost of change in monetary terms can soon be made up by the increased efficiency. Justifcation for the new ipads and the upcoming new Macbook Pro there. And currently Apple is still the way to go for me because of the integration with the iphone and iPad meaning things just work straight out of the box.
42) Little things that annoy you can be easily remedied by focussing elsewhere or doing the little job that needs doing to get it out of the way permanently.
43) Children appreciate memories way more than gifts even if they constantly badger you for gifts like my kids do. Going on walks in interesting places with drinks after is much more memorable than getting them an app or video game.
44) I still don’t like consumerism and buying stuff unless it is totally needed. I also learned this year that I no longer get jealous of other people’s stuff because I am much more focussed on life being enjoyable which comes from other areas rather than “stuff”.
45) Having ten ideas a day is a constant delight when looking back at them as you realize that there is something special in there almost every day and something awesome around once a month. You may also notice that you have moved forward significantly on some of those ideas.
46) The weather in Spain is what makes life here even more bearable than the lifestyle. When you think you can spend time outside doing stuff most days of the year rather than sheltering from cold, wind, rain, sleet or snow you realize how lucky you are if you live here
47) Fear can still stop you from doing certain things that might benefit you. The fear of social media silence is why I still haven’t made use of Periscope or Google Hangouts for example
48) Helping others in terms of work and life and giving ideas away to others is what makes me even happier than doing stuff for myself
49) When you lose your seven year old Raybans then all other shades keep breaking, getting lost, or bent and do not come up to scratch.
50) Don’t sweat the small stuff, don’t obsess over details, don’t worry about minor problems, just enjoy life
and of course 51, as Anita says “You can never have too much life“
As I said this is the fifth year writing this article. See below for the previous 4 years. It’s worth the comparison. Do you think I am progressing?
And having read through the posts while placing the links above I now know a few things I keep learning and therefore maybe need to concentrate on just a tad more.
1) Video – Every year I say I should do more so just do it!!!
2) Sorting out the issue that still refuses to go away.
3) Outsourcing more assiduously
4) Time management (Less Facebook and other social media and more writing)
5) Ridding myself of the last few toxic people in my life as the previous purges have worked so well.
6) Time to push on with a few more projects that are starting to show signs of great possibilities.
Now in the comments let me know what you have learnt this year.