We’re not talking about the one with Richard Gere.
Read time: 12 min
Good morning. What is the first palindrome you think of when someone brings up palindromes?
Mine is “A man a plan a canal Panama.” Thanks, high school history – and Teddy Roosevelt.
Today’s newsletter is dedicated to all our awesome readers. May we know them. May we be them. May we raise them.
“You must find the place inside yourself where nothing is impossible.”
– Deepak Chopra
SELF-DISCOVERY: Unleash the Achiever within
Eat, Pray, Love
You feel as though you are losing control of the direction of your own life. You don’t know what you’re doing or why you’re doing it. You begin to feel as though your desires or decisions no longer matter. Maybe you want to walk dogs and listen to jazz all day—but the overwhelming demands of your life responsibilities make you feel as though you’re not able to live out those desires.
Every moment of every day, you are making decisions on how to spend your time, on what to pay attention to, and on where to direct your energy —all of which reflect our values.
Many of us state values we wish we had to conceal the values we actually have. We fail to back up these wishes with our actions. Aspiration becomes a form of avoidance. Instead of facing who we really are, we lose ourselves in who we wish to become.
How did we decide on those values and that specific idea of self?
We often assume that we know who we are from the start. I often think, “I should know who I am after being me for 20+ years.” Wrong.
There is usually an aha-moment when we realize the person who we thought we were, and the values we thought we had are not a part of our reality. We go on a journey to “find ourselves,” which really means finding new values. Our “self” is the aggregation of everything we value. We are defined by what we find important in our lives through our actions, our words, and our decisions.
Here’s how you can start your creative, personal discovery process in 5 simple steps:
- Tabula Rosa (like you learned in U.S. History). Start with a blank slate, with no preconceived notions of who you are. This gives you the space to discover and define your personal values.
- Create Your List of Personal Values. Think about your most meaningful or revealing experiences, moments of frustration or guilt, and things you must have in your life. Here’s a list of core values to get you started.
- Now that you have your values chunk them into groups and give that group an overarching theme. This is your BIG LIST OF VALUES.
- Cut out the values that are not essential to your life, those that don’t represent your primary way of being or don’t support your inner self. Hold onto 5 – 10 values from the BIG LIST.
- Rank em, baby. This is your ACHIEVER VALUES LIST.
Reply with a pic of your ACHIEVER VALUES LIST.
ACHIEVERS’ ARMORY: Equip yourself with proven tools & tactics
Helping You Accept More Money
It sometimes feels like cash is becoming obsolete because so many Americans no longer carry cash on them. Think about it: you’re out with your friends or order-in food, someone pays with their debit or credit card, and the rest use Venmo or Zelle to pay their portion. There’s not much thought into how this transaction works for the business. So, what does a company do when selling physical products to customers in-person?
Clover is a simple to use point of sale system that allows businesses of any size to accept non-cash payments from there customers. This system accepts credit cards, debit cards, gift cards, and the ever-growing in popularity, contactless payment. Also, they provide the ability to accept and scan checks as well.
Of course, some customers are still going to carry cash. Clover has you covered there with their virtual cash drawer system that handles all of your cash transactions. The Clover system runs on a portable screen that can be moved wherever it is needed. Payments can be submitted by an employee or by the customer.
To check out Clover’s additional features and solutions, click here.
EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE: Master the soft skills
Mistakes Were Made (But Not By Me)
We all make mistakes, but obviously fewer mistakes than other people, right? We’re almost perfect, where everyone else is pretty ordinary. Or so we tend to think.
For those of you who haven’t read this book, it is so worth the read. Carol Tavris and Elliot Aronson address topics that cause and contribute to why we make decisions and how we justify those decisions to others and ourselves, even if they aren’t the best ones. If you haven’t heard of these before, let us introduce you to some important concepts about social psychology.
- Cognitive Dissonance: Psychological stress experienced when a person holds two or more contradictory beliefs, ideas, or values; or participates in an action that goes against one of these three. Ex. If your spouse commits a crime.
- Confirmation Bias: The tendency to search for, interpret, favor, and recall information that confirms or supports one’s prior beliefs or values—the Donald Trump MO.
- Cognitive Bias: The systematic pattern of deviation from the norm or rationality in judgment. All social justice warriors.
- Positive Feedback Loop: The process that occurs in a feedback loop that exacerbates the effects of a small disturbance. Think cattle stampede.
- Self-Deception: Denying or rationalizing away the relevance, significance, or importance of opposing evidence and logical argument, telling yourself that it’s normal to have six martinis in a row once in a while.
These phenomena occur both in ourselves and in others, and recognizing them can help us understand why people have made mistakes. Understanding this helps us to be better when making decisions and helps us to understand others when they may be at fault and fail to realize or own up to it.
MINDSET: Train your brain to win
No More Bananas for Your Monkey Mind
We have around 50,000 separate thoughts each day. Imagine each thought is a banana, and your conscious mind is a monkey, swinging from branch to branch eating one banana after the other— this is your monkey mind. Most of the time, these bananas are unripe and not sweet.
The monkey mind is the part of the brain that is most connected to the ego. It can persuade us that we can’t do anything right, stifle creativity, prevent us from following our passions, and distract us.
Ever catch yourself thinking, “Wow, that couldn’t have been more awkward,” “I can’t remember anything,” or “Why did I say that?”? Hmmm, probably not the most helpful thoughts. This monkey insists on being heard.
Here are some ways to make this monkey work for us rather than against us:
- Meditate with Focused Attention (FA) or Open Monitoring (OM). FA focuses on one thing, usually the breath, to train attention. When your mind inevitably wanders, you bring it back to the breath, again and again. In OM, you watch your thoughts non-judgmentally, acknowledge them, and then let them go (cue Elsa).
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) teaches you to recognize a negative thought process you tend to fall back on, and then consciously create a new thought more based in reality to replace it.
- Practice mindfulness by paying attention to the present moment, however cliche that may sound.
- Color, count, recite, run, talk to a friend to distract yourself, and divert your thoughts to an activity, thought, or emotion that takes away the negative thought.
- Stop being so self-absorbed! Kidding, but seriously, focusing on something or someone outside of yourself can certainly help.
Next time your monkey mind is swinging from branch to branch hungry for some bananas, remember all of the times your negative thoughts and fears have not actually materialized.
SOCIAL CAPITAL: Build a powerful network
Three Types of People You Need In Your Life
The balance of healthy personal relationships is critical in maintaining your mental health, as well as your professional potential.
If you don’t have that balance, you’ll get consumed with what you do and lose sight of who you are. And what you do will eat up who you are—until all you are is what you do. Confused yet? We’ll clear it up.
The higher you go at anything, the more deeply you have to be rooted in something. We all know the Michael Jacksons of the world who do the most amazing things but often fall on their sword because it is hard to compete with a big life if you’ve got a small home.
Surround yourself with three different types of people to keep you balanced:
- People who need you. These people give you purpose. It’s essential to have people who drive you to work hard, achieve, and be consistent. These are people you help, people you train or teach, and people you lead.
- People who feed you. If you have a certain amount of people in your life who need you, you must have a certain amount of people in your life who feed you. Without people who feed you, you’re going to feel empty and drained pretty soon. These people are mentors, loved ones, faith leaders, and others whom you can lean on and learn from.
- People who want to keep you. The people you enjoy and who enjoy you. They’re just crazy and fun to be with, you know? Your mind gets a rest. It is neither drained nor fed.
Live in the middle of these three types of people to stay healthy, happy, and productive.
FUN STUFF – FOOD FOR THOUGHT, OR DINNER
Here’s a cool website to decide what to make for dinner when you don’t have a clue.
Supercook: You tell it which ingredients you have in stock in your home, and it’ll give you a big list of recipes you can make using just those ingredients.
NEWS BREAK: Stay informed
- Don’t expect to get a coronavirus vaccination until well into 2021.
- Chris Pratt and Katherine Schwarzenegger had their baby girl, Lyla Maria Schwarzenegger Pratt.
- The CEO of Apple, Tim Cook, hit billionaire status, a hard feat for a CEO who is not a founder.
- Lebanon’s prime minister stepped down from his job Monday in the wake of the catastrophic explosion in Beirut.
- The S&P 500 is now within 1% of its last record high.
1% BETTER: Improve each day
Make progress on any chores that have piled up by spending ONLY ten minutes on them. Don’t feel obligated to complete them, simply begin.