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  • Is It Still Cool to be an Entrepreneur in the Digital Age?

    Do you even dare to think about becoming an entrepreneur given the current state of the world? And not just the current one. 

    You don’t have to be an economics genius to anticipate that financial hardship will bleed out into the post-pandemic panorama. There is no clear measurement of the economic losses due to COVID-19. There won’t be any definitive ones until much later. 

    Man jotting down ideas on a piece of paper.

    But this hasn’t stopped you from scribbling down idea after idea as you went about your less than exciting day inside. Turns out social distancing zeroed in your focus on some really nice opportunities for financial growth. 

    As you are lounging around the house you keep going through your mental list of most profitable small businesses to start. Apps, platforms, social networks. Your mind has mostly shifted toward a digitally-related approach. 

    You saw the potential of something like that as soon as the first stay-at-home orders were announced to the general population. A while ago you had this nice vision about a brewery of some kind but now you’re just not sure the idea can compete with what the digital space has to offer.

    The entrepreneur without funding

    It’s a scene that happens all over the world. People think of creating something but drop it. You don’t lack enthusiasm, you lack ways to get funding for your business. Your stable 9 to 5 is there to offer your bruised ego a cushioned fall. 

    Just how many ways are there to get funding for your business anyway? As in realistic, non-miracle investors ways. 

    Breaking your piggy bank? Asking your friends and family to pitch in? None of these sound like anything long-term. And if you don’t watch your behavior you’ll turn from the wide-eyed innovator in need of a financial push into the leech whose calls no one answers anymore before you know it. 

    Hammer cracking open a piggy bank.

    You might get mad at those who’ve pulled back on their economic support of your idea and decide to turn to your entrepreneur brothers and sisters. 

    Get ready for a hard reality check. Most of them don’t have resources to spare and if they do, they’d never admit to it. But before you judge them too harshly, think of what would you do if you were in that place? If you’re looking for a sense of community, you might as well look elsewhere. 

    At best, the entrepreneurs you reach out to will respond to you in a private message telling you to keep hustling. They also won’t neglect to drop their company’s social media links in there. They gave you a pat on the back, now they have expectations of you.

    Let customer experience lead the way

    However, if you’re not one to get easily scared by grim entrepreneurial facts, then maybe you can start toying with the consumer and digital experience dynamic. 

    Most businesses still have a lot of catching up to do when it comes to technology. And as we have been dealing with social distancing and stay-at-home orders in the past year, we all have unique examples of companies that could use innovative ideas to improve customer experience online. 

    Let’s cut to the chase: the business owner who navigated 2020 with a user-friendly app, perfected chatbots and a goal-oriented social media strategy is way ahead of the game as compared to their competition lacking all these.

    Opened chat box on a phone screen.

    If your competitor offers your potential customer the possibility to fill an online form and communicate their concerns regarding a product or a service, you think your potential client will take the time to come to your office to do so? 

    Times may be (and they currently are) that it would simply be too much at stake for them to choose to stroll over and have a face-to-face interaction. 

    I can’t help but think of a particular pizza place I love that always frustrated me because they didn’t deliver. The owner smugly related to me that she has an established clientele and from a financial perspective she can afford to be in a position in which she doesn’t have to deliver. She’s closed the place down ever since the pandemic started. 

    Like the pizza owner of this great pizza place, there are many others across all areas of consumption and industries tossing ideas meant to improve customer experience at the bottom of the priorities list.

    The buzz of the online hangout

    So you need a website and/ or a cool app for your customers. You knew that already. 

    But what allows you to nurture online leads is thinking through the complete customer journey and creating a digital flow to help them navigate each relevant touchpoint.

    No one’s asking you to design a full virtual reality experience for your customers to cater to their needs, but what’s your excuse for not having jumped on the digital payments and social media interactivity train? 

    A hashtag symbol next to a heart.

    Gone are the days when something like this would put you ahead of the game. This merely keeps you in the game. Only after you’re done with the basics you can move on to play around with innovative ideas to improve customer experience.

    Taking care of your social media is perhaps one of the best examples of how in the marketing arena a seemingly banal investment can benefit you hugely. See anything that has ever gone viral from a company account. 

    That’s the result of having a company’s social media supervised and actively managed. 

    That’s a social media specialist just waiting for their time to shine with a clap back, a spicy meme, or a cheeky comment. 

    That’s meeting customers where they hang out most – social media. 

    Tech – what you give and what you get 

    So what about the costs of technology interfering this much with the capitalism we’re operating on? If consumers are relying on technology more and more, what are the effects of that on the way they interact with goods and services? 

    Most of those who pay attention would agree that there are quite a few problems with capitalism today as it is. 

    As pleased as we are with the specifically tailored ads we’re getting… everywhere we hang online really, most of us have maybe had a thought or two about what we’re giving up in return. 

    Smiling woman pointing to a dollar sign.

    The direct cost of all these “free” apps and services we willingly jump on is our private information. It’s frightening to think that we surrender such sensitive info to Big Tech without any knowledge on how it will be processed. 

    The exchange in itself is kind of unbalanced and unfair. On our side, we trade our personal data so that we could watch some fun content and slap some likes around. On their side, they give us access to the fun content without revealing the end goal of gathering our private info. 

    Capitalism today is clearly nothing like capitalism in its conceptual form. In that version, there’s a lot more transparency in the exchange so that consumers can discern when making choices. 

    This cannot be the case within an economy profiting off people’s addictions to their goods and services. The Big Tech economic model is way past accommodating clients’ needs and deep into creating dependencies.

    If we want to talk about the big problems with capitalism today, looking into the predatory nature of Big Tech is a good place to start. And perhaps a new understanding of “free” markets is in order.

    None of this is to say that technology is the devil. We simply have to educate ourselves more about the ways in which it continuously remodels the way we interact with businesses. And who else better to spark these conversations than the entrepreneur of the digital age.

  • How to Deal with Shifting Priorities at Work Positively

    You know the ugly truth no one wants to go near when giving you the how to be more productive tips? Changing priorities. 

    Your average motivational speaker conveniently misses the topic of shifting priorities at work. Yes, we know to stay off social media, we’ve figured out how to time box and we’re pretty good at using scheduling apps. But can I get some insights on how to deal with the boss changing priorities according to who knows what criteria?

    Did anyone ever teach you how to organize your to-do list?

    No doubt, learning how to sort your priorities is how you conquer all that represents time management. But in itself, that’s something that needs practice and a clear critical eye. 

    Let your anxiety take over your decision-making and before you know it, you’ll group all tasks you need to work on under “Top Prio.” 

    Let your procrastination lead the way and everything will seem like it could wait a while without any serious consequences. 

    I’ve seen people who would categorize all the items on their to-do list as urgent. I’ve also seen the other side of the coin i.e. individuals swearing that there is no need to rush with anything in particular and they will get their work done in time. 

    Both sides thought they were skilled in organization. Yet they lacked any kind of balance and the ability to pull the trigger. As the weekend nears, the former approaches burnout, the latter desperation. Not a great way to live.

    Boss shifting priorities

    Look, it’s a good thing you’ve started the week with a to-do list. Or lists. Most people do it if only to romanticize their working style a bit. Nothing wrong with it. 

    Checking items off the lists as days go by is clearly important, otherwise, people would not have created lists in the first place. But you know what’s more important? Spotting that whatever seemed critical on Tuesday morning isn’t really that much of a big deal Wednesday afternoon. 

    When it comes to what affects productivity in the workplace, I’d argue that not being afraid to call the shots on what lost its prio status is more valuable to you long-term. 

    Big team, small team, solopreneur, things change all the time, and whoever jumps into the flow ultimately wins. 

    What’s that? You’ve worked on optimizing blog posts on your website and then you find out you won’t get the budget you were promised for your content marketing strategy? Oh, and also, your boss now needs your involvement in another project? 

    Deep sighs, deep breaths, disbelief, speechless, short-circuited brain, and a polite “how can I help?” email you send after you’ve cooled off. Maybe not necessarily in that order. 

    If you think prioritization is hard, try deprioritization

    There are a bunch of things that can frustrate you in such a situation. Some of them might be placed under themes such as disrespect, poor management, or insecurities in the workplace. But few come close to the bitter truth: your plans have been messed with without your consultation. 

    Now you have to deprioritize your initial prioritization. The problem is not getting the new thing(s) done, is it? The problem is fitting getting this new thing(s) done into the current prioritization you’re running on. The realization of that is where the slightly raised blood pressure comes from, right?

    You take a look at your to-do list, and you know it’s not about being unable to meet deadlines at work. No, it’s about re-thinking tasks you’ve already thought about. You’ve got some things you’ve crossed out, some you’ve barely started, and then you only have the mental roadmap for a few other projects. 

    But with all these, you’re somehow invested. It’s a walk in the park to deprioritize tasks you’re indifferent to completely. It’s once you’ve put in some sweat and tears that the huffing and puffing start.

    The thing is, shifting priorities at work is something you will keep running into as long as you do some type of work. It’d be great to be able to catch yourself (or others) prioritizing the wrong tasks early, to quickly readjust your focus, and to stop giving yourself (or others) hell while you do it. So, let’s cut to the chase.

    Signs it’s time to review your to-do list fast

    Realizing you’ve been working on the thing that needed your attention the least usually comes pretty late in the game, huh? Maybe right about when you ask Google what affects productivity in the workplace. You’re pretty deep into it at that point. 

    You’ve got your list of tasks. You’ve got it split into high priorities and low priorities. Right. So, where did you go wrong? How did low prio tasks end up on the other side of the fence claiming your attention and work hours?

    Here are some guesses about what went south:

    1. You chose urgent over value. If one deadline is closer than the other, it might have been enough reason for you to make a high priority out of it. If all that’s top prio on your to-do list has a looming deadline, and all the tasks with comfortable deadlines are categorized as lower prio, that’s a red flag.

    2. You have no plan(s) for changing plan(s). Well, I can’t anticipate what’s going to pop up. I heard that, and that’s not really relevant. It’d be useful, however, to take a few minutes after you’ve put together your to-do list and mentally cover the who, what, when, and how just in case you’re not going to be able to do it the way you’ve initially envisioned. Contingency, as Batman would have it.

    3. Poorly defined outcomes. It’s a sign of immature practice to just write up some goals because that’s what you’re supposed to do. Company or individual. Having a clear and relevant picture of what you’re working towards will save you from wasting precious time. We’re talking ultimate, core goals here, not task goals or project goals. 

    On top of all these, that one coworker or worse, manager (😱🤦‍♀️) keeps meeting your workload concerns with lousy comments about just how easy of an option giving up is. 

    Of course, they offer no actual evidence to support their distorted Internet quote. In fact, by bringing phrases like “giving up” in, they frame the issue worse than it was to begin with. 

    These kinds of chats do not help with making deprioritization an easier process, so avoid them altogether. 

    They say to be a team player and raise issues for discussion. 

    I say be a team player and raise issues for discussion with the smart people only. Creating more problems while trying to fix another problem is the last thing you want.

    Adapting to shifting priorities

    Here’s what you need to do:

    First, you get it through your head that your to-do list is not written in stone. You can tweak, cross out, re-order. Whatever needs to be done for it to be helpful to you. 

    If it’s of no service to you, why keep it the way it is? Your to-do list is a tool. You have agency over it, not the other way around. Get into that line of thinking. 

    Secondly. Either one of the following or both:

    1. Set check-ins with the project manager

    Yes, it’s important to keep your head in the game to get things done. It’s even more beneficial to shift perspective, step out of the daily grind, and critically assess the progress. 

    Depending on the length of the project, weekly or monthly check-ins are something to consider. Set a time to question your every move and take action accordingly. If you don’t, your subconscious mind will more than likely do it for you the chaotic way. 

    No one is breathing down your neck and it has nothing to do with you being unable to meet deadlines at work. But simply: finding out you were going in the wrong direction when you are 30% done is undeniably better than finding out as you are approaching completion.

    2. Deconstruct the task

    Maybe you don’t need to lose the whole task you had as a top prio. Maybe there’s a part of it that can be put on hold with no immediate grave consequences. 

    To be fair, this is exactly how you are supposed to handle those “urgent” tasks also. Most of the time, it’s just part of them that’s urgent, but we get overwhelmed because we perceive it as having to deal with the entirety of the situation. Whatever that may be. 

    You don’t have to feel pressured to come up with a solution for a client 5 minutes after you’ve read their email. Caps on text or not. You can simply deal with what you perceive as the “urgent” part of the issue – their “tone”/ impatience. 

    Write them a polite email in which you tell them… basically the truth. Which is that the problem is more complex and you will be back with a detailed answer after you’ve looked into it properly.

    Done. No way they think you’re blissfully ignoring them after that and you can get on with what you had planned for the day without stressing about unwanted escalations.

    The best thing you can do to get on the level of productivity you envision yourself to be at is to be honest with yourself. The energy and attention span you have today are not the same you’ll have tomorrow or the day after that. So, think your time through with that in mind. 

    It’s a fact we all silently push in the background of the productivity conversation. Who would tell their client that they gave any less than 100% working on their project? No one I can think of. And yet it applies to all of us.

  • Digital Sales – 2 Things You Need to Handle Flawlessly

    Pretty sure you intuitively know most things about digital sales already. Why? Well, because you live in today’s world. You lived before that, too and because of it, you’ve got to experience and witness multiple ways of selling and buying things. 

    Digital sales then and now

    online digital sales process

    Maybe when you were younger people would randomly show up at your door and for whatever reason, in no time you saw your grandma run to get her wallet. 

    A few pleasantries (and currency) were exchanged and then the unknown person would hand her a box of something. 

    House appliances, you’d learn after snooping. 

    You didn’t even know you needed them. 

    Did she know she needed them? 

    The person selling her the stuff must have, right? 

    Thanks, stranger at the door. For the appliances and for setting a younger me on the curious road of customer behaviour analysis.

    Digital sales are the cool rich aunt

    make money with a relevant sales and marketing strategy

    People going door to door to sell stuff is still a thing (not a 2020 thing with the pandemic and all) but admittedly a more rare occurrence. 

    When is the last time you bought something from someone who showed up at your door? 

    Scratch that: when is the last time you even gave your time to some unwanted guest? Depending on your age, the answer might just be never. 

    It’s not you, and it’s not them. It’s this digital reality that we all have had to align with to not get left behind in our lives and businesses.

    No reason to be intimidated by the notion of digital sales. It quite literally refers to the sales that are made with the help of virtual channels. 

    Do I mean that the whole thing traditional sales had going on simply moved to the digital space? Kind of, but with a twist. 

    • Yes, your goal is still to convert prospects into leads. 
    • Yes, you still have to build a well-defined strategy. 
    • Yes, you still have to be attentive and appropriately switch between tactics as dictated by your researched customer behaviour analytics. 

    But you also have to consider that the (digital) medium inevitably leaves its imprint on the whole ordeal. You’re cheating yourself, therefore, if you’re trying to figure out your digital sales strategy with the help of a sales funnel. 

    You need a digital sales funnel if you’re going to do this right.

    The research before buying

    product research and customer behaviour in marketing

    The second something catches their eye, most people go online to look it up. Serious homework is done before purchasing something. 

    This isn’t grandma interacting with the object of her desire for the first time on her doorstep. This is competition, options, and 24/7 wealth of knowledge availability. You don’t even have to talk to anyone.

    Understand online customer behaviour and then you can take care of the rest of your problems. 

    Realistically speaking, figuring out how to turn prospects into leads regularly should be the constant goal of a small business. You’d be surprised how many outright neglect pouring their efforts into bringing in new clients and instead keep refining processes ad infinitum. 

    But whatever insecurities fuel this stalling, we all know at some point you’ve got to jump. Sometimes you get it together and just do it, other times it can take you a while, but every time, you’ve got to do it eventually.

    What is digital sales and marketing gold?

    sales and marketing techniques that actually work

    The digital sales funnel. Do not overlook the “digital” part of it. Do so and you miss out on the complexity that characterizes digital sales. And on the revenue associated with it. 

    You have to be prepared to handle non-linear, informed decision-making coming from the side of your customer. 

    Why non-linear? Because of the web

    Why informed? Because of the web

    So what else is happening to your business because of the web? That’s on you to examine, research, and assess so that you can put together a proper customer behaviour analysis. 

    Document it, come back to it, share it with your team, talk it out with people who are smarter than you. Stay engaged in the process. Harboring data for the sake of harboring data is way too common of a practice, and we could always use a reminder to snap out of it.

    You’ve got to put in the work. You’ve got to anticipate the moves of your clients. This is what customer behaviour in marketing is about. You, the small business owner having sets of potential customer obstacles and motivations written down and shared with your team. 

    Each stage of the sales and marketing strategy is defined in a way that is easy for both your sales team and your marketing team to visualize and use. If that means involving the teams in putting together the plan, then that’s what you need to do. 

    Have a chat with sales and marketing. 

    • If by the end of it you’re working with 2 different sets of solutions for top of the funnel clients and bottom of the funnel clients, you’re doing good
    • If by the end of it both your sales team and your marketing team perfectly understand the differences between the two sets, you’re doing great.

    Quick side note before closing

    Do not underestimate how much reporting your sales team needs to do. 

    It’s not a lone-wolf job. It’s not a “my natural charm closed the sale” thing. 

    The salesperson needs to be observant of everything that happens – and I mean every little thing that occurs in the customer journey – and communicate that to marketing. 

    Your salesperson needs to give more of an input than I closed the sale or I did not close the sale. This kind of info helps marketing not shoot in the dark and waste serious time and resources. 

    Any hesitation, and misplaced clicks, any color and sound preferences will help the marketing team shape up the relevant content for each stage of the digital sales funnel. 

    Thank goodness that in the digital era we can use screenshots and voice memos to quickly share this kind of info, right? 

    I don’t want to hear about sales and marketing not getting along because they have to report to one another. How else are we supposed to work on content development and product design, and, you know, run a business?

    use the relevant digital sales channels

    Both the sales and the marketing team are in the generate quality leads team. The aim is to bring into the sales funnel leads that are a good match that you can easily nurture into paying customers. 

    Forcing each lead into the image of your ideal lead is an unfortunate but common practice among small businesses. It starts in desperation and ends up in chaos. 

    But this fact won’t stop the small business owner obsessively wanting new leads from giving it a try. Sure, look desperate in front of your clients and your employees, how could they possibly not rely on you after that?

  • Burnout Recovery – It’s Not All on You

    Surely you’ve looked up burnout recovery at some point in your life. 

    You probably just needed confirmation of some sort. You don’t really need strangers on the internet telling you what to change so that your every day doesn’t feel as burdensome. 

    Adulting 101 and a little bit more

    It was a process. You’ve most likely led with a few how to stay motivated at work Google searches. Most of your links are a variation of adulting 101 tips. Is this what it has come to? You mumble to yourself half frustrated, half intrigued. 

    Now you’re questioning whether you’re simply having issues handling adult life, whatever that means. You’re not totally useless, you know that. You’re not being dramatic. 

    What you wonder is why is it you can zoom through some of your to dos while others remain unchecked for an embarrassingly long time? Is it just a matter of preferring some things over others?

    It can be. 

    If you’ve lived and operated in this world long enough, you’ve most likely developed a sense for spotting high-effort, low-reward activities as well as methods to handle them appropriately.

    If it doesn’t make your day to day easier to navigate, then no need to bother with it for the time being. Practical, isn’t it?

    Burnout and your chores 

    Regardless of how prevalent it is, most people take a long time to recognize the signs of burnout. 

    That can happen for many reasons, but the driving one sitting at the root of it all is the idea that you have not completely shut down. You’re still functional, you do all these other things, you just can’t find it in you to do X, Y, Z already. But there are only so many hours in a day, you’ll get to those at some point, right? Wrong. 

    It’s messed up that the rhythm of the modern world has us thinking that it’s only when you’ve reached a vegetative state that you’re in burnout. Remember this one when you put together your burnout recovery plan.

    If you think with horror at your mundane chores, you’re probably burned out. You work so hard that by the time you get to these, your tank is empty. It’s still empty at your job, you know that very well, but at least in that case pretending that it’s not still gets you compensated. 

    It’s not just your problem, it’s an entire generation’s problem. 

    It takes 1 financial crisis

    Are our parents to blame?

    Short answer is: yes.

    Long answer is: only a little. They couldn’t have known how the economic climate would be when we would enter the job market, so they did the next best thing: raised us to fit the demands of their economic environment. 

    Add to this the age-old indirect expectation that the next generation will do better than the current one in terms of everything. Sounds stressful even just on paper, huh?

    How to achieve financial security? Mom? Dad? Adulting 101 tips?

    From a financial point of view, the majority of us are doing way worse than our parents did when they were our age. 

    Their savings carried some weight, their stability is probably the reason they could afford to marry and start a family young. If you need financial security examples from which you’ve got something to learn, look elsewhere. 

    Your background has a 2008 financial crisis dictating your future. Yes, your future – how long it will take you to get to your career goals if you are to get to them at all. 

    What has the financial crisis introduced? 

    Full-time jobs in short supply, academic skills put on hold for babysitting gigs, jobs offering no benefits, entry-level positions far outnumbering anything else. That’s what a tight job market looks like. 

    No matter how much you were thinking about how to work hard to be successful, there is only a certain type of success such an economic environment can allow. Not to mention that the focus is less on success and more on how to achieve financial security.

    Losing the meta view on things

    Many think of themselves as failures in such scenarios. Your classic adulting 101 meme has a punchline about how hard you’ve worked for a set of skills only to end up not using them at your job. 

    A promising young programmer being a nanny for a paycheck might leave a few marks on their ego. And understandably so. You didn’t go to school to become a nanny. 

    What will your parents say? 

    What will your friends think? 

    What about your true passion? 

    Is this whole thing more about learning how to stay focused and keep going no matter what?

    It’s easy for a relentlessly hard worker to simply believe that all they need to do in such circumstances is to continue to better themselves and widen their skills and network. And it is this kind of mindset in this kind of economic landscape that gets you burned out. 

    This is how you start feeling guilty about leisure time because obviously if you work harder your finances are going to be looking better. 

    This is how you start believing that all you need to do is figure out how to stay focused on your goals 24/7. 

    This is how you’ll finally get to that place in which you feel “good enough” – yet another one of those tricky adulting 101 topics.

    Gimmicky optimization

    In comes Instagram with its cool and trendy life narratives – even work life narratives – showing how much fun everybody else but you is having on the clock. 

    Scrolling through your feed makes you question needing a burnout recovery plan at all. Am I just being a baby? Do I just need to print out some motivation tips for work and show some discipline? 

    We’re a generation that has been hardly raised but much optimized. 

    That’s how schools work today. Kids are being moulded to do well at a job more than ever. Every training, every course tells us about how to optimize our processes so that we can work more. The question of how to stay focused on your goals is always in the back of your mind, yet it’s still you that’s looked down upon for not doing more. 

    Why? Because doing overtime as a means of standing out among your peers has become expected, because answering late night emails cannot be equated to hard labor, because nothing is ever wrong or too much, you just have poor time management skills. 

    You take it if the only other option is to quit. 

    It’d be not only ridiculous but also irrelevant to ask one individual to fight a company or company culture in general. 

    As with most things, individual action will not lead to much. A whole new look into our ways of working is necessary if we’d like to collectively move toward genuine burnout recovery. 

    If optimizing your life means making room for more work, then the entire point of optimization has been missed. 

  • Why Is It important to Be Curious?

    When it comes down to it, we’re a bunch of curious creatures doing curious things. 

    It’s a simplistic and heavily dependent on perspective view, but it still poses the question: 

    Why be curious?

    Evolution, i.e. the very thing that’s got us all here, would tell you that the sequence of events leading to you scanning this text is nothing more than a set of examples of human curiosity. 

    Way to go, everyone!

    Without any sort of exaggeration, thus, we can think of curiosity as a way to perpetuate our species

    Need might have been there first, but it’s still curiosity that deserves the credit for us getting better at survival.

    Mental clarity and unruly life

    Here’s a statement we can all agree on – life is not an easy thing. In fact, it’s probably the one constant source of confusion engulfing all our years on this planet. 

    We’ve seen life being ugly and unfair, and it isn’t always easy keeping it all at a distance to stoically continue refining our hustles. 

    More often than not, it hits closer to home and we end up creating misery for ourselves. 

    And when you’re the main culprit, mental clarity is even more challenging to find.

    Can self-improvement be boosted by an economic world?

    It certainly doesn’t help that a great deal of what the economic world has to offer is based on marketing strategies solely crafted to turn our fears and insecurities into profits. 

    How much trust can you realistically put in a world that has created markets so you can conveniently deal with your journey of self-improvement

    People have answers for sale. 

    They know how to get you closer to your dream or your ultimate success milestone. 

    They understand your circumstances better than you do yourself. 

    For a fee, of course. 

    And from the obvious con artists to the subtly manipulative, you get quite the taste of human creativity provided you have the budget to be given the time of the day.

    But if any industry out there were able to successfully solve self-improvement issues, we wouldn’t really have self-help experts with increasingly fatter bank accounts, now would we? 

    Be more focused to be more curious

    Not to make a dramatic statement, but it pretty much looks like we’re on our own. 

    It seems to me like the only way to make it against these odds is by learning how to stay focused. 

    However, in a world ready to profit off of everything you’re lacking, most of the time, such a task looks and feels entirely impossible to accomplish.

    So then the obvious question must be asked: 

    Are we doomed to chase answers to issues without solutions?

    In all fairness, we’ve all been playing a part in setting some unattainable standards, perhaps not realizing we’re feeding systems that have no concerns for the things that actually matter in life.

    Because the world we live in has become a primarily economic world (I’d love to hear the con arguments on this one) in which everything has been turned into a commodity, the actual value generators in our lives are constantly pushed in the background. 

    One such thing is curiosity.

    Survival, history, curiosity

    The benefits of curiosity go way beyond our desire to figure out how to be more interesting in life. 

    Humans are way past being born into a blank canvas world. Since we are infants we inherit the accomplishments of all the generations before us. 

    And if there’s something our collective history can prove is that we know how to be creative. And if there’s something our collective history can prove is that we know how to be creative. 

    From architecture to ways of living, to languages, one generation always conquers what their forefathers could not

    The impossible, when looked at it this way, seems only a matter of time.

    At the same time, however, we’re inevitably passed on tons of issues. 

    How come we have to deal with the same problems our ancestors had? 

    As mentioned at the beginning of this piece, chances are very specific groups are profiting off of the active prevention of finding solutions to these problems. 

    History also sheds light, perhaps more than on any other aspect of life, on how humans constantly engage in less than humane acts towards their fellows rarely for solid, justifiable reasons. 

    You’re handed the tools for progress for sure, but your shoulders are also weighed down with all this responsibility

    This is where learning how to be focused comes in handy. 

    Be creative in life, see what happens

    We’re also not born and raised in equal circumstances, so as we navigate our path, we are given, or voluntarily take on different levels of responsibility. 

    And, implicitly, the strain and mental toll that come with it. None have an attached manual, but dare I say that’s a good thing. 

    Copying what the previous generations did wouldn’t lead us very far. 

    How could following the rules of different times help us be successful today? 

    Studying and adapting them? Sure. Getting ourselves stuck in a loop? Absolutely not.

    We have to learn to be creative because it’s our only way to make sense and come on top of what our ancestors have left us. 

    So as thankful as we are for the discoveries they’ve made, we must respectfully not believe that they have already found all the answers. 

    That’s how you take the power away from creativity and curiosity – by making people believe that there already are definitive answers out there. 

    Looking at you, consumerism. 🧐

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