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Self Improvement

102 SAVED IDEAS

Your Career And Your Life

We spend almost 25 percent of our adult life in our jobs, which most of us hate. So we basically wake up every morning and do something which we don’t even like to do.

We need to find a career that does not make us miserable all the time, and according to the Japanese concept of IKIGAI, it is the intersection of three things:

  1. What we value.
  2. What we are good at.
  3. What the world values.

@redkyle

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Self Improvement

What we are passionate about is often superficial, but what we value, we can do no matter how difficult the circumstances, because we derive meaning and value from it. It is different from a compulsion or an addiction.

We need to ask three questions to direct our energy:

  1. What big problem exists that people don’t care enough about?
  2. What problems do you enjoy tackling just for fun, but others don’t?
  3. What do you naturally start to do when left on your own?

To find a perfect career, we need to be good at what we do. It may be a technical skill like writing or coding, or something different, like designing homes, or cooking.

Intangible soft skills, ignored for decades, have now become important. These include emotional intelligence, empathy or making boring topics sound interesting.

  • What we like doing is a hobby, but if it is valued by the world, it becomes a career.
  • We can figure out our strengths and what we value, and look for commercial opportunities that align with our working styles and quirks.
  • We all have our own preferences and working styles, like the desired level of freedom, what we get paid, and how respected we feel.
  • We can also be an entrepreneur and create opportunities where the current market or level of interest is under-serving, filling the gap left by others.
We have become observationally lazy

Observation is as important now as it was a thousand years ago. However, we have to do it more quickly and efficiently because we may run into fifty strangers in a day where our ancestors saw only a few.

We often see people distracted while driving (applying makeup, making phone calls, texting) and getting into traffic accidents. When we fail to observe, it leads to avoidable circumstances. It can increase the chances of being victimized. Someone may say, "I had a feeling, in the beginning, that something wasn't right."

Observation is about seeing the world around you, having situational awareness, and interpreting what others communicate verbally and nonverbally.

Good observation skills allow us to test and validate what others intend for us. Are they kind, unselfish, empathetic? Or selfish, cruel, indifferent, and apathetic? If we discover it early enough, we can spare ourselves.

Being observant does not mean being obnoxious or intrusive. It is done with subtlety and purpose. We assess for two things primarily:

  • Danger: How does this situation or individual make me feel? If you are walking to your car at night and see someone walking briskly towards you, your inner voice will make you more alert, and you can act on the feeling and avoid possible danger.
  • Comfort: Does this person make me feel comfortable at all times? Never ignore clues that say something is wrong.
We Are Wasting Attention

Attention is the most fundamental human resource to our lives, relationships, and quality of work, yet none of us are connecting like we once did.

The intense focus that we once had seems to have gone, and with it, the satisfaction that comes from deep thinking. We need to get back on track by learning how to redirect our attention.

How we manage our attention drives how we manage ourselves. How we manage our collective attention drives collective performance.

At work, as the number of inputs and distractions increase, controlling our attention becomes an essential skill to master. When we focus our attention on a project or campaign, the chances are that focused attention will lead to our most exciting moments in life.

Strong relationships are formed by the exchange of attention. If you have even been on a video call with someone that seems clearly distracted, how does it make you feel? When the family is engaged with their individual phones while eating dinner, how connected does the family seem?

Attention is a way to deepen a connection. When we understand the function of attention, we can be more conscious of how we use it.

We frequently give too little thought to how best to manage distractions.

  • Being pulled away from whatever you are focusing on right now damages productivity.
  • The distractions come with greater stress, exhaustion, and physical pain.
  • A 2.8-second interruption can cause a doubling in mistakes.
  • Once you're interrupted, it takes nearly half an hour to return to the task.
  • To achieve the same level of deep focus will take another 15-minutes.

Multitasking makes us better at being distracted and weakens self-control.

  • Research shows that multitasking undermines performance, increases mistakes, and prevents deep learning.
  • The more we multitask, the worse we tend to be at it.
  • Multitasking undermines our ability to weed out the irrelevant. Everything feels like a priority.

Yet, many people are waking up to the essential importance of attention and prepare effective responses to improve the quality of attention.

Our Work Happiness

A dream job is a goal that many want to attain, and is part of our pursuit of happiness. Happiness, in this case, is not the pleasure-seeking kind, but that which comes from meaning, purpose and good relations.

One has to understand, identify and implement the strategies that boost our happiness while working, thereby increasing our productivity and job satisfaction.

  • For employers, happy workers translate into more profit.
  • People are happy when they are in control of their work.
  • Work from home makes them happier even if they end up doing more work than they would at the office, as it is hard to switch off.
  • People who have more control on their work-life, would have the ability to make it less stressful, but it may or may not lead to real happiness.
  • As people work more, they end up damaging their work-life balance, even if they have a choice.

Creative work fits the definition of a ‘dream job’ to the hilt, as many people dream of doing stuff they love, like making great paintings, sculpting, writing scripts, and then getting paid for it too.

The problem is that society does not educate or finding purpose and meaning using our creative energy, and one has to find it on their own.

The early struggle is crucial to shape us and help us identify what makes us happy.

The problem is that everyone’s happiness is defined by them only, and one has to go through the rite of passage to reach their level of happiness and freedom.

Habit stacking

Habit stacking means adding new habits onto existing ones - to the things you already automatically do every day.

After waking up in the morning, you might put on a cup of coffee. When you visit the bathroom, you wash your hands. And before you go to bed, you brush your teeth. Throughout the day, we have lots of such behaviours that we perform automatically, and we can take advantage of them to establish new habits.

  • Identify a habit that you do every day. Make a list of all your current habits, to identify which would be suitable to stack new habits onto. It could be anything, as long as you perform it consistently. This habit will serve as your cue to start your new habit.
  • Add the new habit right afterwards.
  • When you’re creating a new habit, make things as easy as possible. It’s recommended to make new habits so easy that you’re able to do them, no matter how tired or unmotivated you are.

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