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Saturday, December 03, 2016

The paralyzing fear of having nothing to lean against

Fletcher was the most highly regarded and prolific graphic designer of his generation. 

In his bestselling book on visual intelligence, he famously wrote that the first move in any creative process was to introduce constraints. 

And most artists would agree. A little structure won’t kill your free spirit. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. Without some kind of constraint, there’s nothing to lean against. No boundaries against which to bounce your brilliant ideas. 

Besides, facing a blank canvas is hard enough already. Imagine one that didn’t have borders. Yikes. 

What’s interesting is, this same principle applies to non artistic pursuits as well. It’s the universal human anxiety of having too much freedom. The paralyzing fear of having no constraints. 

I’m reminded the heartbreaking story about the developer of the most popular video game of all time. Microsoft bought out his company for two and half billion dollars. Shortly thereafter, he relocated to a twenty thousand square feet, seventy million dollar mansion. 

And yet, he still wasn’t happy. In fact, he was profoundly depressed. What happened? 

According to a public statement from developer himself, the problem with getting everything you ever wanted is, you run out of reasons to keep trying. Human interaction becomes impossible due to imbalance. And you just sit around, waiting for your friends with jobs and families to have time for you, watching your reflection in the monitor. 

That’s the curse of having no constraints. The danger of having too much freedom. You wind up avoiding all human contact and natural sunlight in favor of disappearing down the rabbit hole of your own bullshit. 

It’s insidious. Nobody warns you about it. 

And so, if you’ve been feeling an overwhelming sense of emptiness, disconnection and imbalance, find a way to introduce constraints into your life. Create borders and structures and routines and schedules. Make a special effort to deepen your direct participation with the world. And keep building your relationship network that provides a sense of identity and esteem and allows you to give and receive support. 

Otherwise it will become too easy to hide. 

Prince, rest in peace, said it best. Too much freedom can lead to the soul’s decay. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS... 
How are you battling your antisocial tendencies and creating a more direct relationship with the world? 

LET ME SUGGEST THIS... 

For the list called, "99 Ways to Think Like an Entrepreneur, Even If You Aren't One," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *

Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Inventor. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.  
scott@hellomynameisscott.com
www.nametagscott.com


Never the same speech twice. Customized for your audience. Impossible to walk away uninspired.

Now booking for 2017-2018.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of 


The Nametag Guy in action here!

Friday, December 02, 2016

Nobody is standing in the way of your ability to generate value.

I’m nostalgic for a time when my ideas were considered interesting enough to make headlines. 

Back when I first started my career, my story went viral before viral was viral. And I barely even had to do anything. On multiple occasions, my book would steal the spotlight and capture the media cycle for a few days at a time, simply by telling the press about some guy who wore a nametag everyday. 

And that was with a war going on. 

But now, it feels like everyone is wearing a nametag. Everyone is interesting. Everyone has their own little personal brand that’s unique and memorable. 

And that infuriates me. Because I was ahead of the game for fifteen years, and now it feels like the world has finally caught up. 

Of course, that’s the structure of evolution. All organisms must keep changing just to stay competitive. And if we fail to adapt, nobody is going to catch us when we fall. 

We’re just going to keep running faster, only to remain in the same place. 

But the upside to evolution is, nobody is standing in the way of our ability to generate value. As humans, our greatest tool for survival is our ability to think and to adapt. 

And so, if we want to create new value in the world, we have to surrender our case history and bow to the door of next. 

To coin a phrase, we have to live larger than our labels. 

Pardon the pun, but that’s literally true for me. Because in my world, the nametag isn’t enough. Not anymore. But that’s fine.

I accept that what got me here won’t get me there. 

I accept that what identifies me doesn’t define me. 

I accept that the work I’ve already done matters little beyond the fact that it brought me here. 

I accept that the past I am used to may not be my best future. 

Onward. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS... 
Are you still down on yourself for not standing out and being special in your work?
LET ME SUGGEST THIS... 

For the list called, "99 Ways to Think Like an Entrepreneur, Even If You Aren't One," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *

Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Inventor. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.  
scott@hellomynameisscott.com
www.nametagscott.com


Never the same speech twice. Customized for your audience. Impossible to walk away uninspired.

Now booking for 2017-2018.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of 


The Nametag Guy in action here!

Thursday, December 01, 2016

All emotions are weather patterns

When you feel bitter, it’s difficult to put your life in perspective. 

No matter how many gratitude lists you create, no matter how many positive affirmations you receive from people you love, and no matter how many entries you write in your victory log, sometimes, it’s simply not possible to delight in what’s wonderful about your life. 

And that’s okay. Everyone has permission to feel lousy. There’s no shame in sitting with the anger. And there’s no positivity police that’s going to arrest you for having a bout of sadness. 

Your feelings are real and valid and nobody can take away your right to experience them fully. Even if they’re inconsistent with this precious little identity you've crafted for yourself. Even if the modern happiness industrial complex seems bent on eradicating all traces of melancholy. 

Try not to outrun your misery in times of pain. Not to embark on yet another obsessive personal development mission to fix yourself, just because you're an incurable individualist who sees it a sign of weakness to feel the gravity of your own struggle. 

I’m reminded of my therapist’s words. She once told me:

It’s worthwhile to let everything register. Try staying with the situation and let it carry you to a new place. Because there’s a fine line between wallowing in your sadness and moving through it. 

That, ironically, is what makes you feel better about my life. Remembering that all emotions are just weather patterns. 

Natural, distinct, subtle, fast moving, ever shifting, seasonal forces. 

It can’t rain forever.

LET ME ASK YA THIS... 
What overwhelming feelings do you have no healthy coping mechanism for? 
LET ME SUGGEST THIS... 

For the list called, "99 Ways to Think Like an Entrepreneur, Even If You Aren't One," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *

Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Inventor. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.  
scott@hellomynameisscott.com
www.nametagscott.com


Never the same speech twice. Customized for your audience. Impossible to walk away uninspired.

Now booking for 2017-2018.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of 


The Nametag Guy in action here!

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

How loud do I have to sing for you people to pay attention to me?

I was recently listening to the executive of a popular television network explain how the ratings system worked for his programming. And he said something that I’ll never forget. 

Ninety nine out of a hundred people aren’t watching my show, and I’m a millionaire. 

Funny how few people you actually need to make art, make a living and make a difference. 

The challenge, then, is being okay with not being for everybody. Letting go of the customers who don’t get the joke. Recognizing who your people are and, perhaps more importantly, who your people aren’t. 

Every week, I perform music under tunnel in the park by my house. The architecture is inspiring and the natural acoustics are astounding. 

But what’s interesting is, although hundreds of people will walk through that tunnel during any given concert, a large percentage of them won’t even acknowledge my existence. They treat me like I’m invisible. As if I wasn’t standing there in public, nakedly sharing my art with the world. 

Which, initially, hurt my feelings. 

I thought to myself, how loud do I have to sing for you people to pay attention to me? 

But after a year of busking in that tunnel, something occurred to me. Nietzsche was right. He famously said that those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music. 

And so, let it go. I started focusing on the small percentage of people who stopped, smiled and sang along. And to my surprise, that audience was enough for me. 

Remember, if you are making everyone happy, you are also making some of the wrong people happy. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS... 
Are you people pleasing the world, or are you famous to the family?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS... 
For the list called, "99 Ways to Think Like an Entrepreneur, Even If You Aren't One," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *

Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Inventor. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.  
scott@hellomynameisscott.com
www.nametagscott.com


Never the same speech twice. Customized for your audience. Impossible to walk away uninspired.

Now booking for 2017-2018.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of 


The Nametag Guy in action here!

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Would you rather be plagiarized or invisible?

Everyday, we read yet another story about plagiarism and interpolation and copyright infringement. 

Companies and brands and labels are suing artists for supposedly stealing their intellectual property. 

And while I respect the need to protect one’s creative work, the reality is, most people are not malicious thieving bastards. They’re just human. It’s part and parcel of the creative process. 

We can’t help but be influenced by the art we surround ourselves by. It’s the primary fuel for our own endeavors. 

I’ve written hundreds of songs in my career, and each one is a musical bouillabaisse of whatever music I was listening to at the time. 

I’ve written dozens of books in my career, and each one is a composite of whatever writers I was reading at the time. 

There’s no way around it. 

I’m reminded of a fascinating theory posed by a paleontologist, who also serves at the vice president of a nature and science museum. Sampson calls it the law of interdependent origination, which explains:

Life's unfolding is a tapestry in which every new thread is contingent upon the nature, timing, and interweaving of virtually all previous threads, and it can’t help by create a deeper incorporation of the connections inherent in the web of life. 

Meaning, everything is made of everything. Everybody steals from everybody. Artists can’t help but be at least a little derivative. 

The real question is:

Is your work interesting enough that people are stealing from you? 

That’s the hallmark of genius. 

Hendrix was plagiarized so much, other guitarists copied his mistakes. 

What a compliment. Sure beats obscurity. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS... 
Who’s wearing your number on their jersey?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS... 
For the list called, "99 Ways to Think Like an Entrepreneur, Even If You Aren't One," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *

Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Inventor. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.  
scott@hellomynameisscott.com
www.nametagscott.com


Never the same speech twice. Customized for your audience. Impossible to walk away uninspired.

Now booking for 2017-2018.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of 


The Nametag Guy in action here!

Monday, November 28, 2016

That moment when you wonder if there’s anyone who knows what it's like to be you

We all have our own unique version of the wretched place depression drags us off to. 

There are as many gradations of anxiety as there are people to suffer through them. 

But what’s universal is the way out. The antidote to our feelings of emptiness and pain. 

And that solution grows out of the two most healing words in any language. 

Me too. 

Because in that moment when you connect with somebody to shake your fists at the heavens with, that person willing to stand with you in your pain, you suddenly realize that everything is going to be play. 

This feeling, of course, is a biological response. It’s the surge of oxytocin, aka, the bonding molecule, which is the powerful hormone of love, connection and belonging. It’s what makes us feel connected and content and safe and trusted. 

The challenge is, that drug is only available to us if we’re willing to break the box around ourselves. To battle our antisocial tendencies and reach out to somebody and make an earnest, exposed statement about our pain. 

Which is an emotional risk. It requires a willingness to create real, human intimacy, and not just clever marketing masquerading as vulnerability. 

But it’s the only way to secure a dose of me too. Because all healing occurs in relationships. Only through an interpersonal encounter with another person, be it a stranger, acquaintance, friend or lover, can we enter into the transcendental healing atmosphere. 

And so, next time the waves of depression come crashing in, call a friend who loves to surf, tuck into the curl of the wave and ride it for all it’s worth. 

Break the silence, break the isolation and let the bonding begin.

LET ME ASK YA THIS... 
Are you honoring the part of you that is not satisfied with a life of estrangement?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS... 

For the list called, "99 Ways to Think Like an Entrepreneur, Even If You Aren't One," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *

Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Inventor. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.  
scott@hellomynameisscott.com
www.nametagscott.com


Never the same speech twice. Customized for your audience. Impossible to walk away uninspired.

Now booking for 2017-2018.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of 


The Nametag Guy in action here!

Sunday, November 27, 2016

The only obstacle to our sense of worthiness

It’s easy to tie our opinion of ourselves to success or failure. 

To believe that our value as people rises and falls in lockstep with our latest achievement. 

But human worthiness should not be contingent upon winning or losing, approving or disapproving, thriving or suffering. Esteem is a decision we make, irrespective of the vulgar accumulations and fluctuations of the external world. 

And so, just because my bank balance hits two digits or I lose my biggest client or the project I slaved over all week gets ignored or my new business venture is met with shrugs and yawns, it doesn’t mean that I’m a worthless pieces of shit. 

It simply means that an event happened, and while there might be waves anger and frustration and meaninglessness, I trust that they’ll soon drift away like weather patterns. 

Because every feeling has a beginning, middle and end. 

Taylor’s groundbreaking research on brain functions proved this clinically. She found that the natural lifespan of an emotion, meaning, the average time it took for an emotion to move through the nervous system and body, was ninety seconds

After that, humans need thoughts to keep the emotion rolling. 

Proving, that once our initial feelings come and go, the only obstacle to our sense of worthiness is the story we’re telling ourselves. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS... 
Are you allowing your discouragement to globalize? 
LET ME SUGGEST THIS... 

For the list called, "99 Ways to Think Like an Entrepreneur, Even If You Aren't One," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *

Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Inventor. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.  
scott@hellomynameisscott.com
www.nametagscott.com


Never the same speech twice. Customized for your audience. Impossible to walk away uninspired.

Now booking for 2017-2018.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of 


The Nametag Guy in action here!

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Don’t take things personally, people are only talking about themselves

Most creative people have developed a hypersensitive relationship to the world. 

And that’s what allows them to do the work they do. Artists think and feel things that other people can’t express for themselves. They can deliver something that their audience can’t find on its own. 

Unfortunately, that hypersensitivity results in artists taking everything personally. They overanalyze, ruminate and even become depressed and anxious over brief interpersonal interactions, wondering if their criticizer was onto something. 

I once spent an entire summer beating myself up over a one line email from an angry reader. And I became trapped in an bitter, ruminative loop that left me awash in fury and resentment and made me feel irritable and on edge most of the time. 

A friend of mine once gave me a great tip for this very situation. He said:

Don’t take things personally, because people are only talking about themselves. 

Most people are just projecting their autobiography onto others. Spewing their emotional bile onto whoever crosses their path. 

And so, if we allow people’s external criticism to trump our own belief in ourselves, the joke’s on us. Because we’ll grow so busy and stressed trying to absorb and neutralize everyone’s feedback that we’ll never get anything done. 

Bikram famously reminds us that nothing can steal happiness and peace away from us. If someone makes us angry, we are the losers.

It’s all about ownership. Refusing to give people you’re not even invested in more power over you than they deserve or should be allowed to have. 

Remember, hypersensitivity is an asset, but it’s also a liability. 

Learn when to exert it, and learn when to holster it. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS... 
Are you allowing the words and actions of others to define your reality? 

LET ME SUGGEST THIS... 

For the list called, "99 Ways to Think Like an Entrepreneur, Even If You Aren't One," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *

Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Inventor. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.  
scott@hellomynameisscott.com
www.nametagscott.com


Never the same speech twice. Customized for your audience. Impossible to walk away uninspired.

Now booking for 2017-2018.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of 


The Nametag Guy in action here!