Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Six Prices You Shouldn’t Have to Pay

Everything costs something.

Not always in the form of money, though.

Currency has many faces.

AND THE REALITY IS: If you’re not careful, you may end up paying a higher price than you need to.

Today we’re going to explore six prices you shouldn't have to pay:
1. Resentment is the price you pay for having no boundaries. I write books and give presentations about approachabilty. And on a weekly basis, somebody almost always asks me, “Can you be too approachable?”

Yes, yes and yes. I know this because I used to lack boundaries. And I learned that if you don’t set healthy boundaries for yourself, other people will set them for you. And then they will violate them. And then they will tell all their little friends to do the same. All because you never set the precedent.

Your job is to figure out where you draw the line. How approachable you’re willing to be. Otherwise you’ll end up obligating yourself to death. Why are you still having coffee with people you don’t even like?

2. Anxiety is the price you pay for having no gratitude. No, you can’t outsmart getting hurt. And no, you can’t scrub your life free of stress. But the more you give thanks for something, the less power it has over you.

That was the best thing my therapist taught me: When you notice anxiety in your life, greet it with a welcoming heart. Put your arm around it. Ask it questions. Find out what lesson it’s come to teach you. And then be grateful for the opportunity to learn.

When I changed my relationship to anxiety in this way, everything changed. Everything. Do you walk a perpetual posture of thankfulness?

3. Panic is the price you pay for having no relevance. I recently received a ridiculous email from my professional association. The incoming president reached out to a group of younger members, asking if we would be willing to participate in a panel to help older members stay relevant to younger generations.

Excuse me, but that’s absurd. First of all, the only people who matter are the ones who choose to. Secondly, relevance is not a synonym for knowing a lot about social media. It’s a function of simplicity, beauty and humanity.

Third, stop trying to relate to people. When you manufacture commonality, you end up insulting people’s intelligence. If you want younger generations to take you seriously, you don’t need hair dye, you don’t need Botox and you don’t need a new wardrobe.

What you need is a mental makeover. Because the problem isn’t old age – it’s old thinking. How will you keep from fading away?

4. Regret is the price you pay for having no balls. I used to take the bus to work. Every morning, I would sit next to Kat, a funky yet fashionable hairdresser. One day, she asked me if I would be willing to be her hair model at an upcoming show.

“Your style is exactly what we need to round out our spring lineup. What do you say?”

I totally chickened out. And to this day, I still regret saying no. Because that would have been some fantastic experience. Fortunately, I’ve since learned how to say yes to life. I’ve learned how to instantly evaluate the perceived level of risk in those micromoments. And that sensibility has enabled me to make bolder choices in the larger moments that matter. What risks do you regret not taking?

5. Insomnia is the price you pay for having no trust. According to the National Sleep Foundation’s annual report, it takes the average person about fifteen minutes to fall asleep once they’re in bed.

To me, this is amazing. When my head hits the pillow, I’m out like a dead rock. Partly because I have excellent sleep hygiene, but also because I know how to trust. Both the tangible and intangible forces of my life.

If you find yourself tossing, turning and glancing nervously at the advancing clock each night, you don’t need a sleeping pill – you need to let go. That’s the challenge with trust: It’s the highest form of surrender. And it’s such a terrifying preposition because human beings an inherent need to preserve their sense of control.

But if you’re willing to trust, you’ll be amazed how quickly your eyes start to close. Do you believe in the dividends of your own emotional labor?

6. Advertising is the price you pay for having no friends. Marketing is like sex – if you have to pay for it, you’re doing something wrong. Smart companies spend money earlier in the process.

Smart companies build things worth noticing right into the product ahead of time. Take design, for example. It’s not an extra, it’s not an also and it’s not an accident – it’s everything. As Tom Peters once wrote:

“The dumbest mistake is viewing design as something you do at the end of the process to tidy up the mess, as opposed to understanding it’s a day one issue and part of everything.”

Choose to champion the beautiful. Think about products you’ve bought, cherished and shared the most. How many of them had brilliant design? And how many of your own products have the same?

Use that as a benchmark for your own remarkability, and your design will be the best advertisement of all. How much energy are you investing in being a beautiful organism?”

REMEMBER: Currency has many faces.

Make sure you’re not paying the wrong price.

What currencies are you using?

For the list called, "16 Ways to be the Best," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

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Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author, Speaker, Publisher, Artist, Mentor

Never the same speech twice.
Now booking for 2011-2012!

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