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Thursday, March 31, 2016

Trusting the totality of your experience

Rogers was one of the founding fathers of psychology research and the pioneer of client centered therapy. In his best known book, which he wrote over fifty years ago, he outlined his professional trajectory as a psychology. 

Rogers said that he was best when he could let the flow of his experience carry him, in a direction which appeared to be forward, toward goals of which he was but dimly unaware. And he always had the feeling that if he was given some opportunity to do the thing he was most interested in doing, everything else would somehow take care of itself. 

It’s not exactly the most data driven career planning strategy. But not everything can be comfortably quantified. Not every human activity can be measured. The touchstone of validity is our own experience. 

As my surgeon friend once said, when it’s your heart, you don’t have to convince people that you can’t live without it. Because although we operate out of the need to control of their environment and actions, and although we have a native desire to label, organize and make sense of our world, some things can’t be proved by objective standards. 

Like the commonly used business phrase, if you can’t measure it, it doesn’t matter. 

Bullshit. What can’t be measured, matters. It is the unquantifiable component of the human repertoire that has the biggest impact on the people around us. 

And so, as you consider your professional trajectory, don’t get too caught up in goals and destinations and metrics and end games. Focus on a career that allows you make use of everything you are. Focus on work that engages as many of your skills as you can. 

And trust to totality of your experience to carry you where you need to go.


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Are you working by instincts or by integers?

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* * * *
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 2016-2017.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of The Nametag Guy in action here!

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

I shall force you to see me and know that I am here

Part of the appeal of busking is, the audience has no obligation to engage with the performer. They don’t have to listen to you. They can easily pretend you’re invisible and just keep on walking. 

And so, it’s the busker’s job to earn their attention. To create a unique demonstration of love and generosity and vulnerability, delivering something worth noticing and worth crossing the street for and worth dropping a dollar into the case for. 


It’s an exhilarating challenge. Amuse them or lose them. Because the feedback is instantaneous. People vote with their feet. Meaning, if your performance doesn’t have stopping power, they’re gone. No tips for you. 


Of course, that’s the beauty of the process. You don’t take it personally, you channel it strategically. Because the perpetual risk of losing your audience is the dangling sword of obligation that pushes you to fight for your life. To give it everything you’ve got. 


I shall force you to see me and know that I am here. 


And that makes it all the more satisfying every time somebody stop and smiles and claps and throws a dollar into the case. 


Whereas, if you signed up for an open mic to perform in a cold room to a crowd of crossed arms who are only there for the free wifi, there’s no incentive to win people over. And that fundamentally changes the complexion of your delivery. 


The lesson is, everyone should try putting themselves in this position where they have to sing their way out of a corner. 


It’s the refining fire that molds you into a stronger artist. 


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What do you deliver that’s worth crossing the street for?
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For a copy of the list called, "20 Ways to Make Customers Feel Comfortable," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

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


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

Now booking for 2016-2017.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of The Nametag Guy in action here!

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

It doesn’t make you a hypocrite, it makes you a human

Every year, I make a list of one hundred goals. 

And over the next twelve months, at least twenty of those goals fall by the wayside. Either because my priorities shifted or my plans changed or my projects shifted. 

It happens. Dreams come and go. And although there are tiny pangs of guilt, I try not to beat myself up too much. Because I trust that there will be more dreams. Better dreams. Bigger dreams. Waiting with baited breath for me to follow them. 

In fact, maybe that was the point the whole time. To flush all of those minor league dreams out of my system and make way for the big leagues. 

The point is, there’s a lot of freedom in letting go of a dream you don’t want anymore. No need to keep it on your list as a constant reminder of failure. The fact that you had it and chased it and shared it is victory enough. 

Besides, better to abandon a obsolete dream halfway down the pike than follow it past its expiration date. 

It doesn’t make you a hypocrite, it makes you a human. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS...
Which goal do you need to let go of?
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For a copy of the list called, "9 Things Every Writer Needs to Do Every Day," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

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


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

Now booking for 2016-2017.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of The Nametag Guy in action here!

Monday, March 28, 2016

Happiness is not wanting to do something else

Everybody’s trying to do something else. 

Nobody is satisfied with where they are or what they’re doing right now. There’s always another horizon on standby. Another aspiration waiting in the wings. And as a result, they get so busy scrambling toward the future that the present is reduced to a means of getting there. 

In fact, go ask ten people what their long term goals are. Half of them will say, well, what I really want to get into is... 

And it breaks my heart. Because when we’re so busy trying to rearrange the circumstances of our lives, we miss out on the available joy that exists right now. That which is right in front of us is often the most invisible. 

I once overheard a conversation between two standup comedians who said that you know you’ve made it in comedy when you’re not doing comedy anymore. Meaning, touring the country and telling jokes at clubs for the birds. The real dream is starring in your own sitcom or hosting a game show or writing movie scripts or acting in indie films or, insert better life situation here. 

But where does it end? When do we decide that the project or the job or the career or the path we’re taking, right now, doesn’t need changing? 

Eckhart writes that the present will never seem good enough, the future will always seem better. And the pain we create is always some form of now acceptance or unconsciousness resistance to what is. But the more we are able to honor and accept the now, the more we are free of pain, of suffering, or the egoic mind. Because is impossible to have a problem when your attention is fully in the now. 

And so, perhaps happiness is nothing more than not wanting to do something else. To be able to ask the question, what, at this moment, is lacking, and not be able to answer it.

LET ME ASK YA THIS...
What would it look like to build a life you wouldn’t trade?  

 LET ME SUGGEST THIS...
For a copy of the list called, "9 Things Every Writer Needs to Do Every Day," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

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


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

Now booking for 2016-2017.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of The Nametag Guy in action here!

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Creativity isn’t a linear experience, it’s an associative one

Every artist creates sketches. 

Small, imperfect, nonlinear piecemeal art that isn’t fully fleshed out. They’re brief accounts. Pocket notes. Opening shots. Micro expressions. Bits and pieces. Splashes of inspiration that capture individual feelings and moments and perspectives. 

And they don’t necessarily have to be pictures, either. Sketches are medium agnostic. 

Carlin, for example, would include sections in his comedy books called short takes. These were one liners, quips, questions, quotations and other stand alone scraps of material, apropos of nothing. My favorite was:

If you love someone, set them free, if they come home, set them on fire. 

The challenging part about creating in this fragmentary associative way is, the human brain has a natural impulse to think in terms of beginnings and endings. We tell ourselves that whatever art we make has to adhere to chronology and sequence and order. And anything that detaches from that tidy little formula isn’t worth saving or sharing. 

But as we mature artistically, we realize that creativity isn’t a linear experience, it’s an associative one. Meaning, we have to make piece of with piecemeal. 

I have a cartoonist friend who recently published a book of short stories and comics. And my favorite part of the book is the appendix, which contains scanned pages from his actual sketchbook. Ideas, characters and pictures that never found a home in a particular chapter, but still deserved to be part of the final product. 

Because they’re the inside track of the creator’s brain. The raw materials from which larger art was made. Jason even told me that those sketches at the end of the book were like little love letters to all the ideas in his life that he thought were failures. 

What a beautiful sentiment. And so, every artist should create sketches. And every artist should give themselves permission to share and use them. 

Remembering, that just because something isn’t complete doesn’t mean it’s not art. Just because an idea isn’t fully fleshed out doesn’t it doesn’t deserve a home. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS...
Have you make piece with piecemeal?
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For a copy of the list called, "9 Things Every Writer Needs to Do Every Day," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

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


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

Now booking for 2016-2017.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of The Nametag Guy in action here!

Saturday, March 26, 2016

If you don’t know how, know who

But I have no idea what I’m doing. 

That’s the biggest barrier in launching any new project. Lack of competence. Absence of ability. Just imagine how many thousands of ideas and businesses and dreams went unrealized because of that statement. 

The reality is, though, if you don’t know what you’re doing, that’s okay. As long as you focus on knowing who you are, you’ll be fine. That’s the priority. Identity before activity. Whom before how. And you trust that everything else will flow outward from there. 

Peters once wrote a magazine article confessing that he had no idea what he was doing when he wrote the most popular management book of all time. But he knew exactly who he was. A na├»ve, creative, curious, provocative truth seeker who loved to read and travel and talk to smart people. And that identity fueled the activity that changed the face of business forever. Twenty years later, he called that book a punctuation point that signaled the end of one era and the beginning of another. 

The lesson is, if you don’t know how, know who. Once you give yourself permission to do that, once you make identity ground zero for your dreams, anything you do will be an honest extension of who you are. The world will stand up and take notice. 

And the satisfaction and fulfillment you’ll feel as a result will be so profound, that you’ll forget all about the fact that you have no idea what you’re doing.

LET ME ASK YA THIS...
Are you focusing on activity or identity?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS...
For a copy of the list called, "9 Things Every Writer Needs to Do Every Day," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

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


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

Now booking for 2016-2017.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of The Nametag Guy in action here!

Friday, March 25, 2016

Steal Scott's Ideas, Issue 012: Sexy Timer, Reflectum & Boardster

Ideas are free, execution is priceless.

That’s been my mantra since day one of starting my business.

It’s also the title of a book I wrote a few years back. You can download it for free here.

But here’s the problem. I'm an idea junkie. Everything I look at in the world breaks down into a collection of ideas. I have about fifty new ones every day, and sadly, I can only execute so many of them. Even if I had all the resources and all the time in the world, I still wouldn’t be able to keep up with the whirlwind of insanity that gusts through my brain.

And that’s where you come in.

I believe ideas were never meant to stay that way. And so, in this new blog series, I’m going to be publishing a sample of them on a weekly basis, in the hopes that they inspire you to (a) execute them, (b) improve them, or (c) invent something completely different.

Remember, once an idea springs into existence, it cannot be unthought.

Even if that idea is ridiculous.

Enjoy! 

Steal Scott's Ideas, Issue 012


01. iMantra. The philosopher's phone

A service that sends you sporadic text messages during the day with encouraging mantras of your choice.

02. Fa La La. Matching music with mood.
A smart watch that senses your emotions and energies and plays the appropriate song to compliment it.

03. Word Up. The writing's on the wall.
A projector that sends your e-reader content to your ceiling so you can read books while laying on your back in bed.

04. Sexy Timer. Smart couples plan it. 
A calendar application that helps couples schedule their sex.

05. Manly Nest. Where dudes tinker. 
A gritty and rugged warehouse and workshop space where men escape to in order to make, break, fix and fiddle with building materials.

06. Reflectum. End your streak. 
A small toilet mirror that helps users assure a clean wipe without wasting paper and getting frustrating.

07. Dearly Departed. Building man's best end 
A professional endings service that helps people create ceremony and ritual around saying goodbye to non-human things such as addiction or bad habits.

08. Boardster. Minimize your runway time. 
An airline privilege program where busy people pay extra to be the very last person on the plane.

09. Good Sport. Never put your cleat in your mouth
A geolocation app that gives you key sports history facts, rituals and inside jokes of whatever city you're in, to make sure you don't say the wrong thing in public and get beat up

10. Dance, Monkey! Joy through movement. 
An app that randomly goes off during the day and plays dance music for sixty seconds, encouraging people to create spontaneous dance parties.

LET ME ASK YA THIS...
How will you turn these ideas into I-dids?

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For the list called, "49 Ways to become an Idea Powerhouse," 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 2015-2016.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of The Nametag Guy in action here!

Thursday, March 24, 2016

We’re all in search of our indestructible alloy

Every commercial airplane has a black box. A flight data recorder, which has the ability to dissect what went wrong in the aftermath of a crash. 

And what makes it so indestructible is the alloy typically found in furnaces, gas turbine blades, car exhaust systems and other extreme heat environments. Flight parameters are engraved onto the alloy throughout the trip, ensuring survival no matter what. 

The running joke, of course, is if the only thing that survives is the black box, why wouldn’t they just make the whole plane out of the black box? 

But any engineer will be quick to tell you, the airplane would be too heavy, too expensive and too difficult to fly if it were made of heavy high strength steel like the flight recorders. 

Fair enough. 

And yet, the premise of the joke is still significant. Because it makes a strategic point about simplicity, focus, efficiency, leverage and labor intensity. About how in an existing system, we can strip away the redundancies, extract the few essentials we need and then rebuild from there. 

Like the popular boy band with only one real star who inevitably goes out on his own to build his empire and become ten times more successful than he could have done as part of an ensemble. Timberlake was the black box that survived the crash. 

The point is, we’re all in search of that indestructible alloy. And sometimes that means letting go of the other parts that have outlived their usefulness. Because in every system of which we are a part, there are essentials, and then there are free peanuts. Which are delicious and full of protein, but when you’re crashing into a mountain at six hundred miles per hour, it’s smarter and safer to seek to stay near the black box.

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What essentials are worth extracting and rebuilding from?

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For a copy of the list called, "9 Things Every Writer Needs to Do Every Day," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

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


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

Now booking for 2016-2017.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of The Nametag Guy in action here!

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Instead of burning candles, burn calories

The best way to find escape from the burdens of the world is with a manageable, self contained activity. 

Something that imposes order on our mind from the outside. Something purposeful that requires skills. Something that prevents disorder from taking hold of our mind and forcing it into frenetic state. Something that focuses our whole being in a harmonious rush of energy. 

Whether it’s physical exercise, manual labor, fixing things around the house, working with our hands, biting into a mental task, diving into our latest creative obsession or even engaging in a six hour long conversation with an old friend, the goal is flow

Mihaly’s definitive book the evolving self explains that seeking flow, becoming an active, conscious part of the evolutionary process, is precisely what gives our lives meaning and joy. Getting to a place where we’re not afraid of losing self, where the ego can easily slip out of awareness, where we can spend energy giving consciousness shape, this is the stuff real life is made of. Because the quality of experience while involved in these activities is intrinsically rewarding. 

Instead of burning candles, we’re burning calories. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS...
What three activities are guaranteed to provide you with the experience of flow?

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For a copy of the list called, "9 Things Every Writer Needs to Do Every Day," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

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


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

Now booking for 2016-2017.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of The Nametag Guy in action here!

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Becoming a victim of your own originality

Every brand longs to lock into pole position. To create a new category where they define the rules and they set the standards and they become the default against which everybody else in the industry measures themselves. 

But the danger is when brands become a victim of their own originality. Terminally unique. So weird that nobody knows what to do with them. So impossible to classify that customers drop the mental ball. So far out of the box that there's nothing left for people to lean against. So different from ever other brand in the category that it's intellectually overwhelming for customers. 

Godin's work on virality and how stories spread reminds us that in order to earn word of mouth, we need to make it safe, fun and worthwhile to overcome the social hurdles to spread the word about our brand. Otherwise we'll end up winking in the dark. 

My first movie failed in this respect. It was equal parts documentary, concert, corporate training video and love story. A hybrid art form that had never quite been done before. Which was thrilling to make on my end, but because it was a new medium unto itself, it was challenging to share on the viewer's end. 

Because the world didn't know what to call it. I became a victim of my own originality. 

And so, before we drive our freak flag into the ground to claim our land first, we have to make sure we're unconventional in the right direction. To bake into our messaging some kind of advanced warning system. A memory aid. A helpful tool for making sense of an ambiguous world. A handle by which our brand can be lifted. 

Because a confused mind never buys. There's a fine line between a brand's purpose driven human uniqueness and just another patchwork of weirdness.

LET ME ASK YA THIS...
Are you a victim of your own originality?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS...
For a copy of the list called, "9 Things Every Writer Needs to Do Every Day," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

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


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

Now booking for 2016-2017.

Email to inquire about fees and availability. Watch clips of The Nametag Guy in action here!