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Tuesday, October 15, 2019

We will not feel complete until we give a gift

The act of sacrifice simply changes the identity of our offering, it doesn’t inoculate us against failure and rejection. 

Just because we dutifully slave away over something and deliver it to someone with confidence and care, that doesn’t necessarily guarantee a response. Nor does it push our names to the front of the line in their heart. 

Truth is, we have limited control over how people perceive our intentions and receive our gifts. Only the creation of the gift itself. 

Take it from a pathological romantic. The danger with sending love letters is that they impose a very heavy load of unintended expectations on the recipient. 

That person may feel overwhelmed and unable to receive our affection. 

That person may experience our generosity as an infringement of their personal freedom and autonomy. 

That person may become angry and resentful because the gift feels conditional. 

That person may grow suspicious and feel guilty about not reciprocating.

That person may not feel a goddamn thing and move on with their life and ghost us like a bad boyfriend. 

Godin famously wrote that art is a human act, a generous contribution, something that might not work, that is intended to change the recipient for the better, often causing a connection to happen. 

The key phrase in his definition is, that might not work. 

Because that’s the first thing we usually forget. The story we tell ourselves, usually while staying up night crafting the perfect turn of phrase to secure our spot in someone’s heart, is that the more sweat we invest, the more sweetness we deserve. 

If only that were true. 

All the more reason to treat the work as a gift to ourselves. 

All the more reason to trust that the act of giving it is a reward in itself. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS...
Do you fear setting boundaries with your generosity?

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

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Friday, October 11, 2019

The more truly we consulted our own powers

If you’re worried that with success will come an unpleasant array of new responsibilities and challenges, you’re right. 

If you’re anxious that getting to the next level of anything means the heights of your actions will call upon the depths of your will, you’re right. 

But.

If you trust that the rising tide of life will lift all boats, including yours, you’re also right. 

If you have faith that the everyday resilience to persist in your efforts will show up right on schedule, you’re right too. 

Think back to the many new jobs and projects and circumstances and relationships you’ve had over the years. 

Weren’t you surprised at how quickly and creatively you rose to the challenge? Didn’t the portfolio of skills that you do well create real power together? And isn’t it amazing to remember how fully alive to that terrifying moment you actually were? 

Emerson, a man gifted with a large cheerful nature, who taught an entire century of people to hope, believed that our ambition was exactly proportioned to our powers. 

He was right too. 

And so, as you confront these changes, prepare yourself for a sudden power within you to rise. A power that will keeps you wonderfully poised in the midst of it all.

Trust that there is no upside to not believing in yourself. 

And know that it does not cost you anything to tell yourself that you can do this. 


LET ME ASK YA THIS...
Are you still struggling in vain to make the world stay the way it was?

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

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Thursday, October 10, 2019

This condition is not a terrible retribution for our sins

Every time we get sick, it’s the worst possible time. 

Whether we have family visiting from out of town, a fourth round job interview or a big presentation for the entire management team, there is never a good time to feel bad. 

And so, our job is to use the powers of creativity and acceptance and optimism to navigate the pain. To be sensitive to points in our life that require us to take action, lest our pain mutates into suffering. 

Here’s how that might play out in daily life. 

Lying on the couch with an ice pack on our heads and a puke bowl at our feet, we remind ourselves that this condition is not a terrible retribution for our sins, it’s a temporary time of darkness that has come to forge our character. 

Sitting in the bathtub while our spouse gently massages our swollen feet, we remember that this is not confirmation of how weak and pathetic we are, it’s a chance to slow down, make changes, transform our bodies and minds and become better versions of ourselves. 

Drifting in and out of consciousness in a hospital bed while chest tube breathes for us, we trust that this experience is not a moment of shame, but a tipping point that will finally compel us to make some much needed changes in our circumstances. 

Misery gives us a window into our own values. It’s something we remind ourselves anytime one of us is in pain. Certain feelings and experiences ask us to take action on our own behalf. They compel us to declare our identity with conviction and double down on what matters to us. 

And for that, we give thanks. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS...
How can you use your sickness to become more of the person you want to become?


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

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Tuesday, October 08, 2019

Acknowledge that we all share the human condition of imperfection

Empathy is what gives us another window into the experience of living. 

It’s the bell of awareness that humbly reminds us that other people are just as important to themselves as we are to ours. And anytime anyone is unpleasant, the appropriate response is compassion. 

As such, before we freak out and start silently name calling strangers inside of our anxious heads, we can make the empathetic leap by training ourselves to ask questions instead. We can treat it like an experiment in curiosity. 

Here are a few of my favorites. 

What if this person is fighting a battle that we know nothing about? 

What if they’re tortured by voices we cannot hear and discomforted by emotions we cannot feel? 

What if we actually considered how much suffering they must have endured to ultimately act like such a jerk? 

What if we accepted the fact that there are serious bad things that happen to others through no fault of their own? 

My mentor used to tell me, people are not evil, they’re just complicated. 

That’s empathy. Trusting that each human being rests at the nexus of a vast number of interwoven causes and conditions that influence their behavior, and odds are, it probably has nothing to do with us. 

I once worked with a cold, emotionless, porcupine of a person who didn’t trust anyone and played the game of office politics like a grand chess master. Everyone on the team shit themselves with fear in her presence. 

But not me. Her coarseness sent wave of compassion racing down my spine every time we interacted. 

Because there was no doubt in my mind that her anger and hostility originated from a place of profound pain. And that only made me feel more and more love for her. 

Sure enough, we never had a problem with each other and did great work together. 

If you have someone like that in your life, and nothing inside of you wants to find a shred of compassion, try harder. 

Acknowledge that we all share the human condition of imperfection, and see if you can open your heart to them. 

Your love will wear them down eventually. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS...
Who in your life needs you to stand as a compassionate witness to their pain? 

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

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Monday, October 07, 2019

Shared tokens of mutual loyalty and trust

Hiring managers and human resources professionals are trained to ask commitment questions during job interviews. 

It’s how they understand the applicant’s expectations for giving loyalty and cooperation to their organization. They want to make sure you’re not just headhunter bait who will leap to another job when an offer appears. 

Which makes perfect sense. In a marketplace where employer turnover is high and talented employees are difficult to hang onto, smart companies want to hire someone who is going to grow as the company grows. 

But commitment is a two way street. It takes to tango, baby. And if an employee is going to sell their skills to an organization, then that company has to return the favor. They have to do more than pay you to show up at an office with some nice people to share your misery. 

One particular job interview comes to mind. The recruiter asked me to convince her my goal was to become a long term member of her team. Because after looking at my resume, she was concerned my job experience of short lived stints at several companies demonstrated a lack of commitment and loyalty on my part. 

Which, for anyone who knows my personality, is not the case at all. But her concern was well founded. It was a fair question that deserved an answer. 

Which I happily offered, and was satisfying to her. 

In retrospect, however, I wish I would have turned the tables with a commitment question of my own. Here’s what should have come out of my mouth:

Can you convince me that your company’s goal is to become a long term part of my life, and not treat me like some invisible temp who feels like he’s always on probation until somebody faster and cheaper comes along? 

She would have been stunned into silence. No candidate asks questions like that before. 

Point being, the person across the table is not the only one with the power of choice. 

You’re hiring them as much as they’re hiring you. Never forget that. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS...

Are you asking the same questions as your competition?  

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

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Thursday, October 03, 2019

Sharpened by my own discernment of duty

Each of us must to be very smart and intentional about our relationship to meaning. 

After all, how we construe meaning dictates how we live our life. It’s the biggest thing there is. In an objective world where there are no moments of intrinsic significance which form a framework of meaning around any given experience, except the ones that we create, the onus is on us to make something out of it. 

Or not make something out of it. That’s part of our meaning making mission too. 

The skill of discernment. The ability to make a nuanced judgment about something in the moment that doesn’t merit our attention and energy. Those little situations, experiences and exchanges that are not really as important as our egos might suggest they are. 

Like when a rude taxi driver in the lane next to us yells that we drive like his blind grandmother. Or when an anonymous internet troll comments that our latest blog post is a flaming piece of dog shit. 

We must practice not giving meaning to those things. Laughing off the minor slings and arrows and inconveniences, as our existential radar runs a filter to take that criticism in stride instead of spiraling into an anxiety tailspin. 

We remind ourselves, oh right, that’s not meaningful, it doesn’t matter, there’s zero nourishment in that moment for us, and doesn’t deserve even a slice of our energy. 

Instantaneous discernment, this skill of taking a moment to stop our usual pinball reactions to the world, will improve the quality of our lives dramatically. 

It will finally allow us to become silent before some new dimension of meaning which is being revealed. 
 
LET ME ASK YA THIS...

How are you practicing not giving meaning to things?

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

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Wednesday, October 02, 2019

We know who we are, and it ain’t that

The brain might be competent, but it still doesn’t understand context. 

It has no idea which of our thoughts are appropriate, depraved, healthy or bizarre. It just churns them out. Tens of thousands of thoughts every single day until we die. 

For that reason, it’s important not to judge ourselves for whatever weird movies our brain may be playing. Because those thoughts are not who we are. They are not a glaring indication there’s something wrong with us. 

Therapists who specialize in obsessive compulsive disorder will often use a helpful strategy with their patients. Their recommendation is:

Instead of ruminating with the intent of trying to solve the thought, figure out what it means and why it exists, simply accept it. 

Instead of incessantly agonizing over the thought and obsessively worrying ourselves to a point of debilitation, simply let it be. 

People tolerate the intrusive thought and prove to themselves that they can survive it. 

Because the other thing about thoughts is, not unlike feelings, they also have a beginning, a middle and an end. They come and go like weather patterns. 

And so, none of us has an identity that is at the mercy of these passing brain farts. Even if it seems like there is no darker place than our own thoughts, and even if the thoughts that arise in these moments seem like fixed truths, they are not. 

We know who we are, and it ain’t that. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS...

When was the last time you solved a problem by becoming totally consumed with intrusive, irrational thoughts until you raised your pulse and blood pressure?

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

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Tuesday, October 01, 2019

We stand joyfully defenseless in their light

Despite living in a post binary world, it can be a useful exercise to create one to improve our decision making process. 

Imagine the corporate hiring manager. Every week she receives hundreds of applications and resumes, conducts dozens of phone and video interviews and spends the majority of her days sitting across the table from prospective team members. 

And all things being equal, assuming every candidate who makes it to the final cut is relatively insightful and savvy and strategic, the final decision will most likely come down to one thing: 

Would we want to work with this guy every day for the next few years? Is he the kind of person we would actually enjoy spending a third of our waking lives with? 

And so, while there is no single system can cleanly capture human nature into two categories, let’s for the sake of the argument, assume that there are two types of people. 

Summers and winters. 

The first group are people who make it summer for our souls. They allow the sun to shine within their spirit, and we can’t help but stand joyfully defenseless in their light. Exchanges with these folks enlarge our horizons and loosen the limitations around our hearts. Just being in their presence positively affects our energy and rhythm. We almost seem to grow nobler and purer for having met them. 

The other category are people who make winter for our souls. Stuck in the perpetual twilight zone of despair, they apparently lack the innate human ability to be an enjoyable person to spend time with. It’s goddamn exhausting. Generous thoughts about others do not survive in their presence. And their inability to naturally evoke even a remote sense of comfort during a period of extended interaction sucks the life out of a room like a dour succubus. 

Which person would you rather hire? 

That’s the benefit of binaries. 

They aren’t perfect, but they do make our decisions easier. 

And most of us already work hard enough. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS...
Are you a summer or a winter?

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

It's the world's first, best and only product development and innovation gameshow!

Tune in and subscribe for a little execution in public.


Join our community of innovators, artists and entrepreneurs