Utopia for Realists by Rutger Bregman (Part 2)

A Fifteen Hour Workweek. Leisure time is scarce in modern society, but why is that so? By 2030, Keynes predicted that mankind would have trouble filling up their spare time. Earlier, Benjamin Franklin predicted that we would work 4 hour days only. Employers were not keen to let their employees work for so short hours everyday. Henry Ford discovered that a shorter work week made employees more productive. In 1938, legislation to protect the 5 day workweek was passed. After WWII, leisure time continued to rise. It was predicted that machines would do all the work in future. Working would only be reserved for the elite. The spread of boredom might be a concern for Mankind. There was a concern that too much free time would bring about boredom and idleness. Are scientists prediction of what life would be like in 2062 come true? The irony is that in modern society, the working week is actually growing. It has to do with the feminist revolution. Parenting is a lot more time-intensive nowadays. The smartphone might even lead to the ordinary worker working even longer hours. Consumption has increased a lot more recently. Would our standard of living decrease if we work less? Productivity and long work hours do not go hand in hand. Even in the modern society, 40 hour workweeks might be too much. Research has shown that 6 hours per day is optimum. Working less solves the problem of stress and leads to increased levels of happiness. It might solve climate change and reduce the number of accidents too. It might address unemployment too. Paternity leave is extremely important nowadays. It might address the issue of aging population too. Nowadays, people tend to show off if they are busy. There is not enough paid work to go around. Is the strategy of shorter working hours what we all want? The answer is yes. The countries with the shortest workweeks have the largest number of volunteers and social capital. We all are capable of handling the good life.

It’s quite simple, really. Time is money. Economic growth can yield either more leisure or more consumption. – Rutger Bregman

It is worth noting, however, that the line between work and leisure has blurred in recent times. Work is now often perceived as a kind of hobby, or even as the very crux of our identity. – Rutger Bregman

There’s not a person on Earth who on their deathbed thinks, “Had I only put in a few more hours at the office or sat in front of the tube some more.” – Rutger Bregman

Work is the refuge of people who have nothing better to do. – Oscar Wilde

Why It Doesn’t Pay to Be a Banker. The trash workers went on strike. The streets were extremely stinky. It actually pays to strike. These are essential services which actually do much good to others. However, wall street traders don’t do much. These are the jobs that simply shift money around. Now, in modern society, more people are able to earn without contributing anything tangible to society. Ireland did okay without the bankers for 6 months. It did not have a debilitating impact on daily life. Creating complex financial products actually destroys wealth. Why are we working harder than ever before? Many people admit that they are doing bullshit jobs. Banking is very exclusive to the elite few. Some people feel that their job had no meaning and significance. This is a problem with the capitalist society. The modern society is concerned with nothing but profit. Now, it is all about milking the cash without innovation. Just imagine how society will be if we just focused on creating things of value. It does not mean that you earn much, it automatically means you are contributing to society. In modern times, more people have sought to move to banking. We need to tax higher earners even more. A teacher has a direct hand in shaping the future. We need to intervene at the classroom level. Which knowledge and skills do we want in our children in 2030? A shorter work week allows us to spend more time on ourselves. Society determines what has real value. After the strike, the garage collectors had a significant pay increase.

Making money without creating anything of value is anything but easy. It takes talent, ambition, and brains. And the banking world is brimming with clever minds. – Rutger Bregman

The goal of the future is full unemployment, so we can play. – Arthur C. Clarke

Race Against the Machine. Machines help to eliminate certain jobs. Robots should help to reduce the average number of working hours. People are educated, but your skills might be superfluous after a while. Moore realized the power of computers and that it would soon surpass humans. Machines help in the transportation sector, such as container shipping. The ratio of capital to labour is not constant. Technology has been advancing at an astounding rate. Who’s profiting from this? There are fewer winners as time passes. Inequality has been increasing in developed countries. Many jobs are at risk to be overtaken by machines. It will come in the next 20 years. That are some that argue that automation will create new jobs. Productivity is at record levels in the 2000s. Even the most modern of computers can defeat chess masters. Robots can hone our mental capacities. Automated cars might take over drivers on the roads soon. By 2029, it is predicted that computers will be as intelligent as people. There is no limit for machine computing power. In 1811, some men declared a war on machines, but the machines won. The whole point of robots is for them to do tasks that humans would rather not do themselves. How can we compete against the machine? It seems like there is limited hope and that inequality will continue to increase. Should we continue to focus on education? However, the low-hanging fruit has already been plucked. Maybe a solution is to bring a hammer. Humans still have the ultimate say as to how to shape our destiny. We need a massive redistribution of income.

The reality is that it takes fewer and fewer people to create a successful business, meaning that when a business succeeds, fewer and fewer people benefit. – Rutger Bregman

The factory of the future will have only two employees, a man and a dog. The man will be there to feed the dog. The dog will be there to keep the man from touching the equipment. – Popular joke among economists

Beyond the Gates of the Land of Plenty. Should we try to give everyone on Earth the joys of the Land of Plenty? We spend a lot of money on developmental aid. Nobody knows whether it has helped much or not. Sometimes, the usage can be different than what was intended. Is the remedy worse than the disease? The first form of aid happened in 1998. Studies have shown that providing free textbooks does not improve scores. We all should aim to take the guess work out of policy making. Is it better to give out free mosquito nets or to sell them? Even microcredit has not been proven effective at combating poverty and illness. Handing out cash is better. However, not everything is measurable. There are the 3 Is of development and they are ideology, ignorance and inertia. There needs to be strong measures against tax evasion especially in poor countries. Opening the gates is one way to give the poor a chance. After the war, countries protected their borders tightly. The world is wide open except for people. Opening borders to labour would boost wealth tremendously. The inhabitants of the Land of Plenty are filthy rich. We turn away refugees way too easily. Americans earn a lot more than their South American counterparts. Opening the borders is one of our best strategies against poverty. However, people often lament that by doing so, you will bringing terrorists in. The risk of terrorism is low. Immigration actually reduces in a decline of terrorist activities. They are not all criminals. There is practically zero correlation between ethnic background and crime. They will not undermine social cohesion too. Diversity cannot be used to blame cohesion in society. There is an argument that foreigner influx can help create more employment opportunities. Will cheap immigrant labor force wages down? A think tank has showed that immigration has virtually no effect on wages. It is not true that foreigners are too lazy to work. Immigrants actually take less advantage of public assistance. Governments can set criteria for them and make it harder for them to get PR. One way is to create language and culture tests. Open borders actually promote immigrant return. Opening the borders is not something we can do overnight. Just cracking the door around migration will help us tremendously.

How Ideas Change the World. There were some people who believed that the world would end on Dec 21, 1954. This was a prophecy that failed. Humans tend to suffer from cognitive dissonance, where people recalibrate reality rather than amend their worldview. Humans tend to stubborn. The more educated you are, the more unwilling you will be to change. Can new ideas like a universal basic income truly change the world? However, people’s ideas can indeed change over time. Sometimes, a single opposing voice can make all the difference. Had we invested too much in our old convictions? There is a lot we can learn from Friedrich Hayek and Milton Friedman. There are lessons we can learn from Neoliberalism. The world is getting richer and safer. It is okay to dream and keep plugging away.

People are most likely to change their opinions if you confront them with new and disagreeable facts as directly as possible. – Rutger Bregman

Utopia is on the horizon. I move two steps closer; it moves two steps further away. I walk another ten steps and the horizon runs ten steps further away. As much as I may walk, I’ll never reach it. So what’s the point of utopia? The point is this: to keep walking. – Eduardo Galeano

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Do Over (Make Today the First Day of Your New Career) by Jon Acuff (Part 2)

Win the Way You Won Before. We have definitely picked up skills in the past. Ask yourself what skills did you learn in the past? It need not be work skills only. What were the circumstances that conspired in your favour? You might have an audience to drive your development of the skill. Sometimes, you could have been pressured by a tight deadline. Find a new crowd you share your skill with. You could devise a reward system once you have attained a particular skill. Set a countdown on your phone to motivate yourself to do something, it could be 60 minutes or something. Don’t be afraid to devise new methods in your pursuit of new skills. Learn the strategies employed in the past to help you improve and give yourself a better chance at success. Never reinvent the wheel and always learn from your past.

Kick-Start Your New Skills with Something Fun. You can learn by necessity or curiosity. Necessity are related to work skills. Curiosity is more borne out of desire. Both types of skills are important for us. A smarter approach is to start with something fun. Developing a curiosity skill is more fun and easier than a necessity skill. Keep it simple. You only need time and knowledge at the start. Time and knowledge are more accessible than money, time, gear. You can research about it for free on the Internet. You need to make time for learning your skill too. You must decide exactly when do you want to learn it. Macro means printing out next month’s calendar. You will realize that you have more time than you think. Fear likes to tell you that you don’t have enough time. Learn to utilize your time well and in a fruitful manner. The micro is exactly which days and how many hours you will use to hone your skill. What’s consuming your calendar daily? Start your day with what matters most and that will help you the most. Work on your skill before other things get in the way. Who will help you learn this new skill? Skills are no exception. It is more fun to learn with a friend. Someone should track your progress. This person should ask you for updates on a regular basis. Check in twice a week.

If you really want to learn something, you have to decide when you are going to do it. Otherwise, you dramatically reduce your odds of actually doing it. – Jon Acuff

Days are like snowballs rolling down a hill. I don’t care how perfectly you’ve planned it, something unexpected is going to get picked up as your day rolls down the slope. – Jon Acuff

An accountability partner you only contract when you are winning isn’t an accountability partner, it’s a cheerleader. – Jon Acuff

Learning a new skill doesn’t have to be miserable, especially if you start with something fun and easy. – Jon Acuff

Skills Get Sharp Slowly and Dull Quickly. Skills will go dull if not used frequently. If you are writer, you should write daily. Once you get lazy, it will be hard to kick-start the habit again. At that time, you need motivation from friends to kick you to start again. The hardest competition you’ll ever face. The key for sportsmen is to be disciplined and do the same time every day of the week, even during off season. Learn to outsmart yourself. There is a problem with first times. First times should be the worst experience. Every time you start a new job, the skills you learn in your previous job are not useless. For every repetition you make, you should lay another brick in your foundation. You work best when skills become second nature to you. This will free up brain space for other things. If you discipline your life, it creates freedom in another. For instance, you could buy many sets of the same clothing. This will help you pare down your decision making. Your career is not shampoo. Nowadays, videos are big part of blogging. You must step into the tension of skills. Some skills cannot be simply put on autopilot, but should be on fighter pilot.

The more you can turn an important skill into a repeatable habit, the more you can trust the power of autopilot. – Jon Acuff

When you refuse to practice a skill today, it makes it harder to practice it tomorrow. Weeds of fear grow stronger the longer we wait to hustle. Get in the garden today. – Jon Acuff

Grab the Right Kind of Hammer for Your Career Ceiling. Do not build your cage. When you are stuck, you can choose to accept it or change it. Your skills will help you break ceilings. The ceiling is challenging you to break through it.

The father of every good work is discontent, and its mother is diligence. – Lajos Kassak

Should you ever stay at a bad job just because other people in your field don’t have a job? What are you really saying? That until everyone in your field is employed you can’t apply somewhere else? You can’t have another job until everyone else does? That doesn’t make any sense. – Jon Acuff

We build elaborate internal campaigns justifying where we are. We trick ourselves into thinking it’s someone else’s fault or that maybe it’s not so bad. It’s not a horrible job, it’s a good-enough job. If we stay there long enough, we eventually forget that we are even allowed to change. – Jon Acuff

I can’t tell you if in ten years I will have written five more books. But I can tell you that this year I will write one. I can’t tell you if in 10 years my blog will have 5 million readers, but I can write a new post today. – Jon Acuff

Investment 3: Character. Character is who you are. Character is the reason why people will give you another opportunity if you fail the first one. It is a pre-requisite for many things to come. Everything is personal in work. Character is impossible to ignore. Character will also determine your resilience to move things forward. Start planting your orchard and be generous and empathetic. People with bad character might win, but they may not last.

A talent is formed in stillness, a character in the world’s torrent. – Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe

Plant an Orchard. Character is a slow process and takes time to build. Character is like an orchard. The trees are the character traits and the weeds threaten to destroy your orchard. Which is one character trait that you want to develop? Ask a friend if you are clueless. Trust could be something you want to work on. Take a look at your whole orchard. I was addicted to chaos and busyness. However, if you like chaos, your character falls on the wayside. Write down the jobs you’ve had. Give a brief description of your job performance. List the way you left each job. Describe the strength of the relationships you left behind. Pull the weeds as fast as you can. Narcissism is a problem. Dishonesty is a horrible weed too. Pessimism is an issue too. Pessimism can grow and it can become a problem. Apathy is a big issue as well. Apathy cripples your ability to launch a career jump.

The future is purchased by the present. – Dr. Samuel Johnson

The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now. – Old Saying

Most destructive of all is that apathy cripples your ability to launch a career jump. No one who is apathetic has the energy or heart to try a positive, voluntary career transition. That entire quadrant is off the table when weeds like this have grown in your orchard. – Jon Acuff

Generosity is a Game Changer. We need to be generous as it can help us greatly in our careers. It helps to breed loyalty. People will support you if you have helped them before. Do not hesitate or hold back. Greed will cost you more than you think. Generosity is always cheaper than greed. Your generosity will pay dividends. It is for long term benefits. If you find that people are exploiting you, make sure you don’t have an itchy trigger finger. Learn to draw some boundaries. You can let the person learn from a painful experience. The worst case is to avoid them. Make your definition of generosity bigger. You can be generous with your time and skills. Ideally, you should be able to do something you are good at.

Service is renewing. When we serve, our work itself will sustain us. – Rachel Naomi Remen

Before you make a Career Jump give generously of your time, talent and resources without keeping score. If you keep a record of who you’ve been generous to with the expectation that they’ll return the favor, you’ll build transactions not relationships. – Jon Acuff

Empathy, No Longer Just for People Who Like to Cry with Friends. You need to navigate with empathy. It means understanding someone else’s needs and acting on them. Most people are the same and they all have hopes, fears, dreams, frustrations. Having empathy allows to work with just about anyone. If you have empathy, you can do sales and sell stuff. Take time to know someone’s real story. You will understand that they might have undergone to get to where they are. Compassion is important. Fear is an amazing storyteller. Care about what the people you care about care about. Character is an orchard, it changes over time. You don’t have to quit your job to engage in a career jump, but you can do something positive and voluntary. Read less minds, ask more questions. Instead of guessing, learn to ask them directly. Simply showing up shows empathy. It doesn’t have to be big actions. Make people bigger. Ask questions to your colleagues like ‘What can I do to make you look like a rock star to your manager?’ Put someone’s needs ahead of your own. What to do when empathy is broken. Be honest and admit you were wrong sometimes.

Everybody has a story. When we don’t take the time to know someone’s story or worse, create our own version of it, we lose the chance to understand what they need, which is the first step to empathy. – Jon Acuff

Be Present. Showing up at your job is important. You have to deal with your phone, your computer, and your meetings. We use our phones way too often. If you are not present, your relationships might be threatened. When you use your phone, you are putting other people on pause. Be present with your computer. People might surf the Internet at work in their free time. We are all guilty of it. Do work while you’re at work. Be present in meetings. Learn to take notes. It is easier to hide behind a laptop by being old fashioned and taking down notes is easier. Ask at least one question during the meeting will help you to stay engaged. Turn your phone upside down. You could just not bring your phone to the meeting or something.

Never Jump without Character. You need character when you decide to chase a dream. Character helps you navigate through chaos of change. You can always rely on your character. You can’t completely eliminate chaos from your life. Over time, you get used to living with chaos. It’s time to hustle.

Investment: Hustle. We are more capable than we think. Hustle means hard work. It helps you to build on relationships, skills and your character. You don’t get anywhere without hard work. There is a thin line between hustle and hassle. Use grit, awareness and flexibility.

‘Music is in the piano only when it is played.’ Jack Gilbert

Grit is a Choice, Not a Feeling. You will feel a sense of apathy if you have given up on your dream. Grit is not fun or easy. You might have to stay up late to work hard etc. It can be ugly and messy. However, grit is a choice. You might ask, what if I don’t have what it takes? You don’t need some ultimate goal to work on Do Over. Fear will always discourage you from working hard and acting on your goal. Tell yourself that you have what it takes to try. We all get to try. What if I pick the wrong thing to hustle on and miss my opportunity? The thing about life is that you will have many opportunities that will come your way. Therefore, do not apply the once-in-a-lifetime label to things you face. Regret is much worse than fear. Which would you rather choose, fear or regret? Make grit decisions. Give your hustle some time to succeed. Counsel and lean on your relationships. Ask for awesome opportunities. Give yourself permission to be kind. Be honest to yourself. Build a grit list. It’s like running, I don’t like it but I put in on my Grid List due to the benefits I derive from it. Go with grit, don’t be most people. Don’t wait until you feel brave to hustle, choose to hustle until you feel brave.

I didn’t want to be selling insurance at 40, wondering what it would have been like to do stand-up. – Steven Wright, Comedian

If you’re going to make new relationships, you need to have grit. If you’re going to learn new skills, you need to have grit. If you’re going to have strong character, you need to have grit. If you’re going to hustle, you need to have grit. – Jon Acuff

There’s no such thing as a perfect job. There’s no job where you get to do only the things you love doing. Those don’t exist. – Jon Acuff

There will be tasks, projects and activities you have to do in your career that you hate. No matter which stage you’re in, you’ll have to do some things you don’t love. That’s why we all need a Grid List, a short list of the skills we grit our teeth and do regardless of how we feel. – Jon Acuff

Hustle Has Seasons: Use Awareness to Recognize Them. Do not try to hustle at wrong points of your life. For instance, do not hustle on a holiday as you will not feel rested or recharged. You need to ask ‘what season am I in?’ Learn to focus. Hustle is a scalpel. Doing more action might not be the solution all the time. Do not hustle too much that you neglect your family etc. Instead of blaming your boss or colleagues, ask yourself ‘Did I expect this job to be something it never would be?’ It does not mean you are a failure. It just meets that you just took a wrong path and need to find a new one. Keep your head down and hustle on your work.

Be proactive about doing that in your own life. Work on your sense of awareness. Don’t wait for someone you love to call you out. – Jon Acuff

You don’t have to know the exact path, because nobody does, but are you roughly headed in the right direction? If you want to be a musician and you’re a pharmaceutical rep working 70 hours a week, not playing any music, stop kidding yourself. That path doesn’t lead to music. – Jon Acuff

Career Yoga. You need to spend time planning your day. Things rarely go according to plan. Hustling with flexibility is the best, as it leads to less disappointment. Be flexible with your dream. The work you end up loving might not even exist yet. You have to flexible about what you study as well. Your dream will change over your lifetime. Be flexible with your definition of success. Let new be different, not old. Humans love to idealize your past when our present doesn’t meet our expectations. Have fun storming the castle. Having fun is important as it helps you to get going and to push on. Having fun helps you to prevent burnout.

Always Use This to Multiply the Moment. Hustle offers you unexpected opportunities. Overcome your fear and learn to speak to a crowd. Say yes to small opportunities and learn to build from there.

Let no one be deluded that a knowledge of the path can substitute for putting one foot in front of the other. – Mary Caroline Richards

Hustle works those two ways. You hustle hard to stir up more opportunities. And then when you have one, you hustle hard to blow it up as large as it can possibly be. – Jon Acuff

Three Final Words You’ll Tell Me Someday Soon. Work can be more meaningful than we think. We have to change ourselves. We don’t get to pick a transition permanently. Your work is a lifestyle. Anyone can have a Career Do Over.

O you who sit over your full cup and do not drink, tell me, for whom are you still waiting? – Hermann Hesse

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Do Over (Make Today the First Day of Your New Career) by Jon Acuff (Part 1)

The Career Savings Account

You control more of your career than you think. You need to rescue and look forward to Monday. A better job begins with building a better you. This book is about building a career. Career ceilings are problems and also retrenchment is one of them. In some jobs, you know when you hit a ceiling and can’t go higher anymore. There are a few options: 1) find another job; 2) Do a job you didn’t want to do; 3) Suck it up over 30 years. Over 70% of the people felt disengaged with their jobs. Learn to embrace career transitions. How do we make career jumps, navigate career bumps, break through career ceilings, make the most of unexpected career opportunities? Learn to build a career savings account. You must keep making deposits into your career savings account. Relationships + Skills + Character X Hustle = Career Savings Account. Relationships are the people you know, skills are the things you do, character is who you are, hustle is how you work. You should have all 4 of them. Most people only work jobs, not build careers. Most people do not have anyone to turn to for career advice once they are in a rut. There are only 4 possible types of career transitions around. Some are voluntary while some are involuntary actions. When you are stuck on a career ceiling, skills will help you breakthrough. When you want to do a career jump and gain progression, your character is the most important investment. Great lives are rarely created in great comfort. Most people are afraid of the unknown. It is never too late to do a do over. It’s time to DO a Do Over.

We eat at TGI Fridays not TGI Mondays. We live for the weekends because we’ve accepted that the weekdays are where dreams go to die. Poke your head up if you’re reading this book at work. – Jon Acuff

Do This First. Fear and complacency are things we need to overcome. Choose your attitude and adjust your expectations. Don’t listen to feelings, but rather, learn to make choices. Adjust your expectations and write down what you see in a job. However, do not completely eliminate them, rather, you can adjust them.

Tomorrow at work, choose to have a good attitude. Choose not to be cynical. Choose not to act like you’re doing them a favor by showing up. Choose not to complain. Choose to cheer for the accomplishments of your co-workers. Choose to treat customers like superstars. – Jon Acuff

Relationships. Finding good people is the key for a successful business. Skills can be judged on a resume, but attitude can’t be judged. Therefore, relationships get you the first gig. During career setbacks, relationships help you too. This book provides some tips on how to strengthen relationships.

You Don’t Know Who You Know. People hate change. Most people despise networking. However, we acknowledge the importance of networking. Who is someone you can turn to for help with your career Do Over? Use note cards. Writing stimulates information retention. Please buy them. It’s okay if you don’t know what to do with your life. Find an accountability partner to monitor your progress on a skill. Answer the question ‘Who do I know that is wise about career issues?’ Answer the question ‘Who have I worked with?’ Answer the question ‘Who do I know that is influential?’ Answer the question ‘Who do I know that owns a business?’ Answer the question ‘Who do I follow online that is in my desired career space?’ Answer the question ‘What casual relationships am I forgetting that might have a career impact?’ Always remember that you don’t know who you know unless you spend deliberate time focusing on your relationships.

It’s better to hang out with people better than you. Pick out associates whose behavior is better than yours and you’ll drift in that direction. – Warren Buffett

Dentists say, “Only floss the teeth you want to keep.” The same is true of career relationships; only invest in the ones you want to keep. – Jon Acuff

Gives Your Foes What They Need Most. You must know what type of relationship you want to develop. You could meet foes along the way, these people are against your dream. They do not support your dreams. Friend is someone who will cheer you along. Advocate is someone who is significant in helping you shape your career. Start to label your friends in the different categories. How do you deal with your foes? This category doesn’t matter and your best bet is to ignore them. There is a difference between an idiot and a foe. Shrink your definition of the word ‘foe’. Don’t search for foes. That’s your best solution. Compare the Internet to Real Life. People are often critics only online and they do not like to criticize in real life. If you have such people, distance yourself from them. Stop hanging out with lobsters. Lobsters just want to make others feel miserable. Distance yourself from them. How do you deal with bad bosses? The first you can do is to improve your work performance to see if it improves your relationship. Admit you’re an employee. Turn the frustration of working under a bad boss into fuel. Your boss is essentially saying ‘I dare you to get a better job’.

One of the easiest and fastest ways to turn an accomplice into a friend is to simply tell your accomplice what you are working on. Most of the time just the act of telling someone what you are trying to do with your life changes things. – Jon Acuff

Sometimes, people who hate on your dream aren’t really mad about your dream. They’re mad because you’re making them jealous. – Jon Acuff

You can’t change someone, but you can impact a work relationship sometimes if you improve your work performance. – Jon Acuff

Casual Counts. Casual friends count too and you never know when they might be able to help you. You need to have a massive collection of these people. Throw as many boomerangs as possible. If you are lucky, one might come back into your life with a work opportunity. Use social media to connect with people whom you haven’t kept in touch. You should try to do some casual relationships. I hate asking people for help. Most successful people didn’t accomplish everything alone. We have to give the casual relationship information. If you’re looking for a new job, tell them that. Start with a small table. Say things like ‘it was wonderful seeing you tonight’. You need to find a table. Put a big table in your house and invite people over for dinner. You need to be a little brave and desperate for community. This is how friendships start. Find a table first. Make new casual relationships on purpose. Casual means deliberate. It’s impossible to predict whether someone can work with you at the start. Be a first responder and do not sit on emails for days. Don’t ignore people and pick up on the first ring. Learn to own the inconvenience. Increase the frequency of your interactions with these casual acquaintances. Friendships built on selfishness never work out. Increase the frequency you see them on their terms, not yours. Own the inconvenience.

Casual relationships run on (and deepen) based on your willingness to share information. – Jon Acuff

If people don’t know you need help, they can’t help you. – Jon Acuff

Whether you’re chasing a new dream or trying to climb the ladder at work, casual relationships won’t know how to help us unless we ask for help. – Jon Acuff

Great Career Take Great Advocates. Not all your friends can give you good advice. There are 3 characteristics that advocates must have. They have to be brave and to tell you the truth, even though it hurts. They have to be respected. They also have to be trustworthy. Cheat Codes make the game a lot easier. They will tell you shortcuts which actually work. However, you must be willing to listen to them. What do career advocates need from us? What’s in it for them? Expand your definition of the word ‘expert’. There are generally 3 types of expertise: Industry, life and You. A best friend can be an advocate too. Advocate is like a mentor and the advice mostly goes one way only. An advocate must be someone smarter than you. Join people in your profession and ask for advice. Know other people in similar firms. You might also build some long-distance advocates or heroes you have read about in books.

It’s one of my theories that when people give you advice, they’re really just talking to themselves in the past. – Steve Garguilo

An advocate is only as good as the amount of access you are willing to give them into your life. The best advocate for your career can’t do anything if you stay surface level with them. – Jon Acuff

Don’t Burn Many Bridges. Sometimes, it is inevitable. However, do not burn many bridges as it might haunt you. Boomerangs will return, even bad ones. The fewer you burn, the better. Do you form hate clubs about people you don’t like. Sometimes, stupid people can be your boss also. Leave Jobs with your thumb raised. Do not raise your middle finger as the experience is not worth it at all. Keep your matches away from digital bridges too. Don’t do social media gloating. Apologize if you have to. Your industry is smaller than you think. Treat everyone like you’ll work with them again someday.

It is seldom indeed that one parts on good terms, because if one where on good terms one would not part. – Marcel Proust

I’m not asking you to be fake and give long, deep hugs to people who spent the previous day verbally assaulting you. – Jon Acuff

If you currently have a job, do not go online and criticize the company you work for. – Jon Acuff

Community Shines Brightest in the Darkness of a Career Bump. There are only 4 things which can happen: 1) career ceilings; 2) career jumps; 3) career opportunities; 4) career bumps. Relationships will pick you up. Friends will be there to help you. Rock Bottom is a Trampoline. Sometimes, you will spring back into life, just like that. A career bump will rock your boat and it will reveal who are your true friends. We need friends and advocates.

Investment 2: Skills. Relationships get you the first gig, skills get you the second. However, if you have no skills, you sink. The difference between an amateur and expert are skills. They give purpose for life. Skills are ability and provide you with natural talents. Old dogs can learn new skills. Your skills can come in handy. Skills are the key to getting unstuck.

Everybody wants to be somebody: Nobody wants to grow. – Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe

Once you have skills, they are yours forever. No one can take that skill away from you. When you leave a job, the skills you learned there leave with you. You must keep them sharp, but a skill you put in the Career Savings Account stays there. – Jon Acuff

You Have More Skills than You Think. Most people claim they don’t have many skills. This is because they are just things you do, but you don’t classify. Get more skills. You should write down a list of current skills. Write down ideas. Look for patterns. Ask what are you good at. Do not be humble. It could be personal skills as well, need not be work-related skills. Ask yourself what comes naturally? Write down ‘what do people pay me to do?’ Write down ‘what are you afraid of?’ Write down ‘If you wrote an eBook, what would the topic be?’ Bring the cards along with you. If you do not know what your skills are, ask a friend for advice. You need to be aware of the skills you might want to acquire.

Whether you want to get better at your current job or find a new one, chances are you will need new skills. – Jon Acuff

Somewhere on the road to adulthood we decided that dreams were dumb. We stopped wanting to be firemen and astronauts and settled for stuck and predictable. We accepted the lie that Monday must be boring. – Jon Acuff

Master the Invisible Skills. Everything is a skill, everything you do at work is a skill. Communication, fixing paper jams are all skills. The small things add up. The small skills do not seem flashy. You just need some tweaks to be great at them. Many people miss these invisible skills and overlook them. Going to work is a skill as it shows that absenteeism is not value highly by employees. Go to work and go on time. You will already be better off than others who don’t show up at work. Learn to add value. In every job, there must be something that you do which adds value. Ask yourself what is the currency of your company. How does what you do add to your company’s mission? You can tell your boss: ‘I’ve been thinking a lot about the best ways for me to continually add value to this company. I’d love to hear your thoughts on how I can do that.’ Employees must add value. Own your attitude. It is not the employers’ job to fulfil your career desires. When you have a bad attitude, it shows. It’s your job to enjoy work, not your employer. Attitude is a decision you choose on a daily basis. Express gratefulness. Show consideration for others. Focus on what matters. Play to your strengths and everyone else’s. Learn to be flexible. Respect their gear. Continue with your education and learn more. If the company wants to train you, you should be grateful.

The goal of your first job is to teach you how to have a job. – Jon Acuff

Over and over again, career experts bemoaned the fact that employees who don’t show up to work get fired. – Jon Acuff

Attitude is a skill. It can be changed. It can be improved and it starts with owning it. You determine your attitude, not your day, not a job, not a situation. You. Own it. – Jon Acuff

If you need more to do, find more work to do. Finishing the work your boss thought would take you 40 hours in only 25 hours doesn’t mean you’ve just earned an extra 15 hours of me time that week. – Jon Acuff

Never Become a Dinosaur. There are people who don’t love to learn new skills. With technological advances, skills are important. If you don’t have them, you are a dinosaur. Your skills can get obsolete quickly if you are not careful. Old skills might not work all the time. New skills open the doors to wonderful opportunities. It will value-add to your resume. Sign up for classes is also a signal to your boss that you care about the job. Passion won’t show up from nowhere. You won’t find calling out of nowhere. There are hassles with learning something new. It’s not easy but you can pretend to be a tourist in a new country and ask a lot of questions to find out more. If you want a Do Over, you have to pick up new skills. It’s hard to get stuck in your old ways when you prioritize learning new skills.

I like being a beginner. I like the moment when I look at everyone and say, “I have no idea how to do this, let’s figure it out.” – Jon Acuff

If we all don’t want to become dinosaurs, bemoaning the good ol’ days, we have to stay current. We have to stay relevant. We have to stay employable and the best way to do that is by learning new skills. – Jon Acuff

New jobs always require learning new skills, even if that just means learning a different way a new company prefers to do something. – Jon Acuff

Learning a new skill can reveal a new dream. How can you know you love doing something if you don’t try it? – Jon Acuff

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Quitter by Jon Acuff (Part 2)

Falling in Like With a Job You Don’t Love. In the past, I was obsessed over quitting my job. Later on, people encouraged me to quit because of my dreams. Quitting your day job is not fulfilling the American dream. People assume your dream is more lucrative. However, writing doesn’t pay well. Dreams rarely pay well at the start. Your dream needs time to incubate. It takes very long indeed. Without incubation time, it will die. Keeping at a day job allowed my dream to have incubation time. What you do in one area of your life will affect the other areas too. Your work attitude tends to follow you home too. Remember why you work. I work to support my family. When you chase your dreams, sometimes you become selfish in your ways. Look for parallels. Starbucks is going to teach you accounting, marketing etc. You can learn from any job you have. Learn to start small and work from there. Look for purpose. Ask how can your day job benefit your dream job and vice versa. How can your chase for your dream job positively affect your day job? People was my purpose. Every dream involves people. You can definitely find purpose in your day job. Do not ever steal from work. This means working on your personal goals while at work. You are supposed to do work in your job description. One way to overcome this is to work very hard in your weekday evenings on your dream so you won’t feel pressed for time. Another way is to take on more assignments at work. Your employers didn’t pay you to work on your dream during working hours. Be honest and diligent with your day job hours. Think of your job as your adversary, not your advocate is a screwed up way of thinking. Protect the way you look at your boss and your company. The next wrong way is to demand that your job meet the needs of your dream. You are not entitled to anything.

The truth is, we need to learn to fall in like with a job we don’t live because it’s actually the best way to set up your dream for success. – Jon Acuff

Bad employees make horrible dreamers. You can’t loaf on your day job all week and then expect to magically throw the switch on the weekend and hustle on your dream. The things you do on your day job tend to follow you home. – Jon Acuff

We get really focused on our own stuff and our own dreams and we lose sight of the many, many reasons it is critical that you do great work at your day job. – Jon Acuff

The romantic way too look at it is that my dream job bled over into my day job. The candid way to look at it is that I was stealing from work. When you do your dream on work time, that’s stealing from your employer. – Jon Acuff

Wait on the Main Stage. We have to get on the main stage. It can be very nervous to speak on the main stage. To many, speaking at a lab is a failure. However, we all need to speak on the side before moving to the main stage. Plans are important, however, do not plan too much. Plans always change and they are fluid. The problem are that plans are too vague and no detailed steps are necessary. It’s like soccer, you can’t plan for everything as every moment is different. There are too many variables in life. You will not be able to script every detail. You do not need a plan. You need passion to drive you forward. The second thing you need is practice. You must show up every day and make it a habit. Just keep practising and practising. The conditions of your dream will change all the time. We like to see the underdog defeat the best. It is like David and Goliath. When you are small, nobody likes and respects you. Developing our dream job is more about hard work rather than grand moments in life. Start small and go along the way. We all need the gift of invisibility at the start. It’s harder to take risks when many people are watching you. Anonymity is the best because you have nothing to lose. You are a free man. Cherish it while it is still around.

Focus on your passion first. Your passion will always fuel your plan. Rarely will a plan fuel a passion. It will contribute. It will shape it. It will most certainly help it. – Jon Acuff

There Will Be Hustle. I have never taken blogging seriously. Things worked out because I hustled. Our desire to complicate matters is because we are lazy and fearful. Hustle is not hard. Sometimes, you will have to do the things you don’t enjoy. Dreams start in the morning. When you wake up, this is the best time to hustle. You don’t have excuses in the morning. One tends to have less excuses in the morning. When you start on your dreams in the morning, it will leave you happier throughout the day. As you grow older, you waste less time. It will force you to prioritize. The clue is to do more of the things you love and less of the things you like. Chasing your dreams isn’t all rosy and shit. The more you practice, the better you become. There is a lot of practice involved. Put quantity before quality. You have to learn 3 things about people. They won’t pay for what they can get for free. You will have to differentiate the product before they will pay. You have to weigh the long-term benefits of doing something for free. If there is a bigger gain from you not charging at speaking events, then don’t charge. Free pays dividends towards expertise. Doing stuff for free improves your exposure. Competition can be a big motivator but it is not a good measurement tool. If you feel you are better than your competitor, then you will get complacent. If you realize how much your opponent is better than you, you will get discouraged. Try not to measure your dream against someone else’s dream. Blog stats could be one potential measure. Your message must stay true to yourself. The best measure is the amount of work you have put in. This is the factor which you can control. Measure the number of days which you woke up early.

I love the title Quitter but still think that a core element holding this entire book together is a need to hustle. To push harder than the other person. To dream further. To work longer and faster. – Jon Acuff

Hustle is not hard. If you write your blog every day, at the end of the year you will have more readers than when you started. If you get up early and work on your dream two hours more than somebody else, your dream will progress faster. – Jon Acuff

The reality is that when you get busy doing the things that matter to you, you actually have more time to do the things you love and less time to do the things you like. – Jon Acuff

Learn to Be Successful at Success. You do not become an overnight celebrity. Do not misinterpret what success looked like for a dream. Success is the Bermuda Triangle of dreams. There are challenges associated with success too. Another problem is that we get arrogant. Overconfidence is scary. Do not let success kill your dream. Learn to define what is ‘enough’. You can send future emails to yourself. Write yourself a letter in the future. Success will often tell you that it is never enough and that you should strive even more. Define your enough. It is important not to burn out. You must always invest in relationships or they will die. Burn your dream bright but do not burnout. Please understand that the land of later is a myth. Kids do not believe in later. There will always be trade-offs. It is important to spend time with your family and kids too. Don’t turn your platform into a prison. Learn to have multi-generation dreams. Build a legacy that is bigger than individuals’ lives and actions. If you have a dream, share it with others. Do not take on opportunities which are not linked to your dream. Avoid saying yes to the wrong things.

Quit Your Day Job. I left my day job. My boss expected it. How do you know you’re really ready to leave? Learn to fill up this scorecard. 1) You have worked hard on your dream for more than a month/ a few months. Please understand that not everyone needs to quit their day job. The author had 6 reasons for quitting his day job. They are 1) He had somewhere to land. Next, the opportunity fit our opportunity filter. The author tested the dream before he quit. It is important to practice what you want to do with your life. I had a support network. We could afford to move. God seemed cool with our dream. It is important to establish some important ground rules. Share the rules and others hold you accountable. Make a list of risks that might appear after you leave your day job. Friendships might take long to form. In addition, you might be required to travel more. Money could be an issue too. You might need to pay rent for a home. We really can’t have two different versions of ourselves ‘work me’ and ‘life me’. To some extent, your work defines you. You think your job just funds the rest of your life. This cheapens the value of work. Some people think work is never meant to be fulfilling. There will always be hard and difficult moments at work. However, you have to do things you don’t necessarily enjoy at times. However, work can be fun sometimes. A menial task has meaning too.

You can’t spend 40 hours a week doing something and think it won’t impact you. You can’t spend half of your waking hours somewhere and think it doesn’t affect you. You can’t make a perfectly clean break between your life inside and outside work. – Jon Acuff

You can fake that you love your job for months, maybe even years, convincing everyone you work with that you care about the company, the business or the job. But your apathy for a job always comes out eventually. – Jon Acuff

If you quit your job without understanding why you’re quitting, you’ll just jump from job to job to job. You’ll become a serial quitter like I was. The things you didn’t like at the job before will show up in your next job. And the next. The common denominator in every bad job you’ve quit is you. – Jon Acuff

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Quitter by Jon Acuff (Part 1)

Closing the Gap between Your Day Job and Your Dream Job

Don’t Quit Your Day Job. I hated my day job and the feelings of Monday mornings. I felt that my dreams were crushed. I had 8 jobs in 8 years. Many employees are also looking out for new jobs. The average tenure of a job is only 3.1 years for the younger generation. Now, we converted from stayers to leavers. We hate our jobs and only see work as a means to pay money to fund our lifestyle. We often feel that work is miserable and that it is possible to separate our work from our personality outside of work. Quitting your job is one of the worst things you can do. It sucks when you have a lousy boss and the only person he can manage is you. We always assume things will be rosy once we quit. All your financial responsibilities will creep up on you. Your wife will start arguing with you. You will get scolded if you watch too much TV. Quitting your jobs might throw your relationship into chaos. You can get to your dream job, but that doesn’t involve you leaving your day job immediately. When you don’t have a job, you don’t have a good bargaining tool to get what you want. If you have a day job, you can still reject shitty offers. The cost of raising kids is very high nowadays. I got to earn some cash speaking in front of a crowd. You lose leverage if you quit without a job. At the heart of a dream is change. People do not like change in general. Financial commitments are tight and inflexible. Stay true to your dream and do not quit your day job. People with jobs have more creative freedom than those without jobs. Once I started a diet, I realized that other aspects of my life was improving as well. Discipline begets discipline. Men need to work and need a project/ need progress at all times. Money issues are very sensitive. Humans need to work. We need to learn to be successful at work. Having a day job will stabilize your marriage.

The unfortunate truth is the escaping the land of bad bosses is just a fantasyland. The second you quit your bad boss you get dozens of new bosses. And some are more demanding than the one you just left. – Jon Acuff

You effectively lose that option when you quit. You lose that freedom when you jump without a net. You lose the power of the walkout or the shredded contract. – Jon Acuff

When you keep your day job, all opportunities become surplus propositions rather than deficit remedies. You only have to take the ones that suit your dream best. – Jon Acuff

Discipline begets discipline. When you step up to a challenge before you, your ramped-up resources rub off on other areas of your life. You wouldn’t think eating less ‘fat’ would impact how closely you monitor your family’s financial budget, but it’s all tied together. – Jon Acuff

Quitting a job doesn’t jump-start a dream because dreams take planning, purpose and progress to succeed. That stuff has to happen before you quit your day job. Often it should occur months and even years before. – Jon Acuff

Removing the ‘I’m’ From Your ‘But’. It feels sexy to quit. We usually label quitters as winners. This is the “I’m, but’ generation. This means that ‘We don’t know what we want, but this isn’t it’. People seem to know what they want to do without even trying that thing. There are ways to find out what your dream job is. For instance, one could work on personality tests. The truth is that most of us don’t know what our dream job is. So ask yourself, so what do you want to do? We often think that what we want to do is going to be a revelation. The author believes that it is more a process of recovery. Somehow, you lost it along the way. Everyday distractions are bad and divert us away from our dreams. Being busy is an excuse. Do not simply discount your dream. You will always meet people in your life who dismiss your dreams, who think that you are not good enough. Nothing can’t hurt you. Nothing is comfortable. Nothing is normal. We are embarrassed to share our big dreams. Don’t believe that you have no gifts in life and you have nothing. It is difficult to answer the question what do I want to do with my life because is a discovery question. Learn to look for hinge problems. Mercedes Benz redesigned the SLR range to appeal to the rich. They added a hinge to the ignition. You needed to open the cover and then press the ignition button with your thumb. It was like launching a missile. That made a tremendous difference to the car’s outlook and appeal. The lamination of your text makes it seem like you are a true published author. My dad also sent my book for publishing and that was great. My dad believed in me, that was one of my hinge moments too. However, most hinges are difficult to recover. Ask yourself the following questions to figure out hinge moments. 1) What do I love enough to do for free? 2) What do I do that causes time to feel different? 3) What do I enjoy doing regardless of the opinions of the people? 4) If only your life changed, would that be enough? 5) Are there any patterns in the things you like doing?

If you recognize that, if you admit that there is a chance that you are good, perhaps even great at something, you should feel a little uncomfortable. Because if your gift is not nothing, that means it is something. – Jon Acuff

A hinge moment occurs when you are planning to do something standard and normal, and then seemingly out of nowhere, a small detail usually hinges you in a different direction. – Jon Acuff

What Lies Between a Day Job and a Dream Job. Every dream has risk associated with it. When you stare at risk, you tend to make irrational decisions. We will now examine 3 risks associated with a dream. They are ‘The Magnifying Glass’. We blow things out of proportion. The next is ‘The Kaleidoscope’. Your dream is also connected to every aspect of your life. This is basically overthinking and thinking of all the worst case scenarios. The last fear is ‘The Telescope’. This is the best as you view from a safe distance and see the big picture. Risk is holding us back from pursuing our dream. Perfection is a real problem. This is because it tends to make you procrastinate and not do anything. Get organized and get things in motion. Perfect is not possible. This does not mean you should write half-hearted work. It is still better to pursue your dreams rather than leave it not pursued. Once you decide, just do it. We often like to say I could be so-and-so if I really wanted to. This leads to apathy. We ask ourselves ‘What if I try and I fail and it turns out I’m not really a writer?’ Apathy is about being a fake somebody. The chance of you failing to get your dream job and then rotting away and going to waste are extremely slim. If you do not attempt your dreams, you fail 100% of the time. We often say that we are too busy to pursue our dreams. However, most of us are also busy. However, everyone can set aside time for time management. Instead of time, learn to focus on the amount of tasks at hand. Financial foolishness is different from being committed to your dream. Do not take drastic measures. Money can be a huge obstacle if you are not careful. I hate the words ‘by now’. We say this when it is too late to pursue our dream. What if I did the wrong thing? Your past career can still teach you valuable lessons. Do not keep saying things like ‘It would be easier if …’ For instance, people say ‘It would be easier if I didn’t have a full-time job’. Having a lot of money will not save your life. Do not blame your kids, marriage for not being able to pursue your dreams. This is simply outrageous.

90% perfect and shared with the world always changes more lives than 100% perfect and stuck in your head. – Jon Acuff

Money will become a high-walled border around your dream if you don’t control it. It will limit what you can do and when you can do it, like a barbed-wire fence at a prison. If you can control it though, money can be a strong, stable place to jump from. – Jon Acuff

I know sometimes it’s scary to think that you might do the wrong thing. But let me assure you, nothing you do will be wasted. Every decision you make, every path you take, has the ability to contribute something you need to succeed at your dream. – Jon Acuff

We always assume that more free time will equal more productivity but often that isn’t true. I personally tend to get more done when I am busy. – Jon Acuff

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The Rich Employee by James Altucher (Part 2)

How a Poor Employee Thinks. Jobs can be either outsourced to other countries or be replaced. Education might not protect you from it. Do not look for employers who will outsource people at the first opportunity. Use time to learn to be innovative. Learning from online courses is a great idea. Avoid the poor employee mindset. A poor employee gossips, under promises, doesn’t understand company vision. He never invests in himself. He spends on showing off instead of learning new things. He never comes up with great ideas. Does only what is required to get a salary. He surfs the net a lot for personal interests. He hates the job.

How to Become a Rich Employee. This is a practice.

The Rich Employee Miracle Morning. You are the alchemist of your life. A near death experience can change you. Do not fight with any bad things that might have befallen you. Adopt the daily practice of choosing yourself: striving to improve every day 1% for both your physical and mental health. Some of the miracle morning strategies you can adapt are ‘Meditation’; ‘Prayer’; and ‘Breathing’. Use affirmations to help you every morning. For instance ‘Today, I am open to learn new things’. ‘V’ is for visualization. Learn to visualize your goal. ‘E’ is for exercise. ‘R’ is for reading. Read books that contain positive ideas. ‘S’ is for scribing. It is very important to have a healthy routine. Start to take action and develop positive habits.

How a Rich Employee Creates His or Her Side Hustle. What worked in the past might not work well today. Hence, it is better to cultivate the rich employee mindset. Being an entrepreneur is about mitigating and not creating risk. Find a system for developing a side job. Pay attention to your emotions. How do you make a blog more successful? You love more. Learn to spread the love and share others’ posts. Link others to your page. Have guest bloggers. Learn to make more love. Buy low, sell high. Use drop shipping tactics, like buy from AliExpress and then sell on Ebay for instance. Adopt the QVC-A method for success. Q is for Quality, V is for value, C is for consistency, A is for authenticity. Learning to find happiness with less is true wealth. We are the sum of our experiences and not the sum of our belongings. It is okay to do nothing at all on some days.

How Does a Rich Employee Handle When Others Get Jealous and Trash Her or Him? You gain success and others will start hating you. People will be jealous of your success. It is not possible to be loved all the time. I have learnt to deal with death threats and hate mails. Learn to live life like it’s your last day. It might be the last moment you see your loved ones. Hate will eventually pass after a while too. Those haters are just junk status binging. Just say ‘thank you’ and let go. Learn to have a vision. Write and work from the heart. Laughter cures all and makes people relax. Laughter is indeed the best medicine. Do not waste time living other people’s fears.

Habits of the Mentally Strong Rich Employee. Anyone can learn to mentally strong. Mentally strong people have very strong relationships. ‘You are the average of the 5 people you spend your time with’. Honesty is important. Understand it’s not about me, it’s about you. Focus on solving the problems of other people. Don’t keep thinking about making money. Smart people keep reading and become stronger. Some of the good books to read are ‘As a Man Thinketh’. Every mentally strong person was a voracious reader. Health is wealth and you can’t achieve big things in life when you are sick. Sleep 8 hours a day and walk a lot. Be curious and try to learn more things in life. Ask questions and learn and do not be shy. Learn, say, repeat. Exercise your idea muscles and come up with ideas. Learn to exercise the idea muscle and keep learning. Mentally strong people give themselves permission. Give yourself permission to fail and to try again. Ask ‘what can you do to help others?’ Understand that life changes fast. There is no grand purpose for you out there. Also understand that experiences are more valuable than goods. Learn to listen more. Pretend everything is going to die tomorrow and treat others well and with compassion. News is completely unimportant. Art and innovation are main stayers. Always take the job that gives you as much freedom as possible.

When you buy something nice, the neurochemicals spike, and then go away. When you have an experience, you have days of anticipation for the experience. Then you have the experience. Then you have the memories that can last forever. – James Altucher

Habits of the Poor Employee. The poor employee has an opinion. The poor employee thinks they are special. We do not have a special purpose in life. The poor employee talks a lot. Try to talk less when you know nothing much. The poor employee has no career. The poor employee thinks it needs X to get Y. There are many other paths to get Y. Some people think that ‘If I don’t do this then bad things will happen’. The poor employee thinks that he can’t leave. There will always be haters. You can’t change them, so you can just delete them. You are the coach of your future self. Take a walk when you feel like shit. Spend time with those who are good around you.

Get good at three, four, or five things. Then find the intersection. Then become the best in the world at the intersection. That’s how you can pretend to do your special purpose. – James Altucher

How the Rich Employee Learns

A Rich Employee is Always Learning. How do you know what you are talented at? Everyone is talented in many things. There are 10 step technique for learning. The first is to love it. Write every day. Study every chess game and work hard. Quantity of ideas is more important than quality at the start. Get a teacher. That will make you learn 10 times faster. Study the history and study the present. Do not read so many self-help business books. Write down the things you learn from each book. Do easy projects first. This will be the small wins which you give you enough confidence to continue. Study what you did. Analyze and do a post-mortem for any failures you might have suffered in the past. No man is an island and we work better in teams. Find your evil plan. Change the world.

Don’t forget the important rule: the secret of happiness is not “being great” – the secret of “growth”. If you only “try”, you’ll get to a level that is natural for you. – James Altucher

Frequently and Important Questions Rich Employees Have

How Does a Rich Employee Deal with a Crappy Boss While In Transition. When a boss yelled at me once, I quit. However, that is not the best way to deal with things. One should learn to deal with them and train them. The first tip is never kiss ass. Engage as little as possible with him, only talk about work. Never talk badly behind his back. Always give him/her credit for everything as Dogs like to be loved. Write a cover-your-ass memo every day describing what you are up to and who you are dealing with. Keep track of every detail. Build relationships with his network of colleagues and contacts. Help other employees of your boss with their jobs. Learn to over deliver. Understand what’s your market value and apply for jobs.

If your boss is a crappy person then you want to engage as little as possible. Only work stuff. Never joking around. Never anything that builds a meaningful dialogue that he will twist later. Don’t make friends with an animal. – James Altucher

On anything he asks you to do provide an extra touch. That is how he gets promoted. When you are more creative than him, over deliver for him, and he gets full credit. – James Altucher

Why is it especially important for women rich employees to become idea machines? Women need to bring things to the table too. This is because women still get paid less than men. As women, you should ask more questions. Men tend to ask the questions during talks. Men do things even if they are not 100% prepared. The transformation might be slow but slow and steady wins the race. Get out of depression. Remember to give to ourselves. Remember that ideas help to save lives and relationships etc. Learn to debunk stereotypes of women. Come up with 10 ideas a day. Ask yourself what is your passion for today? Learn to cut ourselves some slack. Understand that there is no beauty in playing small. The author recommends that ladies read ‘Lean in’.

Just One Thing to Do. Are women afraid that they will ask dumb questions? Do not be afraid anymore.

How Does a Rich Employee Master New Skills? Most of us will not be masters at anything. Talent is indeed a factor. How do you find what you are talented at? The first method is to write down what you enjoyed doing as a kid. Another way is to go to a shop and see what books you pick up to read. We are after all a combination of all of our experiences and if it is garbage so be it. Work on it four hours a day. You will also need to study history rather deeply. Study those who had failed before you. Study your failures. Do not blame others if you fail. Always learn from your experiences. Be able to recognize patterns. To become a master, one has to endure much pain. With mastery, big failures will always come. Build your ego. Persistence creates luck.

There’s a myth that everyone is talented at least one thing and you just have to find it. This isn’t true. Most people are not talented at anything. Most people can be pretty good at something. – James Altucher

At some point you have to cook 10,000 meals. Or play a million hands of poker, or 1000s of games of chess. Or start 20 businesses. Very few are successful right away. That would require too much luck and luck favors the prepared and the persistent. – James Altucher

One reason most people in the world don’t get really good at anything is because they have no talent for anything that anyone cares about. Another reason is they don’t want to put in the work. – James Altucher

How Does a Rich Employee Transform Anger into ‘What Works’? When you experience paranoia, you start losing intelligence. It will destroy you. Resentment is very bad too. If you think of revenge, that is very bad too. So does feelings of regret. Perfectionism is bad too. You can’t control the fact that you are not perfect. There are always things outside your control and you simply care too much. Feelings of guilt are not desirable too. Thinking of worst case scenarios are not desirable too. Talking unnecessarily also removes confidence.

Is there a ‘right way’ to ask for things that the rich employee utilizes? Do not be ashamed when you have to ask for something. The passive aggressive ask. By keeping silent, it will ruin your life. By asking, sometimes it can hurt your chances in future. If you can handle a lot of Nos, then keep asking. This is known as the cold ask. It doesn’t hurt if you don’t really care about the person and also what they of you. You are asking for something very small. You can ask people out for coffee. I asked 100 people to give me $5 on the street, only 1 guy gave me $1. Begging might work. Learn the ‘no pressure’ ask. Asking is good if whether they say ‘yes’ or ‘no’ doesn’t affect the relationship. Later on, you can follow up with No Pressure Asks. One good way is to ask for advice. Ask for advice on how you can improve at work or in your personal life. Try the reciprocity ask. Therefore, the trick is to give something first. You don’t have to ask immediately, you can store up your asks. What to have to offer in return? Therefore, sometimes you need to do the background work first.

As a Rich Employee, how do I know if I should take up a job in a start-up? If the CEO has built a business before, the odds of failure go down to 25%. The company must have enough funds to last 1 year at least. You must also believe in the company’s vision and the CEO must be good at communicating that vision. If you use the product and you like it, even better. Don’t work for a company that is easily replaceable at a lower valuation. Learning is the key. Look out for the subtleties of the company. If you hear about the company trashing their clients, you will probably not want to work for them. All gossiping is bad. You have to like your boss. Work for promising companies utilizing new technologies. Do not ask for when the company will IPO, because it can take up to 7 or 10 years. Make sure you see the path to profitability.

Resources for the Rich Employee

Create a Choose Yourself Meet-up in Your Town. Improving yourself is a practise and not a goal. Associate yourself with others who strive for self-improvement too. Associate yourself with people with similar goals. Share with others how to keep learning, network etc. How to Run a Choose Yourself Meet-up. Keep the meetup small. Gossip should be kept out of the way. This is like a self-help group.

Suggestion Websites where you can pick up new skills: Fedora; TedX; Coursera; Coursmos; Highbrow; Skillshare; Curious; Lynda.com; CreativeLive; Udemy; Codecademy; Stuk.io; Udacity; Platzi; Learnable; Code School; Thinkful; Code.org; BaseRails; Treehouse; One Month; Dash; DataCamp; DataQuest; DataMonkey; Duolingo; Lingvist; Busuu; Memrise; Chesscademy; Pianu; Yousician; ClaudiaYoga.

Recommended Books: ‘The End of Jobs: Money, Meaning and Freedom Without the 9 to 5’ by Taylor Pearson; ‘The Miracle Morning: The Not-so-obvious secret guaranteed to transform your life (before 8am)’ by Hal Elrod; ‘Become an Idea Machine. Because Ideas are the Currency of the 21st Century’ by Claudia Azula Altucher; ‘Bounce: Mozart, Federer, Picasso, Beckham, and the Science of Success’ by Mathew Syed; ‘Seven Years to Seven Figures: The Fast-Track Plan to Becoming a Millionaire’ by Michael Masterson; ‘Quitter’ by Jon Acuff

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The Rich Employee by James Altucher (Part 1)

Who is This Book For? Learn to choose yourself. Always tell yourself that as it very crucial. Ask yourself how can you change the world? Have a ‘rich employee’ mindset. Choose themselves. Apply that vantage point. You can apply the lessons even if you are not an entrepreneur. Make the most of every situation and get the most of every job and learning opportunity. Learn to be a rich employee.

The Rich Employee Mentality. The world was changing fast but I was feeling lost. However, we cannot fight the change. If you are the rich employee, you can survive in any economy. Learn to practise ‘The Daily Practice’ every day. Eat better, move better. Do not spend time with people who will bring you down. Learn to become an idea muscle. Practise a little more gratitude each day. Learn to recognize who are the gatekeepers in your life. Knowledge as a whole can be outsourced. However, ideas can never be outsourced. Income inequality is increasing. Being an entrepreneur, there is an 85% risk of failure. Participate in the idea economy. Learn to participate in the Idea Economy. Learn to enjoy the best of both worlds. Keep getting better everyday.

Everything that can be outsourced will be outsourced. Anything that can be replaced with technology will be replaced with technology. – James Altucher

Don’t forget that entrepreneurship is just like having a job with an 85% rate of failure. There is no way to predict or avoid that failure rate. Once you jump into that poo, it’s too dark to see if a shark is waiting to eat you. But there’s an 85% chance that a shark is there. – James Altucher

Start the Road Towards Becoming a Rich Employee Exactly Where You Are

10 Things a Rich Employee Does if She or He has Just Been Fired. Try your best not to panic, instead learn to take action. If someone bribes you to do something, and you do it, you have become a prisoner.

10 Things a Rich Employee Will Do if She is Hired Today. Follow your boss if your boss is good. Rule #1: Love your product. You must love your company and use your product. Read every book on your company’s history. The author worked for HBO and watched a lot of HBO shows. Rule #2: Know the history of the company. Rule #3: Know the history of the executives. Rule #4: Make your boss look good. Give your boss all the credit. You depend on your boss to climb up. You must know his goals etc. Wake up 2 hours earlier to go to work. Thank him for the opportunities he has given you. Rule #5: Know all the secretaries. Take them out for lunch. Pay attention to ‘Human Resources’. Rule#6: Test Your Value. Do not be inbred. Hence, do not stay at one place for too long. Have fun with other people from top companies. Every time you get an offer, you might get a raise. Introverts are good at listening. It is a powerful skill. Rule#7: Study the marketing campaigns. Rule#8: Study the Industry. Rule#9: Become the Company. Make sure you know how to execute the idea in detail. Rule#10: Leave. Think like an entrepreneur when you are working for a company.

Know all of your colleagues and what their dreams and ambitions are. Get to work 2 hours before they get to work. If they need favors, do them. You have a whole 2 hours extra a day. You can do anything. – James Altucher

10 Reasons a Rich Employee Will Stay at Her or His Job: For Now. You should quit your job, but maybe not today. Not everything is black and white. Reason 1: You get a steady paycheck. Reason 2: Friendship. Reason 3: Chance of Promotion. Reason 4: Fake Money. Reason 5: Respect. You get to build connections with prominent people. The trick to do well is to over-promise and over-deliver. Reason 6: You can Afford to Have an Evil Plan. It took me 18 months to get going. Learn to eliminate your risk. You must have your job to get risk of the risks. Be an entre-ployee. Learn to eliminate the risks. Summers are off. When you are entrepreneur, you will worry about everything and anything. You get to switch jobs. Consult and help people and learn new things. Don’t jump over the cliff. Have ropes and safety gear. Try to generate as many passive sources of income as possible. Income has not been rising steadily in relation to inflation. Try to do consulting and get more skills whenever possible. Have an evil plan and keep working on it in your free time.

In a regular job you can probably get by (maybe unhappily but still get by) forever. But an entrepreneur has a very high chance of failure. Which would you rather take? I don’t want people to stay at a job. – James Altucher

Just being an entrepreneur, without having multiple sources of income, without first taking care of the risks, is suicide. – James Altucher

As an employee, you can link your financial success to the success of the larger company. If you can figure out how to do this, then you can stay at your job forever and watch it grow. – James Altucher

Why Be a Rich Employee?

Why You Must Urgently Become a Rich Employee, Right Now. Most people in the workplace are angry with you. Try not to let people control you and try not to control others. Always remember that no one remembers how you helped them. You cannot save anyone. You never really ‘own’ anything. That thing will own you. For example, you need to pay a bank loan etc. Do not let money control who you associate with. ‘Luck equals 1. Persistence, plus 2. Diversification.’ Come up with many ideas but only implement one. When you are angry in response to someone, you are letting anger control you. Do not let anger control you, or you will sacrifice your health. It is better to be healthy than to be ‘right’. Learn to ignore the chatter in your head. Don’t be the slave, be the master.

If someone does something I don’t like, I can’t control what they may think or do. It’s useless and it’s a waste of my time. I try to change my circumstances so I don’t have to deal with those people. – James Altucher

How to be a ‘Master’ or at least: The Smartest ‘Rich Employee’ in the Room. To seem the smartest, always assume you are the least intelligent person in the room. This is because you will learn to listen more. Learn from everyone you can. People never finish talking. Listen to the silence. Ask them questions after they are doing talking. Intelligence compounds exponentially. It’s called the network effect. Be a spy when you go for an event and absorb as much as possible. Learn to be humble. The problem is even if you are confidence and exude charm, people will forget you. If you are humble, they will remember you.

The Rich Employee vs The Poor Employee Mentality

How a Rich Employee Thinks. Leaders walk the talk. That is why the CEO of the company, Disney, picked litter from Disneyland and threw it away himself personally. He nurtured a culture of excellence. The CEO is the lowest employee who has the most bosses. Excellence ripples throughout an organization. Thinking about money reduces your performance level on the job. Finding meaning in your work is the key. When you are discouraged, learn to encourage others. A great CEO just needs to be right 50% of the time. The key is that a rich employee ties his financial success to the financial success of the company. As an entrepreneur, there is little way of predicting the future. However, you can control your mindset, habits etc. When a company is too big, learn to create ‘grouplets’ or small projects to motivate employees. Craig Silverstein worked for Google but later created Khan Academy. It is now a billion dollar company. A rich employee over promises and over delivers. I always hire people who deliver extra solutions. Always go to work early. The brain is relaxed in the day and sleep is important. Lack of sleep is related to health problems. You are most productive in the mornings. It is difficult to work immediately after lunch as you will be sleepy. You are the most productive 2 to 5 hours after you wake up. Do administrative tasks later in the evenings. A rich employee does not gossip. Gossip arose since the caveman days. It helps to instil trust in others whom you don’t know. However, once secrets leak, things are not pleasant anymore. If you know someone has been gossiping behind your back, you will not treat the person the same again. If your boss finds out that you are gossiping about him, you are screwed for life. Spend less time gossiping and more time working. Ask at the end of each day: Who did I help today? Relationships can’t be outsourced. Spend time during your way to help your co-workers. It is hard not to help someone when you have receive something from them. Always adopt a mindset of ‘who can I help?’ It could be someone from another dept. If you have a stable salary, it could work against you, as you will want to work less since you will get the same amount of pay. A rich employee gives credit to his bosses and employers. Always choose yourself. Judge your success by the success of your employees/students. Help your manager to shine. Focus on your mission and long range profits. Focus on a pain point in the world. Always ask that question first. You must ask yourself questions. What do you want out of work? Write down what your long term goals are. Constantly learn about your competitors, the industry, the history etc. You can always add more value. You must know all the nuances of your competitor in order to succeed. You should new ideas every day and also know how to execute them. Write down 10 easy execution steps for your idea. A rich employee builds deeper bonds with employees throughout the company. You can’t push change through if you don’t know anyone. You should work for a company that allows all of the above. Help your employees succeed. You need to be a leader. Write many leadership articles. Good leadership is very rare. A bad leader does not understand the 30/150 rule. If you have less than 30 people, give each person one thing to do. Do not give people many things. Learn to assign responsibility clearly. Make your employees leaders. Bad leaders are jealous when others are smarter than them. Understand your 30 employees well. If your organization has more than 30 but less than 150, set projects and create small teams. Start a vision if you have more than 150 employees. This is when you must lead by example. Unify people with a story. Having a bad vision equals to failure. Some companies expand by keep buying competitors and not grow organically. Bad leaders talk bad about their clients. Bad leaders don’t want you to pass them. Always attribute your success to your mentors. Bad leaders don’t know their numbers. Bad leaders don’t get rid of the bad people. A bad leader often has enormous charisma. It was charisma that got them there, to where they are. They can charm their bosses. Bad leaders smoke crack. They will not admit their faults. Do due diligence on your own organization. Come up with correct metrics for success. Improve 1% every day. A rich employee has an evil plan. The poor employee does not have an evil plan.

A bad leader will not change his behaviour no matter how many people he or she leads. – James Altucher

Title doesn’t matter. Salary doesn’t matter. It’s how you deliver value and create excellence around you that matters. Title and salary work themselves out over time. – James Altucher

I know that if I can deliver a message that actually helps people in this chaotic world, than money will be a by-product of that in the long run. – James Altucher

The smartest people alive who have brilliant business ideas, who never executed, are never heard of again. Only action makes a hero. Superman never sat around in his living room and said, “Hmmm, should I help Lois?’ No. Execution saved Lois’s life. – James Altucher

There are many ways to tie your success to the success of your company: you can be paid in money, of course, which is good. But also in freedom, in well-being, in better opportunities for your future, and so on. – James Altucher

Bad corporate leaders will do this: buy all the companies, fire all the waste, report good numbers to the stock market, and then sell their stock, the stock goes down, the company falls apart. I’ve seen that happen a lot. – James Altucher

At any point in your career, you are either a thermostat or a thermometer. You either define the temperature of the people around you and help them achieve their goals and dreams, or you simply do as you’re told and be a follower and never inspire. How do you become the thermostat? – James Altucher

How a Poor Employee Thinks. Jobs can be either outsourced to other countries or be replaced. Education might not protect you from it. Do not look for employers who will outsource people at the first opportunity. Use time to learn to be innovative. Learning from online courses is a great idea. Avoid the poor employee mindset. A poor employee gossips, under promises, doesn’t understand company vision. He never invests in himself. He spends on showing off instead of learning new things. He never comes up with great ideas. Does only what is required to get a salary. He surfs the net a lot for personal interests. He hates the job.

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