contentcreation

STOP PUTTING PRESSURE ON YOURSELF TO HAVE IT FIGURED OUT

Karmen Tang
Founder of another startup story
July 15, 2019

Image: @anorganisedlife

Image: @anorganisedlife

Recently, I’ve felt a severe amount of pressure to have life all figured out and to find my purpose.  With new engagements popping up on my Facebook feed every weekend, society is a constant reminder of how I don’t have it all figured out. One of my biggest fears (and I know it’s a lot of other people’s too) is not wanting to be in the same place this time next year. We want to be making progress.  

 

But we are creatures of habit. We think somewhere between 60,000 to 70,000 thoughts in one day, and 90% of those thoughts are exactly the same as ones we had the day before. We get up on the same side of the bed, go through the same routine in the bathroom, brush our hair in the same way, sit in the same chair as we eat our breakfast and hold our cup in the same hand, take the same route to the same job, and do the same things we know how to do so well with the same people (who push the same emotional buttons) every day. And then we hurry up and go home so that we can hurry up and check our e-mail so that we can hurry up and eat dinner so that we can hurry up and watch our favourite TV shows on Netflix so that we can hurry up and go to bed at the same time so that we can hurry up and do it all over again the next day.

 

We often rush to complete things in life. Just going through the motions and doing things to tick a box. We rush to get to the destination when life is honestly about the journey. I’ve learnt this the hard way.

 

Life is a marathon not a race. And what I do know for sure is that I want to try everything that life has to offer. This is why I love to travel and experience different cultures, people, smells, tastes and sounds.

 

The goal of travel is "disruption from circumstance, and all the habits behind which we hide. And that is why many of us travel not in search of answers, but of better questions."
-Jason Silva


Travel is a mind-expanding drug, it exposes us to new situations, new reflections, new thoughts and all of that is mediated by neurochemistry. To travel is to see different ways of seeing the world through different cultures and belief systems. Experience of such perceptual expansion that you have to reconfigure your mental models of the world. Traveling leaves you with increases feelings of openness, of well-being, boost in creativity and empathy and compassion.

 

Whenever making a hard decision in life, I always use the grandma test and ask myself what makes a better story to tell my grandkids? The fact that she went and explored different parts of the world and started a business and failed or stayed in the same corporate job for 9 years and never left her apartment in London?

 

The world is much bigger, richer and more diverse than we imagine, so try as many things as possible whilst you can. Your first years of adulthood aren’t about earning money or building a career. They’re about getting acquainted with the world of possibility . Be extremely receptive. Taste whatever fate dishes up. Read widely, travel far, because stories are excellent simulations of life. Only as you age should you become highly selective.

 

MIDYEAR REGENERATION.

It’s half way through 2019 already! Feeling the fear of not being where you want to be and like you’re running out of time? Do you need help getting back on track and resetting your mindset to give you a fresh new outlook? Make the decision and invest in yourself. 1:1 business coaching sessions now available at discounted prices for the rest of the year.

Click here for more information or drop me an email and let’s chat!

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HOW TO BUILD A PERSONAL BRAND THAT OFFERS MULTIPLE ROUTES TO FINANCIAL SUCCESS

Karmen Tang
Founder of another startup story
May 19, 2019

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I recently attended a conference where I heard Gary Vaynerchuk speak. Now for those of you who don’t know who Gary V is, you need to get to know. His advice on social media and content creation is GOLD for anyone with a business or personal brand and so I wanted to share some of the key learnings on the day.

If you’re finding it difficult to grow your social media following, it’s because all your content is selfish. Harsh, but true. The reason why people follow your account is for one of three reasons; to educate, inspire or entertain. If you’re not doing at least one of those, then it’s likely that your content is crap.

“Worldwide, people watch 1.25 billion hours of YouTube video every day. They post 66,000 photos or videos on Instagram every single minute. And, on average, 20 percent of the time people dedicate to mobile is spent on Facebook.

The scale and power of social-media platforms make it possible for any of us to earn money from a personal brand. With only 1,000 followers, someone on Instagram can earn $5,000 per year, from just two posts a week” – Gary Vaynerchuk, Crushing it!

Everyone needs to think like a publisher. The gateway is content and communication through media is foundational to any business. Media dictates what you think and it creates the outcome you aspire to. Your phone is the most powerful tool right now and it’s scary how many people are not utilizing and maximizing it to its full potential.

With Instagram being over-saturated now, it’s a blessing and a curse and the cream rises to the top. But the truth is, the more content you put out; the more you’re likely to bring out as much valuable content as possible.

The 7 principles you need to nail are: 

1.     Authenticity

2.     Passion

3.     Patience

4.     Hard Work

5.     Attention

6.     Speed

7.     Intent 

‘The intent of content is the variable of success’

 

You need to teach and help people, not treat them like holiday-makers trying to shove a menu down their throat. Every time you post, you can’t expect people to buy your product or services.

A good example is fashion blogger Nadia Anya. The reason why she has over 370k followers on IG and 47k YouTube followers is because she creates content to inspire and entertain others. People follow her for her fashion sense and beauty tips.

As a dear friend of ours, we’ve partnered up with Nadia to share some of her secrets to success as an influencer and YouTube Content Creator.  You can grab your copy of ‘Monetizing your Instagram Guide’ here.

THE TOXIC MYTH OF 'THE CREATIVE'

Kitty Ireland
May 19, 2019

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Everyone starts life as an artist. Maybe you didn’t have a grandmother who would let a two-year-old play with her watercolors, or a mother who would take you out of second grade to go to her community college art classes with her (like I did), but I’d bet $10 that before you could speak in full sentences or read “cat” you were doing something creative.

Creativity is deeply tied to how we learn, and it is the key to how we solve problems. When presented with a familiar situation, you generally know how to respond, or at least know how you responded last time. Over time you learn what works and what doesn’t and develop behaviors based on whatever has the best results.

When presented with an unfamiliar situation, you have to rely on your creativity. You have to make something up.

You may have a frame of reference, like observations of others’ behavior or memories of similar situations. But when you’re a baby, you are usually starting with no information at all, so you have to be very creative and experiment until you solve the matter.

I’ve always cringed at the term “creative” as a noun that defines a person. It implies that some people are and some people aren’t… and I just don’t buy that.

If You’re Not a “Creative,” When Did You Stop?

It’s unfortunate that education in the United States generally undervalues soft skills and creativity in favor of standardized test scores. I was going to say in favor of marketable “hard” skills, but stupidly the education system in this country doesn’t spend much effort on those, either. For an observer who hasn’t been in school or otherwise involved in education for a long time it feels like the system is geared to maintain social inequities and feed the for-profit college industry more than it is to help people become educated or functional in the world.

(sorry, #minirant)

In any case, you were probably taught to stop valuing your creative capacity sometime in early elementary school, which is a damn shame. It’s a shame for you, because (IMHO) a life devoid of creative output is just… #sad. Not to mention that creative thinking is how you become truly successful at anything. Look at anyone who has become super rich (who didn’t start out that way), and you can trace their wealth to a handful of creative ideas. Bill Gates may not fit the mold of “The Creative,” but he has used creative problem solving and creative negotiating to get to where he is today. Pick any successful person who made their own way and you will see a pattern of picking the road less traveled (creative thinking).

It’s also sad for everyone else, because a dearth of creative work and thinking in the world means the status quo is winning. And the status quo really, really sucks.

The Status Quo is Killing Us.

The status quo is killing the planet. We need creative problem solving to fix this more than we need activism. Arguing about it doesn’t help. Trying to convince climate change deniers is a waste of everyone’s valuable time and attention. Making individual efforts to recycle and drive hybrids has very little impact. Like most big problems, we need large-scale, structural and institutional solutions. We need policies. We need international cooperation. We need every major corporation on board and participating in the solution. And to get there, we need creative thinkers. But, because most people were discouraged from developing that skill, it seems like most people prefer being divisive and shouty over being solution-oriented.

The status quo is breeding hatred and violence. The economic inequity of the current flavor of capitalism in service of profit (for shareholders) and growth (of profit for shareholders) is not sustainable. We’re talking pre-revolution-France level concentration of wealth, which history shows does not end well. While this ugly system teeters on the edge of implosion, the growing population of very poor people are sometimes choosing crime rather than poverty. They are sometimes so despondent they use drugs and alcohol to drown out their grim reality. And a lot of them are looking for a place to lay blame. If you hear shouting about how “they” are stealing “our” jobs, you are listening to someone who is desperate for some security in this unstable and unfair economy, and who never learned the vital skill of big-picture critical thinking. They can’t see the real enemy because it’s too large to perceive. So they get stuck in their own bigotry. Stuck thinking like this indicates a lack of imagination. And an aversion to creative solutions.

The Toxic Myth

The main problem with the idea of “The Creative” is that it’s a form of elitism. If you believe that only certain genetically gifted individuals can be creative, you may discount the notion that you could ever have a creative idea. You may start to think that your old, well-tread ideas are the only right ideas, and that there’s only one way to do things: how things were done before. AKA, the status quo.

Meanwhile, these special individuals who have been dubbed “creatives” run around thinking they’re all that, while often operating as cogs in the status quo machine, churning out brilliant ad campaigns for light beer or getting into affiliate marketing on their blogs about how to get into affiliate marketing.

What if we just imagined for a moment that everyone is more-or-less as creative as everyone else? I mean, sure, some people are born with an uncanny ability to draw realistic portraits of animals or play stringed instruments. Others are born with limited capacity due to a disease or injury. But in between those extremes is most people. And most people would be doing themselves and the world a big favor if they used the creative capacity they were born with.

So…I Should Learn to Draw?

Well, sure, if you want to. But ability or interest in drawing, painting, crafts, playing music or writing poems is not a prerequisite for using your creativity.

Be creative in your daily life. Want to change your diet? Learn to cook something. Or, use creative problem solving and find a meal delivery service that suits your new diet. Break yourself out of your routine in any small way and you’re feeding your creativity.

Be creative at work. Are there things you think should be done differently? Write them up and propose them! Or just do them and see if things get better. Just because something was “always” done this way, that doesn’t mean it’s the best way to do things

Word of warning: being creative requires a level of risk and vulnerability that can feel uncomfortable at first. Putting your idea or work out there leaves you open for criticism, which is another reason many avoid accessing their creative nature. It’s easier and safer to stay inside the box assigned and not rock the boat too much.

Whether or not you’ve ever considered yourself creative or even appreciate “the arts,” recognize that you have a creative capacity. The more you can tap into it and use it for good, the better off we’ll all be.