Short on growth hacking
I’m not a big fan of the term “growth hacker”. Growth, yes but hack, no. True growth doesn’t come from a hack.
If you do growth right you’re building a system of understanding how growth happens, or rather, why it doesn’t happen. Getting insights, finding opportunities and iteratively executing and doing (small) wins.
Short note on distractions
Distractions are frustrating and harm productivity, this is something I experienced as a developer and many engineering tasks do require complex thought.
Which is covered in this post: You don’t understand your software engineers
The article has a tech niche but applies to every single (creative) job where you need to combine two or more ideas or concepts into something new.
System and goals
With goals, especially goals related to personal growth can be hard to achieve and fulfill. Easy to feel overwhelmed and triggering us into habits that are less than productive instead of moving us forward.
Choosing a goal puts a huge burden on your shoulders.
Really like how James Clear puts it…
Instead, you can keep things simple and reduce stress by focusing on the daily process and sticking to your schedule, rather than worrying about the big, life-changing goals.
Interesting read about mobile use, a smartphone nearby hinder you in your thinking.
The results were striking: individuals who completed these tasks while their phones were in another room performed the best, followed by those who left their phones in their pockets. In last place were those whose phones were on their desks.
Schedule time to think
I use to say that carving out time to think is a pretty new thing for me. For many, many years I was a production junkie, and still is, but I also realized that carve out time for reflection is essential.
That’s one of the reasons for this blog.
To think and write. You could say it’s my window for reflection.
I’m not always thinking about a problem I’m wrestling with, most of the time thinking about things I already know or, more correctly, stuff I think I know.
A scheduled time to think.
Attitude vs intelligence
People with a fixed mindset document their intelligence and talents rather than working to develop and improve them.
Alternatively, in a growth mindset, people have an underlying belief that their learning and intelligence can grow with time and experience.
- I’m in elementary school up until high school => fixed mindset
- I’m in college and since then => growth mindset
What happens when people believe they can get smarter and they realize that their effort affects their success?
They will put in extra time, which leads to higher achievement.
Read more on this topic via Why your attitude is more important than your intelligence →
Proved everyone wrong
Every CEO, company founder and entrepreneur should watch this video.
Elon Musk when he proved everyone wrong.
Writing and thinking
Writing is thinking. That’s why I do this.
To think and reflect.
Think and write for five minutes each day to clear my mind. It’s like math, hard to keep in mind, much easier if you write it down.
Recently I started to be more aware of changes and actions. I want to change habits, and just now I do that by writing this out of my head.
Small wins increase possibility, strengthen self-confidence and lead to continuous improvement.
Log off. Shut the door. Go outside.
Slow down. Enjoy nature, smell the roses. Breathe.
Run. Walk. Bike. Play.
I have started coding again. I have a background as a web developer but the past five years have been more into management and strategy then producing code.
I have picked it up again for a new project and mmmh; it’s fun.
It is perhaps mainly because it is new and on my terms, but I love to produce. It is satisfying to tackle a problem or an idea and start working on it and a few hours (or days later) see the results.
Feels good the up-to-date and try new things, as a developer you quickly fall behind if you don’t keep you constantly updated in programming.
The blue mind theory
Why are we drawn to the ocean each summer?
A fascinating lecture by Wallace J. Nichols about the blue mind. A theory about how large areas of water can bring your anxiety levels down.
This is what works for me
About me in a bullet list. This is what works for me…
- I am a hands-on, learning by doing type of person
- I love to learn new things
- I love to solve problems
- Production- and efficiency junkie - always learn, always optimize
- Can be very focused (as in barely contactable) in front of a screen
- Recently realized that reflection is important (writes continuously)
- Exercise is my main outlet and resort
Being an entrepreneur is a lot like being a boxer, you can count on getting smashed in the face. It’s part of the sport!
Entrepreneurship is the same thing, it’s going to be hard blows, just shake it off and get back up again.
The other day I wrote Don’t let failure stop you. During the journey, you will lose and that’s OK, see it as mini-battles. The most important thing is that you tried them and if it doesn’t go as planned, make sure to learn and pivot, or let them go. Accept the loss and move on.
Fear and failure
I can’t talk enough about failure. How important it is to say yes even if you don’t have the solution ready in your mind. It’s incredibly evolving.
Failure is the fuel to success. It truly is. And it’s a great teacher too.
Fear tends to paralyze your actions. You are not alone, everyone fears failure. See this as an opportunity, it minimizes your competition.
Let your competitors fear failure while you do take action.
Don’t let failure stop you from taking action.
Embrace the action habit!
Car in space
I guess nobody missed what Elon Musk and his SpaceX accomplished the past day. Falcon Heavy, world’s most powerful rocket has been launched. The result? A car in space and three rocket boosters returned to earth with success.
The success is a major step toward cheaper, more frequent spaceflight.
I’m incredibly impressed. Seeing a car in space is unreal and to watch the two side boosters return to earth simultaneously was mindblowing.
The car continues its surreal path around the planet, now on the way to the Asteroid Belt.
No one like ineffective meetings and meetings cost money, even the good ones. So before the next meeting, think of the following.
Come prepared with a few questions - it allows you to take faster and smarter connections.
Ask questions. People don’t care if you ask questions as long as you listen to the answer. I’ve learned that no boss or someone more experienced than you will think you are stupid because you ask questions as long as you listen to the answer. So ask questions and listen to the answer.
Be in time - respect each other, of course, this applies to everyone, including managers and decisions makers.
Too many looking for the average. When it comes to analysis, conversion optimization and partly even copywriting, you look at the average.
As an expert, you need to zoom into the details. Look at the user. Don’t optimize for the average. Don’t summarize.
Be specific. Give details.
How do you convert the average visitor?
You’re converting the user who will buy your product or service.
Sales vs Customer Success
In the past, there was just sales and support and the line between the two was pretty clear. Although today it is more complex and more technology involved it is surprising that many still work according to the same principle.
Stop selling features. Start selling benefits.
As a founder or marketer, you must go beyond selling features.
Think of how the product works, what value does it provide to the customer?
Sell just that.
One of the last years most popular articles is about the future generation, called iGen, or generation Z. The article compiles data on today’s always connected teens and their screen time.
You can, among other things, read that psychologically speaking, the iGen is more vulnerable than the Millennials were. Rates of teen depression and suicide have skyrocketed since 2011. But the author, Jean M. Twenge, mentions that it’s necessarily not the screen time that causes unhappiness; it’s possible that unhappy teens spend more time online.
Worries for the future generation is nothing new.
We, the older generation, have been worrying for future generations in all years. Thousands of years ago Socrates was worried that the next generation would mess up.
The article is interesting no matter what position you have in the discussion and will make you think, even if you are not a parent.