3 Best Ideas of 2009

Simple, quick. 3 of the best ideas I came across this year.

1. Buy experiences, not things.

Found in Seth Godin’s book “What Matters”. The idea can be also found in the book I’m reading now – “Affluenza” by Oliver James.
In short, today’s developed society is focused on consumerism. We end up working our lives away to get the money to buy the things we’ve always wanted – a house by the beach, that long wished for Porsche 911 or simply that newest Gucci bag. So it costs 2000 USD. Who cares? I’ve worked my a** off for 20 years. Don’t I deserve it?
And then, we realize that buying just things doesn’t make us happy.

I’m a big fan of traveling. Some of the best times in my life were spent while I was abroad in some way. Hell, even the bad times (sleeping on a bench in front of the doors at Heathrow) is still something I like to remember. Because they’re out of the ordinary.

So, go ahead. Do the out of the ordinary. You won’t take your bags or clothes or car with you when you die. You take your memories.

2. The way to achieve success is to define what it means. Then, to know what gets you there. Then, to do it.

Found inThe Naked Leader” book by David Taylor.
It helped me realize that (1) success is not defined by others, but by myself. And if that means, to host 20 cats in a house on the hill, it’s totally fine.

And (2), there’s no recipe for success. It’s 99% simple, hard work. All it takes is to have a good plan, and the discipline to stick to it. Where most of us get our feet caught is the “discipline” part. That’s why we’re constantly looking for “3 steps to a better…” or “How to…” and other simple recipes.

There’s no standard recipe for your success. That’s because it’s YOURS. It’s personal. And you’re supposed to define your own way to it.

3. What’s the next action?

From David Allen’s “Getting Things Done. I’m a Time Management trainer, and yet I had never read this book until this year. I’ve tried building to do lists, keeping agendas (I’m a big fan of agendas. Somehow, though, I never managed to finish one) and other tools. hanging-toysI can’t say I’ve applied all of GTD’s rules. I’m afraid I’m not one of those evangelists who will say “it’s the book that changed my life”.

However, this single idea changed a perspective. I’m a big procrastinator. I hate to start big things. I mentioned here about the hell I went through when I moved apartments. But this little question can help clear things up.

I like to look at my project list like a hanging toy above a baby’s bed. Each project is a toy. Now, imagine that each toy, at its end, has several hanging strings. These are the “next actions”. Now, until I complete my project, I need to close the “hanging strings”. That’s why it’s useful to know which they are.
I notice that the best ideas I came across are either from books or from blogs. That’s why I want to centralize them even more. I’ll start the “Idea of the week” posts where I will post links to interesting blogs, twits, or simply threads of conversation. This will motivate me to boost learning, not only in me, but in those around me as well.

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