It’s never too late to…

A few months back I wrote a post that encouraged readers to complete the following sentence:

“It’s never too early to…”

The responses were AWESOME. And I wanted to keep that same spirit alive in today’s post by asking you to complete the exact opposite sentence:

“It’s never too LATE to…”

Here’s what I’ve come up with so far:

It’s never too late to … be happy!
It’s never too late to … change old habits.
It’s never too late to … be who you might have become.
It’s never too late to … become creative.
It’s never too late to … build a customer-focused organization.
It’s never too late to … call inactive accounts.
It’s never too late to … call off the firing squad.
It’s never too late to … call someone you love.
It’s never too late to … get an education.
It’s never too late to … get healthy.
It’s never too late to … get rich.
It’s never too late to … get your brain in shape.
It’s never too late to … go after your dream job.
It’s never too late to … go green.
It’s never too late to … have a happy childhood.
It’s never too late to … heal.
It’s never too late to … learn how to communicate.
It’s never too late to … learn.
It’s never too late to … love a computer.
It’s never too late to … move for health.
It’s never too late to … organize your finances.
It’s never too late to … procrastinate.
It’s never too late to … save.
It’s never too late to … start exercising.
It’s never too late to … start learning something new.
It’s never too late to … start over.
It’s never too late to … start singing a brand new song.
It’s never too late to … stop smoking.
It’s never too late to … succeed.
It’s never too late to … turn your life around.
It’s never too late to … write that book you’ve got inside you.

It’s never too late.

What are YOU waiting for?

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
Finish this sentence in five different ways: “It’s never too late to…”

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
Post your lists here!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

…only 5 more days until NametagTV.com goes ON AIR!

Here’s the story … of two inventors …

During the late 1800’s, two inventors had almost identical ideas for this AMAZING new transmitting device called “The Telephone.”

You can probably guess who ONE of those inventors was.

Alexander Graham Bell, of course.

But here’s a name that you might have heard before: Elisha Gray.

See, he actually recorded his schematics the telephone about six weeks before Bell did.

SO, YOU GOTTA WONDER: “Why is it that nobody remembers that guy?”

Well, Elisha Gray received a lot of criticism for his telephone invention.

Believing speech transmission to be a waste of time, the top technical journal of the industry, The Telegrapher, put down his idea.

“It is NOT a new idea,” claimed the publication, “…the telephone is an invention with no direct practical application.”

According to the (awesome) book They All Laughed, even Gray’s colleagues were unimpressed.

So, under the weight of criticism, he slowly started to give up on the idea that the telephone was a moneymaking enterprise.

Now, he didn’t give up totally. But he DID continue his research with heavy doubt.

Meanwhile, a determined young man named Alexander Graham Bell was still cooking up his idea for the same invention.

AND HERE’S THE CRAZY PART: although he had no affiliation with Gray, Bell’s initial sketch of the telephone was almost identical to his counterpart’s.

SO, YOU (STILL) GOTTA WONDER: “If Elisha Gray had the idea for the telephone first, why does Alexander Graham Bell always get credit for the invention?”

Well…

After constant legal struggle between the two inventors, the idea of the telephone was eventually deemed fair game for both parties.

So, on the morning of March 7th, 1876, Alexander Graham Bell walked into the Patent Office and secured his name as the official inventor of the telephone.

AND HERE’S THE BEST PART: later on that same afternoon, only two hours after Bell walked out with his patent, guess who walked in the door hoping to do the same thing?

You guessed it: Elisha Gray.

Too little, too late!

See, Elisha Gray didn’t show up in time, because he didn’t BELIEVE as much as Bell did.

He allowed criticism to stunt his creative momentum.

And as a result, he forfeited the opportunity to be recognized as one of the most influential inventors in modern history.

Two hours. That’s all it took.

What are YOU waiting for?

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
What is your biggest creative regret in 2007?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
Post it here!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag

Consultants. Bah.

No systems. No formulas. Just someone who listens, asks KILLER questions and facilitates creative breakthroughs.

Rent Scott’s Brain today!


34 Questions to Keep Yourself Growth-Minded

As we approach the end of 2007, it’s important to ask yourself (and your team) Growth Questions.

So, grab a cup of hot chocolate, relax, and let’s start thinking about the future!

REMEMBER: growth, not comfort.

Enjoy!

1. Are you cloning yourself through teaching others?

2. Are you doing business at the level you want to?

3. Are you growth minded?

4. At what point are you making a living vs. building your business?

5. Does this client represent long-term business potential?

6. How are you being stretched and forced to grow?

7. How are you making sure that everything you do is leading to something else you do?

8. How are you typecasting yourself?

9. How can you duplicate yourself?

10. How can you use this to add more value to yourself?

11. How do you self-renew?

12. How often are you bringing in work that improves your skills and keeps you competitive?

13. In what ways are you currently obsolete?

14. What are the most important things for you to work on that will grow your business the fastest?

15. What are you building?

16. What are you doing in the next five years that’s going to set you up for the next ten years?

17. What are you doing to prepare for the next phase?

18. What can you do differently today to add value to your business?

19. What else does this make possible?

20. What is creeping up on you?

21. What kind of clients would you like to have in three years?

22. What kind of work would you like to be doing in three years?

23. What new markets should you be entering?

24. What percentage of your revenues this year came from products and services you didn’t offer three years ago?

25. What’s next?

26. What’s the movement value of this idea?

27. What’s your sequel?

28. When was the last time you brought new skills to your clients and prospects?

29. When was the last time you created new value?

30. When was the last time you entered a new market?

31. When was the last time you reinvented yourself?

32. When was the last time you upgraded your qualifications?

33. When was the last time your business embraced change and did something innovative?

34. Will it make your company more competitive?

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
Are you growth-minded?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
Share your Top 5 Questions for Keeping Yourself Growth-Minded here!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag

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Study ordinary things intently

All creativity begins with curiosity.

About how things work.
About how things could work BETTER.
About why things are the way they are.
About why people do things they way they do.

But don’t MY word for it. Let’s hear what three of the world’s most notable creativity gurus had to say about the value of curiosity…

1. Leonardo Davinci. He called it curiosita, defined as, “An insatiably curious approach to life and an unrelenting quest for continuous learning.”

“The noblest pleasure is the joy of understanding,” Davinci remarked. “Therefore, be always curious and observant.”

2. Edward DeBono. He encourages people to embrace curiosity by constantly saying, “Now that’s interesting…”

“Be able to find interest in almost anything,” DeBono says in How to Have a Beautiful Mind. “Be curious. Explore things. Bring up a discussion. Get people’s opinions, ideas and values. Explore, elaborate and make connections.”

3. Mihály Csíkszentmihályi. He reminds us to fascinate ourselves with the ordinary.

“Evaluate critically every novelty you encounter,” he wrote in his book Creativity. “One of the surest ways to enrich life is to make experiences less fleeting.”

LESSON LEARNED: study ordinary things intently.

When you can learn to do this – every single day – three things will happen:

You will BOOST your creativity.
You will FLOOD your mind with new ideas.
You will BUILD a solid foundation of curiosity.

And the combination of those three results will mold your melon into an attractive, valuable commodity that your clients will want to access to.

See, clients don’t want to hire consultants or marketers or coaches – they want to hire cool, smart people who happen to do those things.

So, if you want to use curiosity to attract more ideas (and more clients!), follow this four-step game plan:

1. NOTICE. On a daily basis, take the time to stop what you’re doing and say things like, “Huh. That’s weird,” or “Now that’s interesting…”

2. EXPLORE. Study ordinary things intently. Then, start a dialogue. Ask other people questions like, “So, why do you think she said that?” “Hey, did you guys notice that?” and “It would be interesting to see if…”

3. RECORD. Remember, if you don’t write it down, it never happened! So, consider keeping a Curiosity Journal. Make daily entries about things you noticed and what you learned from them.

4. EXPAND. Continue to learn, ask and research these new ideas you’re curious about. Constantly run them through your personal filter of expertise by asking, “How does this fit into my picture of the universe?”

With these four steps, your curiosity will become a weapon!

Both for you AND the customers you serve.

Now … isn’t that interesting?

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
What ordinary thing have you recently studied intently?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
Share your observations here!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag

Enjoy this post?

If so, perhaps I could help on a more personal, one-on-one basis.

Rent Scott’s Brain today!


Get rich slowly

The other day I saw an advertisement for this intense, three-day Wealth-Building Seminar.

The headline read, “Become a millionaire in ONE WEEKEND!”

And my initial reaction was: Wow, are people really THAT impatient?

But I guess it’s not entirely surprising.

After all, that’s our world: a hyperspeed, A.D.D., instant gratification culture.

So, here’s my counterintuitive thought of the week:

Get rich slowly.

I first heard someone say these three words a few months ago. And they really stood out in my mind.

Get rich slowly.
Slow down. Take your time. Practice impossible patience and let wealth (not money) accumulate.

Get rich slowly.
Not quickly. Not within 18 months. Not by the end of the year. When you’re ready.

Get rich slowly.
Make the transition from “making a lot of money” to “making a contribution” and “growing your business.”

Get rich slowly.
Earn money incidentally, not intentionally. Detach from outcomes and focus on serving, solving and providing value. Don’t worry; the money will come.

Get rich slowly.
After all, if you’ve got something cooking, something worth waiting for, something worth talking about, it’s only a matter of time before you become rich. May as well spend a few years getting your shit together first.

Get rich slowly.
Install long-term, efficient business systems, master your craft and perfect your voice. That way when you DO become rich, you won’t blow it all.

What’s your rush anyway?

It’s only a matter of time.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
Are you getting rich slowly?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
Share your best “get rich slowly” technique here!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag

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If so, perhaps I could help on a more personal, one-on-one basis.

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The Circle of Write

A common barrier to putting the pen to the page is:

“…yeah, but I don’t really LIKE writing.”

That’s cool.

I still suggest you get started.

And here’s why…

1. The more you write, the more you will like writing.

2. The more you like writing, the more you will want to write.

3. The more you want to write, the more thought, time and effort you will put into your writing.

4. The more thought, time and effort you put into your writing, the better your writing will become.

5. The better your writing becomes, the more confidence you will have.

6. The more confidence you have, the more you will write and want to write.

And then the pattern repeats itself. Forever.

I call this “The Circle of Write.”

Creativity guru Mihály Csíkszentmihályi refers to this type of process as a Feedback Loop of Mutual Causation and Reinforcement.

This means, as he explains in Finding Flow, “If you focus attention on anything, it is likely that you will become interested in it. And if you are interested in something, you will focus on it.”

So, the effect becomes the cause.

And the cause becomes the effect.

WHICH MEANS: the key to writing is to addict yourself to it.

So, follow The Circle of Write.

And that whole “…yeah, but I don’t really LIKE writing” excuse will become non-existent.

Hakuna-matata!

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
What’s your secret for overcoming creative resistance?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
Share it with us here!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag

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If so, perhaps I could help on a more personal, one-on-one basis.

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Detach from outcomes, pt. 2

(To read part 1, click here.)

When you detach from outcomes…

You relax more.
Which lowers your guard.
Which lowers other people’s guards.
Which enables you to produce better quality work.

AND HERE’S THE GOOD NEWS: this principle can be applied to various disciplines.

In the world of SALES:

o DON’T focus on … persuading, manipulating or reaching quota.
o DO focus on … serving, solving and delivering value.

And you WILL sell a lot.

In the world of CREATING ART:

o DON’T focus on … perfection, recognition or even selling your work.
o DO focus on … finding flow, being yourself and listening to your Muse.

And you WILL create great stuff.

In the world of MARKETING:

o DON’T focus on … being cool, interrupting people or manufacturing a need.
o DO focus on … broadcasting your uniqueness, telling a remarkable story and building community.

And you WILL spread the word.

In the world of CONVERSATION:

o DON’T focus on … networking, controlling or influencing.
o DO focus on … establishing comfort, maintaining authenticity and growing bigger ears.

And you WILL make valuable connections.

So, whatever you’re doing, do it for the process. The journey. For the love of the game.

Detach from outcomes.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
How do you focus on process, not product?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
Share your best tip here!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag


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Lowest common denominator thinking

Call it optimism.
Call it glass half-full.
Call it a positive attitude.

Because at the lowest common denominator, there’s always ONE thing you can get out of everything.

This represents a sort of “takeaway attitude” you need to have about business, about life, about everything.

I call it Lowest Common Denominator Thinking.

For example, let’s say you just spent the last three hours reading the latest best-selling marketing book.

And you thought it sucked.

Ask yourself, “Did I at least get ONE nugget, ONE idea, ONE quotation, ONE thing from that book?”

If the answer is yes, congrats! You’ve just discovered the Lowest Common Denominator. Which, when remembered, written down and applied, should be worth the price of the book and the time you spent reading it.

Here’s another example. Let’s say you just finished attending a lecture at your local college campus.

And you thought it sucked.

Similarly, ask yourself, “Well, it might have been boring, but the one thing I still took away was…”

If your answer is a worthwhile idea that wouldn’t have popped into your mind without attending that lecture, good on ya! You’ve discovered the Lowest Common Denominator.

One final example.

You crawl into bad at about 11:30 PM.

And you thought your day sucked.

Ask yourself, “Yeah, but did I at least do ONE thing that was cool, help ONE person get better, accomplish ONE highly valuable activity or experience ONE moment that validated my existence?”

If your answer is yes, prepare to sleep well. Because you’ve discovered the lowest common denominator.

Here are a few more Phrases That Payses to enhance your LCD Thinking:

“Well, if anything, at least I learned…”
“The one thing I got out of that was…”
“Although it wasn’t my favorite, I still found a way to…”

Call it optimism.
Call it glass half-full.
Call it a positive attitude.

Because at the lowest common denominator, there’s always ONE thing you can get out of everything.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
What’s your takeaway attitude?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
Share your philosophy here!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag


Are you a friend of The Nametag Network?

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You don’t need lessons, pt. 2

(Read part one of this series here!)

Vincent Van Gough took ONE art class during his entire life.

The rest was self-taught.

Pretty shocking, huh?

Similarly, many notable innovators have agreed that lessons weren’t critical to the successful execution of their ideas.

Take Edison, for example.

He went to school for only three months. His teacher thought he couldn’t learn because he had a mental problem!

From that day forth, Edison realized, everything he needed to know about science would be learned from reading books and tinkering with chemicals and telegraph equipment.

Lessons, shmessons!

Now, I don’t mean to reduce the value of having a solid foundation in your area of study. Inventors, innovators, artists and entrepreneurs still need to be brilliant at the basics.

The challenge is to maintain balance.

I like what pacemaker inventor Wilson Greatbatch said:

“I don’t think the problem is too much training. The problem occurs when your training is too narrow and you get yourself on a rigid path of thinking and lose flexibility. Me? I got a masters degree, but the rest was osmosis.”

I also like what Apple founder/creator Steve Wozniak said:

“Teachers were largely a negative influence on me. I read very widely when I was a small kid, and that had the greatest influence on me. We live in a culture that makes it difficult for creativity to express itself properly. I believe in life long learning and self-education. After all, if you could solve all problems with textbooks, there wouldn’t be any real invention.”

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
How do you balance lessons and being self-taught?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
You don’t need lessons. Just go.

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag


Are you a friend of The Nametag Network?

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Create a portable creative environment

Inspiration comes unannounced.

And if you don’t write it down, it never happened.

SO, HERE’S THE SECRET: create a portable creative environment.

My new favorite creativity Big Shot is Mihály Csíkszentmihályi. (Try saying THAT one three times fast!)

Anyway, he says, “Shape your immediate surroundings so as to feel in harmony with the small segment of the universe in which you happen to be located.”

So, if you’re a creative professional, you can’t expect to do all of your best work in the office or studio.

You must learn to thrive in many environments.

Here’s a list of tips to help you create on the go!

1. Capture. Keep a jotter or small notebook on your person at all times. It’s five bucks and probably the biggest lifesaver for idea capturing in the WORLD. Also, Zebra makes a contractible pen for easy storage.

2. Prepare. Keep books, tapes, pictures and other inspirational material everywhere. On coffee tables, in your car or bag, even in the bathroom! Make a list of all the places you might be stuck for a few minutes. Assure that each of them has SOMETHING to motivate your melon.

3. Commutes. If you take public transportation regularly, make a Creativity Travel Kit. Include writing tools, blank paper, books on brain-building, inspirational materials, music and a few protein-based snacks.

4. Car. Great ideas often come behind the wheel. Be ready to capture them with easily accessible tools like notepads or audio recorders. NOTE: be careful when getting creative while driving. Your new idea won’t do you any good if you’re stuck in the hospital!

5. Visits. If you’re a regular visitor or overnight guest at the houses of friends, family members or significant others, be ready. Let them know you’ll be keeping a notebook or small bag at their place, just in case.

6. THREE WORDS: get a laptop.

7. FOUR WORDS: index cards and Sharpies.

8. Backup. If you get a new idea on the road, at work or at any other unexpected time, email or call yourself and leave a message.

The key idea to remember about creating a portable environment is that it’s tailor-made and makes you feel in control.

To quote Mihaly again…

“Regardless of whether the conditions in which they find themselves are luxurious or miserable, creatives must manage to give their surroundings a personal pattern that echoes the rhythm of their thoughts and habits of action. Within this environment of their own making, they can forget the rest of the world and concentrate on pursuing the Muse.”

Good luck!

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
Where do you create outside of your studio?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
Create your portable creative environment today!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag


Are you a friend of The Nametag Network?

Read more blogs!
Rent Scott’s Brain!
Download articles and ebooks!
Watch training videos on NametagTV!

Make a name for yourself here…


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