The Hedgehog Concept | MKE Year 3 Week 15

The Hedgehog Concept

When you take care of the most important activity first, it’s amazing how easy it is to find time to do all the other stuff…the little things that are such time-gobblers.

“The fox knows many things, but the hedgehog knows one big thing.” Isaiah Berlin explored the fundamental distinction that exists between those who are fascinated by the infinite variety of things (foxes) and those who relate everything to a central, all-embracing system (hedgehogs).”

We must ask ourselves two questions…

Q1 | What am I pretending not to know?

and

Q2 | What would the person that I intend to become do next?

You know those videos that illustrate the importance of scheduling the big things in your life first, trying to visually prove that when you schedule the big stuff first, magically it all fits in?  So for this BLOG, I’m jumping past the cleverly illustrated examples of how so many people start backwards…

…and fast-forwarding instead, to illustrating the importance of scheduling – and doing – the big things first, such as making family, faith and income producing activities the priority *imagine tennis balls being put into a tennis ball sleeve*…

Secondly, a visual explanation of how it makes so much more sense to follow the most important activity with the supporting or background details *now imagine pouring rice into the sleeve and watch it fill in the space between the tennis balls*…

Next, and time permitting, allow time for the ‘other’ stuff – the minutia – such as cleaning the house, scrolling your social media feed, updating your phone, organizing cupboards etc. *imagine sand being poured into the sleeve, wiggling its way in between the tennis balls and the rice*…

As a reward for working smarter, not harder, we can then add the ‘fruits of life’ as my friend Mark J. puts it…the fun stuff, the ‘us-time’ or ‘me-time’ that we crave *finally, imagine pouring water into the sleeve…over top of the tennis balls, the rice and the sand.*

Now, stand back and marvel at how beautifully it all fits in…So why then, do we all tend to fill our days with the sand first…???

i-never-lose-either-i-win-or-i-learn

On too many occasions, I’ve looked at my business as a reflection of myself – only to become frustrated at the fact that I’m not making the income I’d like to make, or more accurately…need to make. I get down on myself for not doing the simple tasks…the most important tasks, rather than filling my days with ‘busy work’…all the useless, time consuming, non income-producing activities, and for what? …for nothing except the ability to have an excuse to fall back on for my lack of progress in business.

It’s far easier to trick ourselves into believing we’re actually working…when in fact we are just pushing piles of stuff around on our desks, rarely accomplishing anything of value or importance.

Justifying the avoidance factor in business…and to an extent, in every day life as well, introspection has taught me that if I fear doing the activity that will bring me success – let’s say it’s telling people about my product/service despite KNOWING that I understand my product/service – upon analyzing said avoidance on a deeper level, I’ve realized that I don’t actually have a fear of sharing my business, but rather a fear of being rejected…a fear of people not taking my advice, a fear of putting myself out there and being shot down.

So this is what happens when we concentrate – the truth reveals itself. And it does truly set you free. If you’ll allow it – embrace it rather than reject it.

The avoidance on my part is not whether they do or don’t elect to become a customer, rather for some silly and strange reason, I place extreme personal success or failure based on if they deem my advice worthy or not. I’ve equated them not buying my product/service with them not valuing my opinion – instantly, I become reclusive and my desire to be recognized for creative expression gets all bent out of shape and so I simply stop asking because then I can’t possibly be rejected. Ridiculous, I know.  This is nothing but fear, and everybody knows that nothing more than F.E.A.R. is simply False Evidence Appearing Real.  

I was re-reading How to Win Friends and Influence Others yesterday and read a quote by Benjamin Franklin…

“I will speak ill of no man, and speak all the good I know of everybody.”

It takes self-control to be understanding and forgiving. Along this #LifeChanging journey of self-discovery, I began implementing the 7-day Mental Diet, making a habit of not judging others – which has helped me realize that when I was previously jumping to conclusions about people or situations, I was merely avoiding doing that very same work on myself.

When you can face your fears – which is often [sadly] ourselves – and overcome them, it is then that we discover our greatness on the other side!

I’ve begun recognizing my own self-sabotaging behaviours, and was recently introduced to a powerful resource, a book called Get off your But! by Sean Stephenson.

From the Inside Flap (via Amazon.ca):

“This book will show you how to move beyond your limitations and begin to experience and share your gifts at the highest level.. . . Read this book in its entirety, follow the lessons closely, and watch as your life transforms into a masterpiece filled with an abundance of bliss, passion, and gratitude.” —From the Foreword by Anthony Robbins

In addition to presenting Sean Stephenson’s unbelievable life story, Get Off Your “But,” offers anyone who needs to conquer fears and insecurities a hands-on guide for overcoming the forces of negativity and self-sabotage. Sean—a successful psychotherapist—shows what it takes to overcome the big bumps in the road, eliminate excuses, end insecurities, and ultimately stand up for happiness and success in life. As Sean explains, anyone can fall victim to the “Buts”:

  • “But” Fears (But what if I fail . . .)
  • “But” Insecurities (But I’m not good enough . . .)
  • “But” Excuses (But there’s no time . . .)

Get Off Your “But” offers a practical guide for putting fear behind you and building the inner resources to become self-confident at work and at home. It’s time to get off your “but” and start leading the life you dream.

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Book reviews, as per Amazon.ca:

  • “Sean is an amazing person with an important message.”
    —President Bill Clinton
  • “Sean Stephenson is the Yoda of personal development, with less pointy ears.”
    —Jimmy Kimmel, host of ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live
  • “As we struggle with inertia to become the best that we can be, Sean Stephenson’s book informs and inspires us to stand up and keep moving forward. Thank you, Sean, for your life, your work, and your abundant sharing.”
    —Ken Blanchard, coauthor, The One Minute Manager
  • “Sean Stephenson is a hero to me. When you read his book, he will be a hero to you as well. His moving stories about himself and others who have found the gifts in their pain will teach you so much about courage and, just as important, you will learn how to build your own sense of confidence when it comes to health, career, relationships, and more. Do yourself a favor read this book! ”
    —Susan Jeffers, Ph.D., author, Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway and Embracing Uncertainty
  • your-speed-doesnt-matter-forward-is-forward-turtle

Social Economy Revolution

Serious change is upon us…the world is experiencing the biggest shift any of us have seen in our lifetimes…a shift towards a performance economy. In the future, you will no longer be paid for your time; rather, you’ll be paid strictly for your performance.

Here’s how the world used to work:

The rise of the Corporation was the norm, and represented a safe place to exist in the world:

Step 1: go to school and learn how to be an employee

Step 2: find a company that will employ you

Step 3: work for that company for 40 years

Step 4: retire

When people realized the loyalty and hard work they were giving wasn’t being given in return, and a different process evolved…

Step 1: go to school and learn how to be an employee

Step 2: find a company that will employ you

Step 3: switch companies for various political an economic reasons every 3-5 years over the course of your career

Step 4: find that you can’t retire comfortably after 40 years so you keep working

This is what will become of virtually every job…in fact, it is already happening in some professions:

  • People in the food industry already live this reality; they earn a small hourly wage (required by law) and make their living through tips, based on their performance.
  • The person cleaning the hotel rooms will no longer be paid by the hour, instead, by the room.
  • Office workers will find a lower base salary and performance incentives if they hit certain performance benchmarks on a monthly basis. Now the pressure is on and the company is loving it…if you don’t hit your targets they’ll save even more money and if you do, guess what’s going to happen – they’ll raise the requirements.

If this hasn’t already happened to you, it will.           Count on it.

The evolution of the Performance Economy has begun.

Robot economy pouring beer

According to Eric Worre, here is the ULTIMATE BUSINESS and PERFECT CAREER LIST, summarized from people over 30 countries:

What people don’t want: No boss. No commute. No alarm clock. No employees. No politics. No compromises. No discrimination. No educational requirement.

Using their imagination in a more positive way, here are some more positive attributes: Great product or service. Unlimited income. Residual income. Enjoy the people you work with. Time freedom. Something meaningful. Personal growth. Lots of perks. International. Contribution to worthy causes. Low overhead. Low risk. Low start up cost. Economy proof. Tax benefits. Fun.

As the economy shifts, most people end up with more month than money and are faced to scale back, sell items, or take a second job.Here are some of the typical considerations:

Types of jobs (according to Wikipedia and Eric Worre):

Blue Collar - working class

Blue Collar: A member of the working class who performs manual labor. Somebody who labors to fix something, make something, clean something, build something, or service something or someone.

white-collar-crimes

White Collar: A person who performs Professional, Managerial or Administrative work. A person who’s employed by someone else to do work other than manual labor or sales. (One of the most socially acceptable options available. Long viewed as the safe and secure option. The previous mentality of ‘if I’m loyal to the company, the company will be loyal to me’ is now long gone.)

sales job image

Sales: More adventurous than a typical white collar job because people are paid on their production, instead of by the hour. It is not unheard of for sales people to achieve wild success, when they do, they almost always set their lifestyle to that standard. When times get tough, they work more hours to make the same amount of money…so while they have the stuff, they don’t have the time to enjoy it.

Another challenge for the sales career is that no matter how a person does, they still start at zero the next day, and it can be tiring to live under that kind of pressure for a prolonged period of time.

Blow your hair back image

Traditional Business Ownership: The details vary a bit, but in general the process goes something like this:

  • Use life savings, take on additional debt via personal loans from family, friends or banks to get started.
  • Focus on everything other than what you’re good at – must be all things to all people. Time of and sleep are unlikely.
  • After everyone else is paid, you might have enough leftover to pay your own bills. Likely not enough to pay down your debt from Step 1 though.
  • Concede, give up your dream, and re-join the sales force with massive debt and a broken ego.

Investing weigh scales

Investor: Basically, unless you’re extremely specialized, it’s safe to consider this philanthropy rather than investing.

The New Economy Needs Fewer People

Exponential rise of technology has changed everything.

  • 100 years ago, 90% of population worked in agriculture…today, it’s less than 1%…
  • Remember call centres? You used to talk to an actual person, now you talk to a computer…
  • Companies used to have large sales forces, now people order online
  • What about Blockbuster and all of it’s employees…now people stream movies to their handheld or tablet devices…

…and those jobs are gone!

Robot economy pouring beer

Much like the children of farmers saw what was happening and left Farming for new vocations, the same thing is happening in Old Economy jobs. To survive, people need to open their eyes to this new reality and find something new.

Technology and efficiency are eliminating jobs everyday and there’s nothing we can do to stop it; in fact, it’s only going to accelerate.

Just because technology now reigns supreme, doesn’t trump the fact that…

  • …there are still products that need to be promoted…
  • …consumers still need to be educated…
  • …buyers are more discerning than ever to price and quality, because endless information is literally available at the touch of a button…

For the people who recognize this fact, it will be the best of times; for those who don’t, this change will be the worst of times.

Society is moving away from traditional forms of advertising and is rapidly embracing word-of-mouth because it continues to work better than any other form of promotion.

Aside from Super Bowl, when was the last time you volunteered to watch a commercial? PayPerView and OnDemand TV have eliminated the relevance of the commercial.

Hello, AMAZON Prime. In what reality do malls survive where people can quickly and efficiently order what they want and have it shipped directly to their front door with out the hassle and expense of going to the mall? Right…SEARS, ToysR’Us…

UBER rewards referrals with an account credit. Some banks pay hefty bonuses for . And restaurants. And retail stores (what’s left of them). Companies that offer products or services recognize this Social Economy Revolution and are rewarding loyalty with points programs and referral incentives.

Referral Marketing is the new – preferred – form of advertising. Companies aren’t utilizing large and expensive sales forces’, instead, more and more companies choose to provide Corporate support and pay distributors on a purely performance basis to promote their products, thereby utilizing Network Marketing to tell their stories.

More and more, companies will choose to use Network Marketing because it fits the new economy. The best way I know to not only survive, but thrive in the new economy is this Profession.

Network Marketing isn’t perfect…it’s just better.

You must accept [read: embrace] a temporary loss in social esteem from ignorant people.

benjaminfranklin1

For a while, people living in and trying to function within the old system will think less of you. They won’t understand.

You are seeing the future before it becomes apparent to anyone else. You are the smart one. You are taking action to live a better life.

The allure of getting paid for someone else’ efforts is powerful, but often badly misunderstood.

More often than not, this is what goes through the Lind of virtually every person who decides to get involved:

Hmm, I can think of 5 or 6 people who might do this too. My sister would be great. My friend knows lots of people. I know this other person who loves this kind of thing and would be amazing. Okay, I’ll join.

In other words, they aren’t joining a Profession, they’re just hoping to get lucky. They’re hoping to sign up a few people to cover their own start up costs and sit back and wait for the money to roll in. They haven’t started a real business, they’ve just purchased a glorified lottery ticket.

Imagine a lottery ticket with 6 scratch off spots – those spots represent the people they think most certainly will join, they approach those people and try to get them to join, but because of their lack of skill, most of them end up with nothing, just like the lottery ticket. And since they’ve acted in unskilled ignorance, they may have damaged some friendships or relationships along the way.

So, they rip up the lottery ticket, and instead of taking responsibility for not really starting their business, they blame Network Marketing and make sure to tell the world “Look, I’ve been there. Done that. I talked to every person I know and NM just doesn’t work; save your money.”

If you choose this as a Profession, that’s what you’re up against…the opinions of ignorant people who think they have done it right and it doesn’t work.

Well, news flash:

  • If some people are making a lot of money, then it’s not the compensation plans’ fault.
  • If some people are selling a ton of product, then it’s not the products’ fault.
  • If some people are going on the all-inclusive paid vacations, then it’s not the companies’ fault.

Responsibility rests 100% on our own shoulders. If you can embrace this, the world is yours, and in this Profession, you will get paid BIG money.

In contrast, Network Marketing Companies want to pay you more, not less like traditional Corporations.

They will pay unlimited amounts to people

who can help blind people see,

who can educate the ignorant,

and who can build a community of like-minded people.

The world as we know it has changed. If you’re going to be paid on performance anyway,  why live with the cap??

…summarized and reorganized from Eric Worre’s GoPro…

[7 Steps to Becoming a Network Marketing Professional]