Top 5 People to Follow on Twitter June 2014

With the opportunity to make endless professional connections and learn from successful individuals by reading the information they provide we give ourselves the opportunity to retain valuable insights.  These are my Top 5 people to follow on Twitter for June 2014. Some of these profiles are well known, and some of these profiles fly under the radar. Follow them on Twitter to give your Twitter feed a free boost of successful insight…

1) Ramit Sethi (@ramit) Author of the New York Times bestseller, I Will Teach You To Be Rich.

2) Jeet Banerjee (@TheJeetBanerjee) Serial entrepreneur, TEDx speaker & best-selling author.

3) Alyson Shontell (@ajs)  Business Insider Senior Correspondent.

4) Karl Gusner (@kgesus) CTO & co-founder of Good Audience, Software Engineer, Entrepreneur.

5) Christian Yang (@cyang08) Co-founder ReelSurfer, Microsoft and Google alum, Stanford ’08.

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Don’t Misuse your Motivation in a World of Endless Opportunity

In my opinion there has truly never been a better time to exist on this planet than present day. The opportunities created with our current technology and the ability for anyone with a phone, tablet, or computer to learn any specialized skill with a single click or finger push.   

The problem of the current generation has never been lack of opportunity, the problem has only ever been wasted energy. With more opportunities than ever before we also now face more ways to misuse our motivation and misguide our own potential.

As individuals I believe there is a level of intuition present in each of us that tells us if we have talent in a particular field. For instance, if you have a propensity for public speaking you already know you would have an advantage as a politician. If you are very visually inclined your talents could be used effectively behind a camera lens or directing a film. Why is it that so many of us either ignore or fail to listen to that natural intuition? To me its not about “do what you love.” Its more about do what you’re good at, learn everything about what you are good at, and you WILL love what you are good at because you’re good at it. The key thing to remember is you are likely good at multiple things. Not just one thing.

A complete misuse of motivation strikes me as someone deliberately trying to work towards a career that does not appeal to them, and that they are intimidated by during the learning process. If you are intimidated by what you are learning, that is your intuition telling you that it isn’t right. If you enjoy learning about something, keep at it. 

A failure to listen to your intuition also creates a willingness to take shortcuts. A shortcut can be a person giving up while they are working in a field that does not fit with their natural propensity and trying to make quick money with no thought process or strategy. This commonly leads to failure. Say a person wasn’t making enough money so they set up an account on a website like Clickbank.com and they had no selling ability whatsoever. They saw an easy way to make money but failed to think through that there was no value in it for them because they do not possess the ability to sell “sand in a desert.” Then they have wasted valuable time on something irrelevant to them and are left demotivated.

Instead of wasting time pushing a boulder uphill, make a list of ten tings that come naturally to you and then come up with a list of ten ways to make money for each item on the list. Then narrow down to ten, then down three. Now pick your favorite. There you go, now start up a side business, read everything you can, learn everything you can and watch your level of contentment grow as you earn money.

Don’t waste your time. Figure out what you are good at now and make a living with your existing talents.

Crowdfunding Mixed with Social Networking!

In case you haven’t heard, crowdfunding websites have seen a huge increase in popularity over the years thanks to websites like Kickstarter, Indiegogo, and my favorite which is dedicated exclusively to non-profits, Crowdrise.

Crowdrise offers a fun and simple approach to raise money for your favorite causes. Non-profit organizations can sign up and create profiles. Individuals can start and manage their own campaigns to increase awareness and create additional funding for any of these non-profits. You are also able to join in on causes created by others including celebrity causes. By using social media and your own personal network you can start to raise money for your favorite causes by encouraging others to donate.

I use crowdfunding websites to raise money for organizations like the Muscular Dystrophy Association and Parkinson’s Disease Foundation. It is hard for me to describe the sensation of seeing someone donate to a cause knowing there is virtually no form of reciprocation in it for them. Becoming involved in something selfless that benefits the masses is priceless. Not only can it boost your faith in humanity, but I also feel that it restores some good in each and every person involved. I am sure there are also numerous health benefits to donating to a charitable cause, don’t quote me on that. Now that supporting non-profits is easier than ever and considering the numerous therapeutic benefits of being an exceptional contributor to society with no intent of being rewarded, I can’t see why anyone wouldn’t want to start giving back. 

As they say on the Crowdrise website, “If you don’t give back no one will like you.”

Clarkston Coffee Club #Selfie

 

Selfie (noun): A photograph that one has taken of oneself, typically one taken with a smartphone or webcam and uploaded to a social media website.

The power of the #selfie is not to be underestimated under any circumstances. Business professionals everywhere can take a hint from recent events such as the Ellen Degeneres selfie tweeted during  the Oscars which totaled 32.8 million views around the world.

So how is this relevant on a local networking scale?

This week I noticed a few benefits of taking a basic selfie at our Clarkston Michigan Coffee Club weekly networking event. Immediately after posting this “basic selfie” to the Coffee Club Facebook Page there was an immediate increase in awareness of the event from people that do not normally attend. Also people that did attend mentioned the selfie later and it gave them additional curiosity about unexplored marketing avenues on social media. Additional likes, comments, and even someone regretting having missed Coffee Club that day based on seeing the selfie pic.

So in summary, a selfie may not seem like much in terms of marketing at first glance, but there is a good reason celebrities have been using selfies for shameless self promotion at live events since the pioneering of the first selfies on social media outlets.

Risk vs. Safety: Why playing it safe takes the value out of time

Every day we all make choices and sometimes these choices involve taking a risk or playing it safe. This can be applied to nearly any situation so I want this philosophical jargon I am about to rant about to be applied to choosing a career. When we are children we often declare the profession we dream of pursuing “when we grow up.” As we get older this thought fades away and some of us settle for a “realistic” way of life. This reality check shapes nearly every aspect of our adulthood and often forces any dreams to be locked away in the back of our mind. A person that dreams of becoming an actor may get a business degree instead and send out 1,000 resumes only to end up with no response and a true calling that had been ignored completely. If the person does get the job they spend their days unfulfilled thinking about a future that may have been if they had just been willing to take a risk.

“A ship is always safe at shore – but that is not what it is built for.” -Albert Einstein

When is a risk worth the risk? When does playing it safe cause a mundane existence? Can there be a balance?

Far too many people play it safe in this life instead of pursuing a dream and risking a loss. The irony of those that work to survive is that they are just buying meaningless time to exist longer on this earth with no true personal fulfillment. There are those who would argue some do not have a choice and the cards they were dealt prevent them from making a dream into a reality. A valid argument, but also a glorified excuse in my opinion. There is ALWAYS a choice. The choice to take a calculated risk with a high chance of loss may not be available today or even tomorrow. However, taking a risk over playing it safe is a choice that every person does encounter in their lifetime. Personality can play a role in the outcome of this choice for each individual but at the end of the day it creates two types of people. Those who choose to exist but wish they could live and those who chose to live regardless of the consequences. Yes, every risk does have consequences and some can have a lasting impact on our lives good or bad.

Where is this all leading?

Without taking any risks, just choosing to exist, never acting on any desires or impulses, and never acting on an idea is the ultimate risk. The risk of never feeling alive.

We can all “buy” time and draw out our inevitable end experiencing life in the most mundane way, but instead why not focus on the value of the time we have rather than the duration of our time. Therefore a risk isn’t a risk at all but rather a fulfillment of our existence.

I am interested in reading any comments or thoughts on “Risk vs. Safety” below.

About Andrew Around Town Clarkston

Andrew Around Town of Clarkston Michigan is Clarkston’s BEST digital media resource for local interviews from business professionals, and local event coverage. The show is filmed in downtown Clarkston in The Clarkston News’ own video production studio. The show features local business owners, entrepreneurs, and professionals who want to offer helpful advice to the community. Guests are encouraged to share valuable insights into their profession or trade.

The mission of the show is to promote local individuals and provide information to the community in a fun and creative way.

The host of Andrew Around Town, Andrew Dubats, is a marketing professional certified in digital media arts. Here is more info on Andrew courtesy of an article published by Specs Howard School of Media Arts. 

New episodes are posted online frequently and can be found on the Andrew Around Town Facebook Page or on the Andrew Around Town Youtube Channel.