STAGE ONE: PLANT — RESOURCES
Plant by creating a foundation from your values, strengths, and interests, and your vision for the future. The most successful pivots start from a strong foundation of who you already are, what is already working, and how you define success, no matter how broad that initial vision might be. The Plant stage explores: values, vision, strengths, and finances.
"Suffering is a sign you are about to be woken up again."
This week we tackle a tiny little topic—enlightenment—with one of my all-time favorite authors and thinkers, Martha Beck. I have read all eight of Martha's books (two or three times each) as they helped me through some of my biggest transitions in life and work.
What do the most agile pivoters have in common? What's your Pivot Profile? Learn more in this week's episode, and take the Pivotability Self-Assessment.
"Be you. Be you, and be cool with it. There is nobody else you can be better. There is so much of you unique to the world. You are unique and complicated. You are different and dimensional."
Neil Pasricha's writing is like a cup of hot chocolate, or as he would describe it in Awesome Thing #119, like watching butter melt on a hot piece of toast. It is comforting and delightful. His latest book is about what he learned along his own roller coaster ride of reaching smashing success with his 1,000 Awesome Things blog and books, then realizing he still wasn't happy. We break down topics like The Saturday Morning Test, the three time buckets, and many more.
"My heart is pounding because my heart is in it. Because I care. Because my body is getting ready to rise to this challenge."
—Kelly McGonigal, author of The Upside of Stress
Have you fallen into the trap of thinking that all stress is toxic? If so, you may be unknowingly compounding the effects of it on your body and mind—or at least missing out on some of the benefits and insights stress has to offer. Kelly McGonigal, a pioneer in the field of "science help" and one of my favorite authors, debunks a number of stress myths in the episode.
What happens when you reach previously unimaginable pinnacles of success . . . and still find yourself miserable? I’m stoked to bring you today’s Pivot Podcast with Ryan Holiday—marketing master, studier of Stoic philosophy, and author of several bestselling books.
“The new attention span is about scope. Time stops, everything is instantaneous, coordinated and synchronous. You can already feel the result existing.”
—Penney Peirce, Leap of Perception
Meditation has re-wired my brain. I don’t walk on clouds every day, but I do feel like a new person three years in to maintaining a daily practice (and 120 days in to a consecutive streak). I know, I know. One shouldn’t promote meditation as a miracle cure. But if you have an active mind, one that veers toward anxiety and stress like me, take a listen to this week’s Pivot Podcast.
“At the exact point that deep work is becoming increasingly valuable, it is also becoming more rare.” —Cal Newport
What does it take to find your Zone of Genius and stay there?
- What are the key ingredients to peak performance?
- What are the biggest barriers?
- If you think of your career as a car, what are the two biggest “headlights” that help you see clearly and do your best work?
- How can our challenges serve as fuel for opportunity?
- Ideal Day Madlib Template: Fill-in-the-blanks in this document to articulate what your ideal day looks like. Bonus points: do one version for your wild-and-crazy vision, then do another for your ideal average day; what an energizing “regular” work-day might entail.
- Knowns vs. Unknowns Template: Before moving on to the Scan stage, summarize your known variables for your one-year vision, as well as remaining questions.
- Time Tracker and Schedule Blocker Template (3 Tabs): Especially great for those with flexible schedules, the time tracker and schedule blocker template will help you analyze where your time is currently going and help you put your ideal average day plan into tangible weekly terms.
- Job Interview One-Sheeter: This template condenses nine key questions into a one-page “Cliffs Notes.” Quickly articulate your answers to 9 key areas, including: strengths, goals, work-style, ideas, challenges you have overcome, questions & an answer to that dreaded “weaknesses” question.
- Four-Step Budget Template: Most budgets are too cumbersome to be useful. Check-out this handy 4-step budget: After filling in income, must-have expenses & nice-to-have expenses, you’ll get a “monthly allowance” for you to spend on discretionary items as you’d like.
- Financial Modeling Template: Get a bird’s-eye view of your business model, and track your business income and expenses with this template. This more robust template helps you assess baseline expenses for living and for running your own business. It also includes simple financial modeling tables to map out potential income sources, such as the number of clients needed at specific rates.
- Test Your Side Business Ideas: Side businesses are great experiments: you have a hypothesis about something that interests you that could make money, and now it is time to test your theory.
Chili Soup Recipe & Grocery List: Reduce decision-fatigue with this chili soup recipe that lasts all week. Healthy, hearty and delicious, meals can be one less thing to worry about when grappling with bigger pivot questions.
Mind Map Tools: Nothing beats pen and paper, but for online mind-mapping tools, check out Bubble.us and MindMeister. If you have an iOS device, check out Simple Mind and the Post-It App (which allows you to photograph and re-arrange post-it notes).
PERSONALITY & STRENGTHS ASSESSMENTS
- Strengths Finder 2.0 Assessment: One of my favorite assessments for aptitude. Identify what your natural talents are and acquire the language to talk about your strengths.
- Myers Briggs or this version (then read more about your type here)
- Fascinate F-Score
- 5 Love Languages: A great exercise on brainstorming what you're passionate about and looking for common theme's is Paul Williams' Passions Mind Map exercise
- Stand Out: Similar to StrengthsFinder; book with accompanying assessment
- Wisdom of the Enneagram
- The Start-up of You: Adapt to the Future, Invest in Yourself, and Transform Your Career
- Antifragile: Things That Gain from Disorder
- A Whole New Mind: Why Right-Brainers Will Rule the Future
- The Icarus Deception: How High Will You Fly?
- Choose Yourself!
- The Antidote: Happiness for People Who Can't Stand Positive Thinking
- Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard
- The Power of Full Engagement
- Business Model You: A One-Page Method For Reinventing Your Career
- Body of Work: Finding the Thread That Ties Your Story Together
- Finding Your Own North Star: Claiming the Life You Were Meant to Live
- The Desire Map: A Guide to Creating Goals with Soul
- How to Be, Do, or Have Anything: A Practical Guide to Creative Empowerment
- Life After College
- The Choose Yourself Guide To Wealth
- MONEY Master the Game: 7 Simple Steps to Financial Freedom