You are who you listen to

I have been fortunate to enjoy a number of podcasts in my helmet as I ride to work each day. My standard Playlist revolves through Tim Ferris, James Altucher, Freakonomics and Good Job Brain.

I have found a lethal combination of interviewer/interviewee and have truly revelled in the banter and discussion that has transpired between them. This is Part 1 of my “You are who you listen to” posts.

I’ve been listening to Tim Ferris for a while now and love how he’s able to perfect his questions, drill down deep into various topics, keeping the content of his podcasts vibrant and ever changing whilst at the same time anchoring the interview with some of his standard questions, interjected throughout the podcast. One of the best interviews to listen to was one of his most recent – his (follow-up) interview with Tony Robbins.

Tim Ferris and Tony Robbins in my helmet whilst riding to/from work each day is not for the faint-hearted. I was grinning and shouting in my helmet (to myself, of course) whilst commuting at a fairly brisk pace, often getting lost in the conversation not realising how fast I may be going at a particular point. The dialogue and mutual respect for each other (which is an important part of any conversation, professional or personal) is a joy to listen to and one from which many people can learn.

By far this is the best Tim Ferriss podcast I have had the listening pleasure to partake in. I want to live my life even half as well as Tim and Tony, and my goal is to follow their teachings whilst carving my own path through life. If I’m half as successful as they are, we’re onto something 🙂

What have I learned?

  • Gratitude is everything.
  • Self is important as long as it’s to ground you and ensure you’re in a position to be ready to take up the challenges on behalf of of those who cannot. You cannot give yourself when you are not in a position mentally, physically or spiritually. You owe it to yourself to have these in alignment so you can then help others.
  • I believe in the Stoic philosophy (although I am not yet up with all the teachings, I certainly believe in the tenets of it). I practice it in everyday life, I see everything as an opportunity to do better and to reach a stage where I, too can teach this to others.
  • Tim goes deep in almost everything he tries. Tony goes deep both personally and with those who seek his guidance or counsel. I go deep into things, but not in the same way as Tim or Tony. Depth is good but I need to learn to go just deep enough to achieve the results and not try and find the lower depths, lest I wallow there too long. Life is short and there’s a lot to it to be exploring.
  • Learn something new every day – I believe you can learn something from everyone you meet and interact with, as long as you are willing to invest some time to hear their story, listen to their counsel or tap into their ideas.

Until next time, look after yourself and keep focusing on what you can do to become better; be better and share your story!


After a few years away…

I resurrected this blog after a few years away and have struggled to work out what to blog here compared to what to blog about on my sister site

In any case, I am searching for a few things in life at the moment and considering what to blog about is just one of these things.

We’ll see what transpires on here or whether it simply becomes an online repository of my thoughts and ramblings…

LinkedIn Premium – sneaky behaviour?

During my recent job search, I signed up for a ‘free’ 1 month trial to LinkedIn’s premium ‘job seeker’ package, designed to provide me with more tools to be noticed by recruiters/companies looking for new staff. The message came to me through my primary email address. In fact, up until this point everything has been coming to my primary email address:

  • Requests to connect on LinkedIn
  • Updates to any of my contacts (who has changed jobs, updated experience, etc.)
  • Updates/comments/posts in any of the Groups I am part of or conversations I am involved in
  • Special Offers (such as the 1-month free Premium membership)

I decided to cancel the premium membership after 3 weeks, due to a combination of finding a job as well as not needing the service (and not needing to pay the ongoing monthly fee for Premium features). I’d set a calendar reminder to look into this for Tuesday this week (2nd Aug). I went onto the site and cancelled my Premium membership, which was straightforward.

At around the same time, I received an email in my secondary email account (see below) extolling the virtues of the Premium Service, and that if I do nothing, they will begin to charge me the monthly fee. It’s not even a message confirming that I want ‘out’ of the Premium service – it’s an FYI (Information) email only! Did this email arrive because I cancelled, or is it just coincidence that the email arrives on the day I cancelled, (albeit it to an email address they’ve not used before)? Alarm bells went off in my head at this.

I have contacted LinkedIn to ask them how this happened or why this message went to my secondary account – I am wondering why they sent any communications to my secondary account when everything else has been going to my primary account? I understand why they ask you to provide a secondary email address (for security/access reasons), however I have removed my secondary email address until such time that LinkedIn can explain what happened and whether it could happen again.

Future Summit

Yesterday, I was a remote participant in the Future Summit held in Melbourne on 18th & 19th May 2009. I participated through Twitter, by interacting with attendees at the event, responding to questions & posting comments to various twitterers attending the various sessions on the program.

To me, it felt like I recieved a condensed, highly concentrated (as in I received the core nuggets of each presentation as it happened) presentation without the fluff. Do I feel like I participated? Absolutely yes! Through posing questions to the attendees and having questions and comments retweeted helped me better understand what was being presented and also to get a feel for the mood of the audience.

Things I liked:

  • I got a good feel for what was presented
  • I could ask questions
  • I threw in some of my own comments (which were commented on by others)
  • I had a number of my posts re-tweeted to a wider audience
  • I picked up a number of new followers (which seems to be the holy grail of Twitter [to some people!])
  • Having the Twitter back-channel provide on-the-spot comments from the sessions

Things I missed:

  • The ‘hubbub’ that occurs in audiences when something contentious, alarming or incorrect is mentioned
  • The camaraderie of the audience who shared some of my thoughts/comments – it would have been great to be there and interact with others

Things I inferred/picked up from the comments being made by the attendees:

  • For one of the sessions, the panel kept asking/answering their own questions, not allowing the session to be participative!
  • From the tweet messages, the wrap-up from Julie Bishop seemed to lose the audience and not really achieving it’s intention (of bringing everything together to a close)
  • There seemed to be no actions/action plan we could see/walk away with

Ultimately, I felt like I had been participated in this event, probably more due to the retweeting and interactions with other tweeters.I may even have opened up a can of worms with this comment I made:

It sure is a waste gathering people together to hear the panel talk amongst themselves! Save the CO2 and webcast it 😛

Who’s to know that next time they don’t just have it as a webcast, or a combination of webcast & live sessions – Twitter certainly helped me get a feel for things in real time!

I’d like to thank @SamMutimer, @mspecht, @kcarruthers, @geehall1, @amoyal, @nathanhulls + others for all retweeting my posts/asking questions! 🙂

Not a recession!

What we’re currently experiencing is not a recession (or a depression).

Steve Ballmer (Microsoft CEO) recently (Stanford UniversityMay 2009) said “...what we have been suffering through is no normal recession, but rather a reset to a lower level, a kind of severe rejiggering of the economy that has happened just four times in the past 200 years.

Well said.

There are also claims that not even economists could predict the events we have all seen as their models of prediction simply were outdated and not updated with information about new financial ‘products’ such as Collateralized Debt Obligations (CDO). In a way, I think many many people were blinded by the greed/growth being experienced – in this case it really does fit the cliche that ‘what goes up must come down’.

What’s the moral of the story? I hope more people become educated about money, where it comes from and how it’s used more than they do today. In a way it’s easy to blame the households that took out too-large mortgages underpinning the CDO’s but that would be glossing over the systemic problems brought about at many levels of the finance/banking industry that really showed how internally frail the whole system was. House built of sticks?