List your way to creativity

Every day

James Altucher has really had an impact in the last few years with his books, his blogs, his videos, etc. His core ideas are contained in Choose Yourself. I want to encourage you particularly to apply one of them he advocates for exercising your “idea muscle” that I have started calling the Ten List.

The Ten List is part of his four-part system he calls The Daily Practice–or, actually, a technique that addresses the Mental part of the four. So it’s not particularly about speaking or writing, but I have found it to be really useful for both.

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Do something toward your goal EVERY DAY

Calendar chains

My students are just finishing an assignment. I asked them to write down 10 possible topics for an informative speech every day for a week (well, five days out of seven). In other words, they would wind up with 50 possible topics.

I have survived the system they are now working through, so I know, with absolute certainty, that many of them put it off until the night before it was due and generated 50 topics all at once. Continue reading “Do something toward your goal EVERY DAY”

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Realistic problem solving

 

stalking
"Dear God, he's right behind me, isn't he?"

If you have a speaking habit that gets in the way, you can obsess it, or you can fix it.

Tinkerbell
Vicious dog, aka Tinkerbell

I’ve been fighting a situation in my house for months. I have a chihuahua and two cats. (The picture above isn’t my chihuahua, but she’s very close. The one to the left is my chihuahua.) They don’t like each other. As far as the dog is concerned, the main use for the cats is exercise. The only things on earth that the dog isn’t afraid of are the cats.

Whenever one of the cats ventures near, Tinkerbell nips at it. The cats are always nimble enough to avoid her. One cat, Angel, the classic “fraidy cat” stays as far from the dog as possible. The other older cat, Annie, tolerates the dog, humors her mostly, although she weighs twice what the dog does, and will shred Tinkerbell if she is ever so foolish as to actually push it. Continue reading “Realistic problem solving”

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