Teach something…learn it forever

Human Brain, learning

Today, 5th September is celebrated as Teachers day in India. It is in memory of Dr. S. Radhakrishnan, who was the president of India, a scholar and above all a very respected teacher. So today I was thinking about the teachers who left a deep impression on me and made learning enjoyable.

Some of my own colleagues also sent me thank you notes today for having helped them learn. I used to hear Joe Polish, multiple times, on his podcasts of ilovemarketing.com, talking about the best way to learn something is to teach it to someone.

I used to relate to it because I personally like to get down to the basics of the technology, then conceptually figure out an analogy from a different walk fo life and teach. If my understanding is clear then I will be able to put it into different scenarios successfully. If the analogy is from an area which is dear to the person who is hearing it from you then, they will will immediately absorb the concept.

So for my colleagues who prefer to look trendy, I speak in terms of fashion brands to explain concepts. For people who are more commercial, I have to speak in terms of business. A lot of people have told me that I could become a good teacher because I teach very complex technologies, very simply.

Till now I had not realised why I am able to do it. I generally used to think that I have a unique ability to understand from first principles both – marketing and technology together, which for some reason, others are not.

When I was reading the Steven Kotler book – The Art of Impossible – I have written about this book earlier also – what struck me was the way our brain is wired to learn something. Dopamine is a key hormone which helps in learning. So when we understand something dopamine is released. When we are able to build a story or narrative around it, further dopamine is released making the memory pathways even more permanent.

I think this could be one of the reasons why all the old religious texts had stories built around them, since there were no concepts of writing more than 10000 years back in India. Students were made to recite things. The recitation would involve multiple sensory organs and hence get the brain more active and the stories would keep the narrative constant.

The more you realise the way our brain works, te more you marvel at what a machine we humans are. With more and more scientific discoveries around the operation of the brain, I am in even more awe about what is the limit to our thinking.

Till next time then.

Carpe Diem!!!

Three Hundred Posts

Affirmative action, Financial Independence, Habits, Marketing

I didn’t realise it but yesterday was my 300th post. What an achievement. For someone who didn’t know what to write and was always wondering why will anyone read my posts, to today watching this number made me so happy.

This journey started about 4 years back and I took my domain name around this time. Then I took the WordPress subscription to link my website to my domain.

Initially even putting up one post was an ordeal. As a matter of fact when I hit the 25 mark, I actual had a celebration post. To write my first hundred posts took me almost 3 years painful years because each time I would sit down to write on a weekend, I would think I did not have enough data and so I would go in search of data and the post would not get written.

Last year because of the lockdown due to the Covid pandemic, I got some amount of time at home and I started listening to various podcasts, one among which was I Love Marketing which is run by Joe Polish And Dean Jackson. Joe keeps talking about 2 things which I have taken to heart.

One is that – Its better to be prolific than perfect and

Two – You learn a little by hearing / reading / watching, you learn a lot more by practicing and you love the most by teaching it to others.

I have always had this penchant for wanting to share my knowledge but I didn’t think it would be of value to others so I never bothered. Then I cam across the video series on YouTube by Gary Vaynerchuk where he would put out a video everyday on wine tasting and the kind of wines he was tasting. These were short videos.

That got me on this journey to take affirmative action, to share from my practical experiences in marketing and in finance and then whatever I was reading in terms of improving our performance and health. All my articles after that have been keeping one principle in mind, you should get bite sized information in a quick read while you are standing in the line to take your coffee.

Thank you for being active readers of my blog. I hope I am able to give you even more value in the future. This writing everyday has now be one a habit and I don’t let a writer’s block come in my way. I just put down my thoughts as they flow.

Till then

Carpe Diem!!!

Gratitude – Part 2

Fear, Financial Independence, Gratitude, Happiness, Human Brain, peak Performance

if you do a split of my posts, they can get equally split between Marketing, Financial independence, Human Mind & Performance, Charity / Karma / Gratitude.

I have mentioned multiple times that when I am feeling low, I decide to go and do charity. It gives me a high of a different kind. This is something which I seriously started doing when I heard Joe Polish on his podcast ilovemarketing.com. He had other ideas also about things which you can do when you are feeling low and don’t even have the money to do charity.

While continuing reading the book The Art of Impossible by Steven Kotler, I realised that the human performance is very strongly linked to the human mind – nothing new here, but what was surprise was the scientific reason behind why gratitude or doing good for others helps improve performance.

As per the research which Steven talks about – gratitude trains the brain on looking at the positive things, for which you are thankful. The brain is otherwise seasoned to look for things which can ham us, so that it can protect us. When you are in the state of gratitude , the negative things which can harm us, get filtered out by the brain automatically. When the negative things are filtered out, there is reduced fear. Once that happens you automatically get into a good mood and you feel happy.

When we are in a good mood, we feel safe and secure. When we feel safe and secure, our mind is willing to wander and think. Due to this your creativity also gets enhanced. To get into the more technical details of how the neurobiology and neurochemistry work I would highly recommend reading his book.

Coming back to where I started this post, while I was splitting the Human Mind & Performance , from Charity / Gratitude / Karma, it seems from the research that Steven has done that actually these help improve the performance of the human mind.

So actually my blog posts then, have a skew towards the human mind and performance compared to other areas of marketing and finance. This is interesting.

While I have always had an inclination to continuously find ways to improve myself, I had never actually taken the rigorous analysis that Steven has done on improving myself.

Tell me what do you enjoy more – my posts on marketing, financial independence or human performance.

Till next time then.

Carpe Diem!!!

Prolific versus Perfect – 2

Excellence, Marketing, messaging, persistence

Excellence requires repetition.

Some call it the 10000 hour rule. Int is said that you need to do about 10000 hours of practice at learning something, before you become an expert. Its about ensuring persistence in your endevour.

This issue came up in a discussion today where the people supposedly are passionate about what they are doing but we are not getting the results. They had this argument that they were also getting frustrated when not getting results.

When we tried to analyse the challenges, one of the key challenge was the fact that we did not have enough feedback of how the customers react to our messaging. You have to test a lot of messaging till you are able to actually get to the right piece.

You can refine your messaging or sales pitch only when you interact with enough people, understand the inputs that the prospects give and what the competition is doing. Now if you are a prolific sales person and do 200 calls a days (just for example) and there’s another who’s doing 100 calls a day and both fail 90% of the time, with the first sale person after 20 days of calling you would have got a feedback of 3600 calls, and at the end of a year this would be close to 45000 interactions versus the other person’s 22000 failures.

Within one year the company whose sales people are prolific and are getting 45000 “no” would be way ahead of a company with sales people with just 22000 “no”. They would have refined their product pitch / messaging that many more times to come to near perfection within a year.

To the above argument I get a very standard response, and maybe you also would have it going on in your mind, that after some time statistically the changes would be minor. You are absolutely right about that. But the faster you reach that point, the more sales you pick up till the other company reaches that point.

If I can get my 10000 hours of practice in 3 years versus someone else who will take 5 years then the 2 years window that I have I can exploit to earn so much more , sell so much more or whatever I wish to. While the 10000 hour rule has been around for a long time now, the idea of speed in getting to the 10000 hours was something that I got from hearing Joe Polish in his Ilovemarketing.com podcasts.

The more prolific I am the more I can try new things, the more feedback I will get and the faster I can improve. Now if you have a coach along the way it becomes that much more quicker to climb the curve towards expertise. But you still have to do the hardwork. There’s no easy way out of it.

Till next time then.

Carpe Diem!!!