The video is *really* quiet, so turn up your speakers to full 🙂

Dan Ariely's book Predictably Irrational is a superb dive into the psychology behind why people make the buying decisions that they do, and I thoroughly enjoyed reading it at the beginning of 2011.

What is more interesting is that I inadvertently attracted his attention – he wrote a comment on my Mad Web Scientist – which is pretty cool in my books.

So what if you intentionally used this strategy? It might just work, particularly if you did a whole string of short videos detailing your thoughts on a particular author's work.

Now, have a think why that might be useful attention to get, and write your thoughts below, in the comments section.

A bientot!

Dez.

In his book The War of Art, Steven Pressfield outlines and fleshes out the battle of creativity and artistry that any entrepreneur goes through in order to give birth the things of real value from which others will gain benefit.

Through his own experiences and reflections on humanity, Pressfield powerfully makes the case for the releasing of the artist (or artisan) that lies within the creative higher self we each have.

Although Pressfield doesn’t use the word artisan, but artist, in my book the only tangible difference is the territory traditionally ascribed to each.

And, it’s in the idea of territory that he asserts his premise that this is only real ‘place’ where every true artist can flourish, whether they are a fusion researcher, scientist, entrepreneur, body builder, fashion designer, or writer.

‘Territory’ in essence, as Pressfield defines it, is the region of expertise or influence within which the true artisan flows with purpose and energy, giving birth to what is hidden within, purely for the purpose that it must be released into the world.

On the other hand, the opposite of territory – hierarchy – is a stultifying and inhibiting framework of operation. In a hierarchy, the artist is reduced to being a hack: someone who produces only for affect; not for the higher ideal of releasing inspiration into the world, but for the egocentric accolades they wish to receive from others as a consequence of their creation.

As Pressfield defines it then, the hack has sold out on the higher goals of sharing their intrinsic creativity, to a baser version which is only interested in producing something that will promote the hack’s ego contra his or her peers.

In plain English: the hack does his or her work thinking of how their potential audience will or won’t like the results, but the artist does her work to bring forth of what is within, whether or not an audience exists to receive it.

The artisan gains his or her energy and sustenance from doing the work itself, and not from the praise they hope to receive.

So, is it better to be an artist/artisan or a hack? Clearly not a hack, because at worst a hack is a sycophantic people-pleaser, pandering to the perceived opinions of those the hack is trying to impress, with the hope of receiving some positive affirmation or recognition.

When none comes, the hack is devastated, not having any internal reference point from which to seek solace.

The artist/artisan, on the other hand, travails like a mother-to-be in labor, and as Pressfield beautifully describes, and cries in awe when the miracle baby is held in her arms.

So, can only the hack become wealthy? The answer I believe, is that the hack is never wealthy, even if they are a multi-millionaire, because their offering is never given: instead, the hack always remain the victim of the approval of others, always seeking to compete in a hierarchy rather than operating with skill in their own territory or expertise.

Can the artist/artisan be wealthy? My point is that they will always be wealthy, whether they live in a wooden shack in a shanty town, or in a grand mansion in Beverley Hills. What defines the artist is not the approval of of others’ praise or money showered upon them, but the satisfaction that comes from within at having completed the work that they ached to bring forth, regardless of onlookers’ nods or shakes of head.

Make up your mind then, to be an artist/artisan, and not a hack.

And if you are in any doubt, read Pressfield’s book, the War of Art.

Back in October of last year I posted an article about Robert Kiyosaki, and his recommendations for surviving the global economic recession:

“He believes that this is actually a time more serious than just a recession: a global depression is on its way, and we’re all going to have to face some very stark choices. I know what I’m going to do. How about you?”

Well, here we all are, and this is only the beginning. Things are going to get tough. VERY tough. If you’re in paid employment at the moment and you haven’t thought of a Plan B, GET ONE. Your town, village, city, region, will be unrecognizable in five years or less. OK, that’s a shocker what I’ve just written I know.

But we can’t bury our heads any longer. The roller coaster ride has only just begun.

Watch Robert Kiyosaki & John Seiferth talk about what’s happening. It’s blunt and a harsh wake-up call. But we need to hear it.

If you’re not sure what they mean when they talk about the ‘right hand side’ of the graph, buy Robert Kiyosaki’s book, Rich Dad2: The CashFlow Quadrant.

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Rich Dad 2: The Cashflow Quadrant

Author: Robert Kiyosaki

Summary

  • A detailed overview of the 4 main ways to generate cashflow, with a lovely generous lemon twist of the necessary psychological character strengths, skills and personality profiling garnished throughout this excellent introduction to taking financial responsibility.

Comments

Robert Kiyosaki continues in this successful theme (his best-seller Rich Dad, Poor Dad is a must-read for anyone new to the business world) on how to gain financial freedom.

This is a terrific overview of the four main ways to generate cashflow – but in fact, it’s been a seminal book for me personally in the sense that some of the things he (so aptly described by his not-so-ghost writer Sharon Lechter) writes about have really switched the light on in some up-to-now darkened corners of my mind.

The Four Types of Cashflow Generation

Specifically, Robert shows what skills and mental attitudes are needed to move from one type of generating cashfow to another. He overviews the four main areas (as taught by his rich dad) as:

  • Employee (E)
  • Self-emplyoyed (S)
  • Business owner (B)
  • Investor (I)

In his opinion, he believes that the vast majority of employees never make the transition into being finiancially responsible, remaining trapped in a continuous cycle of pay -> spend -> debt.

Seven Steps to Financial Freedom

The ways he outlines on breaking out from this debt trap are tremendously useful for anyone who hasn’t yet got the luxery of being able to chop up their credit cards. He primarily focusses on the practical steps needed to fast-track your life into financial freedom. Specifically:

  1. Mind your own business
  2. Take control of your cashflow
  3. Know the difference between risk and risky
  4. Decide which of 3 kinds of investor you want to be – (i)Those who seek problems, (ii)Those who seek answers, or (iii)Those who don’t know what to do & they hire others to help
  5. Seek mentors
  6. Make disappointment your strength
  7. The power of faith – ie believe that you can change things, if you believe in yourself.

Other themes discussed

Robert Kiyosaki details the three main types of businesses & the differences between them. He strongly differentiates between the self-employed sole-traders (sometimes known as small business owners) & true business owners in this major regard: If a sole-trader leaves the business alone for 6 months, it will collapse, but if the same person lets a real business run on its own, it will carry on without his/her direct intervention.

This is the important concept of building business systems – ie self-sustaining organisms in which people (who are employees) work for the system you’ve set up. He also calls this a pipeline – I won’t say why (read the book!) – but it’s an analogy he returns to throughout the book, and a theme in which I’m increasingly wanting to plan into realisation myself.

Network Marketing – an ideal transition mechanism

Of the three business types, Robert maintains that the one which most easily enables the transition from S -> B casfhlow generation is Network Marketing.(or “NM”).

Needless to say, this was music to my ears, as someone who has recently started out in NM. But before you decide that the book has nothing to add to your knowledge – remember this: Robert talks as much about Mindset as he does Methodoloy, so by reading the book you are faced with the opportunity to gain a whole new set of attitudes essential for business survival & growth.

You can tell that I highly recommend this book – so why don’t you try it out for yourselt too – if you’re ihe UK, click on the Amazon link above & make this small investment towards your future success.