Operate in the real world
I grew up in a somewhat academic family. Many of my parent's friend are academics, and I've spent a lot of time socialising with such people. My own career has been mostly in the business world. What strikes me is how different their world-view of how things operate is to what I've experienced.
I think this is mostly because academics get tied up in the theory of how things should work, and don't get much experience of how they actually do. Academics live in a sheltered university life, where the real cut-throat world of business rarely operates. They experience the real world through books and dinner-party conversations, while getting very little real experience.
This is typical of many people. So many of us spend our time reading, talking, and getting educated on how things work, without really going out to experience them for ourselves.
And one thing that's certain is the reality often operates differently from how theory says it should. Of course, theory is important, but without experience to back it up it's often not worth much.
It's so easy to get hooked on books, seminars and conversations on various topics. Whether it's investment, job-hunting, relationships, health, sport, or some other field you're interested in improving in - make sure you back up the theory with experience. Get out there and test the ideas you've been exposed to and those you've come up with yourself.
Be prepared to fall over, hurt yourself, and get back up to figure out what went wrong. Don't be afraid to find out some idea you've become wedded to turns out to be wrong.
In these times of the internet and endless information, it's too easy to get caught up in a kind of fantasy existence where you feel like and expert on some topic even though you have very little experience in it. Go out and get that experience. Mix some hard reality in with your theories.
|Emotions are like muscles, you need to work them out |
|It’s amazing how much of our lives are controlled by our emotions. In fact, it could be said that pretty much everything we do is in pursuit of some sort of emotional comfort. If you’re hungry, lonely or cold, your emotions are going to let you know by making you feel miserable. This is generally a good thing.|
|If investments become cheaper, and you’re a buyer, that’s a good thing |
|In the last few years, stock markets around the world have been hammered. Currencies have also fallen to historic lows. People see their portfolios down and are running scared.|
|A key secret of effectiveness |
|What is effectiveness exactly? It's a special term that can sell a million books, and make or break a commercial enterprise. It's a key difference between the average and the successful in this life. And the main secret of it is as simple as it is powerful.|
|How your identity can hold you back |
|We all have this picture inside our heads of who we are. And let's face it, for most of us, we're probably a little bit more generous than reality warrants. Who doesn't secretly believe that they may be a little smarter, more attractive, and more moral than those around them?|
|We are defined by our ignorance |
|What defines us as human beings? All sorts of things. But one key quality stands out above almost all others - our complete and utter ignorance. It's the human condition - we know so little about who we are and how the world works, that it almost cripples us.|
|Take responsibility for your actions |
|Let me tell you a few things about my childhood. When I was seven years old, my parents divorced. They had been fighting many years, and it's difficult for me to remember them ever being in love.|
|Be willing to crash and burn sometimes |
|We all have trouble dealing with failure. We play so many mental tricks on ourselves in order to pretend we aren't avoiding it, that they can sometimes become all consuming. At night, while asleep, we have terrible nightmares of others disapproval, or the world rejecting us.|
|The conditions are never going to be ideal to get started |
|What's interesting about the question "What can I do to improve my life?" is that most people already know the answer. They know what's missing and often exactly which steps they have to take to fix the problem. So why don't they just do it?|
|Much of what we see as real exists only in our heads |
|Humans are incredibly imaginative creatures. We are constantly coming up with new ideas and re-examining old ones. We are filled with ideas that hold a powerful sway over us, even though many of them have no real existence outside our own heads.|
|Don't get too easily discouraged |
|Occasionally, you may come across someone who appears as if they were born an expert in something. Perhaps it's sport, meeting people, business or family. Some of us just seem to be stars, while others are common.|
New articles are being added all the time, so make sure you bookmark Paul's Tips and come back.