50 ways to stop being mediocre
50 ways to stop being mediocre

Mired in a routine, tired of being mediocre and nothing interesting happens? Rip off your tie, take responsibility for your life, be a person or die!

Hey you office slaves! Rip off your ties! Throw off the yoke!

Work can be cool!

Work can be great!

Work can be fun!

Work can mean something!

You can mean something!

Down with office walls!

Dilbert comics in the trash!

Give us a white collar revolution!

90 percent of our jobs are at risk!

Take responsibility for your life!

Down with hierarchy!

Let every project be a wow project!

Be a person … or die!

A new millennium has come: if not now …

That to-o-g-d-ah?

50 ways to stop being mediocre

1. Go to the nearest store. Right now. Spend 20 minutes there. Pick 20 - twenty! - magazines. Among them, there should not be any of those that you usually read. Spend most of your day studying them. Cut it out. Take notes. File into folders. Target: Reach! Repeat … monthly … or at least every two months.

2. Go online. Right now. Relax. Enjoy. Visit at least 15 sites you've never visited before. Open any link that intrigues you. Bookmark some of the best sites. Repeat … at least once a week.

3. Run away from work during the day. For a couple of hours … wander around the nearest shopping center. Pay attention to the things you like. (And which are disgusting to you.) Products, goods - it does not matter. Repeat … every two months.

4. Buy a 3 "by 5" package of writing paper. Carry it with you everywhere. Constantly. Write down cool stuff. And terrible things. Every day. Go through your notes on Sundays. (Get obsessed with it.)

5. Are you going on vacation to the same place next year? Why not try something new? Why not take one of the travels to investigate some strange phenomena (some universities sponsor such travel)?

6. Is the project stuck in a routine? Review your address book. Find the strangest weirdo you've ever met. Call him (or her). Invite to lunch. And let this person puzzle over your project for a couple of hours.

7. Get into a new habit: browsing your address book. Once a month. Choose someone interesting, with whom you have not kept in contact for a long time. And invite him to lunch … next week.

8. New habit: you are in a meeting. Someone you don't know has a helpful suggestion. Invite him to lunch … within the next two weeks.

9. You meet an interesting person. In the meantime, ask him what he has liked the most from what he has read over the past three months. Order it online … today.

10. Don't go to work tomorrow. And regardless of rain or heat, head to a part of the city you've never been before.

11. Take a look at the nearest store. Buy a cheap notebook. Name it Observations Part 1. Start recording. Right now. All. (Now = Now.)

12. Are you having dinner at a restaurant this Saturday? Go somewhere new.

13. Going to a party next Saturday? Invite someone interesting who has never been invited. (There is a chance that the person will refuse. So what? Try it. It's like selling encyclopedias. If you don't ring the doorbell = you definitely won't sell.)

14. Look at a kiosk that advertises local college tuition. Take the booklet. (Or grab a directory for applicants with descriptions of educational institutions.) Check it out tonight. Pick a couple of interesting subjects or topics that you've always wanted to know more about. Call the teacher (with some effort, you will find him). If he intrigues you, sign up … and attend at least an introductory session.

15. Read a provocative business magazine article. Makes you think? Email the author. So what if he doesn't answer? (In fact, there are quite a few chances that it will answer. Trust me.)

16. At church this Sunday, the pastor is announcing a new fundraiser. Of course you are a busy person. (Who's not?) After service, stay for an organizational meeting. Sign up for volunteers!

17. Working with your 13-year-old child on his science project. And you notice that you like it. Go to school tomorrow with him … and volunteer to speak to the class on this topic.

18. A small second-rate project has appeared. But it does give you the chance to work with people you've never worked with before. Volunteer to participate in it.

19. You are not satisfied with what is happening in the school where your child is studying. So talk to the student council members!

20. You are not really going to change jobs. But this weekend, an interesting job fair is being held in the neighboring town. Go ahead.

21. A buddy at university invites you to go fishing on the weekend. But you have never been interested in this. Go ahead.

22. An excellent vacancy has appeared in another country. You fit your skills. But perhaps they never thought of anything like it. Your child is nine years old and your wife / husband has a good job. At least call … and find out the details.

23. Your career is going well. But you find out about an interesting job … in another field. It looks like a deviation from the straight path. But you can learn something really new. Something really cool. So ask about this work. (Now.)

24. Teacher requires an eighth grade companion for the Natural History Museum excursion. And you are a partner in a law firm and earn, my God, 350,000 dollars a year! Go ahead.

25. You enjoy taking pictures. You have come across a brochure advertising a four-day workshop that will be held in another city this summer. Sign up for it.

26. Your friend, a small business owner, is going to Thailand to establish business connections. He calls you with him. Go ahead.

27. An hour later, an excellent football match will be broadcast on the sports channel. Forget about it. Go for a walk with your loved one … which you haven't done for a whole year.

28. I'm not crazy about planning. But how about sitting with your other half and making a list of three or four new things that would make sense to do … and then come up with a blueprint for bringing this to life over the next nine months.

29. You always wanted to go to the Yucatan. So at least call the travel agency … this week. (Or maybe right now?)

30. You know that everything happens at the "cutting edge". Spend a month (two days a week) on a self-designed curriculum that allows you to try all kinds of frontline jobs in a hotel / mall / anywhere.

31. Ask the store manager which salesperson he considers the most motivated. Invite him to lunch … for the next three weeks.

32. Noticed a cool post in your department's newsletter? Call the person who wrote it. Invite him to lunch. Tomorrow. Learn more from him. (Repeat. Regularly.)

33. You and your “other half” watched a wonderful performance this Saturday. Call the director on Monday and ask him if you can meet and chat over the next two weeks. (If the conversation goes well, ask him to chat with you and your 18 accounting colleagues sometime during an “information lunch”.)

34. Establish a tradition of "information dinners". Encourage all colleagues to suggest which interesting people to invite. Criterion: "I never thought that we would invite _______."

35. Volunteer to be in charge of recruiting within the next six months / year. Try to accept applications from places that your unit previously "did not reach."

36. Consider the opportunity … to take a four month sabbatical.

37. Get up from your desk. Right now. And go for a 2-hour walk along the beach. Into the mountains. Anywhere. Repeat this every couple of weeks. (Or every week?)

38. Seriously consider asking your boss for permission to work from home one day a week.

39. Keep the door to your office open.

40. You have a couple of friends who are avid readers. Organize a reading club that meets every third Thursday. Discuss unusual books as well. (Invite a famous local writer to meet from time to time.)

41. Join the speaking community Toastmasters International. (I know I'm repeating myself. But it's important!)

42. Write a note for your department's newsletter.

43. In the quarterly newsletter of your alma mater, you read about a classmate who changed his life in a completely unexpected way. Call him. Tomorrow. (Or even today.)

44. Buy that unexpectedly flamboyant suit that was looked after yesterday. Put it on to work. Tomorrow.

45. Come up with a set of probing questions to use during meetings. "Will it really change something?", "Will someone remember what we are doing here in two years?" "Can we show off this project to our family?"

46. Evaluate all projects that you propose using the criteria "WOW" and "Is it worth doing?"

47. Call the key representative of the client with whom you worked on the most recent project. Invite him to lunch. In the next two weeks. Have an open discussion about how you and your team have worked … and how you might have worked.

How to become real?
How to become real?

And right now:

48. Call the smartest person you know. (An amazing teacher who lectured you 15 years ago?) Invite him to lunch. Ask him if he would agree to meet with you for a couple of hours every three months to talk about what you have done and where you are going. (Try it. It won't hurt.)

49. Become a scout leader. Or the director of a school play. The idea is to spend more time with the kids. They are adorable … spontaneous … and wise.

50. Build a big sand castle!

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