Semperjase sort of hit on this one: for you to discuss how worthless some of the 'self-help' business guru books are. Like "Who Moved My Cheese," "The Four-Hour Workweek," and the "One-minute" series. I mean, how can you stand out when you're one of the sheeple, doing what everyone else does? How do you approach excellence in an individual rather than induhvidual way?
Then, there's the college question. Is college still the path to success? With the cost of college now, will you ever make the money back it cost you to go? I recall reading a comparison of a plumber's lifetime earnings (starting at the end of high school) versus a doctor's lifetime earnings (starting after college, med school, internship and residency), with the plumber coming out slightly ahead.
I'd also like it if you'd comment on Thomas Edison's statement that genius is one percent inspiration and 95% persperation, and his notion that "Many of life's failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up." When do you have to realize that you're just not good enough to become an 'X', or do you ever?
As a matter of fact, if you'd look at some of Edison's quotes (check Wikiquote), that would be a good place to start. In any case, whatever you do, I'm sure it will have much more value than most of the success books out there.
You've written about using them before, but if I recall correctly you weren't sure where the magic came from. Any further thought on why or how daily affirmations might work?
Specific Action due to Specific Failures.
We've all heard, over and over again, that failures are how you learn. Can you provide any specific examples of a failure, the knowledge you gained from it, and the success that followed or the trap that was avoided? (I haven't read your unreleased book yet, so perhaps it's full of such examples. It seems like it ought to be).
I'd just like to know how to successfully get credit for my work. The management level that approves my compensation doesn't have a clue what I do. Every day, I get emails 3 Fwd:'s deep asking about company operations. I'm pretty sure the part of my reply that says "call me if you have any questions" gets stripped out by 3 levels of supervisors.
So... we all know pointy-haired boss is an idiot. And yet he's a successful guy. It seems like it would be in the Scott Adams style to write a defensive piece about the boss's various horrible qualities and how those qualities do, in fact, make a person successful in real life.
It would interesting to explore the notion of "when life gives you lemons, make lemonade." Looking back on my life, there were key moments (similar to jakesdad) that put me on the path to where I am today. I my case, most of the those moments were negative in some way, my reaction to them grew into positive outcomes.
If you wouldn't mind shining some light onto that stupid "lean in" crap and pointing out its utter inanity, that would be great.
(Every time some high-profile woman comes out with a tome of workplace advice, I'm always reminded of the female idiots in my MBA program who worshipped at the throne of Carly Fiorina (this was back in her HP days):
Me: "You realize she's an incredibly corrosive and divisive manager who's driving down HP's value, !$%*!$%*!$%*!$%* clueless women in their late 20s: "She's a woman! And a CEO! Everything she does is fabulous!")
It would seem to me that the old adage of "If at first you don't succeed; try, try again" is antithetical to the wisdom of "the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results". Perhaps we need a new pearl of wisdom that combines the encouragement of tenacity with the intelligence of learning from your mistakes so as not to repeat them.
A friend and I were joking the other day that somebody needs to write a book "Success Strategies for Dilettantes". So, I guess my question is: In this world of increasing specialization, what success strategies (if any) would you recommend for a person that prefers to do a variety of things vs. doing one thing extremely well.
I'd like to know to what extent (if any) your experience has mirrored mine in that one of the biggest lessons I'm impressing on my kids is that the moments & decisions that really turn out to shape your life you rarely recognize when they're happening. when I reflect I can think of 5-10 key moments/decisions that have really shaped my life but only with one of them did I recognize the significance as it happened. conversely, I can think of many things over which I obsessed that in hindsight really didn't mean much (GPA/SAT, college admissions, titles, etc).
not sure what practical application that has except maybe always be authentic because you probably won't recognize opportunity from an encyclopedia salesman when it knocks but that's my story & I'm sticking to it - you?