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5 Reasons People With Crazy Minds Are More Likely To Succeed

5 Reasons People With Crazy Minds Are More Likely To Succeed
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When you think “wildly successful”, who comes to mind?

For me it’s individuals like Steve Jobs, Richard Branson, and J.K. Rowling. However, these people weren’t always seen as they are now. They were all once labeled things like, “foolish”, “senseless”, or “crazy” by people who couldn’t understand them.

Why? Anyone who challenges the status quo and presents new, radical ideas is bound to meet resistance in some form or another. However, what makes crazy-minded individuals successful is their ability to overcome the odds stacked against them – no matter what they may be.

There are certain traits of people with crazy minds that can lead them to be successful beyond any of their peers. Below are the top five…

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1. They don’t care what others think of them.

When Henry Ford proposed his idea of making a “horseless carriage” people thought he had gone insane. If he had listened to the naysayers he would never have begun production on the world’s first car or introduced the assembly line and revolutionized the manufacturing industry.

People with crazy minds succeed in life because they don’t let what others think about them hold them back from achieving their goals.

2. They don’t let other people tell them what to do.

During development of the first iPod, Steve Jobs met with the designers who showed him a prototype. After holding it in his hands, examining the weight, and testing it out, he deemed it too big. One of the designers promptly explained that it would be impossible to make the iPod any smaller than it already was. Looking down at the iPod and at again at the designer, Jobs silently walked over to an aquarium in the room and dropped the iPod in the water. Everyone’s mouths dropped open. As the iPod made its way to the bottom of the tank, bubbles floated to the top. “See those air bubbles,” Steve said. “That means there’s space in there. Make it smaller.”

People with crazy minds don’t take “no” for an answer. In fact, when they hear someone say something is not possible, that just pushes them harder to figure out a way to make it happen.

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3. They don’t let their fears control their actions.

“It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all, in which case you have failed by default.” – J.K. Rowling

J.K. Rowling, who you may know as one of the most successful writers of our generation, was not always so accomplished. At one point in her life, Rowling was a single mother on unemployment and collecting welfare checks to survive. In her commencement address at Harvard University she reflected on that time by saying, “Failure meant a stripping away of the essential. I stopped pretending to myself that I was anything other than what I was and I began to direct all my energies to finishing the only work that mattered to me.” That work eventually became the Harry Potter series.

Those with crazy minds are able to see past their fear of failure. Often this is because they have failed countless times before or, like Rowling, have already hit rock bottom and have nothing else to lose.

4. They create their own path.

Usually the reason people are seen as crazy is because their ideas differ from the norm – they think outside the box. Being human, this scares many of us. Our lives are already so full of chaos and randomness that when someone comes along with an idea that we’ve never seen or heard before, we’d rather cast them aside than try to understand them.

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This is exactly what happened to billionaire entrepreneur and thrill-seeker Elon Musk. No one took Musk seriously when he told the world he was going to create an electric car for the masses. In fact, many media outlets were actively rooting against him. Through determination, perseverance, and a lot of hard work, he was able to create the company we know today as Tesla (embraced by Consumer Reports as one of the best cars you can buy).

5. They go with their gut.

Successful people with eccentric minds all make decisions the same way – based on their instincts.

study by Tel Aviv University found intuition to be an incredibly accurate tool for decision-making. It turns out that this crazy way of making decisions isn’t actually crazy at all. In fact, it has helped human beings to use good judgement and discernment for thousands of years.

Making decisions based on your gut feeling isn’t only helpful in your personal life. Frank Knight, one of the founders of the Chicago School of Economics, has said the majority of business decisions are made based on intuition. This is because in a number of situations there are too many variables and unknowns to make an analysis worthwhile.

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Even in business it pays to be a little crazy.

Featured photo credit: Ryan McGuire via imcreator.com

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Dan Scalco

Director of Marketing

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Last Updated on July 21, 2021

The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)

The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)
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No matter how well you set up your todo list and calendar, you aren’t going to get things done unless you have a reliable way of reminding yourself to actually do them.

Anyone who’s spent an hour writing up the perfect grocery list only to realize at the store that they forgot to bring the list understands the importance of reminders.

Reminders of some sort or another are what turn a collection of paper goods or web services into what David Allen calls a “trusted system.”[1]

A lot of people resist getting better organized. No matter what kind of chaotic mess, their lives are on a day-to-day basis because they know themselves well enough to know that there’s after all that work they’ll probably forget to take their lists with them when it matters most.

Fortunately, there are ways to make sure we remember to check our lists — and to remember to do the things we need to do, whether they’re on a list or not.

In most cases, we need a lot of pushing at first, for example by making a reminder, but eventually we build up enough momentum that doing what needs doing becomes a habit — not an exception.

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From Creating Reminders to Building Habits

A habit is any act we engage in automatically without thinking about it.

For example, when you brush your teeth, you don’t have to think about every single step from start to finish; once you stagger up to the sink, habit takes over (and, really, habit got you to the sink in the first place) and you find yourself putting toothpaste on your toothbrush, putting the toothbrush in your mouth (and never your ear!), spitting, rinsing, and so on without any conscious effort at all.

This is a good thing because if you’re anything like me, you’re not even capable of conscious thought when you’re brushing your teeth.

The good news is you already have a whole set of productivity habits you’ve built up over the course of your life. The bad news is, a lot of them aren’t very good habits.

That quick game Frogger to “loosen you up” before you get working, that always ends up being 6 hours of Frogger –– that’s a habit. And as you know, habits like that can be hard to break — which is one of the reasons why habits are so important in the first place.

Once you’ve replaced an unproductive habit with a more productive one, the new habit will be just as hard to break as the old one was. Getting there, though, can be a chore!

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The old saw about anything you do for 21 days becoming a habit has been pretty much discredited, but there is a kernel of truth there — anything you do long enough becomes an ingrained behavior, a habit. Some people pick up habits quickly, others over a longer time span, but eventually, the behaviors become automatic.

Building productive habits, then, is a matter of repeating a desired behavior over a long enough period of time that you start doing it without thinking.

But how do you remember to do that? And what about the things that don’t need to be habits — the one-off events, like taking your paycheck stubs to your mortgage banker or making a particular phone call?

The trick to reminding yourself often enough for something to become a habit, or just that one time that you need to do something, is to interrupt yourself in some way in a way that triggers the desired behavior.

The Wonderful Thing About Triggers — Reminders

A trigger is anything that you put “in your way” to remind you to do something. The best triggers are related in some way to the behavior you want to produce.

For instance, if you want to remember to take something to work that you wouldn’t normally take, you might place it in front of the door so you have to pick it up to get out of your house.

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But anything that catches your attention and reminds you to do something can be a trigger. An alarm clock or kitchen timer is a perfect example — when the bell rings, you know to wake up or take the quiche out of the oven. (Hopefully you remember which trigger goes with which behavior!)

If you want to instill a habit, the thing to do is to place a trigger in your path to remind you to do whatever it is you’re trying to make into a habit — and keep it there until you realize that you’ve already done the thing it’s supposed to remind you of.

For instance, a post-it saying “count your calories” placed on the refrigerator door (or maybe on your favorite sugary snack itself)  can help you remember that you’re supposed to be cutting back — until one day you realize that you don’t need to be reminded anymore.

These triggers all require a lot of forethought, though — you have to remember that you need to remember something in the first place.

For a lot of tasks, the best reminder is one that’s completely automated — you set it up and then forget about it, trusting the trigger to pop up when you need it.

How to Make a Reminder Works for You

Computers and ubiquity of mobile Internet-connected devices make it possible to set up automatic triggers for just about anything.

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Desktop software like Outlook will pop up reminders on your desktop screen, and most online services go an extra step and send reminders via email or SMS text message — just the thing to keep you on track. Sandy, for example, just does automatic reminders.

Automated reminders can help you build habits — but it can also help you remember things that are too important to be trusted even to habit. Diabetics who need to take their insulin, HIV patients whose medication must be taken at an exact time in a precise order, phone calls that have to be made exactly on time, and other crucial events require triggers even when the habit is already in place.

My advice is to set reminders for just about everything — have them sent to your mobile phone in some way (either through a built-in calendar or an online service that sends updates) so you never have to think about it — and never have to worry about forgetting.

Your weekly review is a good time to enter new reminders for the coming weeks or months. I simply don’t want to think about what I’m supposed to be doing; I want to be reminded so I can think just about actually doing it.

I tend to use my calendar for reminders, mostly, though I do like Sandy quite a bit.

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Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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Reference

[1] Getting Things Done: Trusted System

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