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Why You Need to Give It Away

Why You Need to Give It Away

    Everyone is looking to make an extra buck these days.

    We all want more clients, a better job offer, a promotion. Nothing wrong with that of course, but why is one of the best strategies to give it away?

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    Well, I’ll give you four good reasons.

    You make connections

    Let’s say you write a free white paper that can help solve a problem, or respond to questions at Answers.com, or give a free health assessment at a train station. You are meeting people and making connections. Granted, most of them will go nowhere, and that’s OK, if you begin to connect with 2 – 3 % of those who accept your offer, you will soon find that you know a whole bunch of people who are interested in you and your talents. You would not have met them if they would have had payed for something, since they didn’t know you and the risk was high. By giving stuff away you reduce their risk to almost nothing and more people will take you up on it.

    You get practice

    One of the best ways to gain experience, especially in a new and untried area, is to give it away. Again, there’s no risk. A company might not be willing to offer you a big salary to come and sell for them, but a church or PTA fundraising committee would be overjoyed if you volunteered to help them. Now you’re gaining experience, getting better at the thing you want to do and creating stories that demonstrate your success to people who will now consider taking a risk.

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    When I was still getting certified as a coach, I began volunteering at the Career Transition Center of Chicago, with a little training, a lot of raw talent, and a willingness to work for free. 200+ clients later, it has been a wonderful use of my time, and it has led to paying gigs.

    It feels good

    Don’t underestimate this. It feels great to do something you really enjoy and have people appreciate it, even if you’re not getting paid. You’re doing “Your Thing,” that will make you feel strong (if it doesn’t, it might not be “Your Thing”), Important point here; don’t just do something because you have to and do it begrudgingly. Do something you love to do, and your joy and passion will attract attention. If you like to write, write a white paper or a blog. If you hate writing, do something else, like create websites or read to sick kids or talk about a favorite topic at a professional association.

    It always comes back to you

    You are investing in the “Good Karma Market”, which always pays out in the long run when something is offered with joy and love. It doesn’t always pay out the way you expect, or on the schedule you would like, but it never fails. That’s not to say you should give in order to get. You should give and trust that you will get what matters. It’s a subtle distinction, yet crucial.

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    To sum up, give because you:

    • Make connections
    • You get practice
    • It feels good
    • It always comes back to you

    Conclusion

    I heard a story (I wish I could remember where) that most people stand in front of the fireplace and say to the fire, “I’ll give you more wood when you start giving off more warmth.” We laugh, but that is the approach many of us take to our careers and lives. Some people, on finding the fire burning hotter by sheer luck, don’t even put more wood in at that point, yet we find ourselves surprised when our career is nothing but ash.

    Don’t be this person. If you put in more wood first, the fire will give off more warmth. Give and give. You will surely receive.

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    (Photo credit: The open hands of woman via Shutterstock)

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    Dave Kaiser

    An Executive Coach who helps people make better use of their time, from productivity to living their life's mission.

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    Last Updated on December 9, 2019

    5 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress Effectively

    5 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress Effectively

    Everyone experiences mental stress at one time or another. Maybe you’re starting a new career, job, or business, or you feel incredibly overwhelmed between work, parenting, and your love life (or a lack of it). It could even be that you simply feel that you have way too much to do and not enough time to do it,  plus, on top of everything, nothing seems to be going the way it should!

    Yup, we all experience mental stress from time-to-time, and that’s okay as long as you have the tools, techniques and knowledge that allow you to fully relieve it once it comes.

    Here are 5 tips for relieving mental stress when it comes so you can function at your best while feeling good (and doing well) in work, love, or life:

    1. Get Rationally Optimistic

    Mental stress starts with your perception of your experiences. For instance, most people get stressed out when they perceive their reality as “being wrong” in some way. Essentially, they have a set idea of how things “should be” at any given moment, and when reality ends up being different (not even necessarily bad), they get stressed.

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    This process is simply a result of perception and can be easily “fixed” by recognizing that although life might not always be going as YOU think it should, it’s still going as it should—for your own benefit.

    In fact, once you fully recognize that everything in your life ultimately happens for your own growth, progress, and development—so you can achieve your goals and dreams—your perception works in your favor. You soon process and respond to your experience of life differently, for your advantage. That’s the essence of becoming “rationally optimistic.”

    The result: no more mental stress.

    2. Unplug

    Just like you might need to unplug your computer when it starts acting all crazy, you should also “unplug” your mind.

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    How on earth do you unplug your mind? Simple: just meditate.

    It isn’t nearly difficult or complicated as some people think, so, if you don’t already meditate, give it a try. Whether you meditate for 5 minutes, 30 minutes, or 2 hours, this is a surefire way to reduce mental stress.

    Meditation has been scientifically proven to relax your body (resulting in less mental stress), while also reducing anxiety and high blood pressure.

    3. Easy on the Caffeine

    Yes, we know, we know—everyone loves a nice java buzz, and that’s okay, but there’s a fine line between a small caffeine pick-me-up and a racing heart and mind that throws you into a frenzy of mental stress.

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    Try giving up caffeine for a while and see how you feel. And, if that’s completely out of the question for you, at least try to minimize it. You might find that lots of your mental stress mysteriously “disappears” as your caffeine intake goes down.

    4. Attack Mental Stress Via the Back Door

    That’s right: your body and mind are part of the whole being, and are constantly influencing and affecting each other. If you’re experiencing a lot of mental stress, try to reduce it by calming your body down—a calm body equals a calmer mind.

    How do you calm your body down and reduce physical stress? A  great way to reduce physical stress (thereby reducing mental stress) is to take natural supplements that are proven to reduce stress and anxiety while lifting your mood. Three good ones to look into are kava-kava, St John’s wort, and rhodiola rosea:

    • Kava-kava is a natural plant known to have mild sedative properties, and you should be able to find it at your natural health food store or vitamin store. It’s available in capsules or liquid extract form.
    • St John’s wort is a natural flower used to treat depression. Again, it’s found at your local health store in capsules or liquid. Because it uplifts mood (enabling you to see the brighter side of all experiences) it helps relieve mental stress as well.
    • Rhodiola rosea is a natural plant shown to reduce stress and uplift mood, and Russian athletes have been using it forever. Like the other two supplements mentioned, rhodiola rosea can be found at your natural health store in capsule or liquid form.

    While these supplements are all natural and can be very helpful for most people, always check with your health care provider first as they can cause side-effects depending on your current health situation etc.

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    5. Good Old-Fashioned Exercise

    This tip has been around forever because it works. Nothing relieves mental stress like running, kickboxing—you name it. Anything super-physical will wipe out most of your mental stresses once the exercise endorphins (happy chemicals) are released into your brain.

    The result: mental stress will be gone!

    So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed or just plain stressed, try using some of the above tips. You can even print this out or save it to refer to regularly.

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    Featured photo credit: Radu Florin via unsplash.com

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