Tag Archives: entrepreneurship

Brain Dumps: You Should Add Them to Your Routine

My Introduction to Brain Dumps

My introduction to brain dumps was actually in the form of “morning pages”. I began doing my morning pages as part of my practices when reading The Artist’s Way. Later, I heard Tim Ferris mention using brain dumps as a way to have a more productive day on his podcast. I hadn’t been prioritizing my morning pages anymore. I had become fidgety with anxiety. Anything more than five minutes of still meditation (guided or otherwise) felt nearly impossible, but the idea of sitting for ten or fifteen minutes and writing seemed less daunting. I gave it a try. I sat for a few minutes with my Self Care Everyday journal and wrote. They weren’t complete sentences, it wasn’t a story or poem, it wasn’t even cohesive thoughts. It was freeing because there was no right or wrong, no expectation, just release.

Who Should Do Brain Dumps

Short list: everyone. Longer list:

  • Anyone who is creating a better life in any way
  • Anyone who is making decisions
  • Anyone who knows what it is like to have to hold many thoughts in their mind at the same time
  • Anyone who feels anxious, overwhelmed, or like their mind is overflowing with information
  • Someone who is working to determine their emotional triggers and needs to keep record of the people, places, and things that impact their feelings
  • Parents
  • Children
  • Entrepreneurs
  • Therapists
  • People in therapy
  • Employees
  • Creatives
  • You
  • Me

How Do You Brain Dump?

First, let me make something clear: You don’t have to be a writer, artist, or creative person to do brain dumps. Second, there is no “wrong way”. Now, clear at least five minutes from your busy schedule. I prefer doing brain dumps in the morning and before bed, but you can take this practice throughout the day. Just grab your preferred medium (pencil, pen, paint, marker). I prefer to use my Release and Reset Clarity Journal: Use Brain Dumps to Declutter the Mind journal because at the end of each seven days, there are lined pages for me to evaluate my recurring thoughts and reset by making proactive decisions for the coming week. No paper? Use a sticky note, paper cup, napkin-whatever you can find. 

Take three deep breaths (because, science). Inhale, exhale. Inhale, exhale. Inhale, exhale. Go! 

Write.

Scribble.

Doodle.

Do whatever gets the thoughts out of your mind. Your sentences don’t have to be complete. Your words don’t have to be spelled correctly. Your lines don’t have to be straight, perfectly curved or even meet. 

When you’re finished, you can keep it, throw it away, or burn your thoughts (be safe, please). Take another three deep breaths (still science). Inhale, exhale. Inhale, exhale. Inhale, exhale.

Add brain dumps to your routine for a few days. Come back and let me know how it benefits you.

Contagious: Why Things Catch On

QUICK SUMMARY

There are many reasons that things catch on and go viral. Contagious: Why Things Catch On takes a practical dive into 6 key elements that make things interesting enough to share.

THE 6 ELEMENTS – STEPPS

  • SOCIAL CURRENCY
    • People crave societal approval. They want to be liked, but they also want to feel special and like they know something that others don’t
    • Word of mouth is a form of currency
    • Remarkability, exclusivity, and scarcity boost word of mouth by making people feel like insiders
  • TRIGGERS
    • Environmental reminders that keep you top of mind
    • Examples of triggers: Peanut butter makes you think of jelly; ketchup makes you think of mustard
    • Associating your brand with a specific trigger brings your brand to the top of consumer minds more often
    • Good triggers are those that are seen frequently, happen near where your desired outcome takes place, and are strongly associated with your product (not extremely broad/general)
  • EMOTION
    • “When we care, we share”
    • People share things that are interesting and/or useful
    • You want the emotion to trigger action (examples of emotions that result in action: rage, awe, excitement) so that your brand is shared
  • PUBLIC
    • It needs to be seen for social currency and triggering purposes
    • People do what they see others do because of social proof and herd mentality
    • Behavior is public, but thoughts are private so you need people’s actions to support your brand, idea, or desired outcome, not just their thoughts
  • PRACTICAL VALUE
    • People pass along practical, useful information
    • We measure value in relative terms meaning that we compare things to our reference points and expectations. If we expect a bill to be $400, but it is actually $100, we will be excited because it costs less than we expected; however, if it was $600, we would be upset because it costs more than we expected.
    • When setting prices or creating promotions, consider the consumer’s expectations and use the Rule of 100
  • STORIES
    • Narratives carry information
    • People dispute reviews on a website, but they are less likely to dispute a person’s story
    • Make your brand, product, or idea an integral part of the story to make sure that it doesn’t get left out of the retellings

The STEPPS don’t have to all be used at the same time to make something go viral, but the more that can be included, the better. This book was concise with limited redundancies making it a great resource for anyone interested in making their content reach larger numbers of people. I don’t usually read books more than once, but this book will stay on my bookshelf as a reference tool.

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