The Salt Shaker Theory, Minimalist Marketing, & More
Today at a Glance
- Question: Letting go of the uncontrollable.
- Quote: Do not wait.
- Framework: Batteries included.
- Tweet: Minimalist marketing lessons.
- Article: The Salt Shaker Theory.
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Letting go of the uncontrollable:
Where am I allowing the uncontrollable to impact my life?
This image from Carl Richards hangs on the wall of my office.
It's a daily reminder of an important fact:
There are very few things that matter—and even fewer that I am actually in control of.
Letting go of the uncontrollable is one of the single greatest unlocks for life.
Most of us waste a lot of energy on that which is entirely out of our control—we complain, we resent, we focus, we bemoan.
But our energy is finite. Every ounce given to the uncontrollable is an ounce that cannot be deployed into the controllable.
Every single moment that you focus on the uncontrollable, you are making an active decision to allow it to negatively impact your life.
Remember: When you let go of the uncontrollable, you are free.
The illusion of the "right" moment:
"Do not wait; the time will never be just right. Start where you stand, and work with whatever tools you may have at your command, and better tools will be found as you go along." - George Herbert
If you wait to feel prepared, you'll never start.
Don't wait, act.
Mental model on energy creation:
Energy Creators vs. Energy Absorbers
My simple mental model for two types of people:
- Energy Creators: Create energy for others.
- Energy Absorbers: Require energy from others.
Energy Creators are those individuals who somehow breathe life into a room. When you're around them, you feel more alive. When they leave, you want to go for a run or crank on your focus work because you've been infused with their spark.
Energy Absorbers are those individuals who somehow suck the life out of a room. When you're around them, you feel drained, because the burden is on you to create the energy that they absorb. When they leave, you want to have a nap because you've been exhausted of your energy stores.
I've encountered the generalized version of this mental model in different contexts (professional model here and personal model here). Each time I come across it, I think about what core traits I've observed that characterize Energy Creators across domains.
Here is my current running list of the traits of Energy Creators:
- Movement Bias: Movement creates collisions. Collisions release energy.
- Curious: Deep intellectual curiosity. Desire to learn.
- Growth Mindset: Fundamental belief in the ability to change. Does not waste time with self-limiting beliefs.
- Internally Motivated: Does not need a consistent drip of external rewards. Creates internal motivation to perform and grow. Finds enjoyment in process.
- Consistent: Shows up in the same way, day-in-day-out.
Fill your work and personal life with Energy Creators.
Be an Energy Creator for those around you.
Visuals worth a thousand words:
I'm a sucker for simple visuals that convey a thousand words in seconds. This thread is filled with them. I loved it.
Essay on setting your standards:
Brilliant essay on famed restauranteur Danny Meyer that draws upon a story from his memoir on the importance of setting your standards and avoiding frustration.
My favorite passage:
Your staff and your guests are always moving your saltshaker off center. That’s their job. It is the job of life. It’s the law of entropy! Until you understand that, you’re going to get pissed off every time someone moves the saltshaker off center.
It is not your job to get upset...Your job is just to move the shaker back each time and let them know exactly what you stand for. Let them know what excellence looks like to you.
And if you’re ever willing to let them decide where the center is, then I want you to give them the keys to the store. Just give away the fuckin’ restaurant!
Lesson: Your job is to let them know exactly what you stand for. Let them know what excellence looks like to you.