If you know someone who deserves a shout out (even if it’s yourself), fill out one of the forms below and we’ll see if we have a way to make it part of our ongoing movement of appreciating those who do the hard work.
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There’s no denying the celebrity worship culture that exists in our world today and it bleeds over into the celebrity entrepreneur world as well. How many articles have we read about Richard Branson, Sheryl Sandberg, and Gary Vaynerchuk this year? How many MORE of the same will we continue to support with our clicks and our bandwidth?
It’s honestly exhausting that all of our praise goes to just a few at the top.
We want to spend the beginning of this year recognizing those who work hard without personal branding being the focal point of their hard work. These people should be appreciated and they have some lessons to teach but we don’t know who they are because they are too busy trying to provide value in whatever way they can to the world and communities around them.
And some of them are trying to tackle complicated issues that don’t come with instant success or gratification.
For the next few weeks, I –and the team here at Eazl– will be spotlighting people in our community (both physically and online) who we think are doing great things and deserve a shoutout. Some of these inspiring individuals are entrepreneurs and others are contributing their talent to companies.
I want to make sure we are encouraging the people around us to spread the love instead of supporting those who are already clearly supported in their work.
In this week’s Brain Boost: the science of happiness and social status.
If you look on Instagram and many of the other social networks around, you’ll see that there’s a culture of people who like to flash money, designer bags, trips, and fancy cars. It would almost make you think that personal consumption and status should be the driving force behind our decisions.
If you find flashy images interesting and attractive, don’t worry it’s natural to your brain. Professor Ed Schiappa, the head of MIT Media Lab, has shown that our brains are virtually incapable of categorizing images and videos into a category that’s different from the things that we’ve actually seen in real life.
So, the takeaway here is that, when you see it through social media, your brain thinks that you actually saw it for real. That’s why we have a hard time remembering that some person who posts Instagram photos of themselves with luxury cars and helicopters that they really don’t own really isn’t that rich.
Interestingly, we now know for a fact that being super rich does not lead to happiness. Research from Nobel Prize winner Daniel Kahneman at Princeton University has shown that, after around $75k a year, additional income contributes very little to our happiness. Instead, what we’re looking for is respect.
A research team from UC Berkeley shows that the kind of status that does drive real happiness is the kind that is derived from your personal networks: respect. And that respect is usually delivered in face-to-face interactions within your professional community or within your local community –not online.
So, the takeaway here is that being rich orbecoming rich… if that’s a part of your life, that’s great. You should do it well like Bill Gates, JK Rowling, and Warren Buffett. But let’s call bullshit on all the fraudsters who post Ferraris and claim that they can teach you to get what they have because, most likely, they don’t have it yet.
See you next week at 10 a.m. Pacific Time for another Brain Boost.
Also, check out these other videos from Daniel Kahneman and Ed Schiappa below:
We, at Team Eazl, have been thinking about what role we want to play in the world of education because, really, it isn’t about us. It’s all about you and feeling empowered in your career. Whether you are a professional in the traditional workforce, an entrepreneur, or a freelancer, the more you know about how to build a good life for yourself through your career, the better. The less encumbered and “in the dark” you are about how things work, the more capable you are to truly have control over your life.
This kind of knowledge will help you be more financially prosperous, be and feel more valuable at work, find work relationships that are beneficial, understand how to build and demonstrate your own expertise, achieve independence, and be more of an asset to your community. And all of these things are important. After all, a majority of our lives are spent working and we have the power to make positive change in the world through loving what we do.
Empowerment brings us out of the shadows of self-doubt, unfair compensation or treatment, and feelings of negativity towards our work, our superiors, our employees, and our clients. Team Eazl wants to empower you to achieve what you want to do and we’ve created this list of 5 Ways to Feel More Empowered Today:
Understand the power of owning your experiences and do it. Now. One of the most common issues we see, especially with our Career Hacking and Resume students, is that people systematically neglect any claim over their experiences or expertise. Many seem to feel like they never have quite enough experience or value to feel worthy of going after their dream job or dream client. You will always be able to be more experienced than you are now. There are infinite possibilities for you and how much more talented and knowledgeable you can become at any given moment.
This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t embrace your past and the good work that you’ve done already, whether it’s years of service to a company and the responsibility that you’ve held as a freelancer or business owner or just a couple of years in the workforce. Or maybe even research you have completed as a grad student. Quantify your accomplishments and use the momentum you already have going to push even further with your career goals.
2. Know what you’re worth through research. Don’t devalue yourself because an employer or client is too cheap to pay for quality. Research the rate or salary for someone in your field with your experience. If they don’t see that you are worth what you ask for, you either haven’t communicated your value effectively or they aren’t worth dealing with.
We talk about salary negotiation in our Career Hacking course and setting rates in our Freelance course.
3. Don’t be afraid to take risks The days of lifetime service with a retirement plan are over. To be successful in this economy, it’s all about ownership and building the life you want for yourself. You’ll probably make many employment changes or find various ways of making money. Most importantly, no one is going to put you first except you.
To build the lifestyle and career you want, you might have to get comfortable with a little risk. Whether it’s leaving your full time job to start a business, asking for a raise you deserve, or investing some money into advertising your services, the pay-off from risk is net positive.
Many times, you profit from the risk. In the worst case scenario, you learn from it. For example, learning that an employer is unwilling to pay you market standard salary will at least allow you to realize you are in a bad employment situation and, as a result, your confidence about your skills will attract a better employer.
4. Embrace the power of CRM and use it to thrive in your work and personal life CRM -or Customer Relationship Management- is something that Eazl has found can be easily applied beyond sales and marketing departments and we’ve made sure that we mention this technique in our courses. It can literally be used to build any type of relationship through your job search or business-building efforts. CRM will help you stay on the radar of your clients, colleagues, and industry peers.
5. Adapt a problem solving attitude. Companies want to hire problem solvers and start ups and freelancers with problem solving missions are on the right track. In a world with such access to information, we need thought leaders and people of action to take that information and make it useful. Online courses play a crucial role in this kind of empowerment because you can literally learn almost anything you desire to learn and put it to use for yourself and others. Knowledge really is power.