Mental shifts

When I was a teenager, and computers where just starting to become common things in Italian households, I remember a family friend used to be convinced that they could transmit viruses that where dangerous to people.

What happened is that he probably heard about computer viruses, and he just stuck to his own definition: viruses are a danger for human beings.

This challenge in making new ideas fit into old mental concept and ideas is very common. And if you fall into that, you are not an idiot or uneducated. You simply still have not had the mental shift.

And for that, you are pretty much always in time.

For the best or for the worst

You can set rules for the best case scenario or you can set rules for the worst case scenario.

When you use the best case scenario as a basis, you trust that things will progress well, that people are trustworthy, that nothing terrible or horrible will happen, that “bad” is a situation that can still be managed without much pain.

When you use the worst case scenario as a basis, you look at what will go wrong, at those who will betray you or not keep their part of the deal, at principles that need to be protected, at a “good” situation that is very difficult to digest.

Good and bad start

Start the day with something that motivates you, something you can be proud of, something that is valuable.

A bad way to start the day is by checking emails and instant messages, and getting caught in answering each one of them (as well as the new ones as they come in).

A good way to start the day is by shutting down email and instant messages app, and writing that blog post that’s been on your backlog for weeks.

A bad way to start the day is with a meeting.

A good way to start the day is by dedicating your full attention to that deliverable that is waiting for your feedback.

A bad way to start the day is by checking social media accounts and a few potentially interesting websites.

A good way to start the day is by going offline and drafting the full content calendar for next quarter.

Socially responsible

Many companies claim that they will be changing the World – or the way the World does this and that. Few even actually understand what changing the World means.

In Finland, a local grocery chain has declared themselves “bully-free zone” (article linked in Finnish). And it’s a fantastic win.

Not because it’s their business. Not because they make money from it. Not because they are getting free publicity.

But because it makes sense.

  • Bullying is a problem, in Finland like anywhere else.
  • Bullying happens mainly at school or around schools.
  • In Finland in particular, kids go to school and back home on their own, from as early as 7. That makes the journey home-school-home a problem for a bullied kid.
  • This grocery chain has a lot of local stores, often not far from schools.
  • Stores employ familiar adults (you shop there every day), they are open long hours, they are well lighted (Finland gets long dark days in winter), and there’s typically other people around.
  • So, they promote that every employee at their grocery chain is a safe adult for kids to turn to when bullied.

It must be one of the best executed corporate social responsibility campaigns ever.