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In This Edition:
1. Slimed by Too Much Information
2. Pause Before You Dip
3. Affirmation for Handling Success
4. Free Speech
The start of another year! The weather has been going from warm to cold, with no warning, but hey, isn’t variety the spice of life?
I used to get phone calls after hours, usually around dinnertime, from nice people on the phone with a canned pitch who say, “Mr. Davidson, how are you this evening?”
“Fine, and I am really not interested…” is my standard response. I know that these callers are trying to make a living, and I try to be nice, but how many of these calls can you field in a week, in a month, in a year …especially when they all use the same basic script?
One night I get this call from a fellow, and just to be charitable I decide that I am going to listen for a few minutes. He’s from a brokerage house, he has all these investment plans he wants me to consider, and I finally blurt out, “Wait a second. Please don’t tell me about your 35 investment plans. Boil it down for me. I am the author of the book, Breathing Space, I never volunteer to be slimed” (to use the GhostBusters term). “Tell me about the three investments that you think might be right for me.”
After some hemming and hawing he finally agrees that he’ll send me information on the 3 not on the 35 he had planned to send. Then he goes on to tell me about his annual report, that his company just came out with and the quarterly report and he could send those along and I say, “No, no please. I don’t need to read those reports. If I want them I can always call you back, I can look on the Internet, I can write to your company, I can circle the reader information card in Forbes or Fortune. There are many, many ways that I can get a hold of your annual your annual report if I want to. Please, don’t send your annual report or your quarterly report.” And after a while he finally relents and he agrees not to send his annual report or his quarterly report.
Then he goes on, and I’m not kidding here, to mention his 10K, the comprehensive report that public companies have to file with the SEC, and we go through the same routine. And then, incredibly, he talks about these other lavish pieces of literature, all of which I don’t need. So I am spending six, eight minutes on this phone call simply convincing him that if he wants to do business with me the best way to reach me is to give me a slim little packet of maybe the 3 things that might work based on my situation or as far as he knows about my situation.
He agrees, and I’m wondering what he might actually recommend. Now I put down the phone and, like you, go about my business and I totally forget about it, right? About three days pass. I get a package in the mail from his brokerage house. It’s thick. No, that’s not accurate, it’s very thick, more than an inch. What’s in the package, I ask you?
I have no idea. Recognizing the name of his brokerage house I know that the package is way too large based on our discussion. I take that package, and with my powerful wrists I go to tear in half with one mighty rip and get a little exercise, but it was a Tyvek envelope – you know, the kind you can’t tear – so I tossed the whole thing into the circular file. I won’t deal with that broker, probably not that brokerage house either. They overwhelmed me, and I specifically asked them not to. I never responded, never spoke to the guy, never had contact again. But you know what? If he had sent me that thin package, I might have made his day.
Pause Before You Dip
Martin Moore-Ede, M.D., Ph.D. in The 24 Hour Society observes that the lowest alertness in a day for most people is between 2 a.m. and 5 a.m. Highest alertness is between 9 a.m. and noon, and 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.
A person’s alertness will vary due to hours of consecutive duty, hours of duty in the proceeding week, irregular hours, monotony on the job, timing and duration of naps, environmental lighting, sound, aroma, temperature, cumulative sleep deprivation over the past week, and much more.
Have you taken the time to map your own times of highest and lowest alertness during your typical work day?
Affirmation for Handling Success
The former Dodger manager, Tommy Lasorda, who later became a highly paid motivational speaker, reported that he was once asked the following:
“Do you believe in the United States of America? Do you believe in the U.S. Constitution? Do you believe in the Bill of Rights? Do you believe in free speech? Well, you’re giving one…”