“The currency of real networking is not greed, but generosity.” – Keith Ferrazzi

Lesson of the Week

One of my favorite non-fiction books in the last year or so has been Never Eat Alone, by Keith Ferrazzi. It’s primarily a treasure trove of tips and tricks on business networking, but it also has what I think is one of the best life tips a networking book could give – don’t keep score. This seems kinda counterintuitive to most business-minded people, because much of what you learn in business is to keep track of things in a competitive way. Honestly a lot of life trains us to do that as well, but as Ferrazzi points out, giving whenever you’re able to can make an enormous difference. We all have an endless amount of resources, be it our time, our things, or just a little attention, and by giving what we can of ourselves to others without keeping score, we foster genuine connections and friendships, that don’t feel bound by forced reciprocation. And though time and resources can sometimes be scarce, one resource most people tend to forget about is other people! Most of us have a huge array of friends, coworkers, acquaintances, and family that we interact with every day, and connecting people with shared interests or needs can make an impact on two people, without taking much time or effort from you. In a way its selfish selflessness, but think of any time you’ve been welcomed into a group of friends, or connected with a mentor in life or work – it feels good to be connected to people, and by connecting others, you can give just a little of yourself to make a huge impact on those around you.

Positive News of the Week

  • Beijing’s new ultra-cheap shared bike system may help to revitalize bicycle commuting, and in turn reduce the city’s pollution problem.
  • Richard Posner, one of Chicago’s finest judges and longtime cat lover, found a way to blend an elaborate cat metaphor into a recent hearing on eye drop companies.
  • TransCanWork, a California-based nonprofit, is working to connect transgendered workers with employers who are happy to have them, and provide them with full benefits and understanding.
  • A Hong Kong police officer was a hero this week when he persuaded a suicidal man to come down from a crane by speaking to him in his native language, Urdu.
  • Increased use in energy-efficient appliances in Britain has helped to offset the consumer cost of clean energy policies, making it easier to encourage renewable energy methods.
  • In Japan, organized crime membership fell below 40,000 for the first time since the government started tracking it in 1958.

Challenges of the Week

  • Internal Challenge ∅ This week, try to treat yourself to something sweet without feeling a bit of guilt about it. Make swimsuit season cookie season! (just for one night)
  • External Challenge ∅ This week, try to find a friend and watch eachother’s favorite films that you’ve never seen, and see the world through the things they love.