Fail early, fail often. Great for brainstorming, adventure, excitement, following all leads. It’s lustful and risky. It’s about accepting all offers. Being extroverted and social. Driven by adrenaline and testosterone. Manic. Raw energy. Exploring the landscape, being open to all possibilities, playing with fire. The spark.” —
Someone please hire Buster to write the best self-help book ever. i would buy it.
As much as I would love to write a self-help book, I think building self-help products is more up my alley for now. :)
Fail early, fail often. Great for brainstorming, adventure, excitement, following all leads. It’s lustful and risky. It’s about accepting all offers. Being extroverted and social. Driven by adrenaline and testosterone. Manic. Raw energy. Exploring the landscape, being open to all possibilities, playing with fire. The spark.
Find product/market fit, the soulmate. Great for deep, creative work. Focus, passion, deep dives, working late hours. Excluding all other options in favor of one that you love. Court it, romance it, obsess over it. Driven by seratonin and dopamine. Intense, attentive energy. The overflowing spring.
Double down and go long. Grow grow grow. Find the economies of scale. Count pennies, get in the flow, find the sustainable, long-term plan. Commit, make bold bets. Driven by oxytocin and vasopressin. Grow old together. The unbreakable string.
The 3 engines in our brain
These 3 engines are deep, old, parts of our brains. Powered by hormones and neurotransmitters that have evolved over millions of years. They come with distinct bodily sensations and are designed to help us solve particular problems.
- Engine A: Test the waters, find a connection.
- Engine B: Fall in love, become a team.
- Engine C: Live together, build a family.
These same engines can be used to build a business, and map pretty easily to the stages of any startup as it grows from an idea, to an execution, to a big business.
The really interesting epiphany for me was that each of these engines are integrated with one another, and are impacted by our diet, our general health, our age, our sense of self, our brains, and our self-confidence.
If you wanted to, you could research to see which changes to diet, fitness, stress, and sleep can be improved to help the particular stage of life/relationships/business that you happen to be in right now. The information is out there, if you connect the dots.
This post inspired by the following TED talk by Helen Fisher, who is pretty awesome:
This is one of the most minimum viable (side) products I’ve thought of in a while. It’s a way to publicly track your unread inbox count (as well as your sent, received, starred, trashed counts).
If you authenticate your account, we’ll check your (Gmail-only) email to see how your email is doing every hour or so. Everyone will be able to see it.
No graphs or charts yet, but if you want to test it out, give it a try.
I’ve been playing with the idea on busterbenson.com for a while now and have found some interesting side effects. For example, some people have waited til my inbox is low to contact me. It’s also been interesting to watch how my level of stress/busy-ness/disorganization is tied to the count there.
Just something to play with. Let me know what you think.
- If you’ve changed the names of your default Gmail mailboxes (like the Trash folder, or the All Mail folder), you won’t be able to get this to work. Trying to think of a creative work-around for this. This may or may not also apply to using Gmail in other languages… I haven’t confirmed one way or another yet.
I was *this* close to signing up for Crossfit last week. And *this* close to buying the intro pack at the nearby yoga studio. But the sad fact of the matter is, I probably wouldn’t have stuck with either of those things. Plus, I’m too poor to really afford them on the long term.
I’m a bit too aware of my own Motivation + Ability + Trigger breaking points to really be able to make commitments that are too difficult to keep given my current work + home priorities. Exercise is only important to me in the sense that it makes my work + home priorities stronger… definitely not going to be usurping those anytime soon.
So, instead of signing up for $200 private trainer orientation classes, I bought this $80 pull-up/push-up/sit-up/etc thing and installed it in our new offices. And then, after reading Why Persuasive Design Should Be Your Next Skill Set, I decided to think about ways to increase the triggers to actually use this dang machine.
After some research into various productivity / time out apps, I installed this Pomodoro app on my work laptop and set the timer to 25 minutes. It definitely takes me less than 5 minutes on this machine to feel completely exhausted, so now I have a fun little way to both manage my mental and physical health.
Plus, pomodoros are pretty.
Plus, we’re working on a new mobile app that is going to be very much in the spirit of this motivation hacking, and having an infernal torture machine staring us down near the office door is going to help us make sure we build the right thing.
(h/t Diana Kimball)
Wow, a great articulation of an opinion I’ve tried to express many times. All summed up with “help people get better at something that they want to be better at”. Amber Rae, where did you get this quote from?
Who are the product storytellers? Part matchmaker, marketer, technologist, and artist, the product storytellers ask questions, find answers, and figure out how to distill a vision or idea into a product story. They develop a plot, identify the people, and shape the product around the specific values it should offer consumers. Product storytellers think about the whole, and they see the big picture. But they also can go deep because they understand that the product’s true value lies in the details of its interactions and every touchpoint that a consumer has with it.” —via tricia, Why We Need Storytellers at the Heart of Product Development | UX Magazine (via slavin)
A dangerous belief is one that you hold which is unpopular with those who you love, admire, and respect. It’s dangerous to you because it will make you feel alone. It’s dangerous to them because they no longer fully understand you.
However, they’re also really rare. We are strongly influenced by consensus. If everyone we love believes one thing, it’s very difficult for us to belief anything other. Why is that? And is it a problem?
This has been my question to myself for years. So when asked to come up with a writing prompt for #trust30, a 30-day writing challenge to supplement the latest Domino Project book (a republishing of Ralph Waldo Emerson’s “Self-Reliance”) I could think of no better prompt:
One Strong Belief by Buster Benson
It is easy in the world to live after the world’s opinion; it is easy in solitude to live after our own; but the great man is he who in the midst of the crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude. - Ralph Waldo Emerson, Self-Reliance
The world is powered by passionate people, powerful ideas, and fearless action. What’s one strong belief you possess that isn’t shared by your closest friends or family? What inspires this belief, and what have you done to actively live it?
How would you answer that?
I also really love Gwen Bell’s prompt: “15 minutes to live”. It gave me shivers.