#343: Seth Godin on How to Say “No,” Market Like a Professional, and Win at Life

  • Overwhelm is about shame.
  • Drinking from a firehouse is a really bad way to get hydration
  • I erect my own boundaries
  • You must construct your time in order to do important work

The worlds worst boss – is you

A choice about your time and effort made due to insufficiency is a bad choice

focussing on the hard work (and creating the asset that may not be valuable yet) will become far more rewarding and useful than consistently putting in the long work of the extra hour

Be a professional, consistent – know what your hand washing is

Thinking clearly and strategically allows you to focus on which clients to hire and which to fire when undertaking the hard work

You don’t want the drill, you want the hole. But you don’t actually want the hole, you want a place to put the expansion bit. But you don’t actually want that, you want to put up a shelf. But you don’t actually want that, you want the feeling you’ll get from when your partner is grateful to you for cleaning things up

How might we make things better, by making better things

First you might define your smallest viable audience and test like crazy to ensure they love what you are doing

What keeps us from starting is the idea that we are not as good as we think we are – that when we have defined our smallest audience, if we are rejected by them – it hurts. Living with that fear is the hard work of a professional

Empathy is hard because people are difficult – they don’t want what you want, they don’t think what you think, they don’t believe what you believe – and you want to serve them

stop asking what do you need and start being specific about what you do

Apply constraints to arrive at a minimum viable audience

If you’re drowning – you’re a lousy lifeguard (you’ve got to have self acceptance first)

Interview with Tim Ferriss

I think that you have to find models that share things in common with you rather than trying to become someone you are not. I would say that’s a very important point. Also looking for a model, someone to emulate who has or had the personal life that you would also like to have. It’s a mistake to just emulate someone who has let’s say a hard charging bowl in the China shop approach if their personal life is in shambles and I think it’s important to look at all of that in context.

Oh waste of time; the biggest waste of time in business is just doing a thousand unimportant things well and email.

There’s a difference between how people build wealth and how they maintain wealth.

The short answer is there’s an article by Noah Kagen on my blog about muse testing, so business testing, very inexpensive ways for testing different business concepts and offers. I would focus on that. I would focus on the 80/20 analysis. Also doing an assessment of your strengths and weaknesses, current assets, current lists, current network, the resources that they have and picking markets you understand first and then choosing products that you can test using Noah’s approach.

Let’s just say you are able to test based on that analysis for the first week or two. Then it would be a function of finding what advertising probably in this case paid advertising has the lowest CPA or largest lifetime value. It’s just hard to determine in eight weeks and then pouring more capital into that. You can do that from cash flow. Secondarily you could focus, I’ve never really focused on this model but you can then focus on once you have the messaging that converts most effectively, you could focus on affiliate sales and there are ways that you could make that very profitable depending on how you format it.

I would say if I had 4 to 8 weeks, given what you are currently doing, since it is very personal, that’s the approach I would probably take but a lot of it would come down to ruthless 80/20 analysis, which is really the heart of The 4-Hour Workweek, The 4-Hour Body and The 4-Hour Chef.