Category

CREATIVITY

Category

Children don’t plan.

And they have loads of fun.

Being creative.

And spontaneous.

Reacting to what happens next.

As a consequence of what they just did.

And making it up as they giggle and toddle and wobble along.

Planning.

It’s not that we shouldn’t plan.

We should.

But it’s worth remembering that a plan is simply your ideas about the best way of doing something.

Based on your ideas of what a best outcome looks like.

At one moment in time.

And it is definitely worth remembering that both of those things.

(The best way of doing something.

And the best outcome).

Are fluid.

They will change.

And therefore, so too should your plan.

Measuring and Managing.

Measuring and managing the fluidity and the change is important, of course.

And that in itself is a good enough reason for planning in the first place.

So that when you deviate.

When you change.

You know what you’ve deviated and changed from.

So you can adjust your plan accordingly.

And react.

Just like the children do when they are giggling and toddling and wobbling along.

Here and Now.

A final point is that with less planning.

Arguably.

You’re more present.

You are more in the here and now.

Because you’re not looking behind you at something you wrote.

About something in front of you that you haven’t done yet.

And that sounds good to me.

So maybe the children do have it right?

Children don’t plan.

And they have loads of fun.

Being creative.

And spontaneous.

Reacting to what happens next.

As a consequence of what they just did.

And making it up as they giggle and toddle and wobble along.

If you’re not going all in.

You are definitely, definitely doing it all fucking wrong.

I have absolutely no doubt.

And I hope you realise it too.

Before it’s too late.

Life Is Short.

Life.

Is.

Short.

That’s the first reason that you are doing it wrong if you are not going all in.

But the second reason you are doing it all wrong if you are not going all in.

Is because the things you are worried about.

Ridicule.

Failure.

Being said ‘no’ to.

That’s kinda where you are now.

Because you’re not going all in.

And it’s about time you realised.

Henry Thomas.

You know Henry Thomas.

You probably don’t think know you know Henry Thomas.

But you do.

And when you see him in this stunningly brave 3 minute performance.

Going all in.

As a 10 year old child.

You will see why I am right about you going all in.

Because if Henry Thomas didn’t go all in on this day.

His life would not be what it turned out to be.

And – strangely – neither would yours.

All In.

If you’re not going all in.

You are definitely, definitely doing it all fucking wrong.

I have absolutely no doubt.

And I hope you realise it too.

Before it’s too late.

Here: https://www.50odd.co.uk/all-in/.

 

Some people never grow up.

They never take anything completely seriously.

They focus for a bit.

Then their minds wander.

To the next thing.

The next big idea.

The next adventure.

Everything.

For these people that never grow up.

Everything’s a game.

Everything’s an experiment.

Everything’s both a stop-off point for today’s deep dive.

And a bridge to the next thing at the same time.

Because these people that never grow up.

They soak themselves in the learning, experience and potency of what is happening right at this moment.

Wringing every last drop out of it.

Yet they have one eye on the next hit, too.

Every experience seems to feed them.

Absorb them.

Obsess them.

Names. 

There are names for these kinds of people.

These people that never grow up.

And I’ve heard a few.

Childlike.

Dreamers.

Dabblers.

Ideallists.

Romantics.

Star-gazers.

And escapists.

I call them something else though.

These people that eat a Toblerone from the middle.

(See here: https://www.50odd.co.uk/the-lucky-ones/)

These people that never grow up.

I call them,

The Lucky Ones.

I’ve never said these two things together I don’t think.

Road rage.

And Linkedin.

But here they are.

Road rage first.

Road Rage.

I’ve been road-ragey in the past.

Until someone opened my eyes to something.

They said that if I walked down the street with the same mentality as I (very occasionally) adopt in a road-ragey moment.

Staring at people.

Getting in their space.

Growling about what I perceived to be their shortcomings.

Spitting out words like venom.

I’d get bashed.

And quite right too.

The etiquette and behaviour that is acceptable as we walk around.

Is pretty much the etiquette and behaviour that we should display when driving.

And that brings me to LinkedIn.

LinkedIn.

Try this.

Next time you’re at a business gathering.

Just walking up to someone.

And say this:

Hey.

Do you want one?

Then add:

I don’t know anything about you.

And you don’t know anything about me.

Do you want one?

Alternatively.

Think about road rage.

Think about the fact that the etiquette and behaviour that is acceptable as we walk around.

Is pretty much the etiquette and behaviour that we should display when driving.

Then think about the fact that the etiquette and behaviour that is acceptable when we are at business gatherings.

Is pretty much the etiquette and behaviour that we should display when on Linkedin.

And stop being a twat.

I suppose I just wanted to write the headline.

Whale Catches Train.

It’s not unique.

Other people wrote it too, I think.

But I wrote it anyway.

Whale Catches Train.

A Dutch Metro train crashed through the barrier at the end of elevated tracks in Spijkenisse this week.

Near Rotterdam.

It was caught by a whale tail sculpture.

And saved from tumbling downward.

Here.

Take a look: https://www.50odd.co.uk/whale-catches-train/.

Push further.

If you can.

(And you’ll definitely know if you can).

Interview. 

I interviewed a nice guy this week.

A recent graduate.

Mid-range results so no superstar.

But he was polite.

Smart.

And articulate.

Experience.

He had no experience.

In fact he’d not done exactly what I wanted him to do before, ever.

But that’s OK.

Because he said he’d do his best and see how we got on.

He had (some) transferable skills.

And he was keen.

Two Weeks. 

He offered to work two weeks or  more for free.

Which was nice of him.

I said no to that.

But since the work I wanted him to do was totally fresh to him.

I did say that him dedicating up to one week of his time at no fee was the the best for him and me.

Radar.

As it happens.

A day or two later.

Another chap popped onto my radar that did have experience.

This new guy fell short in one or two other areas, as it goes.

So they were pretty much neck-and-neck.

Gut Feeling.

In the end.

I chose the second guy.

I thought it was gut feeling.

But actually – it wasn’t.

It was this.

Blogs and Podcasts.

When I met the first guy.

(The one I ended up saying ‘no’ to).

I asked him if he’d read the blogs on the Always Wear Red website.

Of course, he could have said:

Yes.

All 18.

I particularly liked the one about the labels.

They’re lovely.

But instead he said.

Yes.

I read a few.

And I also has asked him about our 20 minute long podcasts.

If he’d listened to them.

Again, he could have said:

Yes.

All 6.

Interesting!

Rojin interviews you well.

But instead he said:

Yes.

I listened to two I think.

Anything and Everything.

If I want something.

Really want something, I mean.

I do anything and everything I can to get it.

The interesting thing here is that.

At the time I interviewed the first guy.

(The one I ended up saying ‘no’ to).

The fact that he had only looked at ‘a few’ of my blogs and had listened to ‘I think two’ of my podcasts was not a big deal really.

But it became a big deal.

It became a big deal firstly because a stronger competitor entered the arena.

And it became a big deal because secondly – well – because he’d not shown me that he’d done anything and everything he could to get something that he (apparently) really wanted.

And that stuck with me.

Push Further. 

If you really want something.

Push further.

If you can.

(And you’ll definitely know if you can).

The conversations in my head.

Conversations beyond my control.

Between me and my brand monster.

Arriving without me inviting them.

Here’s an example of what they sound like.

IKEA.

OK.

So IKEA say,

The Beautiful Everyday.

And I can her that bloke’s voice.

Saying it.

So what exactly IS that he’s saying?

It must be a brand thing.

Because that bloke keeps saying it.

Over and over.

Repeating it.

For years.

And because IKEA understand brand.

They understand that brand is consistent.

And simple.

And repetitive.

And ownable.

That’s why they keep using that same bloke’s voice.

Because the fact that no one else is saying this quite like this.

And the fact that IKEA keep on saying it.

Over and over.

Means they own it.

And even when they start saying:

Tomorrow Starts Tonight.

Which is also excellent.

They don’t bloody say it INSTEAD of:

The Wonderful Everyday.

Because they know damn well that:

The Wonderful Everyday

Is a BRAND SLOGAN.

Created to build a permanent perception about improving your life.

And they know that:

Tomorrow Starts Tonight.

Is a CAMPAIGN SLOGAN.

Created to sell things in the here and now to help you sleep better.

Focusing you on you having a great nights sleep.

By buying IKEA mattresses.

And beds.

And pillows.

And duvets.

And they also know that:

Tomorrow Starts Tonight.

The CAMPAIGN SLOGAN.

Feeds into:

The Wonderful Everyday.

The BRAND SLOGAN.

(Bloody hell these two three word sentences even sounds the same when I read them.

In my head).

Because the words dance similarly.

And the IKEA brand gets stronger. 

Because they really do understand how to build a brand.

And layer campaigns on top. 

So that.

Together.

Everything becomes stronger.

And more familiar.

And they sell more stuff.

Whatever stuff they want to target with today’s campaign.

Without damaging yesterdays and tomorrow’s brand. 

Yes. 

I see. 

That’s how IKEA are making it all work for them.

Voices.

And so it goes on.

The conversations in my head.

Conversations beyond my control.

Between me and my brand monster.

Arriving without me inviting them.

Change is disconcerting.

Because it’s scary leaving familiar.

To set sail for unfamiliar.

Another reason.

But there’s another reason that change is scary, too.

And if you acknowledge this reason.

Change itself becomes a whole lot more palatable.

Lost. 

When you think about change.

And moving from ‘here’ to there’.

You demonise ‘here’.

And you romanticise ‘there’.

Because that kind of thinking gives you the impetus to make the first move.

It’s an understandable tactic.

But it can also have an unfortunate side effect.

It can take the focus away completely from the space in between ‘here’ and ‘there’.

And you can end up feeling completely lost.

Here and There.

The space between ‘here’ and ‘there’ is valuable.

It’s where you learn.

So by definition it’s where imperfection lives.

And mistakes.

And disappointment.

And demotivation.

And worse!

And it is important to acknowledge and expect these things.

Because you have to go through bad to get to good.

Then through good to get to great.

Insecure.

If you start to feel insecure as you travel between the ‘here’ and ‘there’.

It’s because you’re meant to feel insecure as you travel between the ‘here’ and ‘there’.

You are literally ‘without security’.

So enjoy the journey.

Because if you are ambitious by nature.

And restless by nature.

(And if you have read this far you probably are).

You’ll set sail again.

Because you’ll very soon be seduced.

By another, different ‘there’.

As it once again dawns on you.

That last year’s ‘there’

Just became this year’s ‘here’.

Most of the time.

I’m just making things up.

Thinking.

Imagining.

Letting my mind wander about with strange, conflicting notions.

Spitting out words and ideas.

Life and Business.

I like living life that way.

And most times.

I like doing business that way, too.

Graffiti Embroidery.

I did business that way last week.

Thursday it was.

When my mind started rattling on about ‘Graffiti Embroidery’.

With Erica Akerlund.

Erica Akerlund.

Erica is a bloody brilliant artist and illustrator.

Finnish.

And Erica embroiders her illustration too.

Labels. 

Erica illustrates the current Always Wear Red labels.

With weird little characters doing weird little things in a world of ‘OFFNESS’.

And as well as that.

Erica is going to embroider 12 or 24 jumpers and scarves in 2021.

In an Erica Akerlund x Always Wear Red Collaboration.

And that’s where the phrase ‘Graffiti Embroidery’ comes in.

We just made it up.

Jumpers.

Erica will take jumpers that already cost over £1000.

And embroider them in whatever way she likes.

Pushing the price point towards or over £2000.

The embroidery will be weird.

And unpredictable.

Unpredictable because I don’t know what Erica is going to embroider.

Because neither does she.

And that’s the way it should be with artist collaborations I think.

It’ll be ‘Graffiti Embroidery’.

Because if the brief is boring.

The garment is too.

Limited Edition.

Most of the time.

I’m just making things up.

Thinking.

Imagining.

Letting my mind wander about with strange, conflicting notions.

Spitting out words and ideas.

And it is because of this approach to doing business that a Limited Edition Erica Akerlund and Always Wear Red Collaboration is going to happen.

‘Graffiti Embroidery’ we’re going to call it.

Coming in 2021.

Peter hadn’t modelled before.

He’s just a cool guy that I used to see from time to time.

From my home office window.

Sauntering around the marina next to my house.

Taking his dog Marley for a walk.

Model.

I asked Peter to model for Always Wear Red.

Peter said he didn’t like having his photo taken.

And that he’d think about it.

Then.

He said yes.

61.

Two years later.

Peter’s now Always Wear Red’s most photographed model of all.

And his age when he first ventured into modelling?

61.

Here he is: https://www.50odd.co.uk/61-2/.