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Author: Matthew

5 Ways To Make Better Business Decisions

Business, by nature, is cutthroat. All of us that have gotten into business are trying to get ahead of the curve, especially as technology has evolved. This has caused people to make snap decisions, with fear of missing out (FOMO) becoming a trend in the business world. Just because the market is moving fast doesn’t mean that you have to make a decision within nanoseconds, though. It’s important to take your time when making any business decision, and here are some ways to do just that.

Remember the Past

Philosopher George Santayana famously said that “Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” This is a good mindset for anything, but especially in business. When trying to make a decision, see how a similar decision made either by yourself or someone else has worked in the past. If it failed miserably, you might want to steer in the opposite direction. Though times may change, results can often be the same.

Word of Mouth

Any good decision making process should include a lot of research. There will be facts and figures at your disposal, but it’s also important to talk to the right people. Don’t be afraid to ask for advice from anyone and everyone that you can think of before finalizing your decision making process. This is especially true if you can speak with someone that has experience in a similar decision. If you are a manager, ask your employees how they would feel about changes that your decision could make.

Think Long Term

In the evolving world that we live in, many decision makers in business are thinking short term. Whether this be to appease shareholders or mortgage the future for their own current wellbeing, it seems that the long term goals are getting thrown out of the window. If you want to set yourself and your fellow employees up for success. When you have a plan in place that focuses on five years down the road, you’re much more likely to retain employees and be more consistent in your success. It’s not necessary to follow every trend, and the most successful businessmen think years ahead instead of weeks.

Execution and Education

Once you’ve come up with a business plan, looked at data, asked around and did the research, it’s time to put your plan into place. Make sure that everyone you’re working with is on the same page with the decision that was made beforehand. You don’t want to get yourself into a situation where you made a decision without first educating employees on the changes that are being made, or else you’re setting yourself up for a big setback right from the start. Educating before a decision will also build trust that is vital to retaining good employees.

Progress Tracking

Now that your decision has been made and is off and running, you don’t just want to ignore it and hope for the best. Every month or so, it’s important to keep an eye on how the decision has impacted your business. If things aren’t working, it’s okay to make adjustments to make your decision more efficient. It’s not an admittal of failure, but rather some fine tuning that will be beneficial. After all, you don’t just buy a car and expect to run forever without new tires or oil changes at some point, right?

Collector Psychology: Why We Love To Collect Things

If you’re reading this right now, there’s a good chance that you have some sort of collection. Whether it be coins, baseball cards, stamps or anything in between, it’s estimated that 40 percent of Americans have a collection of a particular item. Why do we do this, though? Since no two people are the same, there are varying reasons why people become collectors so frequently, and here are a few of those reasons.

Investments

In the United States, we seem to always be ready to make a quick buck, but there are plenty of people that want to play the long game. Because of this, collecting has been seen as a form of investment, especially when it comes to trading cards and coins. For every T206 Honus Wagner trading card, there are thousands of Beanie Babies collecting dust. 

32 percent of collectors said that they have gone into collecting in hopes of making money, with 83 percent of those people thinking that they will strike it rich as a result. Among those that are the most hopeful are the coin collectors. Surprisingly, it’s the younger people from Generation Z that are the most avid collectors these days, hoping that rare coins and even Pokemon cards will appreciate in value when they get older.

Nostalgia

Outside of investors, there are people that love to collect without any intention of selling what they’ve amassed. That’s because of the nostalgia factor, where seeing a collection can take someone back to their “happy place” and remind them of better times. These items tend to be more personal, such as autographs addressed directly to the collector.

While it may represent what’s perceived to be a good time in someone’s life, collecting for nostalgic reasons can also be a warning sign. Studies have shown that people experience nostalgia more in times of depression than happiness, using it as an escape. Collecting out of nostalgia can be a hint that someone is attempting to have a tangible escape from their current state of mental health.

Other Factors

Not everyone with a collection is trying to make money or get a break from reality. There are other factors that come into play. This includes spirituality, with people collecting items that are tied to their religion or other beliefs. Others can simply be very passionate about a particular subject (think of an array of sports memorabilia in a ‘man cave’). There are some cases when collecting can get to be too much, however.

The Line Between Collecting and Hoarding

In recent years, people have become more aware of hoarding due to mainstream exposure, particularly in reality television. Hoarding is classified as a mental disorder in which people compulsively hold onto items for various reasons, but has been linked to substance abuse, depression, anxiety and other mental illnesses.

The reason that collecting and hoarding are different is due to the fact that hoarding doesn’t narrow in on one particular item. There is hardly ever monetary value, separating it from the investment side of things. There’s also little organization, leading to a home filled with clutter. Hoarding is also more rare than collecting, affecting only about 3.5 percent of people compared to the 40 percent of the public that collects.

Already-Existing Tech That Will Change How We Live In 20 Years

Before the past 100 years or so, technology seemed to evolve at a snail’s pace. In the past few decades, however, technology changes faster than many people are able to keep up with. Because of this, some of the technology that you’ll see 20 years from now haven’t even been thought of today, but there are also emerging technologies that you’ll be seeing two decades from now that will play a major part of your everyday life. Here are a few of those technologies to keep an eye on for the future:

3-D Printing

3-D printing is nothing new, but it’s something that in the past few years has expanded to the point of being able to do amazing things. Many years ago, 3-D printing was used mostly for symbols, but has since evolved into a fascinating process that has changed many industries. In the future, it’s likely that we’ll see 3-D printing play a massive role in healthcare; especially when it comes to printing bones and organs that can help save lives. The automotive industry is another one to keep an eye on in the 3-D printing world.

Flying/Self-Driving Cars

Previous generations have predicted that we would have flying cars by 2022, though it hasn’t caught on just yet. That doesn’t mean that it will never happen, though, and many companies are still working on being the first to get a consumer car into the skies. Of course, these cars will have to clear regulations with the FAA, but it could be sooner than you think.

Until then, the self-driving car is the next big leap in the auto industry. Companies such as Tesla have dabbled in self-driving automobiles for years now, while businesses with large logistics operations (such as Walmart) are using self-driving trucks to get goods from point A to point B. Will we see self-flying cars one day? Only time will tell.

Nanorobotics

When you think about nanotechnology in 2022, you probably think about how a lot of things are explained in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Nanotechnology is very much real, though, and will be playing a big factor in our lives 20 years from now. Researchers have been racing each other to develop nanobots that are so small that the eye can’t even see them with various uses. Among the uses that people are most hopeful for is the treatment of cancer. You can expect nanotechnology to be used in computing and automobiles at some point, as well.

Artificial Intelligence

Of course, you can’t mention the future without talking about artificial intelligence. Though it’s been a part of our lives for years now, AI is really ramping up in recent years. From being able to analyze your health by simply looking in a mirror, to knowing when you need to order certain items on websites like Amazon, artificial intelligence is already here and its use will only expand more in the coming years. By 2042, expect artificial intelligence to be so developed that you’ll have an affordable robot butler that reminds you that you need to re-up on pool noodles when the temperature starts to rise during the spring.

How To Use Visualization To Improve Your Wellbeing And Live More Effectively

There are people that are fine with receiving information via spoken word and can remember what they were told, but that way of processing information is becoming more and more rare. These days, people want information given to them in a way that they can map it out and allow their brain to process it in a more creative fashion, while also using the mind to get the body to do what they want.

This is known as visualization and it’s becoming increasingly common in just about every facet of our lives. Not only are major companies promoting the use of visualization to their employees at every level, but people are using it in their personal lives to become more efficient in their way of processing information. So what is it about visualization that makes it work for our everyday lives?

In short, visualization impacts your brain directly. By visualizing yourself doing something, your brain reacts directly by sending signals to different parts of the body. Whether you visualize yourself running faster or writing that big essay or company-wide email, it’s better to think about yourself doing it beforehand to allow your brain to get going.

Visualization isn’t just good for your physical well being, but also mentally. When you’re feeling stressed out, science has shown that visualizing yourself somewhere more comforting can help to reduce this stress and anxiety. Think about your favorite smell, the best beach you’ve ever been to, or simply resting at home with the ones you love. These images in your mind will get you more relaxed and focused even in the most hectic work situations.

There’s also a major impact on the business world when it comes to visualization, which shouldn’t come as a surprise. One of the old tropes for businesses in movies and television shows are businessmen using pie charts and bar graphs to show productivity in the workplace. As technology has become more advanced, though, we’re seeing companies use more interactive forms of visualization to help break things down and allow the brain to retain more information. It’s also helpful in terms of micromanagement as businesses try to get the most out of every penny spent.

One trend that has caught on a lot in recent years is a vision board. This is when someone creates a poster-like art that shows their goals for a given timeframe. Whether it be someone in a graduation cap and gown, a vacation destination or someone getting promoted, this helps your mind retain these images and collect the drive needed to make these goals happen. 

This is known as using your Reticular Activating System. This is a system of neurons located in the brain stem that blocks out some of the unnecessary information that your brain doesn’t need. In turn, you’ll become more focused on the important things such as data that you need to remember or the goals that you want to achieve. The more specific you get with your thoughts, the more likely your brain will be focused on finishing what needs to get done. So whether you want to improve your golf game, breathe easier in stressful situations or make more money at work, your brain can help you through the power of visualization.