chrisweatherburn

www.chrisweatherburn.com

Newsletter – No 1 September 2020

Greetings!

Welcome to my first email update which aims to keep you thinking positively, share some recent learning and help you get the most out of your life!

So first an update – why a website?

Several years ago I got into the habit of sharing my book reviews on a Facebook group, then got thrown out of the group for providing a non-controversial review of a Donald Trump book.  So I decided why not make my own Facebook group.  Did this around 4 years ago, now has over 600 members from 60 countries all across the world.  If you like looking at data Facebook do provide you with the opportunity to download various metrics from this, this is a good thing.  However, Facebook could just remove the group and all posts and connections would be lost.  Therefore set up www.chrisweatherburn.com, opted for this name and to be fair inspired to make the website after listening to this blog interviewing Dr Ali Abdaal. 

My website also aims to broaden my impact on the world by sharing the content I produce more widely.  Instead of solely a Facebook group am going to try to upload posts to my website, share these on Twitter and also start to do YouTube videos.  Over the years have gained an understanding of these platforms but am certainly no influencer.  In terms of YouTube it is really a learning process but have already established need to keep these shorter.  Would encourage you all to try here I think fail fast is the way forward.  Will need to work this one up more. 

Recently have read Jim Collins – Great By Choice

Well this book is not that great but does highlight that you can’t control many factors but keep ‘marching’ in a direction that you can control.  Fire ‘bullets’ often, these are small minimal effort, minimal risk changes. Until you are ready to fire your ‘cannon’ the large effort in the correct direction.  These lessons are clearly applicable to not just business and day to day life.

Planning on exploring Instagram – so set up an account, feel free to check my Instagram out and let me know what you think. Soon realised didn’t really understand the point of Instagram.  After being constantly bombarded by spam bots thought would give a book about making money on Instagram this a quick read, check out my review.  I summarise the mains points and have at least put up the suggested ‘cool’ photos with relevant hashtags.  Think will put Instagram on hold for the moment. 

The main concept would like to highlight in this newsletter is a method of remembering items in a certain order using a mind map.

If you ever wanted to play the conveyor belt memory challenge on the television programme thee Generation Game it would be useful for playing. Wouldn’t recommend watching a full re-run of any episode of the Generation Game but someone on Youtube has made a cartoon version of the game you could check out.  

The trick is to create a mind map of a familiar route such as entering your house, remember this in detail and number objects.  When you then try to remember a new list think of the list that you have learnt based on the route and make in your mind both these objects vividly interact.

So for example, in my house have done this; objects as follows:

  1. Clock
  2. Dishwasher
  3. Kettle
  4. Microwave
  5. Oven
  6. Lava Lamp
  7. Google Home
  8. Keyboard
  9. Computer
  10. TV
  11. Fire
  12. Table Football
  13. Bookshelf
  14. Sofa
  15. Router
  16. Radiator
  17. Mirror
  18. Toilet
  19. Sink
  20. Shower

Have even added stickers to make me remember these clearly and also to teach the concept to my children. 

Then when I encounter a list of things it is easier to remember then and recall the position in that order.  So for example this diagram below:

I would look at these and vividly think:

  1. Clock and Bike
  2. Dishwasher and Apple
  3. Kettle and Dog
  4. Microwave and Cola
  5. Oven and Plane
  6. Lava Lamp and Coffee
  7. Google home and handshake
  8. Keyboard and Ball
  9. Computer and Tooth
  10. TV and number nine
  11. Fire and Bird
  12. Table Football and Tree
  13. Bookshelf and House
  14. Sofa and Piano
  15. Router and Axe
  16. Radiator and letter K
  17. Mirror and Car
  18. Toilet and Cake
  19. Sink and Umbrella
  20. Shower and Party Hat

You can reuse this mental list as long as you remember your first list very well!  Ideally you have a few lists in your head to ‘peg’ things onto in case you need to remember similar items. 

  1. Clock and Bus
  2. Dishwasher and Cook
  3. Kettle and Teacher
  4. Microwave and exam result
  5. Oven and Letters
  6. Lavalamp and Calendar
  7. Google home and girl by door
  8. Keyboard and Slide
  9. Computer and Basketball
  10. TV and chemistry
  11. Fire and Swing
  12. Table football and helmet
  13. Bookshelf and food tray
  14. Sofa and Pencil
  15. Router and Numbers
  16. Radiator and Guitar

It is not perfect but with a bit of practice could help remember things.  The difficulty is who needs to remember a list of things now anyway as everyone has their phone!

Hope this has been useful.  Plan to write occasional newsletters. 

It would really help if you could try to ask seven people within 10 days to sign up.  Got this magic number from a Netflix documentary.   This will help my mailing list to grow and sustain my motivation to write these

Copyright © *2020* *chrisweatherburn*, All rights reserved.
*ww.chrisweatherburn.com* *Mailing List Letter 1 September 2020*

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chrisweatherburn

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Greetings!


Welcome to my second newsletter in which am excited to share tips to help you get the most out of your life.

It dawns on me that there is a real skill to be able to speak well in videos. These maybe the only chance you get to pitch you point across and can potentially be viewed by millions. Useful for pre interview screening, pitching a funding requests, launching new products, explaining a concept or perhaps a small advert. Other than practice, not being afraid to try and fail I wondered what other things are available to help you. Then I stumbled upon the fact that the ‘teleprompter’ technology, the stuff that newsreaders use is freely available to anyone who owns a smart phone or a computer.

For example here is a free teleprompter website for a computer and one for android.


The advantages of using a teleprompter are that you will not miss points that you planned to include and you can change the speed the text runs. This means you can get adjust to your speed of speech and predict the time your videos will take. Although, using this does mean you need to make a script, set it up and get used to reading to the camera it is probably worthwhile. Will let you know a benefit of writing a script in a future newsletter (teaser alert!).

To make it look like you are not reading a script try putting the text small so viewers won’t see your eyes dart around as much. Works well at the top of a smart phone just below the camera. Certainly am no expert at using this, having solely made one video but think it is definitely worth mentioning to others to consider using and I certainly plan to use this again in future. Now when I look at lots of professional videos it is clear to me they use teleprompting.

It is worth considering not using teleprompting and instead solely making videos spontaneously such as this one. Would be interested to know which you feel looks better.

As always have been reading, or more accurately listening to audiobooks. Particularly enjoyed reading about different ways of becoming a genius the main concept to highlight is called ‘satisfies’. Unlike perfectionism in which multiple revisions are required, satisfies is doing things to a satisfactory standard but being prolific. By putting out a lot of content one of your things may actually be very good. In addition it is always worthwhile reading about negotiation, remember the first goal of negotiation is to know exactly what you want, then attempt to create value by assessing what both parties want. If what both parties want is different then there is a chance you can come to a good compromise.

Will leave you with a thought that Above &| Beyond have just celebrated 20 years of producing awesome Anjunabeats music. It is my belief this group are a true inspiration and demonstrate that if you work on something you love, together with a shared goal then persistence can indeed pay off. In addition Above & Beyond adapted to changing times and now utilise social media to it’s maximum potential. Certainly an inspiration to all.

Hope that helps, have a great October!

Copyright © *2020* *chrisweatherburn*, All rights reserved.
*www.chrisweatherburn.com* *Mailing List Letter 2 October 2020*

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Dear Friends,

As clocks have moved backwards, the short benefit of the extra hour in bed has been replaced with dark evenings and numerous virtual
meetings.

I realised in these current times it is of paramount importance to be able to use a screen recorder. Some are easy enough to use but lack great functionality and several have a watermark printed on the screen. Having tried a few I sincerely believe that OBS (Open Broadcaster Software) is excellent, available for Windows, macOS and Linux. Free to download and the functionality certainly has more than what you could hope for. Main sponsor is Twitch which is also a great if you want to do live streaming or watch world class DJs performing in their kitchens as clubs
are shut.

Plan to utilise screen recording to make a few instructional educational videos with ‘nuggets’ of wisdom, here is an example in which I am demonstrating the desktop version of BMJ Best Practice.

Recently I had the pleasure of presenting about the topic of Negotiation to the Scottish Digital Health and Care Network. The full presentation can be viewed here (warning it is 50 minutes). To summarise the key to negotiation is to firstly be clear about what you want. Be sure to listen, take the time to understand what the other party values and try to put yourself their shoes. With preparation you can understand their proclivity, aim for win – win situations in which value is created for all, being a nice person also helps! 

 

With Christmas coming up, and lockdown ongoing would urge you to consider using a Cashback website to earn some money back when you purchase things online. A cashback website is a website that you visit first then click the store such as eBay through the website prior to making
your purchases. The one I use is 
Quidco and here is my referral link which currently states you would get £5 cashback for signing up, it is free and may give you some extra coins 🙂

Tweet of the month


Hope you all enjoy whatever it is you are doing at the moment, even all those virtual meetings!

Until next time,

Chris

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chrisweatherburn

www.chrisweatherburn.com

Newsletter – No 4 December 2020

Dear Friends,

People ask me why am I doing this?

The honest answer is to share knowledge which I believe will help people. In addition it is about learning, my learning to be specific which provides some motivation.

Getting this website off the ground has enhanced my knowledge of:

Available applications

Computers in general

Mailing list management

Marketing

Screen recording software

Social Media

Presentation skills

Video production

Website development

Unlike lots of scientific disciplines in which one does things aiming for a certain outcome am really doing this to just see if it works and hope that what I share people find useful.

Tweet of the Month

Have thought a bit about social media and looked at several ‘viral’ Twitter posts – it is interesting to note that a popular post may have tens of thousands of likes and retweets but the person who made the initial Tweet gains very few followers. Have attempted to go in with an open mind and engage with some people who have very different views from me. It is fascinating how argumentative some people are, using absolutes and being clearly wrong but not willing to change their views. That is fine, let them be.

In real life perhaps some would describe these people as ‘toxic’ or perhaps they would be too busy looking at their phone trolling someone. I have come to think of a ‘toxic’ person like a boulder rolling down a hill. You can’t really change the rock rolling downwards, perhaps at best you can steer it in the right direction.  Due to gravity if you are not careful you may potentially be crushed and severely injure yourself by attempting to stop this.

You may recall Sisyphus, a figure from Greek mythology who had the eternal punishment of rolling a boulder up a hill, so be easy on yourself.  At times it is better to simply step out of the way and simply observe rock’s descent. At one point I do plan to get a photo of a boulder rolling down a hill for my office at work!

In the past I found social media is useful to organise events, however given a certain pandemic that has been difficult this year. Spirits are lower than usual at this magical time of the year. So thinking about happiness, if you want to improve yours – one tip is to stop reading the news. We must be very mindful about what news we expose ourselves to, given the brain’s negativity bias. The brain has a tendency to remember bad things more than good things as well as a recall bias in which it is easier to recall something we have heard recently. Therefore it is important to fill yourself and surround yourself with uplifting things.

On that note will wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year 2021!

Chris

 

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Copyright © *2020* *chrisweatherburn*, All rights reserved.
*ww.chrisweatherburn.com*

A new year is a great time to set new challenges for yourself and strategically assess how your life is going and plan what you want to achieve. Am an advocate of new years goals rather than resolutions. It tends to be good things happen as a result of goals, for example a few years back I challenged myself to undertake every group exercise class in my local gym. Had thought wouldn’t enjoy these but it turned out I enjoyed them all, now incorporating these classes into my day to day routine. To be honest didn’t really feel in place in Aquarobics, being the only man and probably the only person who was not retired but everyone was always welcoming. Some people may not try new things as they perceive others are watching and judging, this is called the ‘spotlight effect’. The truth is most other people tend to have their focus on themselves rather than looking out for people to judge.

Remember, passions grow out of action, so take action and experience new things.

My challenge have set myself this year is to proactively start my own YouTube channel username ‘MegaCW007’. The main content will be uploading will be VLOGs summarising key learning points from books that I read. Really am looking forward to this learning journey. Feel free to check it out, like and subscribe 🙂

Tweet of the Month

A new years resolution to stop something can mean you may expend your mental energy on not doing something rather than being in the moment and enjoying the thing you are doing. If that is what you want to do good luck, but would suggest trying to replace the thing you want to stop with a behaviour you want to do to so you can use your energy focusing on this. It is hard to achieve flow state if you are depleting your energy not doing something. Make it easier to do the desired behaviour and harder to do the one you want to stop, this taking batteries out of a TV remote and putting your gym bag in your car. The fact that gyms are not going to be open for awhile does mean that deliberately incorporating ways to prompt a healthy routine is even more important now than ever.

Flow state is when you are living in the moment, being able to completely focus on one task, this is what mindfulness is based on and what living life to the full is all about. Learning to ski as an adult is an example in which I had to use my absolute focus on the moment, to not fall over and is a way of inducing this flow state. Learning skiing was also a great way to meet good friends. Have heard a similar thing said about riding a motorbike, in which when the visor is down it is your absolute focus. Have never driven a motorbike and have no plans to do this, it is not because I don’t want to meet ‘bikers’, I believe every person is potentially a wonderful individual that can teach you something. Am using this example to point out that stereotypes tend to be short cuts in decision making, which although can be handy, but the downside with these generalisations is that they can lead to a culture of ignorance and racism. Personally plan not to drive a motorbike and stick to a car purely for safety reasons.

Social media is what we are turning to for entertainment as further lockdowns occur. The opportunities are enormous however if you seek validation by comparing yourself to others then you may face a hard time. My suggestion would be to engage and learn with others, collaborate and help others. If you are competing with others on number of followers it is bound to end in misery as there is always a bigger fish. There are websites when you can simply buy someone else’s account with lots of followers. In addition results may occur many years after you start something with persistent effort, when you don’t make an immediate gain compared to others it is too easy to stop.

So will leave this January Newsletter wishing you all well and suggesting you practice gratitude about what went well, this will help you in all aspects of your life!

My VLOG of the month

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Dear Friends,

Hope that 2021 is going as well as it can for you all.

At the moment in the United Kingdom there is a national lockdown so it is extremely important that  we look after ourselves and find useful things to occupy or minds with.  As I mentioned in my last newsletter, am planning on making 50 videos on YouTube this year summarising books.  If you have any books that you recommend would love to hear from you, please get in touch!

This challenge provides me with the opportunity to learn more about video editing and have found that OpenShot is an excellent bit of open-source software, simple and powerful, it is free to download.  In the past I played a DJ game in which you constructed your own music moving blocks around, never would have predicted that almost two decades later those skills are coming in handy.  To me, this is an example that if you always take opportunities to learn over time you never know when the skills you have learnt may help.  There is always a chance they will compound into greatness.

Tweet of the Month

An interesting study I read about was titled Envy on Facebook: A Hidden Threat to Users’ Life Satisfaction, this shows that ‘passive following (on Facebook) exacerbates envy feelings, which decrease life satisfaction.  This is challenging as many of us are looking to social media to cope with lockdown life.

One of the challenges of starting up a YouTube channel and a mailing list is that inevitably you then comparing to more successful people which can be demoralising.  However it is important to have metrics to determine if you are being successful and certainly you can learn from others.   Equally being aware that we are all unique is important to remember when comparing metrics to others, the VLOG below highlights this.

My VLOG of the month

Thought provokingly would like to introduce the concept of types of thinking from Neuro Lingistic Profiling (NLP).  If you think in first person you may appear self-centred, second person too accommodating, third person at times too cold.  Being aware of this empowers you to be able to alter your thinking pattern to help analyse a situation from a variety of viewpoints.

Will leave you with this one challenge, try to think  ‘behind every behaviour is a positive intention toward you.’ this will help you practice gratitude.

Until next time, take care,

Chris

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Dear Friends,

If you have never thought about how to best deliberately use your mind and optimise the way you think, it is worth taking a few moments to reflect on this. A book that I have read suggests you are your mind, which is separate from your brain.  At times your brain can provide unhelpful thoughts. If you intentionally direct your attention you can improve the your thinking. I summarise a book ‘You Are Not Your Brain’ in some detail which recommends the following steps to help reduce unhelpful thinking:

Step 1: Relabel—Identify your deceptive brain messages

Step 2: Reframe—Change your perception of the importance of the deceptive brain messages

Step 3: Refocus—Direct your attention toward an activity or mental process that is wholesome and productive

Step 4: Revalue—Clearly see deceptive brain messages as something to dismiss, not focus on).

Remember you speak to yourself more than anybody else!

Tweet of the Month

This light hearted Tweet resonated with me as it summarises the challenges of home schooling and is a good example of actively looking for humour in day to day life.

Regarding YouTube am well on my way to my self-imposed challenge of summarising 50 books this year.  Have been putting out quite a few so selecting my video of the month is harder!  Have opted for this book, Principles by Ray Dalio, a fairly dry book that has a lot of useful learning points.  I summarise it in just over 11 minutes and hopefully have removed the need for you to read this fairly dry book yourself!

YouTube Video of the Month

 

If there is a book that you would like me to summarise please get touch, will consider it!

Until next time, take care,

Chris

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